Spike in complaints puts Workplace Relations Commission under strain
A significant “spike” in complaints to the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) put the body under strain in 2019, according to its annual report.
The WRC’s adjudication service received 8,309 complaint applications in 2019, encompassing 20,939 individual complaints, the report states.
The number of complaint forms lodged increased by nearly eight per cent on the previous year and 13.6 per cent on 2017, while the number of individual complaints increased by 36 per cent on the previous year and nearly 50 per cent on 2017.
The increases “have placed some strain on the service”, the WRC said, but the average timeframe for a decision was kept under eight months.
The WRC’s annual report also details its achievements in the first year of a three-year “programme of change”, including the opening of a new regional office in Ennis and the development of new adjudication postponement procedures.
Director general Liam Kelly said the new postponement procedures “are already having a positive effect in simplifying the process from a user perspective and improving efficiencies in hearing scheduling”.
Reflecting on the overall progress, Mr Kelly said: “These outcomes were achieved against a backdrop of shifting priorities and challenges within the broader economy – many of which found an echo in the activities of the WRC during the year.”