ADR: Is it worth trying?


Posted on Thursday, April 4, 2019

Dear CCMS, I heard that Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) takes a lot of time and the outcome isn’t guaranteed. Is that true?

It wouldn’t be accurate to say ADR takes a lot of time – it’s relative. For example, formal complaint mechanisms like grievances and harassment complaints often take much longer, while power-based options like seeking a decision from your manager or CoC can be quite a bit quicker. It is fair to say, however, that ADR requires much more effort.

Negotiating a mutually agreeable solution requires parties to take the time to listen and engage with one another, exploring possible solutions that will work for all. This requires more time and effort than having one party impose a solution on another.

Also, while it is possible that ADR will not produce an outcome, when it does, the outcome will be, by design, favourable to all parties. This is because ADR requires that any agreement must be accepted by all. This is opposed to other complaint resolution mechanisms, like formal and management decision making, all of which will most certainly produce a guaranteed outcome, but not necessarily one that all parties will agree is a fair resolution to the problem or one that meets everyone’s needs.

The best way to determine if ADR makes sense for your situation is to have a confidential consultation with your local CCMS centre (613-588-4700 /