The Director of Employee Relations works within a team based environment and plays a key role the strategy, administration, and operations of supporting the collective bargaining agreements and managing ongoing labor-management dialogue, managing complaints, grievances, investigations and other forms of conflict as well as overseeing the performance management process for union and non-union employee groups. This is a key leadership role within HR, reporting to the CHRO, to provide thought leadership as well as strategic and operational leadership in the areas of labor relations, performance management, complaint/investigations, accommodations, and overall HR strategy. This role collaborates with all levels of LAS leadership, stakeholders, and employees to create concrete, effective strategies to meet organizational needs while resolving labor concerns and needs.
Human Resources Strategy
- Maintains current knowledge of labor relations, complaint/investigation procedures, ADA accommodations, and general HR best practices; provides thought leadership on interest-based labor-management relations, employee engagement and performance strategies that increase employee effectiveness, morale, and retention
- Recommends new approaches, policies, procedures and priorities to achieve the HR mission and goals, continuously improve the employee and management experience and improve the collaboration with LAS units and stakeholders
- Understands the legal/regulatory/union requirements of workplace conflict, complaint and resolution processes and the application to day-to-day management and administration of employee cases, reducing risks, ensuring compliance, streamlining administrative processes including protocols on documenting, and retaining records
- Aligns the employee relations strategy and operational needs with budgeted resources, supporting the CHRO in identifying needs, prioritizing, proposing viable recommendations, and advocating for solutions; seeking opportunities to incorporate inclusive leadership and interpersonal practices through an anti-bias lens including but not limited to: anti-racism, lgbtq+ welcoming, gender affirming, accessibility oriented, veterans inclusive, trauma informed practices
- Establishes and maintains relationships and communication channels with senior leadership, management, union leadership, and employees across LAS to provide a high level of responsive support in relation to the employee/team performance, conflict management, and resolutions of accommodations, grievances, and complaints
- Actively engages and collaborates within the HR leadership team to provide support, identify potential opportunities or risks, and advocate for the best interest of employees
- Actively assesses and identifies sources of inequity and works with stakeholders to spotlight, analyze, prioritize, and address inequity in relation to employee conflict resolution approaches
Labor engagement, non-union employee relations, and reasonable accommodations management
- Engage with unions and act as point of contact for union organizers and delegates. Work to bridge the gap between LAS and the unions to create a more collaborative relationship; Lead and conduct labor/management meetings. Facilitate and assist with the collective bargaining negotiations process in collaboration with key management stakeholders
- Train and coach managers on collective bargaining agreements, grievance rights and process.
- Works closely with CHRO and the General Counsel in tracking grievances, complaints, accommodations, concerns
- Provide in-depth knowledge and leadership on case managing complaint and resolution procedures in relation to respective CBAs and other potential law and policies that may be implicated
- Manage reasonable accommodation requests
- In partnership with senior leadership, routinely review and maintain an updated employee handbook, policies, procedures, and regulations as needed. Develop and implement a communications plan to inform employees of changes and updates.
- Provides routine reports on employee conflict and provides recommendations on how to improve labor-management relations
- Maintains knowledge of the suite of HRIS systems and accommodation requests, provides expertise in identifying potential opportunities, risks, troubleshooting and resolving issues, and recommending actions that continuously improve overall accuracy and efficiency
- Manage exit interview process upon employee separation and providing routine reports
- Manage investigators, as well as coordinate and communicate with senior leadership regarding the progress of investigations. Issue and communicate findings and/or issue penalties at the conclusion of investigations/cases within a reasonable timeframe
- Responsible for reviewing allegations/complaints of employee misconduct, leading investigations to determine if the allegations have been substantiated, providing confidential reports on investigations with recommendations. Keep track and provide expert analysis of cases and manage all other aspects of LAS's disciplinary cases
- Establish processes, communications, templates, and supporting documentation in managing complaint/resolution process from intake to conclusion and providing recovery recommendations to restore effective and productive team dynamics; Incorporates inclusive practices using an anti-bias lens including but not limited to: anti-racism, lgbtq+ welcoming, gender affirming, accessibility oriented, veterans inclusive, trauma informed practices
- Assess penalties for substantiated misconduct, conduct settlement conferences and implement penalties, as well as assist with preparation for arbitrations
- Work with unions to discuss current discipline procedure and structures pursuant to the CBAs.
- Utilize information system (iSight or equivalent) to track, monitor, and report out on intake and case management.
Supervision and Management
- Manages department budget and ensures resources are monitored and expended according to strategic plans
- Establishes productive team culture and norms, document position descriptions, provide work assignments, establish high standards of performance, model inclusive team-building behaviors and leadership
- Supervises, trains, manages, and coaches the HR Business Partner team, ensuring department needs are met and goals are reached; encourages continuous professional development as well as learning in the areas of systemic oppression, inequity, unconscious bias and specifically promotes intentional anti-racist behaviors and norms
- Monitors effective delivery and utilization of services provided by vendors and consultants within employee engagement and conflict resolution; maintains regular contact with service providers, addresses problem areas, ensures continuous improvement, and elevates issues to the CHRO as needed; Responsible for the timely processing of vendor invoicing
Professional development and external networking
- Develop an ongoing individual professional and personal development plan, including increasing an external professional network that support an understanding of current and projected trends of organizational opportunities, risks and needs in the areas of labor relations and employee engagement
- Support LAS colleagues and in particular, the HR employee community in learning about labor relations and employee engagement
Please submit these documents as a single combined PDF when you apply via the LAS (Legal Aid Society) Recruitment Portal.
- Cover Letter
- CV and Resume
Required Education & Experience
- Bachelor’s degree and at least 7+ years of professional Human Resources experience or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
- In-depth knowledge in areas of labor relations, investigations, conflict resolution, performance management, engagement programs and its application to conflict case management and records management requirements
- Experience in managing resources that align to strategies, such as budgeting, position management, or project management
Preferred Education and Experience
- JD or Master’s degree in a related field
- HR certification with a focus on labor/union relations, organizational development, workforce planning, DEI focus
- Experience in a unionized environment
- Prior supervisory or project management experience
- Education or experience in understanding the systemic oppression of identities and operationalizing inclusive practices using an equity mindset, informed by diversity and inclusive practices
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, including the ability to build trusting relationships and interact with staff at all levels
- Effective consultation skills and the ability to influence others
- Strong written communication skills
- Ability to manage multiple projects with competing deadlines
- Ability to perform research and analysis; interpret and present data
- Working knowledge of federal and state employment laws particularly related to collective bargaining
- Proficient computers skills, including HRIS Systems, Microsoft Office Suite
- Highly analytical and systems oriented in trouble shooting and resolving issues
- Ability to lead through uncertainty, assess and gather relevant information, resolve, recommend or elevate resolution as needed
- Ability to clearly identify roles, responsibilities, delegate tasks and create systems of accountability
- Ability to create and implement communication plans that account for diverse perspectives
- Ability to provide meaningful performance feedback for professional development and performance improvement including having difficult conversations and resolving sensitive issues
- Perform duties with the highest regard for confidentiality, integrity, and respect for employee information
The posting reflects the range of potential salaries for the role. The specific salary offers will be dependent on candidate qualifications, including collectively bargained salary steps for unionized roles.
Salary Range/ Salary: $147,590
SALARY AND BENEFITS
The leadership of The Legal Aid Society believes in attracting and retaining exceptional talent committed to serving our clients. We offer a generous benefits package including health insurance, paid vacation, disability, and life insurance, and more. Salaries for our unionized jobs are governed by our Collective Bargaining Agreement. Please visit our Careers page for additional information. Salary and benefits information will be available to applicants, when and if, an offer is made.
OUR COMMITMENT TO DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION
The leadership of The Legal Aid Society is committed to a work culture of zealous advocacy, respect, diversity and inclusion, client-oriented defense, access to justice and excellent representation. We are dedicated to building a strong professional relationship with each of our clients, to understanding their diverse circumstances, and to meeting their needs. Our ability to achieve these goals depends on the efforts of all of us.
HOW TO APPLY
All applications must be completed online. We do not accept paper submissions. Please visit our Careers Page to review all current job postings, and instructions on the application process. For technical difficulties or questions regarding this posting, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer, The Legal Aid Society prohibits discriminatory employment actions against and treatment of its employees and applicants for employment based on actual or perceived race or color, size (including bone structure, body size, height, shape, and weight), religion or creed, alienage or citizenship status, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity (one’s internal deeply-held sense of one’s gender which may be the same or different from one’s sex assigned at birth); gender expression (the representation of gender as expressed through, for example, one’s name, choice of pronouns, clothing, haircut, behavior, voice, or body characteristics; gender expression may not conform to traditional gender-based stereotypes assigned to specific gender identities), disability, marital status, relationship and family structure (including domestic partnerships, polyamorous families and individuals, chosen family, platonic co-parents, and multigenerational families), genetic information or predisposing genetic characteristics, military status, domestic violence victim status, arrest or pre-employment conviction record, credit history, unemployment status, caregiver status, salary history, or any other characteristic protected by law.