how to handle employee complaints

In this case, the policy of always following the chain may result in continued harassment and legal liability for the company. HR complaints can be challenging to navigate, both for employees and HR. But by utilizing these tips, you’ll be better equipped to successfully file or manage an HR complaint, whether you’re on the employee or the Human Resources side. And this can help lead to effective resolutions, and the best outcomes all around. Make sure your employees understand that they won’t face any repercussions for filing an HR complaint — no matter who the complaint involves.

If your health plans leave your workers with limited coverage and high deductibles, you may find them skimping on healthcare, thereby increasing the number of days they’re out of the office sick. Get expert advice on every topic you need as a small business owner, from the ideation stage to your eventual exit. Our articles, quick tips, infographics and how-to guides can offer entrepreneurs the most up-to-date information they need to flourish. Employees need to know if they’re doing something wrong so they can improve. The supervisor is responsible for correcting work-related problems and seeking the help of appropriate offices or persons when necessary.

  • In other words, “If an employee files a charge of discrimination or otherwise complains about workplace practices, treat the person as if the charge had not been filed,” Gamlem said.
  • State Update Overview Date Updated October 2019 Labor Law Update The Wisconsin Labor Law Poster is now updated with a new employment insurance policy.
  • Tell the person who submitted the grievance what steps you plan to take.
  • The employee is responsible for timely submission of complaints within the established guidelines of this complaint procedure.
  • To prevent discrimination lawsuits, employers will sometimes fire that person with a group of others so that they can claim it was for economic reasons.
  • Ask, “What do you mean when you say that your manager is always watching you?

To prevent discrimination lawsuits, employers will sometimes fire that person with a group of others so that they can claim it was for economic reasons. Another risk however, is that you may treat the symptom but not the cause; there may be other involved employees who go undiscovered as a result. Sometimes a disgruntled employee will go to the press with a problem that they’re having but Guerin notes that employees usually do that because they feel they weren’t taken seriously. Letting them know you will handle their concerns quickly and fairly can forestall a media disaster. Kelly adds that, in his experience, “most employees don’t want to do a hatchet job on their employers,” rather they want to see their problems solved to everyone’s benefit.

Review Of Supervisor’s Decision

Conflict resolution, improved communication and teamwork, improved retention of the right employees, and heightened morale. Thank your employee for bringing the issue to your attention.

how to handle employee complaints

This has the added benefit of encouraging reports of future problems by demonstrating your proactiveness. At a smaller company it may be easier for the CEO to just call a general meeting, but you would want to consult a lawyer to make sure you don’t violate the privacy of the employees involved in the complaint. No matter how attuned you are to your workforce, there are details you will miss, and unfortunately those tidbits of information are often the ones you can least afford to overlook. That’s why smart business owners set up a formal mechanism for employees to report problems, whether the complaint happens to be with one of their managers or co-workers, or regarding a broader systemic issue. Once your team has agreed on a solution to a certain problem, make that solution the company policy that applies to everyone. People can point fingers at managers or coworkers, saying that this or that decision is unfair.

You may want to say that you are sorry they went through this or are feeling the way they are. This simple act helps your employee feel their concerns will be taken seriously.

Whatever you do, don’t ignore a complaint and hope it goes away. Under New Zealand employment law, employers are responsible for creating a safe and secure working environment and to take steps to ensure employees aren’t subjected to bullying, harassment, or discrimination at work. Sometimes, employees complain when they really just want to express their frustrations, but it is still important to listen to your employees and find the cause of the complaint. With the exception of serious complaints like discriminatory behavior, most employee complaints can be resolved by following HR policies. If the complaint involves a legal issue, again, consult with your attorney. You may be required to turn the issue over to law enforcement.

How To Handle Employee Complaints To Hr

Instead, simply gather the evidence and evaluate what really happened. Sometimes, all it takes is a simple conversation to clear up an issue at work. For example, your coworker might have no idea that they’re speaking loudly or sending you too many personal messages throughout the day, and talking to them might be all it takes to solve the problem. Don’t make a decision until you have obtained all the facts.

Remember that you have only heard one side of the story at this point. Promise to respond to employee complaints but avoid making promises about specific outcomes. Instead, give your employee a date when you will follow up with them, and then keep that promise. It’s important to approach HR complaints in a way that aligns with the seriousness and severity of the issue.

Categorizing Complaints

An HR Tech platform will help you stay organized, enable quick access to individual case files, provide detailed case notes, facilitate consistency and provide centralized case information. It’s never easy to deal with serious allegations in the workplace, but when someone is falsely accused of something, it’s important to handle the situation immediately.

how to handle employee complaints

Another best practice is to ensure all management and supervising staff are properly trained and knowledgeable about company policies and appropriate conduct when addressing employee complaints. For instance, it can be beneficial to your organization to require professional training for managers and supervisors that cover how to handle complaints, including serious charges like discrimination or harassment. It is crucial for any organization to focus on handling employee complaints. While many organizations tell their employees that they have an open-door policy and welcome employee feedback, it isn’t always clear what the avenues for employee complaints are. When you have a Grievance Procedure in place, make sure that this is clearly communicated to your employees.

Establish Policies For Submitting Complaints

Reward good work and make sure to specifically mention employees who have done well. Employees will feel valued and that they are contributing well to the company if their hard work is recognized. Hearing positive praise can go a long way towards making employees feel valued by your company. In addition, employees can view work they’ve done well and have been positively praised as a benchmark to aim for in all of their work.

  • Sometimes, all it takes is a simple conversation to clear up an issue at work.
  • columnist Alison Green answers questions about workplace and management issues–everything from how to deal with a micromanaging boss to how to talk to someone on your team about body odor.
  • The complaints can range from something minor in nature to issues that are quite serious.
  • Your investigation will begin when an investigator is appointed.
  • Contact UCIRO if you think you have been a victim of harassment, discrimination, or retaliation.

The procedure for solving problems in the workplace is available to all current and former employees of the Research Foundation . Fellows and independent contractors are not covered by this procedure. In the case of contractors, individual contractual agreements will cover disputes. Some complaints could have serious implications—for example, complaints about discrimination and harassment or complaints about safety conditions. It’s a mistake to think that if you run an efficient department and relate well to your employees, you’ll never have any complaints.

How Should Employee Relations Leaders Prepare For An Investigation?

You can’t always do the perfect thing every time because you’re dealing with imperfect employees. Listening and taking the time to learn about your employees are the keys to your success. On the other hand, if the complaint is about racial discrimination, you must clearly communicate that you have to investigate and that certain people will have to know.

It’s a great policy to encourage employees to solve most of their problems themselves. But if you turn people away, you’ll miss valuable or even critical information. Employee complaints run the spectrum between serious allegations that require official action and perceived wrongs with little or no substance.

  • Knowing if a space is occupied will save time and confusion.
  • Case in point, complaints about a drab office may seem inane, but may actually help address productivity issues.
  • But if it is a serious issue like sexual harassment or any other form of abuse, it is advisable to hire a lawyer and gather facts.
  • Depending on the nature of the complaint, an employee may not feel comfortable going to their boss’ boss.
  • For further information on the best practices for documenting your company policies in writing, refer to Why You Should Create an Employee Handbook.
  • For instance, it can be beneficial to your organization to require professional training for managers and supervisors that cover how to handle complaints, including serious charges like discrimination or harassment.

Make it known that the complaint has been received and that it will be addressed by the organization. You do not need to immediately provide a solution, but you want employees to know they are being heard. These can relate to any organizational rules that employees feel are being violated by other workers and/or middle or senior management. At the end of the day, a properly handled complaint has the potential to boost confidence in the company and your leadership. You would also have gained valuable information about your employee’s sentiments about their work and the workplace. Grievance Appeals Form that provides one final opportunity for the employee to pursue a grievance and investigate the reasons why the resolution of a complaint may not have adequately addressed the grievance suffered.

Best Practices For A Manager

Managers in small to mid-sized businesses may have risen through the ranks with no leadership or management training. If your manager is micromanaging employees to the point of madness, using inappropriate language, creating a sour atmosphere, or otherwise working counter to your team mission, talk to them. They may need management or interpersonal communications training. Remember, 50% of employees leave a job to get away from their manager.

Employees feel comfortable in an environment where they know that their voice is being heard. Meetings are an easy way to address multiple complaints at one time. All employees are able to voice complaints in these meetings, however, some are better discussed in private. If you are running a business and have people working for you, you are bound to receive complaints from time to time. The complaints can range from something minor in nature to issues that are quite serious.

It’s up to you to determine whether complaints are legitimate, and how you should respond to them. Another qualm of the open office concept is not having private spaces. Many employees don’t feel comfortable taking a personal call from at their desk or reading an email from a family member. Similarly, they may be having a bad day and need to get away while they work. Quiet workspaces, private meeting rooms, and discrete hot desks are all great options for those days when total focus is required and interruptions can’t be tolerated.

Five Steps To Handling Employee Complaints

Guerin gives the example of an incident that occurred in the company break room. If one employee says the event in question happened there at 9 a.m. But that nobody else saw it transpire, you go to the break room at 9 a.m. If it tends to be crowded, that person’s story begins to look fishy.

It’s important that the employee feels that they can give their complaints to someone in confidence. Employees must feel comfortable with the management in order to be able to issue any complaints. Employees need to feel that their complaints and feedback are being taken seriously and using them to improve procedures creates a culture in which nobody is afraid to complain.

Finding constructive ways to keep all of your employees happy is always better than yelling at somebody to stop their annoying habit. If somebody hates their office, how to handle employee complaints it’s more constructive to find somebody willing to switch than to either make them put up with it or move somebody else in there who might have the same problems.

If you are getting more complaints from your employees it may cause you concern that something has gone systemically wrong in your company. From a worker’s perspective, one of the worst things is feeling trapped in a dead-end job. To keep that sentiment away from your employees, establish a career development plan that enables them to keep learning and growing. This could mean giving them opportunities to try out new assignments/projects, providing them with financial support by, say, sponsoring a new course or pairing them with mentors. One solution is an Integrated Workplace Management System or a Computerized Maintenance Management System . Both platforms help facilitate better responsiveness to facility needs. Employees will know who to report issues to and once they do, the software creates an accountability string to ensure problems are fixed.