Third party pressure arises when a customer or client instructs an employer to remove a particular employee or employees from their site or form servicing their contract. It is often the case in such scenarios that the customer or client will threaten to withdraw their business unless the employer removes the employee or employees in question. This may occur when the employer provides services to a client and employs people to work on behalf of the client, sometimes on their premises. Examples include security guards, cleaners, secretarial staff etc.
Because of this relationship clients may from time to time request than an individual be removed from a job in accordance with their contract with the employer. In such circumstances the employer will need to investigate the reasons for such a request. The employer may seek to appease their client by informing them that they will take disciplinary action where the employee in question has committed some sort of wrongdoing e.g. where a security guard had fallen asleep on duty or where a has not adhered to cleaning frequencies.
If a client maintains their stance that the employee(s) be removed and the employer does not have sufficient grounds to terminate on conduct or capability grounds, then alternative steps will need to be taken to ensure that alternative work is provided. This could be on another contract with potentially different hours and on a different rate of pay. If this is not possible then, notwithstanding the fact that the employer does not have conduct, capability or redundancy reasons for dismissing the employee, the employer may be able to justify dismissing the employee with notice on the basis of third party pressure.