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Office issues are bound to arise from time to time. People don’t always get along. In some situations, coming to a resolution can be challenging. Should you immediately go to HR with your office issues? Probably not.

When you have issues with your employer, a policy or a co-worker, going to HR may not always be the best option. It can be tough to know when to go to HR and when to deal with the issue another way.

“There are times you should absolutely ask and expect HR to help you out, but there are other times when going to HR may not be your best move,” says Suzanne Lucas on cbsnews.com.

Human resources operate somewhere in the middle, and they walk a fine line between protecting your interests and the best interests of the company.

So, before you go to rush off to speak with someone in human resources, make sure you have a legitimate issue.

Here are 4 times when you should go to HR with your issues:

1. Harassment-related office issues

If you feel you are being harassed, you should report it to HR immediately. There is no room for harassment or bullying in the workplace, regardless of who is doing it. Whether it’s a boss, co-worker, business partner, or even a customer, make HR aware of the issue.

2. Health and safety issues

Anytime you feel as though there are health and safety concerns, you should bring them up to HR. Whether it is the actions of another employee, your boss is asking you to do something that puts your safety at risk, or there are certain processes you believe are dangerous, these issues should be reported.

3. Illegal actions

If you notice any form of illegal actions going on, you should report them to HR. Are government regulations being violated? Have you noticed certain employees stealing or engaging in other illegal activities? Many companies have anonymous tip lines for these issues. Even if HR cannot directly help you with the issue, they will know who to report it to so it can be investigated.

4. Special accommodations

From time to time you make have personal or health issues that interfere with your ability to work. For example, you may need time off during the afternoon to see the doctor, or you have work restrictions because of illness. Perhaps you have personal issues that could get in the way of you working normal hours. HR can work with you to find a resolution, so you don’t risk running into issues with management.

Get more HR solution tips and advice by reading:

3 Struggles with Keeping Company Culture Alive and How to Overcome Them

4 Challenges of Executive Coaching

Felicia Smith

Felicia is the manager of human capital solutions at AugmentHR. With over six years of recruitment experience coupled with multi-faceted HR roles, Felicia is an expert in matching people with the right role and environment. She has worked in many different industries, including investment banking, HR consulting firms, medical, and commercial. Understanding people is one of her strengths, and she has recruited at every level, from directors, project managers, and engineers to operators and general labourers. Her ability to network and develop relationships has been a key tool to her success. With approximately two years of experience managing people and creating a positive work environment, Felicia’s diverse skill set makes her a well-rounded individual. Her business education and background help her identify different business needs and human capital solutions.

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