Keys to Resolving Employment Disputes
There are many ways in which an employment dispute may occur—an employee may have been treated unfairly, the employer may face numerous complaints (which may or may not be baseless), and so on. It is vital for all parties involved to resolve these disputes in an economical manner, but doing so isn’t always straightforward.
Elements to Consider
Whether you’re the employer or the employee, there are several elements to consider when resolving an employment dispute. These include:
- Impact on morale in the workplace
- Time and resources needed to resolve the dispute vs. what’s at stake
- Disruption of workplace processes
- Amount of evidence to support your position
- Potential for future working relationships
If these elements aren’t taken into careful consideration, the results can be costly, both in terms of monetary value as well as long-term impacts. An employer may face far-reaching operational disruptions, while an employee may face difficulties with future employment.
Evaluate Your Position
In order to pursue the best possible course, it’s vital to understand the situation. Often when facing disputes, the parties involved may each feel that they were slighted. It’s common for an offended party to believe the “rightness” of their case is sufficient to ensure victory, but litigation cases aren’t often that clear-cut.
When seeking to resolve an employment dispute, it’s vital to consider your position as objectively as possible. For instance, while an employee may be in the right over an unfair termination issue, they need to have sufficient evidence to back their claim. In addition, the cause for termination may not necessarily be illegal, so it’s important to objectively consider that concept when evaluating a case.
Regardless of the dispute, it’s vital to start early. Often, expensive litigation can be prevented through careful policymaking and contract writing. For example, many employment contracts include arbitration or mediation clauses that require disputes to be handled through ADR rather than lawsuits.
In the event that a dispute occurs, prompt action is vital. If you delay resolution, it can reflect badly on you and undermine your case, and any evidence that would be used on your behalf could deteriorate. Often, the claims made in these disputes are based on memory and perception of events, and time doesn’t treat those elements very kindly.
In addition, the more time a dispute takes, the more it’s ultimately going to cost you. If a dispute is interrupting management processes, for example, it will exact a heavy toll on your company as workplace management becomes sluggish and unresponsive.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
A final key to resolving employment disputes is by opting for alternative dispute resolution. ADR methods, such as mediation or arbitration, are often far more cost-effective than litigation, and they leave room for mutually beneficial outcomes in many cases. They typically cost less, take less time, and put less strain on companies and individuals alike.
The key to ADR, of course, is having a competent third party to help with the dispute-resolution process. Legal authorities, such as the attorneys at Hart David Carson LLP, can facilitate a reasoned discussion between the two parties and help them come to an effective solution.