Reporting a workplace issue

At the University of Newcastle, your wellbeing is taken very seriously. We have a procedure which will provide you with the best possible support so that we can all work in a respectful environment that values diversity and inclusiveness.

The Promoting a Respectful and Collaborative Workplace: Resolving Workplace Concerns or Conflict Procedure (PDF, 216KB) takes a risk management approach to the resolution of conflict. The procedure empowers staff members to proactively manage their relationships in the workplace and resolve workplace concerns as early as possible and at a local level.

Resolution pathway

If you have a workplace concern, including bullying, harassment, discrimination or interpersonal conflict, the Promoting a Respectful and Collaborative Workplace: Resolving Workplace Concerns or Conflict Procedure (PDF, 216KB) should be utilised. This pathway can empower you to resolve the issue early and quickly. It is important to note that this pathway is not necessarily a linear process. The pathway is illustrated in the resolution flowchart (PDF, 109KB).

If you have a workplace conflict or concern, you are encouraged to speak with your supervisor or manager in the first instance. They will help you plan a constructive conversation with your colleague.

If you do not wish to speak with your manager or supervisor about your concern, you are encouraged to speak with your Human Resource Business Partner who will initiate the conflict resolution process.

If you feel comfortable, speaking directly with the other people involved can be a really effective way to resolve your concern. You may want to ask your supervisor, manager, or Human Resources Business Partner to be present at the conversation.

A constructive conversation between you and your colleague should:

  • describe the specific behaviour or circumstances that is causing concern
  • describe the effect the behaviour or circumstance is having on you or your work
  • give your colleague the opportunity to ask questions and respond
  • state your desired outcome

If you do not feel comfortable having a conversation directly with your colleague or if the conversation has been unsuccessful, you can consult any of the following people for advice and a possible strategy:

One of these people will help you resolve the issue locally or help you make contact with the relevant UON service.

If the issue cannot be resolved locally, it may be escalated to a triage process. In consultation with your supervisor or manager, the relevant Human Resources Business Partner (PDF, 32KB) for your department will consider the best approach to find a resolution and may provide a summary of the issue to another member of the UON Officer Group. An Officer will be actively involved in directing the triage process and is there to ensure you are better informed about your choices and feel supported.

The UON Officer Group will conduct an objective assessment of the issue in order to determine the best pathway for resolution. They will work with you and the relevant Human Resources Officer/Advisor to:

  • identify who is involved
  • work out what the desired outcome is
  • direct a resolution pathway based on the desired outcome
  • identify whether the issue should be referred to an alternative system for resolution, for example a complaints resolution pathway (see below).

A formal complaint may be made if you are not able to resolve your issue by any other means, or are concerned about how a process or procedure of the University has been applied.

If you have any questions about how the University works with you to resolve issues and complaints, what a formal complaint is and how we can help you, please review our Complaints and Grievances process page.

Reporting fraud and corruption

If you suspect, or become aware of any fraud, corruption, misconduct or maladministration in relation to any aspect of the universities operations, this is a matter of public interest and you have a responsibility to report it.

Reporting fraudulent or corrupt practice is also known as ‘whistle blowing’ or making a public interest disclosure (PID). The university does not tolerate corrupt conduct and takes any reports of such behavior very seriously. You need to follow PID policy and the associated reporting processes that are in place to protect and support whistle blowers. These processes are different to those outlined above on this page.

Reporting through the correct channels will ensure you are not disadvantaged for raising your concern. To be afforded this protection, it’s important you report your concerns correctly.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.