June 15, 2007

elevate: Answering the Tough Questions

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Medical Center leadership answers the tough questions about what the elevate program is and what it means for the people who work at VUMC.

Question: How can an employee relations liaison serve both the employer and the employee effectively? How can they overcome what appears to be a possible conflict of interest?

Answer: Our employee relations representatives are available to serve as an objective third party for any employee grievance.

They don't represent aggrieved employees, and they don't represent supervisors who face grievances — they instead represent our institution.

The primary role of our employee relations representatives is to protect the institution, helping keep violations of employment law from occurring anywhere within the University, and helping Vanderbilt uphold its own employment policies.

They're highly skilled experts, able to identify and carry out solutions to many types of employee problems. They can be reached at 322-7259.

If a grievance is received and our employee relations department determines that no law or policy is in danger of being violated, the employee relations representative is then limited to an advisory role, with decisions in the matter generally being left up to the appropriate manager.

If you have a problem with your supervisor or your work group, but you don't think it's a matter for our employee relations department, consider calling on the services of Work/Life Connections Employee Assistance Program (936-1327).

Experienced counselors are available to help you find solutions to any stressful problem, personal or work-related.

— Kevin Myatt, associate vice chancellor and chief human resource officer