Assistant Director of Employee Relations

Website Brown University

Job Description:

Reporting to the Assistant Vice President of Employee and Labor Relations, the Assistant Director, Employee Relations plays a crucial role in supporting a positive and productive work environment by providing expert guidance, support, and oversight in all matters related to employee relations. This position will engage in training opportunities to remain competency levels in the field.

Key Responsibilities:

Provide Expert Advice: Serve as a subject matter expert on employee relations matters, including but not limited to performance management, disciplinary actions, conflict resolution, and policy interpretation. Provide timely and effective resolutions to departmental and employee concerns. Offer guidance to managers, HR business partners and employees on best practices and compliance with university policies and procedures. Foster and engage in a collaborative relationship with campus stakeholders.

Manage Employee Investigations: Oversee and conduct investigations into employee complaints, and hotline cases and concerns. Ensure investigations are thorough, fair, and compliant with legal and university guidelines. Prepare detailed investigation reports. Collaborate with relevant stakeholders, such as HR, legal counsel, and department heads, to resolve issues effectively and in a timely manner.

Develop and Implement Policies: Contribute to the development, review, and implementation of employee relations policies and procedures. Keep employee relations up to date by updating standard operating procedures. Stay abreast of changes in employment laws and regulations to ensure policies are current and compliant.

Training and Development: Develop and deliver training programs for managers and employees on topics related to employee relations, conflict resolution, performance reviews and employee engagement. Promote a culture of respect, fairness, and professionalism across the university community.

Mediation and Conflict Resolution: Facilitate and mediate discussions between employees and managers to resolve conflicts and disputes in a constructive manner. Provide coaching and support to promote effective communication and relationship-building. Work on de-escalation tactics where appropriate.

Data Analysis and Reporting: Analyze employee relations data and trends to identify areas for improvement and make recommendations for proactive interventions. Prepare reports and presentations for senior leadership on employee relations metrics and initiatives.

Partner where needed with Labor Relations to ensure compliance and continuity between represented and non-represented employees where applicable.

Job Qualifications and Competencies:

Education and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college/university.
  • A minimum of seven years’ relevant professional-level HR, employee relations or labor relations experience required.
  • Strong proficiency in communication, conflict resolution, analysis and planning, creative problem solving, and consultation required.
  • Excellent verbal, interpersonal and written communication skills, sound business judgment, tact and diplomacy, and the ability to interact with employees at all levels of the University.
  • Must be detailed oriented and extremely organized, with extensive experience and demonstrated proficiency investigating and resolving complex and multi-faceted employee relations/HR employment cases.
  • Extensive knowledge of federal and state employment laws and regulations (e.g., FLSA, FMLA, ADA).
  • Experience consulting with internal/external clients on employee relations and/or HR employment matters.
  • Demonstrated ability to support a community of diverse perspectives and cultures in an inclusive environment.

Preferred Qualifications

  • A Juris Doctor (JD) or advanced degree.
  • HR systems and Case management experience, including experience using HR enterprise systems and case management software such as Workday and Salesforce.
  • Prior experience in a higher education setting.
  • HR certification and/or SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP.


  • Ability to collaborate and/or work effectively as leader or member in teams, taskforces, or committees. Must be able to develop and maintain a pattern of reciprocal exchanges of support, information and other valued resources with colleagues; demonstrates agility and adaptability when project requirements, goals or constraints change.
  • Be able to demonstrate initiative; learn quickly when facing new problems; open to change; display proactive leadership in identifying issues and addressing client needs in a timely manner; serve as a change agent to support organizational change.
  • Ability to motivate a group of people to achieve their common goals; possess the ability to guide, direct, and influence others; promote consensus among stakeholders when proposing new initiatives; facilitate communication and decision-making necessary to implement initiatives.
  • Maintain high level of personal and professional integrity and act as an ethical agent who promotes core values, integrity and accountability throughout the institution; establish credibility and become a trusted advisor to resolve complex employment matters; demonstrated ability to manage political and social pressures when making decisions and when administering HR programs, practices, policies, and collective bargaining agreements; treat stakeholders with respect and dignity; value and consider the perspective and backgrounds of all parties and stakeholders to promote a diverse and inclusive workplace.

Please include a cover letter in the attachments section when submitting the application.

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Background check satisfactory to Brown University.

Recruiting Start Date:


Job Posting Title:

Assistant Director of Employee Relations


University Human Resources


Grade 11

Worker Type:


Worker Sub-Type:


Time Type:

Full time

Scheduled Weekly Hours:


Position Work Location:

Hybrid Eligible

Submission Guidelines:

Please note that in order to be considered an applicant for any staff position at Brown University you must submit an application form for each position for which you believe you are qualified. Applications are not kept on file for future positions. Please include a cover letter and resume with each position application.

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EEO Statement:

Brown University is an E-Verify Employer.

As an EEO/AA employer, Brown University provides equal opportunity and prohibits discrimination, harassment and retaliation based upon a person’s race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or any other characteristic protected under applicable law, and caste, which is protected by our University policies.

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