There is a weird employment provision in all companies I have ever worked for – a probation period. They usually last 3-6 months, and may be tied to the earning of conditions of employment like benefits or RRSP contribution matching etc. The weird thing about it is that the Employment Standards Act does not recognize probation as a special term in employment. Either you work there or you don’t – meaning that if you get terminated without cause you are still entitled to the severance etc that is outlined in the act. Yeah, it is going to be tiny, but nonetheless, you can’t be hired then fired within 5 1/2 months with no repercussions to the company.
So, it is a weird provision and it also says “Hey, I haven’t quite decided about you. You’re in, but not quite really.” I don’t get to caught up in it really except when the starting of benefits is tied to it. But, I understand – getting a new employee all signed up for everything and then to find they are not quite the right fit? Costly, so probably not a terrible idea to say “We’ll see how it goes.”
My current position has a 6 month probation period – which is funny because I worked for my current boss for 3 or 4 years prior to this. So she knows me and what I bring to the table. And little was tied to coming off probation, so I didn’t concern myself too much with it at all. It also helps that I knew my boss already and that I knew whatever came up would be dealt with fairly.
The nice thing about probation is it forces a conversation when you come off probation about how things are going, how you’re feeling, etc. And after a while, you start thinking “Hello? Do you like me or not? Am I here or not?” So it’s nice to get it sewn up.
April 18th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary: