Made.com staff taking legal action over ‘appalling’ Zoom redundancies

Staff at Made.com are taking legal action against the collapsed retailer after being told they were losing their jobs with immediate effect over Zoom.

About a dozen employees have instructed law firm Aticus to pursue the legal challenge after being made redundant on Wednesday, despite the business being bought out of administration by retail giant Next.

It means that staff could receive eight weeks pay in compensation, capped at £571 a week, if the claim is successful.

The furniture retailer’s collapse will result in hundreds of job losses, with administrators PwC confirming 320 redundancies on Wednesday.

Aticus Law said that it is “appalling” that companies had not learned lessons from the P&O Ferries scandal earlier this year, which saw nearly 800 employees lose their jobs with immediate effect and replaced with cheaper agency staff.

Mohammed Balal, an employment law specialist at Aticus Law, said: “It’s absolutely appalling to think that nothing has changed since the collapse of P&O earlier this year, when the way the redundancy process was managed made headlines both here in the UK and further afield.

“Despite the concerns raised about the rights of employees to fair consultation over redundancies, it would appear that the employees at Made.com are the latest to be let go with immediate effect as their employer enters into administration.

“Given that the brand has been bought but not all of the people will be retained, many staff members will have had their lives turned upside down, and they are no doubt feeling anxious and concerned about the future.”

He said that staff members have the right to hold the company accountable for the way in which it announced redundancies.

“Under current employment law, if a business is making more than 20 employees redundant at one establishment, they must follow the correct consultation process.”

Mr Balal said he was expecting to get a flurry of calls in the next few days after a dozen staff came forward after being made redundant over video platform Zoom.

The law firm will pursue a Protective Award claim against the online retailer, which is compensation awarded by an employment tribunal if an employer fails in its duties.

Mr Balal added: “The Protective Award is a vital safety net for so many families in fast-paced redundancy situations that often leave them with no source of income and absolutely no notice.”

People hoping to receive the payment must list their names and job titles as part of the claim, and cannot “watch from the side-lines” while former colleagues take the legal challenge forward, he said.