Senior Employee Relations Manager
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Microsoft is continuing to evolve and grow the Global Employee Relations (ER) Team! The Global ER team leads the process, principles, and practices to navigate complex and sensitive matters, conduct investigations, and manage workplace conflict. This team works in close partnership with the Legal and Line HR teams to manage cases involving inquiries into behavioral concerns, manager conflict, consulting, investigations and employee grievances related to lived experiences not aligned to the company’s aspired culture, and legal risks.
We are looking for a Senior Employee Relations Manager with deep experience influencing and impacting high growth and dynamic businesses through effective management (both proactive and reactive) of a wide range of employee relations issues. This person will be accountable for working with employees across organizations, building trusted relationships quickly, and leading with empathy, compassion, and creativity to think inside and outside of the box to drive the right solutions.
- Directs the analysis and resolution of issues with increasing complexity, visibility and risk related to policy or culture concerns/violations and incident or threat response, independently or by collaborating with managers, peers in Human Resources (HR) and Legal as appropriate. Recommends solutions to address issues from a systematic perspective (e.g., establishing new principles/tools) while prioritizing employee experiences to maintain a safe and professional work environment. Effectively contracts with and manages stakeholder engagement and expectations. Leads and holds accountability for strategy and judgement around all aspects of an investigation (e.g., stakeholder involvement, communications) working with up to senior leadership.
- Contacts and interviews complainants, reported witnesses, and respondents related to policy or culture concerns/violations and incident or threat response with increasing complexity, visibility and risk. Documents findings, and maintains appropriate levels of confidentiality. Collaborates with and seeks counsel from senior peers or managers as needed on proposed strategy and approach depending on perceived increased complexity and/or sensitivity of the complaint, or seniority and/or visibility of the parties involved. Models best practices in interviewing techniques and mastery of empathy, confidentiality, and connecting themes across interview findings for peers.
- Utilizing Human Resources (HR)-related tools and customer relationship management (CRM) platform, tracks and documents findings gathered through interviews and the investigatory process. Is responsible for ensuring all aspects of the investigation are thoroughly documented (e.g., interviews, conversations with leaders and teams for operational buy in, findings, disciplinary actions). Utilizes tools to track data and information relating to a situation and documents relevant findings. Makes recommendations for refining, streamlining, and improving tools and their usage to improve future documentation needs.
- Assists/partners with internal investigative entities at Microsoft (e.g., Workplace Investigations Team [WIT], Office of Legal Compliance [OLC], Global Security Investigations [GSI]) in investigations of serious cases with increasing complexity, visibility, and risk, and implements appropriate remediation in conjunction with a business, region, or geography. May lead the investigations for a business, region, or geography where resources are limited, and ensures appropriate documentation of issues is in place. Seeks input from and/or partners with peers, managers, and appropriate stakeholders to ensure compliance with applicable laws, regulations, and Microsoft policies. Influences internal investigative partners regarding employee experience throughout the investigation process.
- Identifies and interprets trends in employee relations issues across business, region, and/or geography. Designs and recommends interventions and solutions to facilitate an open, inclusive, Microsoft values-based environment that enables effective employee relations for relevant business, region, or geography.
- Concludes an investigation, using findings, relevant partnership with team, and knowledge of the relevant regulations, and Microsoft business context and organizational policies to determine a resolution to investigation of policy or culture concerns/violations and incident or threat response, and assigns corrective/disciplinary actions as deemed appropriate. Independently recommends appropriate corrective/disciplinary actions or processes, consulting with peers/managers where needed, and influencing acceptance of recommended by key stakeholders. Anticipates consequences and manages risk proactively in cases with increasing complexity, visibility, and risk.
Educating and Guiding Through Expertise
- Educates, supports, and coaches employees as they navigate the Employee Relations (ER) process for cases with increasing complexity, sensitivity, visibility and risk. Objectively provides guidance through the employee relations experience, and acts as a sounding board for employees and managers on how to navigate work and handle themselves post-investigation. Provides training and guidance on information that may situationally relevant (e.g., how to take a leave of absence, steps to the performance management process) or to address relevant skill/knowledge gaps (e.g., effective communication strategies, cultural differences impacting inclusivity). Builds a trusted connection with employees at all levels to facilitate exploration of options and next steps in the employee relations process balancing the individual need with organizational context. Recognizes trends in current and past coaching to make recommendations to ER colleagues for future coaching engagements with employees. Collaborates with colleagues and/or management as deemed necessary or appropriate.
- May serve as a subject matter expert on Employee Relations (ER)-related topics both within teams and for other teams (e.g., Human Resources [HR] Consulting, HR Business Partnership [HRBP], HR Leadership, management). For internal partners seeking assistance, consults on a situation or concern using subject matter expertise to make recommendations for next steps, determining what would need to occur next for the situation to need to be transferred to ER, and, if out of scope for ER, deciding what best practices other teams should use to navigate the situation/concern. Leverages other stakeholder partners to influence policy and decision making based upon ER best practices and observed trends. Recognizes when standard HR policies and process should be followed and where exceptions should and can be made. Consults with colleagues and/or management as deemed appropriate. Serves as point of escalation for consulting to stakeholders.
- Initiates conversations with individual parties at Microsoft in conflict, listening for what is said both verbally and nonverbally in order to understand the nature of the conflict for issues with increasing complexity, visibility, and risk, what parties' contributions are to the conflict, their respective willingness to resolve it, and what may be potential solutions for conflict resolution while maintaining appropriate levels of confidentiality. Coaches and guides parties to leverage best resources and/or approach to address conflict after sharing their findings, or provides the tools that would allow for facilitating conflict resolution to occur as appropriate. If parties are not willing or able to resolve the conflict, either investigates further to find deeper reasons for conflict, or coaches involved parties in the potential next steps in the Employee Relations (ER) process. Collaborates with colleagues and/or management as deemed appropriate or needed.
- Bachelor's Degree in Management, Business Administration, Organizational Behavior, HR, Industrial Relations, Psychology, or related field AND 7+ years experience in experience in HR, mediation, investigation, or ER-related roles
- OR Juris Doctorate or Master's Degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology, Human Resources (HR), Business Administration, Organizational Leadership, Industrial Relations, Law, or related field AND 4+ years experience in HR, mediation, investigation, or Employee Relations (ER)-related roles
- OR equivalent experience.
Additional or Preferred Qualifications
- Bachelor's Degree in Management, Business Administration, Organizational Behavior, HR, Industrial Relations, Psychology, or related field AND 12+ years experience in experience in HR, mediation, investigation, or ER-related roles
- OR Juris Doctorate or Master's Degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology, Human Resources (HR), Business Administration, Organizational Leadership, Industrial Relations, Law, or related field AND 8+ years experience in HR, mediation, investigation, or Employee Relations (ER)-related roles
- OR equivalent experience.
- 3+ years experience handling internal employee investigations and managing employee conflict.
- Society for Human Resource Management Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) or Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI) Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification.
- Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI) certification or other relevant mediation/investigation-related certification
Microsoft is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, color, family or medical care leave, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, national origin, physical or mental disability, political affiliation, protected veteran status, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws, regulations and ordinances. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during the application or the recruiting process, please send a request via the Accommodation request form.
Benefits/perks listed below may vary depending on the nature of your employment with Microsoft and the country where you work.
Benefits and Perks
- Industry leading healthcare
- Savings and investments
- Giving programs
- Educational resources
- Maternity and paternity leave
- Opportunities to network and connect
- Discounts on products and services
- Generous time away
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