With outsourcing, a business process is transferred from one organisation (the customer) to a third party (the provider), which allows the customer to concentrate on its core competencies. A good example of this would be a business that hires a specialist to take care of all their IT and data storage needs.Outsourcing usually allows a relationship to build between the customer and provider, and when their services are required, the mediators have a deep understanding of the nature of the business, and also have an existing relationship with the employees.
A common strategy
Many companies outsource mediation, as all parties are more comfortable when a neutral third party facilitates negotiations. Not only that, conflict management involves special skills and many companies do not have any personnel that are qualified to undertake such a diplomatic role.
Disputes come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from a delay in a process, from one or more party, to a disagreement over working conditions or pay. Industrial action can be very costly, so it makes sense to end any conflict as soon as possible, with the minimum disruption to productivity.
Identifying performance failures
A major cause of industrial conflict is performance failure, so to be able to identify exactly where this occurs is the key to solving the problem. The problem might lie in one party claiming that certain services are included in the price, while the other party is adamant that these costs are not included in the original agreement. If the negotiations reach an impasse, it is time to call in the mediator, who, after careful consideration, will try to find a suitable agreement that all parties accept.
Breach of contract
This is very often the cause of a conflict, so the terms and conditions of any business agreement should be clearly stated, with both parties signing the document, which can avoid issues later. A contract should cover every eventuality, and be clear about which party is responsible.
Court proceedings are expensive, so by using a professional mediator, you can save a lot of time and money by bringing the matter to a successful conclusion, without the need to go to the law courts.
Some larger organisations prefer to send selected staff members on mediation training courses, which empower the employees to deal with conflicts in the workplace. The training enables people to listen with empathy, and identify the causes of the conflict, which facilitates a satisfactory outcome for all parties.
These associations exist to protect workers’ rights and ensure they have safe working conditions, yet they can also be very aggressive when pursuing their goals. An experienced mediator is often required to avert work stoppage, which could cripple a large manufacturer.
The professional approach
An expert mediator will know exactly how to get the best results from any conflict situation, and will always have the best interests of the customer in mind, making sure that the company can return to normal as soon as possible.