What are grievances?

A grievance is a concern, problem or complaint raised by an employee against their employer.

It is ideal for an employer to have a grievance procedure in writing, commonly held within the staff handbook, contract of employment or held with additional company policies to help you manage this situation fairly and without delay. Contractually, you must ensure employees know who they should apply their grievance to and how they should make this application.

As a manager or a business owner, you may have to encounter a grievance issue or complaint. It is important to successfully handle this to maintain continual running of your business and fair treatment to all staff.

Typically a grievance process will consist of a number of stages including investigation, hearing, and possibly appeal.

Why do grievances matter?

If a grievance procedure is contractual and not handled correctly, the employer may be liable to receive a claim from an employee for breach of contract. If an employee feels like they have to leave the company due to consequences or actions from their grievance, then they may claim constructive dismissal. There could also be a risk of an employee claiming unfair dismissal and further consequences to consider such as a breakdown of relationship of mutual trust and confidence between the employer and employee and loss of morale.

How can we help you with grievances?

We can support in these situations by advising or guiding you through the process. This could entail the investigation, holding a hearing and managing the outcome.

We can provide the essential documents, offer recommendations going forward, provide training and development, review your policies and ensure the decided outcome is fully understood.

If required we can conduct the necessary meetings at our offices to provide a neutral offsite environment, to minimise employeee stress, workplace disruption, and maintain privacy.

Alternatively, our team are experienced to act as external investigator and explore the issue impartially and quickly, leaving you to focus on managing your business and staff. Should there be an appeal against the outcome, we can provide a second experienced consultant to run this so as to maintain impartiality.

Lastly our experienced trainers can work with you to enable you to feel confident should a difficult situation arise again.

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