Regardless of what your dispute is about it really is always better to employ some sort of mediation services to help you resolve the matter. The benefits are multiple and one that comes to mind immediately is saving time and legal costs. Mediators can really help mitigate a conflict reaching the courts of law and we know how costly and timely this process can be.
In basic terms when two opposing sides have and issue that they were not able to resolve by simply talking to each other, it’s best to find a mediator who can assist in bringing the dispute to agreement and ultimately resolution. One crucial condition is that both conflicting parties are willing to sit at the round table and negotiate with the presence of a mediator.
Mediator’s task is to gather as much information as possible before calling the meeting to order and then open up the gathering by explaining the workplace mediation process in which he or she does not have the authority to make any decisions nor force either conflicting parties to a particular outcome. They’re merely there to – mediate! They are then to allow each person to talk and express their point of view, how they see the issue and what their grievance is with the other person.
Australian Government’s so called Fair Work Ombudsman has a free and confidential mediation service and according to them, eight out of ten people successfully resolve their issues quickly and easily using mediation process. The assistance from their mediation services can be requested by either an employee or the employer and only if it hadn’t already been resolved. Most disputes happen due to the breakdown in communication and mediation is the right way to get both parties talking.
Mediator’s role is to not to judge or provide legal advice or take sides; it is all about being impartial and talking to people with disagreements to find workable solution that both sides are happy with. Fair Work mediation service is conducted over the phone with a group discussion where parties express their viewpoint and their particular pain points. You are allowed to have a support person like a family member, a friends, interpreter, lawyer, union or some other workplace association. For more information you can go to their website http://www.fairwork.gov.au/mediation
If the work dispute is between two employees then the dispute resolution process can take a place in the workplace itself not requiring the services of professional and qualified mediation specialists. The role can be filled by a manager, a HR person or even another individual contributor, another employee.
Should the grievance exist between an employee and the company and it wasn’t resolved by internal negotiations involving human resources department, this could signal a good time to employ the services of workplace mediators. You will find that some law firms will have dedicated facilities for mediation services and one of those legal firms is McArdle Legal. McArdle has a whole floor dedicated to mediation and are ideally located in the heart of Sydney CBD.
There are obvious advantages of having employment lawyers mediate your workplace issue as they know what is possible further down the track if the matter ands up in the courts so they can help set appropriate expectations which in turn increases the chances of resolution without entering the court system.