HR Magazine: The ABCs of ADR: A Short Glossary

Jul 1, 2001

HR Magazine, July 2001Vol. 46, No. 7




Order in the Hearing!

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR)

an umbrella term for a variety of methods to resolve disputes out of court.

Arbitration​
an ad judicatory process in which a neutral third party imposes a final, binding decision to resolve a dispute.

Mediation
an informal process in which a neutral third party assists opposing parties to reach a voluntary, negotiated, non-binding resolution of a dispute; may be conducted internally or externally.

Ombudsman
a neutral third party who is designated to confidentially investigate and propose settlement of complaints brought by employees; may be an insider or outsider.

Open-door policy
a process in which employees are encouraged to discuss problems with their immediate supervisors or others in the chain of command.

Peer review
an internal process in which a panel of employees works together to resolve employment complaints.

Sources: American Arbitration Association, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

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