PROBLEM GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE
In working together from day to day, it is normal for employees to occasionally have problems or
complaints affecting their work-related activities. It is important to work out a solution to these problems
as quickly as possible. It is the University’s view that most problems can be resolved through informal
discussions between employee and supervisor in the department. You are encouraged to talk about work-
related problems with your immediate supervisor. If you are not satisfied with the outcome, you may wish
to use a more formal process – the grievance procedure – to seek a solution.
What is a grievance?
A grievance is a formal complaint, and the University’s Problem-Grievance procedure is a formal process
to address day-to-day complaints/problems.
Who can file a grievance?
All staff employees can file a grievance whether appointed or hourly, professional or biweekly. Students,
faculty, and professional employees classified as PC are not staff employees and therefore not eligible to
use this grievance procedure. You may exercise your right to file a grievance without fear or retaliation,
harassment or negative impact on your employment relationship with the University. Grievances are
confidential and are not included in your personnel file.
What can I file a grievance about?
Many types of complaints can be addressed through the grievance procedure. Disciplinary actions and
personnel policies violations are the most common complaints filed. Employee concerns regarding unfair
treatment may also be grieved. If however, you feel you have been treated unfairly because of your age,
color, disability, ethnicity, gender, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, or
status as a Vietnam-era veteran, you should contact the campus Affirmative Action Office at 274-2306.
The Affirmative Action Office also handles complaints involving sexual harassment. Complaints
involving judgments such as salary increases, salary range, classification assignment, and performance
appraisals cannot be addresses through the grievance procedure.
When do I file a grievance?
The grievance procedure has time limitations, which are outlined at each stage of the process. These time
limits may be extended if both parties agree to the additional time needed. The most important time
restriction to remember is that your grievance must be filed within 14 calendar days from when you know
about the situation causing your complaint.
How do I file a grievance?
At first, you may want to talk to your supervisor about your complaint/problem and try to resolve the
matter in the department where you work. The first step of the grievance procedure does not have to be in
writing. If this conversation does not solve the problem or if you want to present your complain in
writing, you may use a grievance form. You can get a form online at www.hra.iupui.edu (click on HR
forms) or you can pick up the form at Human Resources Administration in Room 340 of the Union
Building. Complete the appropriate sections of the grievance form and present it to your immediate
supervisor, dean/director or Human Resources office (see Stage 1 for the correct person). For questions
about the grievance procedure or for help in writing your grievance, contact Human Resources
Administration at 274-8931 or email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org via email.
You are allowed to have someone help you file a grievance and state your complaint during a grievance
meeting. This person is called a representative and usually is someone with whom you feel comfortable –
a coworker or union steward, for example. Your representative cannot be directly or indirectly involved
with an employee organization not recognized by the University (a union other than AFSCME).
Attorneys are not permitted except at Stage IV.
You and your representative will be allowed a reasonable amount of time during working hours to attend
the grievance meetings. You must get prior approval from your supervisor for this time away from your
job. You will be paid for time spent in formal grievance meetings. Time spent preparing your grievance is
without pay and is to be done outside your working hours.
If you decide to file a grievance, you must do so within 14 calendar days from the time of your
knowledge of the situation causing the grievance. For example, on August 15, your supervisor talks with
you about your poor attendance and informs you that you will receive a “write up” (disciplinary action).
On August 17 you receive a copy of the written warning. You had knowledge of the disciplinary action
on August 15 when your supervisor spoke with you.
Your complaint or problem is first directed to the immediate supervisor. You and the supervisor will try
to resolve the complaint or problem by meeting to talk about your concerns. The supervisor has two
working days (not counting weekends and holidays) to reply. The complaint and/or answer may be
expressed verbally at this stage, but it must be put in writing if requested by you or your supervisor.
If the supervisor’s response is unsatisfactory to you, or if you do not receive a response with the two-day
time limit, you may appeal to Stage II.
Exception to Stage I: - If you are grieving a termination, skip to Stage II. If you are grieving a 5-day
suspension and termination, skip to Stage III.
If you wish to proceed to Stage II, you must so during your next two working days following the response
at Stage I. The grievance is directed to the Dean or Director of the immediate supervisor. The Dean or
Director has five working days (not counting weekends and holidays) to attempt to resolve the grievance
and to respond to you. At this stage, both your complaint and the Dean or Director’s response must be in
writing. If the Dean or Director’s response is unsatisfactory to you, or if you do not receive a response
within the five-day timeframe, you may appeal to Stage III.
If you wish to continue your grievance, the response at Stage II must be appealed in writing during your
next two working days (not counting weekends and holidays) to the Manager of Employee Relations and
Benefits or a designee in Human Resources Administration. If you do not receive an answer at Stage II,
the Manager of Employee Relations and Benefits or the designee will request a final decision from the
Dean or Director in writing. The Manager of Employee Relations and Benefits or the designee will try to
resolve your grievance and will respond to you within 10 working days. The response may be final, or, in
some situations if you are not satisfied with the response, you may choose to go on to Stage IV.
To decide if your grievance can be appealed to Stage IV, you must look at your employment status and
type of grievance.
Employment status eligible for Stage IV: You must be an appointed employee beyond the probationary
period. Casual, hourly employees and probationary employees are not eligible.
Types of grievances eligible for Stage IV: Your grievance must involve termination of your
employment or a violation of University Human Resources Policies. Lesser levels of discipline (oral
warning, written warning, suspension) and other types of issues are not eligible to be appealed to Stage
If you are not satisfied with the decision at Stage III and you meet both eligibility requirements, you can
request a Stage IV hearing. This request must be made to the Assistant Vice Chancellor of Human
Resources Administration or the designee during the next three working days (10 working days for SM
employees) after you receive the Stage III response.
Stage IV of the grievance procedure is very detailed. Following your request for a Stage IV hearing, a
meeting will be scheduled with Human Resources Administration to discuss the full details of this
This brochure is intended only to summarize the University’s Problem-Grievance Procedure.
Please read the University Human Resources Policy Manuals for a full explanation and specific
language of this policy.
IUPUI Problem –Grievance Procedure
Stage Your Time Limit to Person Who Hears Respondent’s Time
Appeal the Appeal Limit to Answer
I 14 calendar days (from Immediate Supervisor 2 Working Days
the knowledge of the
II 2 Working Days Dean or Director of 5 Working Days
III 2 Working Days Manager of Employee 10 Working Days
Relations and Benefits or
IV 3 Working Days (10 Faculty Member, 15 Working Days (if
working days for SM Hearing Panel, possible)
employees) or Arbitrator