Introduction to this document

Grievance procedure

Your grievance procedure should play a crucial role in how you deal with staff complaints. Use our procedure to set out the steps that an employee with a grievance relating to their employment should take, but be aware that they can still issue employment tribunal proceedings against you even where they don’t follow your grievance procedure in first raising their written complaint.

A fair procedure?

Your aim should always be to resolve disputes with employees internally. Grievances are concerns, problems or complaints that employees raise with you. You should use a Grievance Procedure to deal with these complaints. Proper use of this procedure will enable you to deal with problems before they develop too far - often into constructive dismissal claims. At the very least, you must set out your grievance procedure as part of the employee’s written statement of employment particulars, although it can be contained within your Staff Handbook and it can be made non-contractual and therefore not legally binding. Our employee grievance procedure ensures compliance with the general provisions of the Acas Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures. Our procedure anticipates that the employee will first try to seek to resolve their issue on an informal basis with their line manager but, if this does not work, they should raise it formally in writing which will then trigger the operation of your grievance procedure. This will involve the holding of a grievance meeting with the employee, notifying the employee of the outcome and of the right of appeal against your decision and then holding a grievance appeal meeting at a higher level of management should the employee appeal against your initial decision.

Employment tribunal claims

Employees are able to pursue a tribunal claim whether or not they have first raised a written grievance with you about the subject matter of their claim (although they must notify Acas under the Acas early conciliation procedure before they can lodge employment tribunal proceedings)