Employee & Management Relations (E&MR) in the Office of Human Resources (OHR) provides this Facilitated Conversations Program to encourage supervisors and employees to work together to resolve their differences informally. The University values open communication among supervisors and employees, and through this program the University provides a venue for parties to talk freely while addressing mutual concerns.
facilitated conversations (facilitation): a program offered through Employee & Management Relations (E&MR) in the Office of Human Resources (OHR). It is a structured conversation with two or more university employees, managers, or both, in order to find acceptable solutions regarding a communication or work issue. E&MR assigns trained University employees for all facilitated conversations.
Difference from Grievance-Related Programs
SPA grievance mediation: a component of the University System SPA Employee Grievance Policy. It is a structured conversation between an employee and a member of the employee’s management as a formal step in the resolution process for a grievance. The Office of State Human Resources assigns mediators for all SPA grievance mediation. These mediators, by policy, cannot be employees of UNC-Chapel Hill.
SPA grievance informal discussion: a component of the University System SPA Employee Grievance Policy. It is a structured conversation between an employee and a member of the employee’s management as an informal step in the resolution process for certain grievances. E&MR conducts the SPA grievance informal discussions.
EPA non-faculty grievance mediation: a component of the University EPA Non Faculty Grievance Policy. It is a structured conversation between an employee and a member of the employee’s management as an informal step in the resolution process for certain grievances. E&MR assigns mediators for all EPA non-faculty grievance mediation.
Additional Campus Programs
- The University Ombuds Office provides its own mediation and conflict resolution program.
- OHR’s Training & Talent Development unit works with campus managers to provide coaching and organizational development programs for University organizational groups.
- The Employee Assistance Program provides confidential consultation for both work-related and non-work issues.
The Facilitated Conversations Program is available to all university employees for addressing workplace issues.
- If an employee requests a facilitated conversation, then all parties involved must agree to participate in order for the facilitated conversation to occur.
- If a supervisor requests a facilitated conversation for one or more employees (with or without the presence of management), the employees are required to participate.
The requesting party must submit a completed Facilitated Conversation Request Form to E&MR indicating the nature of the issue and the parties involved. E&MR will contact the parties. If the request is accepted (if applicable), then E&MR will assign facilitator(s) and schedule a time and location for the meeting, generally within two weeks of the request. Some facilitation may require more than one meeting.
- If an agreement is reached, each party involved will sign a written agreement statement and will receive a copy of the completed statement. E&MR will review all agreements to ensure compliance with State policy.
- If no agreement is reached, then E&MR will provide a summary of the facilitation to the parties involved.
If you have questions about this policy, contact the E&MR Consultant assigned to work with your department.