There are many reasons why a Team Member may need to be offboarded: perhaps they’ve decided to resign, their fixed-term contract has ended, or you as our customer no longer require our services or that of the Team Member.
Whatever the reason may be, it’s important to know and follow the correct offboarding process for the market in which the Team Member operates. As your global employment partner, we will help you handle these situations correctly to ensure a smooth and compliant transition, protecting both your company and Oyster.
This resource outlines how the employment relationship works, why it’s important to follow the proper process for termination, and how we can work together to ensure it’s always handled in the best possible way.
Relationship between the different parties
First, let’s review how employment works between the three parties involved: you as a customer, the Team Member, and Oyster as your global employment partner.
When you engage a Team Member through our platform, it means that Oyster (or a local partner) becomes the employer of record. In other words: your company partners with Oyster; Oyster employs and manages the Team Member; and the Team Member provides services to your company. The hiring, paying, and ongoing care of your Team Member will always flow through Oyster, and the Team Member’s services to you will continue for as long as you continue with Oyster.
It’s important to remember that Oyster (or a local partner) is the employer of the Team Member. That’s why termination has to be handled by Oyster, and cannot be done by the customer directly. The same applies to resignations, which must be addressed to Oyster.
The risks of incorrectly handled terminations
When Team Members are engaged through Oyster, it is always done in compliance with the local employment laws and regulations of the country where the Team Member is located. Every country has its own rules around employment contracts and terminations. For instance, there might be a minimum notice period before letting someone go. There might be financial obligations, such as severance pay, payment for unused annual leave, and so on.
In instances where Oyster must offboard a Team Member providing services to you, it's crucial that we do so in compliance with local law—and we need your help to get it right. If we don't, it could expose you and Oyster to unnecessary risk, including allegations of unfair dismissal or unfair treatment, which could cost time and money for both you and Oyster. In addition, any public dissatisfaction expressed by the Team Member could result in reputational damage to you and/or Oyster.
Following the correct process means we will work together to ensure everything is handled appropriately, avoiding all unnecessary risks.
The proper process for offboarding
The offboarding process begins with gathering information. Once you initiate an offboarding request, you can view a high-level walkthrough of the offboarding process and we will follow up with you with more details.
After informing you about our process, Oyster or the local partner will reach out to the Team Member to initiate the offboarding process. Sometimes the process is relatively straightforward once Oyster has spoken with the Team Member. However, there may be instances where the termination proposal requires negotiation or extra consideration. We will keep you updated and will reach out to you to discuss the situation or request with the goal of finding an amicable, compliant solution. Once all parties have agreed on the way forward, Oyster will prepare the paperwork for signatures.
Oyster's terms and conditions require the customer to provide 30 days' notice prior to terminating a service agreement. Keep in mind that in some cases, local laws may prevent Oyster from terminating employment in less than 30 days. We aim to complete the process in three to four weeks (after we have received our 30-day notice), but how long it takes might vary depending on the details of the particular situation.
Things to keep in mind
In addition to the process outlined above, here are some important things to remember regarding terminations.
First, be sure to inform Oyster as soon as possible, and share as much detail as possible. We require 30 days’ notice as outlined in our terms and conditions, the only exception being situations of gross misconduct. If the situation concerns poor Team Member performance, loop us in as soon as possible. It can be helpful for us to start recording feedback early so we can handle things in the best possible way. Do not speak to your Team Member about offboarding without talking to Oyster first. Remember that as the employer, it’s Oyster’s responsibility to handle the termination.
Secondly, remember that there will likely be costs associated with offboarding. Depending on the Team Member’s country, there might be requirements for severance pay, payment for unused annual leave, etc. Talk to our team to find out the details of potential offboarding costs for your specific situation.
Finally, at-will termination is rarely an option around the world. Offboarding takes time and effort, depending on the jurisdiction and the Team Member in question, so always provide advance notice so we can work with you to set up a strategy and approach for handling the situation.
By working together, we can find the best solution that will work for everyone involved and avoid unnecessary legal risk.
Further information and support
For more information about notice periods, probation, and different offboarding scenarios, see Managing Team Member offboarding.
To learn how to initiate the offboarding process on the Oyster platform, see How can my company notify Oyster about a termination?