Employee Relations

Mediation

What is mediation?

Mediation is a voluntary and confidential method for resolving disputes in the workplace. It involves an independent, impartial person helping the parties in dispute reach a solution that is acceptable to everyone.

The main purpose of mediation is to restore workplace relationships…

Why choose mediation?

Conflict costs time and money. It affects the productivity of those directly involved, and those around them. It increases stress in the workplace and ultimately affects your bottom line. Mediation rebuilds relationships, is less stressful than formal procedures and can prevent disgruntled staff leaving your employment.

How does mediation work?

The main purpose of mediation is to restore workplace relationships. Mediators are not judges and will not try to decide the rights and wrongs of any given situation. Instead they will ask questions to try to get to the root of the problem, help the parties involved understand the underlying issues and assist them to establish options for resolving the dispute. The emphasis of mediation is always on moving forward together, not who was to blame for past disputes.

When should you consider mediation?

Generally speaking, it is best to try to resolve workplace issues through open communication and discussion between the parties involved. However, if disputes cannot be resolved, mediation will be most effective if it is employed early on in the process. This avoids the parties involved becoming too entrenched and unprepared to compromise. In fact, it may be worth considering including a mediation stage in your company’s Grievance Procedure.

Is mediation appropriate for all workplace disputes?

According to available figures, a successful resolution is reached in about 75% of the cases that are taken to mediation, so it is clearly effective. However, mediation is about repairing a working relationship and is only appropriate where the parties involved want to find a way forward. Equally, mediation cannot resolve contractual disputes or pay negotiations.

To find out whether mediation is right for your company, and how RFHR can help, get in touch.