Falkirk Council places great emphasis in having a well-motivated workforce. We encourage open and honest communication at all levels. There will be occasions, however, when you may feel aggrieved either about a condition of employment matter or the way in which you have been treated.

The Grievance Policy aims to encourage open communication between you and your line manager to ensure that problems arising during the course of your employment can be raised and, where possible, resolved quickly and to the satisfaction of all concerned.

  1. Table of contents

Raising a grievance informally

In many instances, a grievance can best be resolved in an informal manner by raising this in discussion with your Line Manager, or in writing. This will allow both you and your manager to seek to resolve the grievance as speedily and effectively as possible. This approach is encouraged as it facilitates effective management and good communication between employees and line managers.

In some cases, where you have submitted your grievance in writing, an independent line manager may be involved to seek an informal resolution without progressing to a formal hearing. This option would be facilitated by Human Resources, with a view to agreeing a resolution.

Another option, where you have been unable to resolve the issue informally in discussion with your own line manager, is to consider the use of an independent third party to help resolve the issue. This may involve an independent mediator. If all parties concerned wish to make use of third party intervention, this should be notified to Human Resources who will be responsible for making appropriate arrangements.

This approach is not appropriate for grievances relating to contractual terms and conditions.

Raising a formal grievance

Stage 1

If despite any informal attempt to resolve the grievance, you remain dissatisfied, you have the right to submit the grievance to an appropriate more senior manager within 5 working days of receipt of the outcome. This must be in writing (using the form below) and must:

  • specify your reasons for raising the grievance
  • confirm whether informal approaches have been unsuccessful or were not practicable
  • indicate the resolution sought.
Notification of grievance and grievance appeal form

If you are a trade union member, your trade union may be able to assist you with completing your grievance form.

The relevant manager shall formally acknowledge receipt of your grievance and will either:

  • determine that, depending on the nature of the grievance, an investigation is required prior to any hearing. In such circumstances, you will be advised in writing if this is the case
  • consider it appropriate to explore whether there is an opportunity to resolve the grievance by informal means. In such circumstances, they will contact you and/ or your representative to agree a way forward; or
  • arrange for a hearing normally within 5 working days of receipt of your letter.

You would be formally notified of the outcome of the hearing within 5 working days.

Stage 2

If the matter is not resolved to your satisfaction then you have the right of appeal to your Chief Officer/Director within 10 working days of the receipt of the written outcome of Stage 1. This must be in writing using the appeal form below and must specify the grounds of your appeal.

Notification of grievance and grievance appeal form

The Service Director/ Chief Officer will make arrangements for the appeal to be heard.

Prior to the appeal being heard, if it is expressly agreed between the parties, Human Resources will arrange a meeting to mediate the matter. This process should occur within 10 days, unless there are exceptional circumstances. If this process is unsuccessful, then your appeal will proceed to a formal appeal hearing.

Following from the appeal hearing/mediation you will be formally notified in writing of the outcome within 5 working days.

This is the end of the grievance process unless the matter is related to the application of a non-discretionary National Condition of Service. This relates to nationally determined Conditions of Service which do not allow for any discretion or local determination on the part of the Council.

Stage 3

Where your grievance relates to a non-discretionary National Condition of Service, you may be able to progress an appeal to the Appeals Committee of the Council.

Appeals only progress to this stage if you have pursued either or both the mediation and the hearing outlined in Stage 2.

Any such appeal must be submitted to the Chief Governance Officer within 10 working days of written notification of the outcome at Stage 2 and must clearly specify:

  • the reasons for the appeal and
  • the appropriate Clause of the National Conditions of Employment giving rise to the appeal.