HR & Employment Law Insights

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Breaking nearly all of the HR working directives, failing to observe health and safety, and forcing long and inhumane working conditions on his staff, could this person be the worst employer in the world?

Despite being very much loved by everyone around the world, those who work for him could well have a very different opinion of his working practices and constant demands for nothing less than the best.

We are sure you are asking yourself, ‘who is this terrible employer who flouts all the employment laws and fails to take care of his staff? It’s someone you’ll all be very familiar with: Santa Claus.

Here’s a look at why you should be very happy that this festive season you don’t work at the North Pole.

Hazardous working conditions


There’s absolutely no indications that Santa pays any regard whatsoever to ‘elf and safety’, with all his attention focused on the objectives, he completely ignores any mishaps that could occur along the way.

Santa’s sleigh is clearly overloaded with presents, and that bag of gifts doesn’t seem to be secure in any way – and have you ever seen Santa wearing a seatbelt? Let’s not even start to discuss how fast he needs to travel in order to cover the globe in just one night.

It’s not just about Santa’s safety. The working conditions in the factory seem to be dubious at best, with toys stacked up everywhere causing a number of possible work accidents. This also restricts workers from essential fire exits. We think it is the reindeer who have the worst treatment, forced to land on slippery roofs with no steady footing. They also have to wait while Santa delivers to each house. It’s just a matter of time before those poor creatures suffer an injury during their working hours.

Failure to plan and delegate


With so many households to deliver to, there’s a huge pressure on Santa’s employees to get everything ready on time. However, with children in bed when Santa arrives, there’s no reason why the big man couldn’t enlist some temporary help. This would reduce pressure on the elves, creating a much less stressful environment.

Complying with the working time directive


In the countdown to the big event, the elves are put under a lot of pressure to send out all of the toys for children all over the world. However, Santa’s workers have the right to refuse to work for longer than 48 hours in any given week. It is very doubtful that given the time constraints, the elves are given the opportunity to assert their rights.

For Santa himself, he’s an accident waiting to happen. With roughly 200 million square miles to cover, the 24-hour delivery period is a mad rush and there’s no sign that Santa takes a break. While his commitment to the cause is admirable, there is no indication that he rests for at least 11 hours in the 24-hour period, nor take any breaks. Unless you count drinking milk and eating cookies at each stop.

Failure to Innovate    


Think about it: Santa is such a magical entity that he manages to visit around 200 million children in a single 24-hour period, has a factory with elves in and has reindeer that can fly – yet still refuses to update his methods of delivery.

As an employer, Santa’s method s of production is still entirely manual, forcing the elves in to hard labour to produce the goods.

Surely with all his powers and magical prowess, Santa could have come up with a more effective way to deliver presents, reducing the strain on his workers.

This year when you’re unwrapping your presents under the tree, just remember all the work and effort which has gone in to the production and delivering the goodies…and thank your lucky stars that you don’t work at the north pole!