Court of Appeal (14 May 2009): The Court of Appeal held that using length of service is a lawful element to use within a redundancy matrix. Whilst this constituted indirect discrimination, it was held to be objectively justified and was not the only criteria to be used.
Where two or more employees in a surplus occupation group have the same total matrix assessment score, length of service with the Company can be the deciding factor and the longest serving employee will be retained. To reward long service by employees in any redundancy selection process, was held to be an entirely reasonable and legitimate employment policy, and one which a conscientious employer would readily and properly negotiate with a responsible Trade Union. However, employers should tread carefully in regards to employers with over five years service.