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Here at Goal Digger, we like to look out for everyone and this month we want to school you up on 90 Day Trials.  Have a quick read if you are either looking for a job, or looking to employ.

Whilst it is favourable for an Employer and an Employee to agree upon a 90 day trial period… it is only worth the paper it is written on if you have ticked all of the boxes.

If you are in the market to recruit, here are a couple of important things to cover before making an offer to your potential Employee:

  • Remember, even if you discuss a job like “Hey Bob, want to come and work for me folding letters, I will pay you $17 an hour”, that’s a job offer, even though it is verbal and very casual!  You have entered into an agreement at this point.
  • You must notify your potential employee at the time of making them an offer (in writing, please), that their employment with you will be subject to a 90 Day Trial.
  • The trial period clause must state that the 90 Day Trial is enforced from their first day of work.  Therefore their contract must also state when their first day of work is…
  • And here’s the kicker, for the clause to be able to be enforced, your potential employee must sign their contract prior to their first day of work. Not bring it in on their first day… oh no, that won’t do. Before their first day it should be back to you, signed, sealed and delivered.
  • If you are exiting someone during the 90 Day Trial period, you need to check your contract and provide the notice specified in your agreement.

Here’s why we want you to know this information. Here’s a snippet of a recent ERA case.

Failure to provide notice in writing invalidated trial period

The Employment Relations Authority found that an employer could not rely on the protection of the trial period as a result of failing to comply with the written terms of the employment agreement requiring notice to be given in writing rather than only orally. The Authority held that the notice given was not lawful notice, because it did not comply with the employment agreement’s requirement for it to be in writing.

McKenzie v Farmer Motorgroup Ltd