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A disciplinary procedure could be instigated by the University if there are concerns about an employee’s conduct or behaviour.

We have two formal disciplinary procedures in place, one for Grades 1-5 and another for Grades 6-9, to help and encourage colleagues to improve when their conduct or behaviour is unsatisfactory.

Before taking formal disciplinary action, we will often raise the matter informally with the person. However, on some occasions, a formal disciplinary procedure will be followed in the first instance.

What next?

Line managers are responsible for dealing with problems as they arise, and this is usually done through one-to-one discussion, coaching, and counselling.

If this does not successfully resolve the situation, formal disciplinary action may be invoked in consultation with the Employee Relations team and a disciplinary investigation undertaken.

Following an investigation, a disciplinary hearing may follow and one of the following sanctions could be given depending on the seriousness of the misconduct: verbal warning; first written warning; final written warning; dismissal.

If you need advice and support, in the first instance speak to the Employee Relations team or your People & OD partner. You may then be required to complete a referral form. Each form is confidential and triaged by colleagues within People and Organisational Development.

Frequently asked questions

I am a line manager. What is my responsibility?

Line managers are responsible for communicating and encouraging the required standards of conduct or behaviour. They are also responsible for the preliminary investigation of any concerns about conduct or behaviour and for any private and informal counselling of those judged not to be meeting the required standards.

Line managers will also be required to participate in formal disciplinary action such as investigations and hearings.

I am being investigated. What does this mean?

The purpose of an investigation is to determine if there is a disciplinary case to answer. Investigations will normally be carried out by your line manager unless the circumstances require an independent investigating manager to be appointed.

If, following the investigation, the investigating manager decides that there is a disciplinary case to answer, you will be asked to attend a disciplinary hearing.

You will have the option to bring a colleague or Trade Union representative with you to formal meetings.

You have the right of appeal against any formal sanctions issued.

I have been called as a witness. What does this mean?

When carrying out a disciplinary investigation, the investigating manager needs to obtain as much relevant information as possible on what happened, where, and when. This may include conducting interviews with witnesses and/or obtaining written statements from them.

If the investigation concludes a disciplinary hearing should follow, you may be required to attend the hearing as a witness and your statement will be presented to the person who is subject to the allegations.

If you feel reluctant to provide evidence for an investigation. Speak to the investigating manager or a member of the Employee Relations team. In confidence, they will explore with you why you feel reluctant to give evidence, provide reassurance, and seek to resolve any concerns you have.