Conflict Resolution and the ACAS – What UK Employers and Workers Need to Know

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service provides a comprehensive range of products and services to its member organisations, but the conciliation part of its mission statement is perhaps the most important. Avoiding workplace conflicts and employee/employer misunderstandings is one thing, but dealing with those conflicts when they arise can be quite another matter.

The men and women behind The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) understand that not all workplace conflicts are avoidable. The ACAS further realizes that prompt action is essential when dealing with those conflicts and misunderstandings. Through its conciliation services, the ACAS seeks to mitigate the damage and help UK-based businesses and their workers overcome those conflicts in the most positive way possible.

The conciliation process pioneered by the ACAS is so important that any employee planning to lodge a complaint with the Employment Tribunal is first required to notify the organisation. Notifying the ACAS of the workplace issue is an essential first step, and the conciliation services offered are designed to make reporting to the Employment Tribunal unnecessary.

The conciliation services offered by the ACAS can also relieve het burden on the Employment Tribunal, lowering the overall cost of doing business in the UK and helping the entire economy run more smoothly. The overarching role of the ACAS is to help both sides in the conflict, the business owner and the employee, arrive at a solution that is mutually acceptable.

In addition to resolving the current conflict, the mutually beneficial solution to the problem can help prevent future conflicts. Other employees will see the conciliation process, and they will remember that conflict resolution process the next time something similar arises in the workplace.

In many cases, the conciliation services offered by the ACAS will allow the employer and employee involved to reach a satisfactory conclusion and a mutually beneficial solution to their problems. In those cases, the intervention of the Employment Tribunal will not be necessary. When that happens, both parties can benefit from less stress, less wasted time and productivity and less potential for potentially harmful misunderstandings.

In other cases, even the best efforts of the ACAS will not be able to resolve the conflict to everyone’s satisfaction. When such an impasse occurs, the ACAS will step back and allow the matter to be referred to the Employment Tribunal for final disposition. Even when the matter has been referred to the Employment Tribunal, however, the ACAS can continue to offer a comprehensive list of conciliation services. These conciliation services can continue right up until the date of the hearing, making it easier to resolve the conflict in a manner satisfactory to both the employer and the employee.

With so many services to offer UK-based employers, it is easy to see why The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service has become such a valuable part of doing business in the country. From reducing costs and enhancing productivity to resolving workplace issues in their earliest states, the ACAS is helping UK-based employers run their businesses more efficiently and allowing employees to understand their rights and live up to their responsibilities. Get hold of ACAS now with any questions you might have.

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