4. Mediation

What is Mediation, and Why Would You Use It?

Conflicts at work can take many forms. It might be an individual with a grievance, a problem between an employee and a manager or conflict between two co-workers. Any conflict can get in the way of work and make your business less productive. 

Having suitable policies and procedures in place to resolve workplace issues is essential. But where an issue turns into a potential dispute, a positive result can be achieved through early and informal intervention. By dealing with conflict at an early stage, it will save time, money and stress later on, for both the employer and employees and will stop the situation developing into a full-blown dispute. 

This is where mediation can be an effective solution. Many kinds of dispute can be mediated providing those involved want to find a way forward. Mediation provides a positive opportunity for people to resolve disputes, practical problems and interpersonal issues. 

The main aim of workplace mediation is to restore and maintain the employment relationship wherever possible. This means the focus is on working together to go forward, not determining who was right or wrong in the past. Improvement in the relationship for the parties involved restores a healthier and comfortable environment for them as well as others who are affected by the fallout of the dispute or conflict. 

Statistics show that mediation is successful in over 80% of cases (where undertaken). The majority of 2 party mediations are resolved in a single day. Mediation is cost-effective as it reduces or eliminates the hidden costs caused by conflict; these costs include reduced or lost productivity, sickness absence costs and cover, as well as managers and employees time lost when dealing with formal disciplinary or grievance procedures.