The employer should offer the employee the right of appeal if they are not happy with the outcome.
The employee could appeal on a variety of reason, but they tend to be on:
The procedure was not fair
The outcome was wrong, not fair or not reasonable
An employee has appealed against the outcome of a grievance they have raised, and one of your managers is in the frame to chair the appeal hearing.
The Grievance Appeal Hearing Procedure
Once the employee appeal the outcome of their grievance, the employer should arrange to hold an appeal meeting within a reasonable time ideally within 5 - 7 working days.
The employer should allow employees enough time to prepare for the meeting and inform them that they have the right to be accompanied at the meeting.
The employee must choose their companion from one of the following:
A work colleague
A trade union representative
An official employed by a trade union
It is also good practice and under discrimination law the employer needs to consider a disabled employee’s request to bring someone else for additional support, such as a carer or family member or friend as a reasonable adjustment.
Who hears the grievance appeal?
The person who hears the appeal and carries out any further investigation should be:
Someone not previously involved in the grievance
Someone more senior than the individual who carried the initial grievance
This might not always be possible, especially in small businesses, but the employer should try and make the process as fair as they can. This may include the employer bring in an external consultant.
The grievance appeal hearing must be fair and well-conducted and below are a few key steps to follow:
Introduce – it is good practice to introduce everyone present and explain their role and that this is a formal grievance hearing. If no one is accompanying the employee, explain that they were offered the right.
Explain the process – it is good practice to outline the procedure and how the hearing will run.
Grievance - invite the employee and/or their representative to explain their grounds for the appeal and why they disagree with the outcome and what resolution they are seeking. Also request they for any supporting information and evidence. Allow them to raise any point and ensure they have raised everything they wanted to.
Close the meeting – Explain what will happen next and give an approximate timescale for the investigation to be completed.
Make a record of the meeting – it is vitally important that a written record is keep of the meeting and ask the individual to confirm and agree the notes from the meeting.
What happens after the grievance appeal hearing meeting?
The employer must now undertake further reasonable investigation if necessary before deciding on the outcome of the grievance appeal.
Should the employer outsource a grievance hearing?
Any grievance investigations and the outcome from those investigation should be achieved after following a fair, thorough, and timely process.
There are times when this is difficult to accomplish within the business due to a lack of resources, experience, and someone independent. This is when the use external specialist investigator can be the best and most cost-effective option saving management time and it ensures that the grievance is handled promptly and independently.
If you need support with carrying out a workplace investigation, our consultants are highly experienced, please do contact us.