The newsletter for all employers and managers of people

Rapport: Would you like a Fairness Policy?

Dear Reader

Happy New Year. May your workforce and therefore your business, prosper harmoniously.

This is our first in a new style of monthly newsletters from HR & Diversity Management Limited. You are being sent this as you either previously subscribed to the old newsletter or have requested this new Newsletter. It may be that you feel someone else in your organisation, such as you HR team, may also be interested in Rapport. If so please forward or pass it to them.

The new format newsletter will bring you aspects of employment law and new legislation; case studies where we have carried out successful work; aspects of our TIM product set; and news about the development of the National Bullying Helpline, that we currently fund.

To start the year, we would like to offer you a FREE Fair Treatment Policy that embraces diversity and equality legislation and starts off with an Anti-Bullying and Anti-Harassment policy. All you have to do is click here to confirm your subscription to this newsletter and we will send you a copy of the Fair Treatment Policy by return.

Best wishes,


TIM - a product suite that addresses Training, Investigations and Mediation


Every organisation has a ‘Duty of Care’ to its employees. It is your line manager’s responsibility to fulfil this duty of care for all of their direct reports. It covers recruitment, inductions, performance management, capability and conduct and is a fundamental and essential tool to the key aspects of successful line management.

Too often a newly appointed ‘First Line Manager’ will have received little or no training in the ‘people management’ aspect of his/her new managerial role. Many new managers are not even aware that they have a level of responsibility under Duty of Care for staff on their teams. One manager was dismayed when a Tribunal Chairman awarded a financial penalty of £7,000 against him personally for failing in this key area. His ignorance of the law had cost him £7,000 of his own money!


Over the last 5 years we have worked extensively and successfully in both the Private the Public sectors, mainly with County Councils and the NHS. We have designed a 20-step Investigation formula that enables us to get to the very heart of a dispute and provide you with a complete dispute resolution remedy, acceptable to both employees and employers. As part of the TIM product suite we are able to train HR teams and line managers to conduct their own in-house first stage investigation.


The 3-step dispute resolution laid down in The Employment Act 2002 is highly complex and confrontational. By April 2009 the Act will be replaced with a less confrontational set of statutory procedures which employers will be required to follow. The soon to be announced new employment laws will feature a mandatory requirement on employers to work with external help-lines and mediators as part of a complete dispute resolution approach.

ACAS generally gets involved in proposing mediation after a Tribunal has been alerted and at the tail end of confrontational, internal, phased meetings. We believe that it is important to ‘nip it in the bud’ and address potentially contentious issues at a much earlier stage – to avoid unnecessary disruption in the workplace. Mediation can provide a fast, economic return to productivity and the status quo with staff who may have been employed for a long period of time, and who currently could be lost to the organisation.

We’ll be telling you more about TIM over the coming months and how you can build a happy, loyal workforce.

The National Bullying Helpline

The National Bullying Helpline (NBH) is dedicated to resolving workplace behavioural issues. Since the untimely passing of Tim Field and the demise of the very active Bullying Adviceline he so successfully ran for many years, NBH has incorporated Tim’s activities with our work. We now respond to both employees and employers seeking free advice.

Many public sector organisations recommended that anxious employees rang the Bullying Adviceline, since Tim often provided solutions that resolved issues before they became grievance oriented and certainly without involving litigation and its inherent costs.

NBH now incorporates the same free helpline advice – again it is our objective to eradicate bullying, harassment and all forms of discrimination in the workplace.

Please invite your employees to call NBH on the helpline and we will try to resolve the issue as quickly as possible to regain workplace harmony. If it would help, please contact us on 0845 22 55 787, speak to Christine Pratt and she will send you a poster and answer any questions you may have.

To do an even better job we need urgent funding and would be pleased to talk to you if you believe that our efforts in reducing bullying in the workplace are worthwhile and you would like to sponsor the charity. Please call Christine Pratt on the helpline 0845 22 55 787.

How Can We Help You?

We received this testimonial from the past Pharmacy Director of a leading NHS Trust in London where we carried out two pieces of Investigation work last year. Mike Cross wrote:

“I just wanted to thank you for the two pieces of work that you carried out for me as head of this department.

As a line manager it is difficult to deal with people who have borderline performance, make notes about everything that happens to them and are disruptive behind the scenes. They take a long time to come to the top of the list and when they do the situation is complex. Of course it is always better to prevent such situations progressing but I suspect that most managers with a large number of staff and years experience will recognise the scenario.

I now recognise what a fantastic resource your company provides when such matters occur. In both cases, which had different outcomes, your approach was to work and focus towards a satisfactory outcome rather than producing a report of what was happening and walking away.

I am happy to provide a reference for you if needed.”

Thanks Mike, it was our pleasure!

So, having read this first edition of Rapport if you would like us to help you regarding workplace issues - please just call us on 01793 338888 and ask for David Pratt.

January 2008