Upon receiving the application for arbitration, the Registrar of IAC will call for a meeting with the employer and union concerned, usually within 2 weeks. At this meeting, the parties will be asked to elaborate on the dispute - the circumstances that led to the dispute and their perspectives with regard to the issues involved and rationale for their positions.
Subject to the agreement of the parties, the Registrar will call further meetings to help the parties resolve the dispute amicably through mediation. This is the recommended approach as negotiation gives both parties the opportunity to achieve a win-win outcome, which is particularly important given that the union-employer relationship is a long-term one. The parties will also save on the time and effort involved in preparing for and presenting their respective cases at a Court hearing. Negotiation between the parties at the mediated sessions is conducted on a confidential, and ‘without prejudice’ basis, unless otherwise requested by the parties.
If the parties are able to resolve the dispute amicably, the party or parties who submitted the application to IAC will be asked to withdraw the application, and the case will be closed.
If the parties are unable to resolve the dispute, the Registrar will arrange for the dispute to be heard by the Court.