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Conflict Resolution

Disciplinary Actions

The goal of progressive discipline is to identify problem behavior and take corrective action.

When necessary, Employee Relations assists departments in implementing disciplinary actions up to and including termination of employment. Employee Relations assists departments with:

  • assessing the specific incident or behavior in question;
  • determining what, if any, disciplinary action is appropriate; and
  • documenting the action taken.

For assistance in any of these areas, please contact Human Resources at 865-946-8847. For more information, visit the Disciplinary Action Policy HR0525.

Mediation Services

Human Resources coordinates mediation for the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus. Mediation is a process in which neutral parties facilitate communication and negotiation to help people resolve and/or manage their differences.

Mediation is different than and separate from Disciplinary Action and/or the Complaint Procedure.

If you have a conflict you believe may be resolved through the facilitation of a mediator, please contact Human Resources at 865-946-8847.

Conflict Resolution Services

Human Resources staff is available to assist with many types of conflict resolution. We offer assistance to the campus community in the following areas:

  • Workplace conflict
  • Mediation
  • Disciplinary action
  • Grievance procedure
  • Complaint procedure

A member of the Human Resources staff is available to speak with any staff member in need of assistance in any of these areas. For more information, please contact Human Resources at 865-946-8847.

University Ombudspersons

The ombudsperson program is designed to provide an informal mediator, and the process is an alternative to university’s formal complaint and grievance procedure for staff and the administrative and Faculty Senate process for faculty. An ombudsperson does not serve as an advocate for the faculty or staff member or the university, but as a supporter of fair practices. For more information, visit the Ombudspersons website.

Complaints

A complaint is defined as an employee’s expression of alleged unfair or inequitable treatment with respect to the application of policies, procedures, and regulations which he/she has been unable to resolve with his/her immediate supervisor. For the purpose of this complaint procedure, an employee is defined as both exempt and non-exempt staff.

The following issues or concerns will not be addressed through the complaint process, as these issues have a defined mechanism to address an employee’s concerns. Those not included are: job classification, pay, workers’ compensation matters, terminations during the probationary period, terminations accomplished in accordance with the Reduction in Force (RIF) policy, court-ordered terminations, terminations for inadequate work performance or gross misconduct, and complaints alleging discrimination (including claims of racial and/or sexual harassment) in work assignments, employment opportunities, or conditions of work.

Complaint Procedure and Form

Grievances (Non-Exempt Staff)

Only matters defined as grievances in Policy HR0640 are grievable. Matters not grievable include, but are not limited to, the following: job classification, pay, workers’ compensation matters, performance evaluations, written and verbal warnings, terminations during the probationary period, terminations accomplished in accordance with the Reduction in Force policy and procedure statements, court-ordered terminations, and challenges to the content of university policy or procedure.

Grievances alleging discrimination (including claims of racial and sexual harassment) must be addressed first through the campus discrimination complaint Policy HR0220. The procedure outlined below is available to an employee only if the resolution through the discrimination complaint procedure is not satisfactory to the employee.

Grievance Procedure and Form

For more information, visit Policy HR0640 on Grievances.

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