There are some common HR issues that most businesses with staff will face. Many businesses trust these issues to an HR professional, either in-house or outsourced. And that is often the right approach.
The Equality Act 2010 makes it against the law to discriminate against a person who has a protected characteristic. These characteristics include sex, religion, or age. Discrimination can occur anywhere but as HR consultants, we’re specifically talking about protected characteristics in the workplace. This blog explains the protected characteristics, how discrimination can occur, how employers can avoid discrimination, and how Metis HR can help you stay compliant. Protected Characteristics In The Workplace Formed to replace separate anti-discrimination laws with one easy to understand Act, The Equality Act 2010 provides people with legal protection against discrimination in the workplace and wider society. 9 protective characteristics are set out in the Equality Act 2010. These are: age disability gender reassignment marriage and civil partnership pregnancy and maternity race religion or belief sex sexual orientation Workplace Discrimination As mentioned, the Equality Act protects people at work as well as in society. Workplace discrimination disputes arise when an employer has acted unfairly towards an employee, or potential employee based on a protected characteristic. Discrimination isn’t always intentional, and employers can inadvertently discriminate against employees or potential employees. If this isn’t picked up until it is too late it can sever trust with employees, damage […]
Causes of Conflict Some people do not ask for help during conflicts at work because they are not always aware there is a problem or do not know when to ask for mediation. Conflict can arise in organisations because of miscommunication, misunderstanding, cultural differences, choice of language, poor leadership, ineffective management styles, unclear roles and responsibilities. As well as workplace issues creating conflict, work colleague’s personality types and personal issues are added to the mix at work, which can also create or exacerbate a conflict. Things like: personal problems at home, marital issues, cultural or gender differences, family problems, abrasive or submissive personalities (for instance, some personalities become annoyed with quiet, withdrawn type characters and others are fearful of loud or aggressive characters), some people are insensitivity to others feelings and what may seem trivial to one person could be a huge issue for another. Personal disappointments, coupled with unmet needs and a whole host of negative emotions, like guilt, fear or jealousy over promotion can also add to conflict. There are many emotions that are not directly related to work, but which people bring to the workplace that can cause conflict. The CIPD survey Managing Conflict at Work found […]
Employers are worried about using Mediation and Settlement Agreements. The introduction of employment tribunal (ET) fees has changed the balance of power between employers and claimants. It has had a significant impact on employees’ willingness to make claims. Employers spend an average of 19 days of management time dealing with individual ET cases. Larger organisations with more than 250 employees spend 20 days dealing with individual ET cases. While organisations with fewer employees spend around 12 days. CIPD (2015) Recent legislation has only a limited impact on employers’ approaches to managing conflict. However, there is growing support for an alternative dispute resolution. Try something different to the usual formal discipline and grievance processes. Employers are beginning to use informal methods when attempting to dismiss staff. Employers are beginning to use mediation and settlement agreements as a means of terminating employment. The majority (56%) of employers asked in a recent CIPD survey that they feel settlement agreements are a useful mechanism for removing an underperforming employee without the need to go through an unnecessary and time-consuming performance management process. Employers are making increased use of mediation, and other forms of alternative dispute resolution, to resolve workplace issues, but many HR managers […]
Are there winners and losers in the Grievance process? Or is everybody a loser? ‘Just put a grievance in’, is a very common response by employees who are having difficulties with a situation at work. Especially, if it’s to do with a difficult working relationship. ‘Just put a grievance in’, shows a complete lack of understanding for what putting a grievance in, actually involves. By the time an employee gets to the point where they feel they have no option other than to ‘just put a grievance in’, it’s likely that they have had months of negative emotion about a situation. The situation will have likely kept them awake at night. Or been their sole topic of conversation at home and at work for some time. It will be distracting them from working as productively as the organisation would wish them to. And may even have resulted in them taking time off sick to avoid the situation. Resolving this situation is highly unlikely to have winners and losers in the Grievance Process. The employee’s grievance will most likely involve at least one other employee. The person that they are aggrieved against. That person may be oblivious to the situation and […]