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Topic: Disciplinary, capability and dismissal

mediation checklist
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Mediation checklist

Mediation checklist

Assuming an employee has agreed to participate in mediation, if the mediator is in-house, he or she can use our mediation checklist to help them to prepare for and present the mediation session.


Both the mediator and you will need to prepare for the mediation session. The mediator will want to go through all the paperwork to establish the history and facts relating to the dispute.  For your part, you need to arrange where it will be held and provide appropriate resources. If the mediator is an external one, it’s up to them to make their own preparations but where the mediator is internal, they can use our Mediation Checklist to ensure they’ve covered all the bases. Our checklist covers the key areas of preparation, room set-up and points to remember in both the mediator’s opening statement and in the mediation process itself. As far as room set-up is concerned, the main room should be sufficiently quiet and private and there should be two smaller meeting rooms close by for private discussions. Have office facilities available, such as a telephone, fax machine, printer and laptop, as well as basic items such as pens, notepads and a flipchart and, of course, don’t forget to provide refreshments.

Opening statements

A mediation session always starts with an opening statement from the mediator. The mediator needs to open the session by thanking everyone for coming, introducing the parties present, explaining the mediator’s role as facilitator, explaining that mediation is voluntary and non-binding to the point of agreement, setting out the position on confidentiality and the “without prejudice” rule, describing how the process will work, setting out the standards of behaviour expected from the parties and asking them if they have any questions before the process starts. After the mediator’s opening statement, the complainant also makes an opening statement, setting out their version of events and what they want to see happen, and then the employer will make their opening statement.

Mediation process

After opening statements, the mediator needs to split the parties into separate rooms to speak to each in private. Normally, the mediator will start with the complainant. During the private meetings, the mediator will fully explore the issues listening and taking notes about the key points while refraining from providing personal opinions. After meeting privately with both sides, the mediator should bring the parties back to the main meeting room and outline the areas that have been discussed (omitting any information specified as confidential). Then, input should be obtained from each party in turn. Following this, the mediator should summarise the key points and ask the parties to confirm their agreement, highlight the common ground and set out the areas that are still disputed or otherwise unresolved. The parties can then be sent off again to separate rooms for another round of private discussions and the process continues like this until both sides ideally reach agreement.



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