Managing an employee grievance can be an incredibly time-consuming task. While some complaints may be addressed informally, others may call for a formal procedure. In some cases, grievances may escalate into a disciplinary process or uncover another issue.
No matter the nature of the grievance or degree of support required, we offer a full range of Employment Law and HR solutions to help you tackle these difficult situations confidently.
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How we help
Make light work of employee issues
Respond to employee grievances the right way and prevent unnecessary strain on management time with our pragmatic Employment Law and HR support.
From setting up a grievance procedure to holding a hearing and managing appeals, we’re here to walk you through the process so that you can resolve issues quickly, compliantly and with minimum disruption to your business.
- Ensure best practice with advice from a dedicated team of Employment Law experts
- Set out your approach to employee complaints with a robust grievance policy
- Save time with bespoke document drafting and expert-created templates
- Not confident or time-poor? Let us conduct the investigation, hearing and appeal for you
- Protect against claims with our optional, FCA-regulated Legal Expenses Insurance
Acas Report Claims Disputes Cost Employers £1,000 Per Employee
Grievance Guidance Note
6-Step Guide | How to Expertly Handle Workplace Grievances
Reduced management burden, quicker resolutions
Dealing with an Employment Tribunal can be an incredibly unnerving and time-consuming process. Our team of specialist litigators can look after you, and your case, throughout the life of a claim.
Your dedicated adviser will deal with all the other parties, take care of correspondence, and draft all your documentation to relieve you of significant time pressures and offer peace of mind. If you have taken Legal Expenses Insurance, we will liaise with the insurers directly on your behalf and keep them updated. We can advise you as to prospects of success based on our years of experience in defending claims brought against companies, and, where possible and appropriate, explore settlement and negotiate terms that are acceptable to you.
We will also liaise with Chambers to find and instruct a barrister who will represent you at the hearings, and work closely with them to ensure seamless representation throughout. We will do everything we can to advance your case and take the stress out of an already stressful situation.
Can an employee withdraw a grievance at work?
Yes, a grievance can be withdrawn by the complainant at any time.
How can I resolve workplace grievances?
It’s important to have a grievance procedure, set out in your Employee Handbook, that explains how any workplace complaint should be resolved, whether that be on a formal or an informal basis. A formal procedure will usually involve meeting with the complainant to discuss their grievance in detail, investigating the complaint before giving an outcome. It is also best practice to offer the right of appeal.
Can I ignore a grievance?
This would not be a good idea. If someone has complained about their treatment at the hands of a colleague or manager, ignoring the problem will not make it go away. In fact, it will probably make things worse. If the complaint is not dealt with properly, it could lead to a resignation and then a constructive dismissal claim or, depending on the subject matter, a claim for discrimination.
What is the Acas code of practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures?
Acas have set out procedures which should be adopted by all employers when dealing with a disciplinary or grievance issue. It involves investigating any issue, holding a meeting with those involved, providing an outcome and offering the chance to appeal. If an employer fails to comply with the Acas Code of Practice, it can lead to employees receiving uplifts in compensation of up to 25% following a successful claim.
What is the grievance process at work?
Most companies will have a grievance procedure set out in their Employee Handbook. If not, they should follow the Acas Code of Practice.
What should I do if an employee raises a grievance against me?
Refer to your Employee Handbook to determine the process you should use. If there is no handbook or procedure, then you should refer to the Acas Code of Practice. If the grievance is against you personally, you should refer it to a colleague to independently investigate.
How long should a grievance investigation take?
That will depend on the subject matter of the grievance or how many allegations are made. There is no legal time limit on how long the investigation should take and the Acas Code of Practice says that an investigation should be completed within a reasonable time frame.
Can you provide grievance training?
Yes. Our Grievance & Disciplinary training course has been designed by HR specialists to give managers and supervisors the skills and confidence needed to manage these essential processes. It can be delivered exclusively to you on site or at a location of your choice.
Explore our fixed-fee Employment Law support
Explore our fixed-fee Employment Law support
Advice LineFast, pragmatic, commercial. Our Employment Law & HR advice line gives you and your managers access to truly unlimited advice on all of your people-related challenges, from the seemingly straightforward to the most complex.
What sorts of things can you advise on?
HR matters come with the territory when you run a business or manage an organisation and we’re here to help you through it all. Whether you’re battling absenteeism, struggling to manage an underperforming employee or need help navigating a complicated exercise like redundancy, we can walk you through the steps required to handle the situation appropriately.
Is everything dealt with through one team?
Yes. All of our advisers are qualified legal professionals or on the road to formal qualification, which means a full range of employee issues can be dealt with within your dedicated three-person team. In the event that you’re presented with an Employment Tribunal claim, we will conduct a full handover to our Litigation Team so that they are well equipped to defend you.
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Why choose us?
Experts in Employment Law & HR
At WorkNest, we’re known for our bespoke service and the quality of our support. Not only is our expertise unmatched, but we take the time to know you so that we can function as a true extension of your team.
- Your own small team of dedicated experts
- Commercial, pragmatic advice tailored to you
- Bespoke contracts, policies and handbooks
- Trusted by over 35,000 organisations
- Recognised as a leading firm by the Legal 500
Who you’ll be working with
Executive Director, Privacy International
WorkNest supports our 280 staff members with Employment Law and Health & Safety and has provided quality management training too.”
Head of Service Delivery, Catalyst Choice
We get a great deal of comfort and satisfaction knowing that we have support as and when we need it, in a decisive and responsive way.”
Group HR Director, Culina Group
We moved our legal support to WorkNest (formerly Law at Work) having previously used a time and line law firm. It was important, though, that an all-inclusive fee structure did not come at the expense of quality. Thankfully we’ve been delighted with the service we’ve received from WorkNest.”
What we recognised in WorkNest is the background that they have. They are able to supply knowledge and experience in a number of disciplines, which enables us to develop our business in a way that’s safe, to do it on time and with a quality to it.”
Director of Human Resources and Health & Safety,
Bluestone National Park Resort
Chief Executive, The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust (JRCT)
As the company started to get larger, we knew we had to protect our employees and our contractors both onsite and in the offices. WorkNest is exactly what we needed to move the company forward.”
Operations Director, Beaverfit
Pineapple have worked with the team at WorkNest (formerly Law at Work) since 2003, and we have built a trusted partnership together. We particularly like WorkNest’s concise and practical advice concerning employment law/HR issues and also appreciate their totally supportive approach in all areas of health and safety.”
Pineapple Dance Studios
I’ve taken WorkNest into every organisation that I’ve worked with. I’ve introduced them to many teams and many colleagues and referred them with absolute pleasure because I genuinely trust in the service that we get.”
People Director, The Works
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