Employee Relations Manager, Academic HR Affairs

Position Summary

New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) seeks to appoint an Employee Relations Manager, Academic HR Affairs reporting to the Director, Employee Relations & Engagement.

The Employee Relations Manager, Academic HR Affairs, will assist and support the Director in managing the Employee Relations portfolio at NYUAD with a focus on Academic related affairs.  The incumbent will be required to maintain and promote a positive work environment, foster employee engagement, promote and ensure fair and equitable treatment of all employees, and minimize potential liability for the University thereby minimizing/eliminating workplace impediments and problems. 

The manager will assist the Director, Employee Relations & Engagement and Assistant Director, Employee Relations in identifying areas of improvements and establishing plans of action, and provide data and analysis in support of Employee Relations & Engagement activities across the university, this includes the design, development and maintenance of analytical tools and dashboards. 

The individual will assist in the management and resolution of Ad Hoc HR queries & issues working in collaboration with various HR teams (Subject Matter Experts “SME”) to facilitate the interface between HR and employees. The incumbent will balance their time between projects and crisis-response, proactively partnering with leadership and HR teams to create and sustain positive employee relations programs and best practices.

The manager will also work re-actively on critical employee relations issues as they arise that are highly sensitive and confidential, and typically can only be successfully completed with limited time.

Key Responsibilities

  • Manage grievances and concerns by evaluating claims and gathering required information, facilitating discussions and finalizing concerns/claims by either resolution of matters or escalating to higher levels.  Ensure compliance with policies, contractual provisions, and consistent practices, and provide direction throughout grievance process. Engage in negotiations and interpret and uphold policies and contract provisions. Maintain employee relations case documentation, information regarding grievances, etc., provide weekly updates to the Director and prioritize accordingly
  • Manage and conduct investigations of employee misconduct and other inappropriate workplace behavior and policy violations. Produce quality oral and written work product, presenting matters clearly and concisely, and provide a clear message to ensure understanding of the findings and to make suggestions for corrective actions
  • Provide Employee Relations Advisory services and counsel to managers and employees on performance management, conflict resolution, reorganizations, progressive discipline, formal grievance procedure/ mechanism and other employment matters. Counsel supervisors and employees on preventing and resolving routine to increasingly complex employee relations matters; mediate disputes; prepare related documentation
  • Participate in developing and delivering employee relations training programs including new employee orientation. Provide advice, counsel and support for management staff on proper handling of employee relations problems; ensuring compliance; participate in developing and delivering workshops for supervisors and employees on ER matters
  • Manage NYUAD’s disciplinary process to ensure adherence to University policies and legal requirements. Work with supervisors in taking disciplinary matters, assisting in the investigation and prepare recommendations on appropriate follow up action. Coordinate University’s efforts in any mediation and litigation matters related to employee’s matters. Partner with legal counsel as needed
  • Manage, initiate and facilitate to completion the separation process for involuntary departures.  Work with employees, supervisors and various administrative units internal and external to HR to ensure the separation process is completed effectively and conduct exit interviews
  • Analyze data and ER process trends to develop ways to improve employee retention and engagement. Monitor current trends and assist with improving/introducing employee relations policies and best practices as appropriate, including but not limited to tracking and completion of Probationary Reviews, Exit Interviews and ER Caseload. Report on the process by preparing data and analysis, including  the design, development and maintenance of analytical tools and dashboards
  • Provide advice, counsel and support to managers and employees on reorganizations & restructures. Manage, initiate and facilitate to completion roles that have been identified as redundant. Partner with employees, supervisors and various administrative units internal and external to HR to ensure the redundancy process is completed effectively. Develop and implement separation proposals, communication strategies and hold redundancy meetings with employees
  • Prepare case files for claims made with the Ministry of Labour, working with various entities within the University including the General Council, Government relations and Immigration. Attend cases at the MOL on behalf of the University. Ensure all ER cases are managed in compliance with UAE Labour Law
  • Monitor current best practices in ER as appropriate. Review current polices and introduce employee relations policies, procedures and toolkits that reflect best practice to sustain positive ER. Partner with HR teams in developing new policies and procedures that contain ER matter

Education Requirements


  • Bachelor's degree in HR or related field


  • Professional Certification in Human Resources

Experience Requirements


  • 5 years relevant and recent experience as a Human Resources professional of which at least 3 years as an Employee Relations Specialist in a professional capacity
  • Previous experience conducting investigations
  • Good knowledge of a variety of human resources areas and experience in advising managers and staff
  • Good consultative, negotiation, analytical and influencing skills
  • Ability to work both independently and within cross-functional teams
  • Creative, problem solver and outcomes-focused. Ability to facilitate decision making
  • Adaptable, flexible, open-minded management approach
  • Ability to interpret legal provisions, policies and procedures
  • Proven ability to operate effectively in ambiguity and work effectively in a culturally diverse workplace
  • Strong business/organizational knowledge. Significant multi-tasking, spatial thinking abilities
  • Solid understanding of a client-facing, HR business partner service model
  • Excellent English verbal and written communication skills, with the ability to compose a variety of correspondences and professional reports
  • Fluency with MS Office (Power Point, Excel, Word, Access, etc.). Fluent with spreadsheet creation and analysis
  • Extensive client support


  • Recent experience in a higher education environment
  • Previous experience handing Employee Relations issues for a diverse, multi-cultural workforce
  • Knowledge of both the US and UAE labor laws and regulations
  • Possess a good understanding of all areas of HR
  • Knowledge of contemporary HRIS software
  • General business acumen

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