Case Number: ADJ-00004190. Workplace Relations Commission

CourtWorkplace Relations Commission
Docket NumberADJ-00004190
Date26 July 2017
PartiesManager V Respondent

Adjudication Decision Reference: ADJ-00004190

Complaint(s)/Dispute(s) for Resolution:


Complaint/Dispute Reference No.

Date of Receipt

Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under Section 8 of the Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977



Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under Section 39 of the Redundancy Payments Act, 1967



Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under section 6 of the Payment of Wages Act, 1991



Date of Adjudication Hearing: 11/10/2016

Workplace Relations Commission Adjudication Officer: Michael Hayes


In accordance with Section 41(4) of the Workplace Relations Act, 2015 and the abovementioned Acts, following the referral of the complaint(s)/dispute(s) to me by the Director General, I inquired into the complaint(s)/dispute(s) and gave the parties an opportunity to be heard by me and to present to me any evidence relevant to the complaint(s)/dispute(s).

Attendance at Hearing:






David Higgins (Sol)

Louise O’Byrne (Sol)


The respondent employed the complainant as a Provincial Connections Manager from 5th of January 2009 until 5th of February 2016. He was paid €2516 gross per fortnight and worked 40 hours per week. The complaint under the Redundancy Payments Act, 1967 (CA00005820-002) was withdrawn at hearing. The parties made written and oral submission to the hearing.

Summary of the Complainant’s Submission and Presentation:

The complainant submits that he was constructively dismissed. His WRC complaint form states -

“I was bullied in the workplace and invoked the internal grievance procedures which were not followed. I was increasingly marginalized and isolated which resulted in me going on sick leave due to occupational stress. While pursuing an internal grievance, my position was made redundant and I was transferred to another role. I did not receive my performance related award”.

In particular he began to experience difficulties in the workplace in or around March 2014 relating to workload and lack of support from his manager. The complainant became fearful for his position as the respondent was considering a restructure. He sought reassurance from his manager and met with him formally. He asked that his concerns be noted. He became increasingly frustrated when his manager for the first time began to take control of his diary in September 2014 which led to double bookings and the erosion of his position. He discovered that he had not been paid increments for 2012, 2013 and 2014. The manager would have had to ignore HR notifications for this to happen. The matter was rectified when the complainant brought it to the attention of HR. The manager by email of the 27th of April 2015 outlined the Action Plan for May which contained unmanageable workloads. As a result he raised a grievance on the same day with the manager but never received a response. Simultaneously he sent his sales report and highlighted his concerns in relation to lack of resource. He subsequently discovered that his report had been edited by the manager. He made a verbal grievance/complaint to HR in June. At this stage he had sought the assistance and advice of the respondent’s EAP in his attempts to deal with the matter. Meetings with his manager on the 1st and 2nd of July were not recorded at which the manager engaged in making changes and admitting that he had been advised by HR that he had been micro managing the complainant. He met HR again on the 10th of July and advised that he was suffering from anxiety and sleepless nights. He outlined his feelings of isolation and lack of support to his manager on the 15th inst. He informed HR on the 6th of August that he wished to adopt the informal approach towards his grievance. He was advised by HR that he would personally have to inform his manager of his choice in the matter. He felt that the respondent was not taking his complaint seriously and therefore changed his mind with regard to the informal approach and subsequently informed HR of his change of heart and that he now wished to proceed down the formal route on the same day. He called the senior manager HD later on and arranged to meet him on the 11th inst. to discuss his concerns. He outlined the specifics of his complaint at that meeting and noted the connection between his deteriorating health and his treatment at work. It was 20 days later when the respondent referred him for medical assessment for the first time. Furthermore no minute or formal note was taken of the meeting. He met the HD again on the 21st inst. and was informed that there was no case to answer in relation to the grievance. It was accepted that the manager complained of – “had used questionable management methodologies” but that there was no victimisation. It was also accepted that one of the KPI’s was unachievable. He was told that he was underperforming and that was why he was being micro-managed and that he should accept his part in all of this. He refused to agree and pointed out that the respondent was seeing only one side of the problem. On request he was informed that there was no formal record of his having underperformed. He was offered mediation with the offending manager which he refused on the basis that the relationship had irretrievable broken down. The HD offered to outline the new structure which he intended to propose to management to see where the complainant might be accommodated by way of change in reporting line. He sought details of previous reviews from HR thereafter which were provided. He pointed out several discrepancies as a result. He also requested minutes of his meetings with the HD but none were forthcoming. On the 27th of August he received an email from the HD stating that the process to date was informal but that based on his refusal to mediate it would have to be moved to the formal stage for resolution....

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