As an employer, you must pay special attention to your employees' needs, including grievances they have regarding workplace-related matters. Employee grievances are issues and instances that make it difficult for employees to perform their duties comfortably. Typically, employees present their grievances to management for resolution. The reasons for employee grievances may vary by employee, and will depend on the type of business you run and your company's culture.
Improperly Functioning Office Equipment
Whether there's a broken printer, computer or coffee machine, when office supplies and equipment don't function properly, it can wreak havoc on an employee's day. Employees tend to complain about ill-performing office equipment if it prevents them from accomplishing their job duties. For example, if an employee tries to print documents for an upcoming meeting, he may alert management if the machine won't print in color, or if it completely stops printing.
In a 2009 report, the International Facility Management Association revealed that an uncomfortable office temperature was the top employee complaint. From winter to summer, the temperature inside of a workplace changes. What some employees feel is comfortable, others may feel is too cold or too warm. You may notice employees adjusting the thermostat, bringing in space heaters or fans, or dressing in layers, if the temperature is one of their grievances.
Discrimination can cause employees to file complaints with your human resources department, and if these complaints go unaddressed, they can turn into lawsuits. Examples of discrimination may include a worker who feels that only male employees are getting promoted, or an employee who's offended after a co-worker tells a racist joke. Other areas of discrimination may include age, disability, equal pay, religion or even pregnancy.
Salary, Benefits and Promotion
Employees often approach their managers to discuss their salaries, benefits and promotions. An employee may not understand how the company's tuition reimbursement program works, or if he's eligible. Employees may feel that they're unfairly compensated for the work they do, or wonder why they haven't received promotions, like fellow employees. Employees may also voice concerns over their health care coverage, including high co-pays and premiums.
When employees are harassed by co-workers, they may lodge complaints with management, so the situations can be addressed. An employee may get groped inappropriately, become offended by sexual jokes, or have an employee make a physical threat towards him.
Hours and Schedule
Employees' schedules and hours are often a source of frustration, if employees feel as if they're not getting enough hours, or that they're working too many hours. Employees may also complain if they want to telecommute, but cannot, because they can't access the necessary systems from home. If employees are constantly scheduled to work during shifts they don't prefer, employers may experience a rise in complaints.
Miranda Brookins is a marketing professional who has over seven years of experience in copywriting, direct-response and Web marketing, publications management and business communications. She has a bachelor's degree in business and marketing from Towson University and is working on a master's degree in publications design at University of Baltimore.