Grievance Procedure

Individual Grievance Procedure

The aim of this procedure is to give an employee an opportunity to raise a grievance either informally and/or formally and to discuss this with their employer with a view to having it resolved.

General Principles

  • Grievances should be raised as soon as possible, to allow issues to be resolved quickly.
  • Employees should be given the opportunity to explain their grievance and how they think it should be resolved.
  • If the employee’s grievance is against their line manager they may raise the matter with another manager in the organisation, where possible.
  • The employer will ensure that the timing and location of all meetings under this procedure are reasonable.
  • As far as is reasonably practicable, appeal hearings will be conducted by a manager more senior than the manager who took the decision which is being appealed. This does not apply where the most senior manager attended the hearing at which the decision being appealed was taken.
  • Employees will be entitled (where reasonably requested) to be accompanied to any grievance or appeal hearing by a fellow worker or Trade Union Official (who may be either a full-time official employed by a union or a lay union official who has been reasonably certified in writing by his/her union as having experience of, or as having received training in, acting as a worker’s companion).
  • Employers, employees and their companions should take reasonable steps to attend grievance and appeal meetings.
  • Records shall be kept detailing the nature of the grievance raised, the employer’s response, any action taken, the reasons for it and other information relevant to the process. These records shall be kept confidential.
  • There may be circumstances where the employer and employee feel it would be beneficial to involve a third party to help in resolving the issue, through for example a process of mediation. In this instance the grievance procedure may be temporarily set aside.

Mediation is a process whereby an independent third party intervenes in a workplace dispute to assist the parties to reach a satisfactory outcome.

The Labour Relations Agency can provide a mediation service to assist the parties. Further information on mediation is available on the Agency’s website or by telephoning 028 9032 1442.

Dealing with a grievance informally

If an employee has a grievance or complaint to do with their work they should, in the first instance and, wherever possible, discuss it with their line manager. They may be able to agree a solution informally.

Formal grievance

If it is not possible to resolve a grievance informally, or the employee does not feel it is appropriate to do so, they should raise the matter formally in writing to your account manager. The written grievance should contain details of the nature of the grievance and how they feel it might be resolved.

Grievance hearing

The account manager will call the employee to a meeting to discuss their grievance. This will normally be held within 5 working days from receipt of the complaint in writing. Employees should be allowed to explain their grievance and how they think it might be resolved. The employee will be entitled to be accompanied at this meeting. Following the meeting the employer (within 5 working days) will advise the employee in writing what, if any action they have decided to take along with a full explanation of how the decision was reached. The employee should be informed that they can appeal (and to whom the appeal should be made) if they feel that the grievance has not been satisfactorily resolved.


If the employee wishes to appeal they should let the account manager know in writing stating their reasons(s) for appeal. This should be done within 5 working days of the grievance hearing decision being communicated in writing to them. Within 5 working days of receipt of the appeal an appeal meeting will take place. The appeal will be conducted by account manager. The employee will be entitled to be accompanied at this meeting.

Following the meeting your account manager will advise the employee in writing of the outcome of the appeal, no later than 5 working days from the appeal being heard. This decision is final.

Read more: