The Labour Relations Agency provides an Early Conciliation service following a change in NI employment law which took effect on 27 January 2020. This service helps to resolve workplace disputes in a legally binding way, without the need to take a case to the Industrial or Fair Employment Tribunal. Click below for more information or to make an Early Conciliation notification.
The Agency has not been conducting face-to-face meetings with customers due to Covid-19, rather we have held meetings by alternative means such as video conferencing or teleconference. Our staff have in general, been working remotely and our offices have been closed to visitors. We are delighted that work is now in progress to restore Covid-secure face-to-face delivery for specific services such as Independent Appeals and Mediations. It should be noted that the pandemic created a considerable backlog in relation to these services and we therefore thank you for your patience and understanding.
Our programme of public and in-company seminars and workshops has been postponed for the time being, but we are continuing to develop and publish webinars on key topics such as Redundancy, Mental Health and Discipline and Dismissal.
The Northern Ireland Engagement Forum, which is chaired by the Labour Relations Agency, has produced A Practical Guide to Making Workplaces Safer to support organisations and workers across Northern Ireland. We have also produced a Working from Home guide and a Practical Guide to Hybrid Working.
Clear workplace policies and procedures help organisations to be productive, efficient and maintain high levels of staff morale. Ensuring that everyone knows how and why things are done is a key component in establishing best employment practice. Check out our free 'Toolkit' to create your own policies and procedures that adhere to legal requirements and best practice, and which meet the particular needs of your organisation.
When employment contracts end through resignation, retirement, dismissal or redundancy, there are rights and responsibilities for both the employer and employee.
Problems can arise in any workplace. Below are some examples, though not an exhaustive list. Employers, employees and their representatives may find it helpful to refer to the Labour Relations Agency's codes of practice, sample letters, flowcharts and guides. Our service is confidential and all our resources are free of charge to anyone working to prevent or resolve a workplace issue in Northern Ireland.
Once you are registered you can unlock our free core employment guides to help you build documents, policies and procedures for your own organisation.
There are different types of employees, including agency workers, apprentices, piece workers, posted workers and young workers. Further information on each is provided below.
Employers must provide a contract of employment which sets out the terms and conditions of employment.
When there is an issue in the workplace, employers and employees have a number of options and steps they can take to resolve it, ranging from informal conversations to formal processes and procedures.
The Industrial Relations (Northern Ireland) Order 1992 defines a trade union as “an organisation (whether permanent or temporary) which … consists wholly or mainly of workers of one or more descriptions and is an organisation whose principal purposes include the regulation of relations between workers … and employers or employers’ associations.