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Clawing Back Training Costs


My organisation is currently looking at a policy for the claw-back of training costs for employees who leave within a certain period of completing a course.

We already have a policy for employees who undertake further education or professional study, but its now being considered for all courses.

Would anyone be able to share their experiences of creating such policies, what type of training is covered by the policy and how long after the training any fees must be repaid.

Jo House

4 Responses

  1. Encourage dont surpress
    Sounds like you could be facing a whole can of worms if you implement such a policy.
    Recouping payment for professional and eductional courses undertaken at the behest of an individual request is one thing, imposing final sanctions and deductions for mandatory training imposed by the body corporate is quite another.
    Why not just face the facts of life..turnover does happen
    provide the opportunity for the traininee to use the new skills and see what effect that has.

  2. Repaying costs
    There is a long exchange of views on this on the CIPD web site:
    Rather than replicate everything in that discussion you may want to take a look.
    For others, here is what I said there:
    I think a ‘clawback’ clause can be useful in situations where the company pays for a major qualification only for the individual to leave shortly after completing. Some organisations see this as an inevitable risk or, in the public sector, as an investment in UK Plc. However, it can be useful to have the choice to clawback as a disincentive for those who might abuse the system. And, after all, you can aways waive the clawback where circumstances warrant it.
    There are, however, some legal nuances around such a system, so seek legal advice. Some people will tell you that it is not possible to take money back from final salary, or if the person disputes the clause you would lose. Nevertheless, a clause can be carefully crafted to fit within the law (eg by giving them an advance of salary for them to pay for the qualification and then writing off that advance after two years). But do seek advice.

  3. Clawing Back Costs
    We have a system in place whereas staff who approach for help with costs for qulifications/expensive training are required to payback some of these costs up to 1 year after the qualification is received, as we are a charity this protects our investment.

    However we do not try and “clawback” for training that WE set as compulsary ie 1-day courses etc.

    Interestingly our employment law advisors did say we would be perfectly legal to go down this route for all training – but we would rather encourage than discourage staff. Hope this helps. I have a sample form that staff sign if this would help.

  4. Training Costs
    As a rule the organisation I work for do not expect staff to pay back compulsory training, ie, Induction training etc. However we do claim back from employees costs that we have incurred for professional and NVQ qualifications, the level of qualification dictates the qualifing period for repayment.

    We have this written into our contacts, clearly stating what we can and can’t claim back, and I also make every staff member read and sign a training agreement, so they know exactly where they stand.

    You could also look at having the training funded, there is loads out there for basic skills, NVQ’s and professional quals – and this can vastly reduce your traing costs. For example the company I work for where payiny £1200 for an NVQ at level 3!, I approched a local college, agreed a delivery package with them, and I am now paying £275.00 per person for the same course.

    Hope this helps!!


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