Managing conflict at work is an ongoing challenge for Organisations and can be very damaging in the workplace environment. While conflict is a normal part of workplace, one of the key challenges is to take steps to minimise the impact as resolving issues, when they do arise, is not always a straightforward task.

An increase in the Rate of Conflicts and Disputes in the Workplace

What we do know is that unfortunately, the occurrence of workplace conflicts and disputes is not uncommon and worse still is on the rise. Further to our HR Pulse Barometer 7.1, conducted in May 2023, findings revealed an increase from 31% of Employers experiencing a disciplinary issue in 2021 to 52% in 2022, while grievances came in at a close second with 45% of Employers citing this in 2022, up from 29% in 2021.
In fact, all categories of conflicts and disputes have seen an increase between 2021 and 2022. In 2022, 69% of Organisations experienced workplace conflict, an increase of 23% on the previous year and with that comes a significant rise in costs to Organisations. Further still our HR Barometer Pulse findings cited that 24% of Employers surveyed had employment claims at the Workplace Commission/Labour Court, which is an increase of 9% from 2021.
This clearly indicates a big risk for Organisation and confirms the need to ensure an understanding of what is causing this increase and more importantly to understand how to deal with it whilst protecting the impact on business growth, Employees, and Company culture.
Our HR Pulse Barometer also revealed the amount of time spent by HR managing complaints has increased, where four in ten Organisations (45%) have seen an increase with only 8% citing that it has stayed the same. This can only distract from other vital HR areas such as promoting Employee experience, engagement, and ultimately retention of talent.


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