Preparing for the Fact-Finding Meeting

In the fact-finding meeting, you, your employee, your HR Business Partner, and any representation your employee decides to invite (any one individual your employee chooses, most likely a union rep if the employee is represented), will meet to align on the facts of the issue. This is your opportunity to clarify your expectations again, and your employee’s opportunity to contribute their perspective to, ideally, help resolve the performance issue. To prepare for the meeting, you’ll want to collect all the information you can so that you’re able to present your case clearly to your employee.

  • Check the employee’s file to see if there are prior records of this issue.
  • Begin compiling your notes about the performance issue. Your notes should answer these questions:
    • What is your personal understanding of this issue?
    • What information have you gathered already (from your own observations or others’ feedback)? Whom did you speak to and when about the employee’s performance?
    • What feedback have you already given the employee? When did those conversations occur?
    • If your employee has a union or employment contract, what does their contract say about this issue?
    • If the issue is covered in a law or university policy, what do those regulations say about this issue?
  • Schedule a meeting with your HR Business Partner to prepare.
    • Prepare a framework for presenting the performance issue to your employee.
    • Prepare questions to better understand your employee’s read on the situation.
    • Using your notes, lay out the data and evidence to help your employee understand your read on the situation.
  • Schedule the fact-finding meeting.
  • Provide notice to your employee of the time and topic of the meeting so that they have time to obtain representation, if they so choose.
  • It’s always recommended that you have your HR Business Partner join as your representative during this process, but especially important when you are meeting with a represented employee and their union representative. Union rules and requirements can be complex, and it’s useful to have subject matter experts in the room so that questions can be resolved quickly and with accurate information.