Assisted Problem Solving

This online policy content is provided as a resource for the students, faculty, staff, and administration of Dickinson College. Content is subject to change. Please contact the appropriate person or office to obtain the most current information.

Dickinson College seeks to promote and maintain a work environment that provides for the full and satisfying performance of their duties. However, the college also recognizes that there may be occasions in which work-related concerns or problems arise that cannot be resolved in the normal day-to-day interaction with peers and supervisors.

Employees who believe that college policies have been inappropriately applied to them or who encounter situations in which they have work-related problems with other employees or visitors that require intervention by the college, or in which they have problems with the work setting itself that have not been resolved, may use these procedures. The college encourages employees to seek answers to work-related questions and concerns. Certain matters, specifically limitations included in the college benefits, job classifications, compensation and non-work related issues or concerns are not subject to procedures beyond general inquiry. Additionally, reports or concerns of discriminatory harassment should be made in accordance with the specific reporting procedures set forth under the "Eliminating All Forms of Discriminatory Harassment" section of the Administrator and Support Staff Handbook.

With other concerns, as a first step, an employee is encouraged to direct a particular work-related problem or query to another appropriate department administrator, for example a second-level supervisor or the senior office for his or her division. Alternatively, an employee may contact HR Services, which will attempt to answer the questions and advise the employee on how to resolve problems in the most appropriate and timely manner. To the extent consistent with the need to gather facts and try to assist in facilitating a resolution, employee communications relating to concerns with a member of the college's employee assistance program (EAP) if they wish to discuss the issues confidentially with someone outside the college. The college encourages early discussion of problems and concerns in accordance with the above informal process so that there is the potential to resolve concerns when they first arise and where any resolution can bemost efficient and effective.

If an employee has a concern that he or she feels will not be adequately addressed through the informal grievance procedure, the employee may file a formal grievance. The grievance must be in writing and submitted to the employee's supervisor and HR Services. If the employee is not satisfied with the determination of his/her supervisor and HR Services, he or she may seek to address the matter further in writing with the appropriate dean, vice president, department chairperson or director. If the employee is not satisfied with that determination, the employee then may seek further consideration by presenting his/her concerns to the associate vice president of HR Services. The decision of the associate vice president of HR Services is deemed the final decision of the college.

In order to assure that prior discussions relating to concerns or grievance do not become stale, a formal grievance should be raised within ten days of the conclusion of the informal procedure, and any further consideration should be sought within ten days of the final determination at the prior level.