Chairing Disciplinary Hearings & Leading on Subsequent Appeals
When the outcome of an investigation shows that the employee has a case to answer, they should be asked to attend a disciplinary hearing, as soon as possible. A flawed disciplinary hearing is one of the main reasons that employment tribunals are found in favour of the employee, so it is crucial that you get it right, first time.
It’s not always easy to allocate a hearing officer from within your organisation. For that reason, we offer external support to ensure the highest levels of objectivity and impartiality. Our world-class consultants offer support at all stages of the process, including:
- Chairing the Disciplinary Hearing
- Leading subsequent appeals
- Carry out a further investigation, where needed
External Support for Chairing the Hearing
When a case is received, we will allocate an expert consultant to your case. They will report to your commissioning manager to review all the current evidence, including the investigation report, appendices and associated evidence.
At the hearing, our allocated hearing officer will conduct a full review of the evidence. A note-taker may also be present. The misconduct or performance issue will be explained to the employee, who will then be provided with a safe and empathetic environment to set out their case, respond to the allegations, ask questions, and provide any additional evidence (including further witnesses.)
After the hearing, our hearing officer will carefully review the case, and provide an outcome, in accordance to your grievance and disciplinary (or other appropriate) policies.
A Fair and Reasonable Outcome
Our hearing officer will remain objective and review all available information, prior to making a decision as to whether they have a genuine belief that there is a proven case to answer. They will then make a decision on what the most appropriate outcome should be, based on what they believe is both fair and reasonable. They will draw upon their experience, to take into account what has been done in similar cases in the past.
Our recommended outcomes may include:
- Demotion of the employee to a role with a lower level of responsibility
- An informal warning
- A formal, written warning
- No action should be taken (for cases where it Is clear that there isn’t a misconduct/ performance issue.) This will end the disciplinary procedure.
Assurance that the Process was Correct and the Outcome is Fair
Every employee has the right to appeal the outcome received at the disciplinary hearing. This can happen when they feel that the outcome is too severe/ wrong, if they believe the process was conducted unfairly, or when there is new evidence to show.
By law, the person carrying out the appeal must not have been previously involved in the case. For many organisations, this means that external support is essential.
Our expert consultants can also lead the full appeals process. They will undertake a thorough review of the processes that have been carried out, alongside the evidence involved. In some cases, we may recommend that the investigation is carried out again. In these cases, we can allocate an expert TCM investigator, who will deliver a fair, rigorous and robust assessment, ensuring that no gaps are left.
Ensure your Internal Staff are Equipped to Chair a Hearing
Our half-day Chairing a Hearing course is designed for senior managers and HR professionals who are required to chair disciplinary and appeal hearings.
The course will equip delegates with the background, knowledge and skills to chair a hearing in a confident, and competent manner. Key learning outcomes include:
- Preparing for a hearing
- Planning & conducting the process
- Reviewing documents to reach a fair and reasonable outcome
- Delivering the outcome
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