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NOAA Alternative Dispute Resolution Program


What is “Alternative Dispute Resolution” (ADR)?

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) refers to a variety of approaches used to resolve conflict other than litigation. ADR provides a secure and satisfying way for employees to resolve workplace conflicts or disagreements.

At NOAA we use mediation, consultation, and facilitated problem solving to resolve disputes that may impede productivity or have a negative impact on the work environment. The ADR process is confidential and any concerns regarding confidentiality will be discussed once an ADR service has been requested.

NOAA’s ADR Program was created in 1996 to comply with the Administrative Dispute Resolution Act of 1996. The purpose of the ADR Program is to help employees and managers reduce and resolve unproductive conflicts quickly so that NOAA’s mission can be accomplished as effectively and efficiently as possible. Using ADR services at the first sign of workplace conflict is a cost effective, proactive approach toward building healthy relationships and maintaining a positive workplace.

It is NOAA’s policy to encourage use of ADR whenever appropriate. NOAA follows NAO 202- 715 “NOAA Alternate Dispute Resolution Program”.

NOAA uses mediators and facilitators from the Shared Neutrals Program,( a cadre of Federal employees who are highly trained and certified to mediate for Federal agencies), the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services, and other Federal agencies. Mediators and facilitators assist the disputing individuals in a variety of ways during ADR by:

ADR services are usually scheduled and completed quickly, at little or no cost.

Creating a productive and non-threatening environment for all employees is our goal. Please don’t hesitate to contact us for questions on how to handle a workplace dispute or learn more about the NOAA ADR Program.