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Managing Performance Pages

Managing Performance – Home

Managing Performance – Stage 1

Managing Performance – Stage 2

Managing Performance – Appeal


The performance capability hearing is Stage 3 of the procedure.


Who attends the hearing?

  • The chair of the hearing who must be a senior manager at third tier level or above.
  • The line manager who has been managing the employee’s performance.
  • The employee.
  • The employee’s companion if they wish to be accompanied. This should either be a work colleague or trade union representative, but not a spouse, partner or legal representative.
  • An HR Adviser to provide procedural advice and guidance.


An invite letter must be sent to the employee.  Please find below the template for this:

Invite to capability hearing letter

You must also attach the capability report.


What if the employee cannot attend the hearing?

All reasonable steps must be taken by the employee to attend the hearing. The employee will be informed in the letter inviting them to the hearing that if they fail to attend without good and sufficient reason, then it is likely the hearing would proceed and a decision made in their absence.

If the employee is unable to attend because his/her companion is not available on the proposed date, the employee can suggest another date which must suit everybody involved and be no more than 5 working days after the original date. Otherwise, the employee will need to select another companion to accompany them at the meeting or attend the meeting unaccompanied.

Should the trade union be unable to provide representation within 5 working days of the original date, this should not delay the process.  It can be insisted that the pre-arranged meeting go ahead as planned.

In exceptional circumstances, consideration can be given to a trade union representative or work colleague attending the hearing on behalf of the employee, to present their submission, where the employee is unfit to attend and where they agree to this in advance. Alternatively, the employee can choose to provide a written submission.


What happens at the hearing?

The employee must be given an opportunity at the hearing to provide a full response as to why they have been unable to achieve and maintain a significant improvement in their performance at work.

The chair of the hearing must consider the employee’s explanation alongside the evidence submitted by the line manager

The chair of the hearing must make the determination as to whether the employee is capable of undertaking and fulfilling their role. Their options are to dismiss the employee on the grounds of lack of capability, extend the review period or return the employee to normal monitoring.  Please find the relevant template letters below:

Dismissal Letter

Outcome of Capability Hearing – extension

Outcome of Capability Hearing – successful Letter

Further details on the steps to take in a capability hearing can be found in the Managing Performance guidance document found on the main Managing Performance page. 

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