The purpose of the Ombuds Office is to assist UW-Madison faculty and staff in dealing with challenges that arise in the workplace. It is a safe place where employees can seek guidance regarding concerns at any time, without fear of reprisal, and at no cost to them.
- Provide a confidential place to collaboratively explore complaints, clarify issues and consider options concerning issues in the workplace
- Confidentially receive questions and concerns related to individual situations as well as broader systemic issues
- Listen impartially and give unbiased feedback
- Encourage and empower employees to find their own solutions to problems
- Guide employees toward available services and resources
- Facilitate communication when conflict arises
- Serve as facilitator in group problem-solving
- With the employee’s consent, consult with university units and departments to obtain more information about the issues, at hand, and explore options for conflict resolution
- Suggest the redirection of matters to formal channels when appropriate
- Promote fairness, equality, inclusion and access for all persons
- Serve as a catalyst for institutional change by reporting trends and identifying opportunities to enhance university policies and procedures
Services offered by the Ombuds Office supplement, but do not replace, other more formal processes available to the university community.
Ombuds cannot impose remedies or sanctions, or enforce or change any policy, rule or procedure. Due to the role of the ombuds, communication with the ombuds does not serve notice to the university.