Director, Employee Relations

4 days left

Toronto (City), Ontario
Annual Hiring Salary:$127,352
October 8, 2020
December 7, 2020
Job Level
AVP, Director
Employment Type
Full time
Designations Required/Preferred

York is a leading international teaching and research university, and a driving force for positive change. Empowered by a welcoming and diverse community with a uniquely global perspective, we are preparing our students for their long-term careers and personal success. Together, we can make things right for our communities, our planet and our future.

The Division of Equity, People and Culture is a new division at York University which includes the Department of Labour Relations, the Department of Human Resources and the Centre for Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion.

As a key leader in the Department of Labour Relations, and reporting to the Assistant Vice-President, Labour Relations (AVPLR), the Director, Employee Relations provides professional and strategic advice to senior leaders on a wide range of operational and support staff labour issues and leads the Employee Relations Office in achieving effective and collaborative and builds positive labour relations. The Director, Employee Relations leads a team that serves as the University's key liaison with all of its operational and support staff units (currently six).

The Director Employee Relations is responsible for the interpretation, application, and negotiation of operational and support staff collective agreements, mediation, grievance, and arbitration preparation, preparatory research, and liaison with appropriate external organizations for the acquisition and provision of relevant information to support collective agreement negotiation, and the development of initiatives and policies to foster and enhance a positive labour relations environment. The nature of the work requires that the Director, Employee Relations is able to bring strong analytical skills, seasoned experience and intuition, and critical thinking skills to the role in order to make effective decisions, as well as the tact, judgment and ability to effectively negotiate the implementation of such decisions.

Employee/Labour Relations context: York University currently has 13 different bargaining units representing full-time, part-time and casual workforces totaling approximately 11,000 employees. The position of Director Employee Relations focuses on the six bargaining units comprising approximately 3000 operational and support staff. They include the York University Staff Association (YUSA) Unit 1, York University Staff Association (YUSA) Unit 2, Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 1356, CUPE 1356-1, CUPE 1356-2) and the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE). The Director is accountable for providing strategic direction in a complex labour relations environment. The role requires the Director to: provide expert advice, leadership and both tactical and strategic direction to the organization on labour relations issues related to operational and support staff bargaining units. At the tactical level this includes the interpretation, application and administration of their collective agreements, coaching and training of the community to ensure compliance, grievance and arbitration preparation; providing strategic direction to bargaining teams and external counsel when preparing for and negotiating collective agreements. At the strategic level this includes working with senior leadership of the University to develop a comprehensive labour relations strategy for the operational and support staff bargaining units that aligns with the University's academic plan; assuming a leadership role in the development of strategic plans to mitigate and respond to risks to the University associated with operational and support staff labour relations issues, acting as a consultant and advisor to University senior management on all operational and support staff labour relations; providing direction concerning correct application of labour legislation, playing a leadership role in the development of initiatives and policies to foster and enhance a positive labour relations environment, developing strategies to ensure consistent application of policy.

To be considered for this opportunity, you will bring the following:

Law Degree specializing in labour/employment law or Master's in Industrial Relations (MIR) degree or equivalent level of education and experience is required. Minimum of 10 years' experience working in a complex multi-union labour relations environment, preferable in a University or the Public Sector. Demonstrated experience and expertise in collective bargaining including in the role of chief negotiator on behalf of the employer; expertise in facilitating case resolution, grievance/mediation and in directing legal counsel on arbitration handling and settlement. Experience working with senior management on strategic planning initiatives. Experience providing senior administrators with advice on labour relations and employment related issues.

For full position details, including skills and knowledge requirements, and to apply to this exciting opportunity visit the External Career Portal ( and refer to posting 101991

We offer comprehensive benefits and access to superb educational and recreational facilities. For more information on what York has to offer U please visit:

The University welcomes applications from all qualified individuals, including, but not limited to women, persons with disabilities, visible minorities (racialized), aboriginal (Indigenous) persons and persons of any gender identity and sexual orientation. York University is committed to a positive, supportive and inclusive environment.

York University offers accommodation for applicants with disabilities in its recruitment processes. If you are contacted by York University regarding a job opportunity or testing, please advise if you require accommodation.

We are committed to enhancing our environmentally and socially responsible practices for the benefit of all members of the York community. Our long-term perspective recognizes our responsibility to be innovators and to continually work as a community to reduce our ecological impact.

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