Employment Relations Team

Members of our employment relations team are based in offices in Hawke's Bay, Manawatu, Taranaki, Nelson and Wellington.


Scott Doolan

Scott Doolan  Senior Consultant

Scott is the senior consultant at Business Central’s Palmerston North office. He advises private, public sector and local government employers in the Manawatu/Wanganui/Wairarapa regions on all issues relating to employment. This includes establishing best practice human resource systems, and advising on current legislative requirements, general employment relations issues, as well as resolving particular disputes.

Scott has extensive experience in representing employers with collective bargaining across a board range of industries. Scott has negotiated multi employer collective agreements, multi union collective agreements and has bargained with all the large Unions.

Prior to Business Central Scott had 15 years' experience in the health sector, including as an operational manager, responsible for a team of 30 - 40 employees, and subsequently as a human resources manager.

Scott's thesis for the MA degree covered interpersonal conflict in the workplace.


Diana Koorts

Diana Koorts Senior Consultant

Diana joined the Business Central New Plymouth team in August 2003. Having lived in Taranaki since 1993, she has a keen interest in the local economy and community. She has assisted both large and smaller employers in a diverse range of industries, including private and public health, retail, local government, manufacturing, education and not-for profit organisations based across the Taranaki region.

Primarily, Diana's responsibilities have centred on the following:

  • Daily advice and assistance to Business Central clients on all aspects of HR, from drafting of Job Descriptions to HR Audits, Recruitment and Selection, Performance Appraisals, Induction, Remuneration as well as HR Employee Handbook/Policy Manual development.
  • Extensive work in helping our clients with reviewing and drafting their employment agreements, running disciplinary processes and leading disciplinary meetings and mediations.
  • Advising and assisting employers on a wide range of employment relations issues, particularly on performance management, restructuring and redundancy processes and strategies.
  • Carrying out in-depth investigations on behalf of our Business Central Clients.

Diana has also worked on long-term secondments from time to time for Business Central at two of Taranaki's prominent organisations in their Human Resources Departments - providing assistance to management on all HR and ER related matters such as a major company restructure, collective bargaining, developing/updating policy manuals, pandemic planning etc.

Prior to joining Business Central, Diana worked in Human Resources in construction and engineering consulting organisations, as well as enjoying a stint in the Real Estate industry.

Diana holds a tertiary qualification in Personnel Management and completed the Massey University paper on Employment Relations Management in 2006.


Darren Mitchell

Darren Mitchell Senior Consultant

Before joining Business Central Darren worked as an employment law advocate, and as the Human Resources and Compliance Manager in a large retail store.

Darren has a broad, practical knowledge of employment law issues, and is an experienced advocate and negotiator. He advises employers on compliance with employment related legislation, restructuring and redundancies. He also provides expert help in tailoring employment agreements and contracts for services to meet particular situations, and in drafting workplace policies.

Specialising in the personal grievance and disputes area, Darren assists employers to resolve such matters in a practical and commonsense manner. He has significant experience representing employers at mediation and in the Employment Relations Authority.
Darren is also experienced trainer, and is available to carry out in-house training on employment law issues.


Debbie Yates

Debbie Yates Senior Consultant, specialising in HR

Debbie Joined Business Central in April 2011 as an HR Consultant, after spending some time working as an independent consultant on HR and management issues. Debbie has previously held HR and management roles in the Health and Education sectors., and has had over 20 years experience in the not-for profit sector.

Debbie is particularly interested in managing conflict though facilitation: mediation and restorative processes. She is also interested in recruitment and induction and positive performance management, and sees the value in getting that fence at the top of the hill well secured, rather than having to provide an ambulance at the bottom of the same hill! However, she does offer a range of other services including assistance with Culture Survey’s; Succession planning; assistance with “Difficult Conversations”: development of policies and procedures; employee handbooks and exit interviews.

Debbie works as a trainer for Business Central, providing management and “soft skill” training.

Debbie has a BA in Politics and  Teaching Diploma and is about to complete a Business Diploma in Alternative Dispute Resolution.


Ian Reid

Ian Reid  Approved Provider

Ian is a strong advocate of enterprise and provides practical management advice that makes a positive difference to clients.

Ian has more than 28 years experience in specialist corporate and consulting roles focussed on Human Resource and Employee Relations Management. He is a strategic thinker with expertise in managing complex employment relationship issues in a wide range of enterprises.  Ian adds value to strategic people initiatives with practical advice to help clients achieve their goals.

Ian is a skilled advocate and experienced negotiator who is able to represent clients in many areas including bargaining and employment agreement negotiations, performance management, staff discipline, investigations, dispute resolution / Mediations / Employment Relations Authority, recruitment, restructuring, working on unionised areas and managed exits to name but a few. He has a reputation for excellent judgement and developing strategic responses supported with practical initiatives to address identified needs.

Ian’s clients, both large and small, are located all across New Zealand and cover a diverse range of enterprises including service industry, food / meat, hospitality, Clubs, IT, transport, maritime, manufacturing, petroleum, engineering, age care /health, baking sectors as examples. Ian has considerable experience working in strongly union organised workplaces and has spent many years working in complex rail / maritime restructurings and/or negotiations as well as with change and performance management initiatives.

Ian’s previous roles include: - Employment Advocate with a Wellington based employment law practice, consulting with Greene Hanson (Right Management), Managing Consultant with the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA) and employment as the Industrial Relations & HR Manager for the Interisland Line (Cook Strait Rail Ferries).

Ian has formed an alliance with the Business Central (also known by its previous title “Employer & Manufacturers Association” or “EMA”) and leases serviced offices from them in their Wellington business premises and in many instances has access to their consulting /legal/ training/ Health & Safety services . While Ian functions as an independent Approved Provider, looking after Business Central members he retains the independence to act for his own firms clients.