Handling new hires who abruptly quit

Does an employer have to pay an employee who only does some training and quits before starting the regular job?
By Colin Gibson
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 10/01/2012

Question: An employee accepted a position, arrived for work, did some training, attended a meeting, left for lunch and sent an e-mail saying this job was not for her. Does our company have any recourse against this person? Since necessary documentation was not handed in, does the employee qualify for pay?

Answer: It is frustrating when a new employee resigns with little or no notice, as the employer usually feels that the resources that were invested in the recruitment, hiring and training process have been thrown away. Unfortunately, an employer usually has little in the way of meaningful recourse in this type of situation.

Sometimes an employment relationship turns out to be a bad fit, which is why prudent employers ensure that their employment agreements, collective agreements and policies contain appropriate probationary language that enables them to dismiss the employee quickly and inexpensively if she turns out to be unsuitable for the job. The termination of a new employment relationship can also be initiated by the employee, if the job does not measure up to her expectations.