1)It is the employer's decision to provide uniform to the staff to serve certain purposes as said above but not the demand of the employees.When the employer provides a facility at his own instance, it is not proper to ask the employees to pay for it.
2)The wages are paid only for doing the work and can be deducted proportionately only when there is any short fall in the normal standard of productivity of the employee either on account of absence or late coming or neglect of work etc.On the other hand uniforms are expected to improve productivity of employees because of the feelings of unity and bonding and therefore not a prudent practice to penalize him for being more productive.
3) Most of the employees who have to wear uniforms belong to junior levels of hierarchy and may not be very well paid. A deduction may cause some financial hardship.
4)The employee himself bears the cost of keeping uniform washed and pressed regularly. He bears the maintenance cost.
3) It may not help employer branding.
One question may arise as to what if an employee leaves the organisation within one month or within short period of joining, rendering the uniform waste as it cannot be given to others.This is a cost to the company. In such cases, you can make it as part of the terms of appointment that he has to bear 60% of the cost of the uniform if he leaves within a month of his joining and 50%, if he leaves within three months and 40% thereafter but before 6 months. No recovery after six months.
Other views welcome
HR & Labour relations Adviser
24th January 2018 From India, Mumbai
Uniforms are a distinctive mode of being recognised from the crowd.No wonder armed forces the world over give uniforms to their personnel.They not alone prescribe dress but gives them subsidy, monthly allowances etc
The company which wants their employees in uniform must select -suitable design, cloth type-which not alone make employee stand out but helps him in work.
Company can weigh the indirect cost of providing uniforms and intrinsic but non computable value of giving uniforms and accordingly make policies.These policies range from cost limits, periodicity to recovering cost of uniform form people who leave w/o serving a minimum period after joining.
Some negative points of Wearing Uniforms at Work:
Hampered performance: Poorly designed work clothes can result in restricted performance. ...
Dress issues: ...Type of aparrel may not suit some workers
Prevents uniqueness: ...Unique style of each person gets submerged in the crowd.
Negative reception: ...Some employee may not like this regimentation and feel they are in the Army.(IR Part)
Taking time: ...Uniforms need special care and upkeep.A dirty uniform is more noticeable and has negative value as compared to a dirty civil cloth worn by worker.
Religious sentiments:This aspect also needs to be kept in mind while prescribing uniforms.
After weighing all these issues, company can take a call.
24th January 2018 From India, Pune
Since most Cos. give it as a welfare measure & for the need of the Co. for discipline, identity etc., at work places, proposing to charge can have negative effect on morale of the employees.
Some Cos. give 3 pairs of pant & shirt. Recovery can be proposed if the employee leaves within 3-6 months of issue. Senior Members have given good suggestion. HR Dept. to see the Industrial practices in surrounding industries and implement.
HR Consultant. 25.1.18
25th January 2018 From India, Mumbai
To add one more point to the valuable suggestions given by the members above, I wish to mention that for the employees falling in the workmen category under labour laws, you can neither charge nor discontinue the uniform as it is a service condition now. However, you can introduce changes by following the process under Section 9A of the ID Act.
For others you can easily do so but not without causing resentment.
In fact this step will vitiate the atmosphere.
Why when it comes to cost Leadership of the Companies try to punish poor employees of the Company, if cost is the issue, then cut down the entitlements, facilities, salary and benefits of the top layer of the employees this way you will only a handful will suffer, also stop their hefty increments to save the cost.
25th January 2018 From India, Thane