ONE of Scotland’s leading independent employment law, HR and health and safety firms has announced an expansion to its workplace mediation services.
Empire HR, which is headquartered in Aberdeen and also has offices in Glasgow, has been bolstered by the accreditation of Catherine Wilson as a registered mediator.
Catherine’s qualification follows increased demand for the mediation services that Empire provides and she joins chartered FCIPD, Elaine Masson, as one of two dedicated specialists who deal with complex disputes, grievances, and the breakdown in working relationships between teams or individuals.
Empire works with a wide range of clients across a number of industries; including oil and gas, manufacturing, education, charities and community enterprises.
The firm established its mediation team in 2011 and the take up of its services, which offer flexibility in the times and locations for mediation meetings, has grown sharply over the last two years.
Says a spokesperson: “Moreover, in anticipation of legislative changes that look likely to see the introduction of fees for individuals wishing to make a tribunal claim, it is projected that more employers will turn to professional mediation to help iron out any difficulties before they develop into anything more serious.
“Indeed, experts have already expressed concerns that the conflict between employers and their employees who may not be able to afford the tribunal costs could escalate, causing wider disharmony in the workplace.”
Managing director of Empire, Steve Cook, said: “Catherine is vastly experienced in matters such as welfare rights and, prior to joining Empire in 2008, she worked for Aberdeen’s Citizens Advice Bureau as an employment specialist.
“I am delighted that she has completed her advanced training and her unique experience and skill set will not only be an invaluable asset to the mediation team, but also Empire more generally.”
Catherine said: “Conflict in the workplace can be extremely costly for businesses, particularly if it is not addressed early.
“Prevention is better than cure and mediation offers an informal, confidential and safe forum for dialogue between parties that can help ensure that fraught relationships do not spiral into full-blown employment tribunals.
“Ultimately, mediation is about working together to find common ground and identifying a positive way forward.
“The mediation team is registered with the Scottish Mediation Network and we continually undergo professional development training to ensure that Empire is able to provide services that are of the highest possible standard.”
Empire, which has a diverse range of clients across the UK, with employee numbers ranging from three to 13,000, offers a wide range of employment support services including employment law, payroll, training, health and safety and employment tribunals.
Catherine’s accredited training was delivered through The Mediation Partnership in Aberdeen.
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