ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I wish to express my sincere gratitude to Dr. Md. Ataur Rahman of Management Department of University of Dhaka for providing me an opportunity to do my assignment work on “Disciplinary Action in Organization”. LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL December 31, 2011 Dr. Md. Ataur Rahman Department of Management Studies Faculty of Business Studies University of Dhaka. Dear Sir, I am submitting to you the assignment report, due December 31, 2011, that you have assigned me in our class. This report contains details about the disciplinary action in organization.
I hope you find this report satisfactory. Sincerely, M. S. A. Shahnawaz Chowdhury ID:3-11-20-064 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Disciplinary action refers to the actions or penalties that are taken by an organization in response to an employee’s misconduct. This paper contains all aspects of organizational disciplinary action including its types, model, and guidelines of disciplinary action, tips for disciplinary action, steps and procedure of disciplinary action, benefits and policies of disciplinary action. This report also contains causes and impacts of indiscipline in organization.
At last practices of disciplinary action in public and private organization in Bangladesh is also included in this report. TABLE OF CONTENT 1. DEFINITION OF DISCIPLINE 6 2. DEFINITION OF DECPLINARY ACTION 6 3. TYPES OF DISCIPLINE 7 4. POLICIES OF DECIPLINARY ACTION 7 5. BENEFITS OF DECIPLINARY ACTION 9 6. OBJECTIVES OF DECIPLINARY ACTION 10 7. GUIDANCE FOR MANAGERS WITH RESPECT TO DISCIPLINE 11 8. STEPS OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION 13 9. MODEL OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION 16 10. TIPS FOR DISCIPLINARY ACTION 24 11. CAUSES OF INDISCIPLINE 25 12.
IMPACT OF INDISCIPLINE ON PRODUCTIVITY 27 13. IMPACT OF INDISCIPLINE ON ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR 29 14. DISCIPLINARY ACTION PRACTICES IN BANGLADESHI PUBLIC ORGANIZATION 29 15. DISCIPLINARY ACTION PRACTICES IN BANGLADESHI PRIVATE ORGANIZATION 30 16. CONCLUSION 30 17. REFERENCES31 18. BIBLOGRAPHY32 19. QUESTIONS33 DEFINITION OF DISCIPLINE Discipline is a most for every organization that wants to move forward. It is very essential for the smooth running of any firm. It is also very important for peace and harmony in an organization.
Peace between employees, customers and clients. It is always necessary for discipline to be instilled in employees to get the best out of your workforce. Before I go on with why we should have discipline and disciplinary actions in case of defaulters, its right to find out what discipline is. Discipline can be seen or defined as a force that prompts individuals, organizations, nation etc to observe rules and regulations stipulated which are deemed necessary for the effective and efficient running of the group, organization or nation.
Discipline in firms can be seen as an orderly conduct by employees of an organization to adhere to the rules and regulations as well as policies guiding the activities and running of the organization. DEFINITION OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION Disciplinary action refers to the actions or penalties that are taken by an organization in response to an employee’s misconduct. For disciplinary action to be effective it must be undertaken by appropriate people and must adhere to NSW Government legislation and the policies of the agency involved.
Disciplinary action that is not done properly is more likely to be challenged and/or overturned if there is an appeal. The range of disciplinary action that may be taken includes an official caution or reprimand, salary being reduced by pay increment(s), a fine, transfer to another position, demotion, suspension (with or without pay), and dismissal. Remedial action, including issuing a warning, implementing a performance improvement plan, training, coaching, mentoring, and restricted (instead of flexible) hours may be used as an alternative to formal disciplinary action.
TYPES OF DISCIPLINE There are two types of discipline. •Preventive discipline : Preventive discipline is action taken to encourage employees to follow standards and rules so that infractions do not occur. Prevention is best done by making company standards known and understood in advance. The basic objectives however is to encourage employee self discipline. In this way the employees maintain their own discipline rather than have management impose it. Employees are more likely to support standards that they have helped create.
They also will give more support to standards that are stated positively instead of negatively, and when they have been told the reasons behind a standard so that it will make sense to them. •Corrective discipline: Corrective discipline is action that follows infraction of a rule; it seeks to discourage further infractions so that future act will be in compliance with standards. Typically the corrective action is a penalty of some type and is called a disciplinary action. Examples are a warning or suspension with or without pay. POLICIES OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION
In any social system, irrespective of its nature, it is important for the participant to determine a set of rules that will regulate the conduct of its members and should be observed in order to function successfully. Similarly so it is important in the workplace to determine a set of policies to regulate the relationship between the employees and the employer in the form of a disciplinary procedure. The code is based on the following principles:- •The right of management to take appropriate disciplinary steps against any worker, who acts in a manner conflicting with the interest of the conference. At the same time the code also recognizes the right of a worker to a fair hearing and applicable and just disciplinary action. •The emphasis of any disciplinary system is on prevention, justice and rehabilitation. •The disciplinary code is regarded as a guideline and its interpretation must be adequately flexible in order to adjust to various circumstances. Writing a Disciplinary Policy The trick to writing an effective disciplinary policy is to give your employees clear notice of the consequences of poor behavior without locking yourself into following one course of action in every situation. For xample, even though you may generally follow a policy of progressive discipline (in which a first offense is met with a verbal warning, a second offense with a written warning, and so on), you want to reserve the right to immediately fire an employee who really acts badly. And you will also want to avoid any hint of a promise that employees will not be fired unless they engage in specified misconduct – you may find that your employees dream up bad acts you never considered, or that you have to fire employees for reasons entirely separate from their performance (an economic downturn or plant closing, for example).
Once you know that an employee has violated a company rule, you will have to dispense some of that discipline promised in your policy. Here are some guidelines to follow: • Don’t procrastinate. Once you have determined that discipline is in order, set up a meeting with the employee right away. The sooner you place the employee on notice, the sooner he or she will be able to improve. • Keep it private. Schedule a meeting with your employee to discuss the problem, one on one. Make sure you can meet in a private place, away from eavesdropping co-workers and office gossip. Be honest. Your natural tendency may be to accentuate the positive, but now is not the time to indulge it. The purpose of this meeting is to notice and improve poor behavior. You must tell the employee precisely what the problem is, what steps he or she must take to correct it, and the consequences of failing to do so. • Be respectful. Even bad news is best delivered with respect. Let your employee know that you want him or her to improve, and that you will help if you can. Set aside enough time for the meeting so that the employee will have an opportunity to respond.
Make sure to listen to your employee’s concerns; it may be that a performance problem is the result of a misunderstanding, or could be easily corrected if you work together. • Write it down. Document every disciplinary meeting, action or discussion with each of your employees, and place that record in the employee’s personnel file. In the case of a written warning, give the employee a copy of the warning and ask him or her to sign it to acknowledge receipt. These records will help you later, if that employee decides to file a lawsuit. • Follow up.
If you tell your employee that you must see improvement by a certain date, make sure to follow up. Check with your employee periodically to make sure everything is proceeding smoothly. It is essential that all employees accept personal responsibility for maintaining high standards of conduct and job performance, including observance of WPI rules and policies. Violations of these standards will result in disciplinary action. Disciplinary action is considered a dimension of performance evaluation. It is a corrective process to help employees overcome work-related shortcomings, strengthen work performance and achieve success.
BENEFITS OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION A disciplinary action procedure provides employers with a structured approach for dealing with ill-discipline at work. The procedure defines the types of ill-discipline it covers, the presentation and documentation of warnings, representation at disciplinary interviews, time limits for investigation, and rights of appeal. Benefits of disciplinary procedures are given below. * Set standards of conduct at work. * Ensure fair and consistent treatment for employees throughout the organization. * Can help prevent a minor problem from becoming a major one. Offer protection for the employer against claims of unfair dismissal. Points to remember about disciplinary procedures There are no real disadvantages of implementing a disciplinary procedure, but remember: * it requires time and resources to run effectively. * The objectives must be explained thoroughly to staff to avoid undue worry . * They are not to be used to replace informal warnings and performance monitoring systems. OBJECTIVES OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION The purpose of discipline according to Dessler (2001) is to encourage employees to behave sensibly at work, where being sensible is defined as adhering to rule and regulations.
In an organization, rules and regulations serve about the same purpose that laws do in society; discipline is called for when one of these rules or regulations is violated. The objective of this Disciplinary action Procedure is to regulate discipline in the workplace with the key principle that the employer and the employees should treat each other with mutual respect. Following are some of the purposes and objectives of disciplinary action: 1. To enforce rules and regulations. 2. To punish the offender. 3. To serve as an example to others to strictly follow rules. 4.
To ensure the smooth running of the organization. 5. To increase working efficiency. 6. To maintain industrial peace. 7. To improve working relations and tolerance. 8. To develop a working culture which improves performance? Discipline is therefore a measure to not only protect the interests of the organization but also its employees. A good example is that of the recently implemented Sexual Harassment Guideline provided for through a Supreme court ruling wherein all organizations must have a policy and a committee that will look into the gender related harassments at the workplace.
Today all organizations have clearly laid down guidelines that detail un-acceptable behavior amongst male-female employees that can merit disciplinary action. GUIDANCE FOR MANAGERS WITH RESPECT TO DISCIPLINE 1. Collective agreements Some collective agreements contain provisions pertaining to discipline and departments must respect these applicable terms and conditions. 2. Steps in determining misconduct and disciplinary action 1. Determine whether or not rules and orders have been applied fairly and consistently. 2. Conduct a fair and objective investigation. . Establish whether or not the employee has been accorded due administrative process. (See investigations below. ) 4. Determine whether or not a breach of conduct has occurred. 5. Determine the appropriate disciplinary action to be taken. The action being considered should take into account the mitigating and/or aggravating circumstances. 3. Investigations and interviews 1. An investigation into alleged wrongdoing should be conducted as close as possible to the relevant incident. 2. The investigation should be conducted fairly and objectively.
It should also consider and provide the following: obackground information leading to the relevant incident; oinput from the witness or witnesses; othe employee’s response to the allegation(s); oan analysis of the facts; and othe conclusion as to whether or not misconduct has taken place. 3. As part of the investigation and in the context of administrative due process, employees have a right to be confronted with the alleged wrong doing and to have an opportunity to respond. Interviews with employees normally take place in private.
Managers should consult the applicable collective agreement and advise the employee of the provisions with respect to the attendance of a bargaining agent or other representative at the interview. Management may also choose to be accompanied by a human resources specialist or another management colleague during the interview. Documentation of the outcome of the interview, including the investigation report, if there is one, must be retained and must be made available to the employee. 4. Determining appropriate disciplinary action 1.
Each incident of alleged misconduct must be considered on the basis of individual merit. Based on the circumstances, in management’s opinion, what corrective measures would be necessary to correct the undesirable behavior? The application of disciplinary measures should not be punitive in nature. In the event that previous efforts to correct behavior have not achieved the desired results, or if the misconduct of the employee is deemed so onerous that continued employment is not considered feasible, termination action may be the only meaningful appropriate measure. 2.
Mitigating circumstances, such as the employee’s length of service, past record, the seriousness of the offence, and the unique circumstances of each situation, may require variations in management’s response to seemingly similar offences; but whatever the response, it should be made evident to all employees that disciplinary actions depend upon the nature of the offence, the attendant circumstances, as well as any mitigating factors. Consultation with your labour relations advisors may also be appropriate, and a review of applicable prior jurisprudence is advisable. . Disciplinary action, however, should not be delayed; a lengthy time gap between the breach of discipline and management’s response tends to dissociate the offence from the corrective action. Such delay may also be considered as condoning and may weaken management’s case at adjudication. 5. Flexibility and application of discipline Rigid equation of offences and disciplinary measures should be avoided. Disciplinary action of a progressively more serious nature is warranted when there are repeated incidents of misconduct. 6. Meeting at which a isciplinary decision is rendered Once a decision on disciplinary action is made, an employee shall be informed of this decision at a disciplinary meeting as soon as practicable. Managers should consult the applicable collective agreement and advise the employee of the provisions with respect to the attendance of a bargaining agent or other representative at the meeting. An employee should be informed of the following during a disciplinary meeting: 1. disciplinary measure(s) to be taken; 2. the reasons why the disciplinary measure was chosen; 3. itigating circumstances and contributing factors that were taken into consideration in reaching this decision; 4. in cases involving suspension, financial penalty, demotion and termination, the manner and time frame in which the disciplinary measure(s) will be administered; and 5. The right to present an individual grievance. Applicable collective agreements may also require management to inform local union representatives when taking specific forms of disciplinary action. At the disciplinary hearing, an employee should be provided with a written copy of the disciplinary action to be taken. 7. Documentation
A written record of the disciplinary action taken is to be placed on an employee’s personnel file. With respect to discipline, only documentation that the employee is aware of can be placed on his or her personnel file. Failure on the part of an employee to acknowledge disciplinary documentation being placed on file may be substituted by a notation to that effect. Removal of any document or written statement related to a disciplinary action, which may have been placed on the personnel file of an employee, shall be destroyed in accordance with the applicable provision of the collective agreement.
Documents that have been removed from the employee’s personnel file cannot be considered in subsequent applications of disciplinary action. STEPS OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION There are some steps of disciplinary action, they are: 1. Oral Warning: •Set a time and place to ensure privacy. •Make notes about what you want to say in advance. •Remember that the employee may have a right to representation. •State clearly that you are issuing an oral warning. •Be specific in describing the unacceptable performance or behavior. •Remind the employee of the acceptable standards or rules.
If they are available in writing, provide them to the employee. •State the consequences of failure to demonstrate immediate and sustained improvement: Further disciplinary action may be the result. •Note the oral warning on your calendar and key elements of discussion. 2. Oral reprimand : It is a verbal disciplinary measure that includes a statement outlining to the employee the nature of the misconduct, the corrective action required, and the consequences should it not be corrected. No record of this measure is to be placed on the employee’s personnel file. . Written Warning: If you gave an oral warning and the problem performance or behavior persists, a written warning may be effective. You may decide to use this disciplinary action more than once, to get the employee’s attention. Be careful, however, not to get stuck issuing repetitive letters of warning that fail to influence the employee’s behavior or performance. Consult with your L/ER Analyst. •State clearly at the outset of the letter that it is a written warning, and cite the appropriate personnel policy or contract provision. See Sample Written Warning Letter in this chapter. ) •Describe the performance problem(s) or work rule violation(s) in very specific detail and attach documents which support your conclusions. •Outline previous steps taken to acquaint the employee with the issue (coaching sessions, performance appraisals, and previous disciplinary actions) and attach copies of the documents. •Describe the impact of the problem (safety issues, need to reassign work). •Note the employee’s explanation (as revealed during your investigation) or that the employee declined to offer one.
If it was unacceptable, explain why. •Reiterate your expectations regarding behavior and/or performance. •Note that if the employee doesn’t demonstrate immediate and sustained improvement, the consequence will be further disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal. •Refer the employee to the appropriate policy or contract provision for appeal rights. • Deliver the warning letter to the employee and place it in the employee’s departmental personnel file using appropriate delivery procedures such as “Proof of Service. ” 4.
Written reprimand : It is a formal written warning that misconduct has occurred. It should outline the nature of the misconduct, the corrective action required, and the consequences should it not be corrected. If more severe disciplinary action should later become necessary, the record of the reprimand(s) on the personnel file will demonstrate that the employee was made aware of the consequences of further misconduct. 5. Suspension: It is the temporary removal of the employee from the place of work without pay as a consequence of misconduct.
The notice of suspension should include the nature of the misconduct, the corrective action required and the consequences should it not be corrected. A suspension may be imposed in the following situations: •pending investigation of certain suspected misconduct when the presence of the employee at work cannot be tolerated or could undermine or impede the investigation (see Annex 2 for indefinite suspension criteria as enunciated in Larson PSSRB file 2002 PSSRB 9); or •To impose a definitive disciplinary measure for an act of misconduct. 6. Financial penalty:
It is an alternative to a suspension, where a financial penalty is considered preferable for operational or economic reasons. Financial penalties are appropriate in situations involving mass unlawful withdrawal of services, continuous shift operations, ships at sea, and isolated posts where it may be difficult to schedule suspensions without the use of replacements and overtime. It may also be used to impose a definitive disciplinary measure for an act of misconduct. It should outline the nature of the misconduct, the corrective measure required, and the consequences should it not be corrected. . Demotion: It means an action taken by the employer to appoint an employee to a position at a lower maximum rate of pay. Demotion is an alternative to a disciplinary termination and should be used when the manager is of the opinion that, despite the misconduct, the employee is still suitable for continued employment albeit in a position at a lower maximum rate of pay. Demotion could be used in situations where a manager is found guilty of harassment and is moved to a position with no managerial responsibilities. . Disciplinary termination: It is the separation of an employee from the core public administration for misconduct. It may be used after a series of acts of misconduct when a “culminating incident” has occurred, or for a single act of serious misconduct. Termination is the most severe disciplinary measure, and the decision to proceed should be taken only after careful consideration and when it is determined that the employee is no longer suitable for continued employment by reason of misconduct.
MODEL OF DISCIPLINARY ACTION Following model is designed to assist employers in ensuring you properly understand all the steps necessary in dealing with a disciplinary process; if you follow all the steps this should help protect you from having to defend an unfair dismissal – or at least allow you to defend an unfair dismissal effectively. Even with guidance, making sure a disciplinary is fair & balanced can be difficult, and you are therefore advised to consider seeking expert assistance before taking any action.
The flowchart provides live links with more details: click on any stage (the ovals) and you will be taken to commentary on that stage in the disciplinary process. The weight of the lines between the stages signifies the importance of these: light broken arrows mean employers should be considering the action, although it will not often be appropriate; unbroken arrows imply the next stage is essential. Determine Probable Level of Misconduct Once the likely level of misconduct has been determined, the employer will be able to determine what action to take next.
The nature of the misconduct will be obvious in some occasions, but as the disciplinary policy will only include the type of conduct that could fall into each category, it will be necessary for an employer to make a reasonable judgment in many cases of suspected misconduct. These will be determined according to the nature of the company, as some matters may be more important in some workplaces, and a failure to follow these requirements could be more of a disciplinary offence in these circumstances.
Typical examples of misconduct could include: •Minor (breaches of the rules or required standards, but not of an nature serious enough to warrant dismissal or more formal action initially) oPoor Time-keeping oPersonal use of telephones, etc oRegular or unauthorized absences oFailure to act on a reasonable instruction oPoor performance •Serious (breaches of the rules or required standards of a nature serious enough to warrant dismissal in some instances) oInsubordination Continued poor performance after appropriate support & training oIncapability due to drugs or alcohol oSerious misuse of computers of other equipment oRepeated incidents of minor misconduct •Gross (breaches of the rules or required standards of a nature serious enough to warrant dismissal in all instances) oSerious insubordination oTheft or Fraud oViolence or bullying oSerious breach of confidence oSerious neglect of health & safety procedures
Repeated offences of minor misconduct may also be treated as serious misconduct. However, it’s important to remember, this is misconduct for which there have been charges brought against the employee – informal action (when formal disciplinary charges are not applied) does not count, and it is only repeated minor misconduct for which charges has been brought when repeated minor misconduct should be treated as serious misconduct.
Appears to be Minor Misconduct In cases of minor misconduct, it will often be practical & sensible to deal with this informally. This will not lead to any formal action being taken against the employee, and unless there is further misconduct – when a more formal approach should be considered – this issue should not be held against the employee in the future… except of course if there is a repeat offence, the employer should ensure formal action follows.
Employers should be cautious not to use the option of an informal discussion instead of more formal action simply to avoid being too heavy-handed. Formal disciplinary action for minor misconduct is not heavy-handed, and with the appropriate action taken, should a further incident arise the employer will now be ready to consider if this should be escalated to serious misconduct. Where formal charges are brought against the employee, it will be important that these are still documented & the employee has a clear knowledge of this.
Despite the apparent contradiction, even the issuing of a verbal warning should be reiterated in writing – this will simply advise that a verbal warning has been issued, but will not increase the level or status of the disciplinary penalty. In cases where the employer considers formal action is appropriate, the employer should commence the process by advising the employee of the potential misconduct, and proceed with an appropriate investigation from there. In other cases, the concerns should simply be addressed as part of any good management process, with an informal discussion about the incident.
Address with Informal Discussion In most cases of minor misconduct, the employee may have had no intention of misconduct, and may not even have realized their actions were misconduct. Once the area of concern has been identified, it will often be possible to deal with this through appropriate support – for performance or attendance issues, either providing more training or making reasonable adjustments in the workplace that could help improve attendance. Arrange appropriate support
Whatever the outcome of the disciplinary process – whether summary dismissal (dismissal on the spot), dismissal with notice (serve out the notice period before the dismissal takes effect), a lesser disciplinary penalty, or no disciplinary penalty – the employer has a responsibility to their employee, and should ensure appropriate support is provided. If you have decided to summarily dismiss, you should ensure the employee is able to gather any personal belongings in a manner that causes the least difficulties.
This may involve a supportive approach as they return to their workplace, but as this will often be in full view of colleagues, it would often be better to arrange a quieter time to arrange this if practical. Employers should take care to ensure the employee is only removing their own property, but you should try to act sensitively in observing any packing the employee finds necessary, as you don’t want to portray any more level of distrust than is appropriate & necessary in the circumstances.
Where dismissal is preceded by notice, the employer should ensure the employee is given appropriate support & responsibilities through the remaining term of their employment – the appointment is continuing, and work appropriate to the contract & grade should continue to be assigned, although this may be restricted where necessary & appropriate to the disciplinary action.
Where a lesser penalty has been issued, if this involves for example a demotion, the employer should help the employee settle into the new role, and adapt to the lack of responsibility or increased management attention associated with this position. In other cases, the employer should remember that disciplinary action is aimed principally at improving performance, and continue to support & promote the necessary improvement in the future conduct of the employee.
If no disciplinary penalty is issued, the employer will still need to acknowledge the difficulties & stress a disciplinary procedure will have had on an employee. It is imperative that the employer provides the necessary support for employees that have been considered for disciplinary action, and ensure they understand the employer needs to investigate suspected offences although this is not an assumption of guilt on the employee by itself. Appears to be Serious/Gross Misconduct
Cases that appear to be serious or gross misconduct must never be ignored. Equally, it is important for employers not to jump to conclusions or otherwise make assumptions about the perceived misconduct, let alone reach any conclusions about the likely outcome of the case. At this stage, there is a suspicion that the employee’s conduct is inappropriate, but until the matter has been properly looked into, employers should assume nothing, and not determine the actual, or even likely, outcome.
In the most serious circumstances, employers should consider suspension now, but this will be rare, with a real & genuine risk to the interests of the company suspected. Advise Employee of Potential Misconduct As you have determined that there is possible or probable misconduct, it is only appropriate you alert the employee to this. Natural justice & good employment relations require you to give the employee notice of the issues you suspect they are guilty of; any concerns that this notice will allow an employee to prepare an excuse or otherwise hide the facts, or adjust their conduct should not deter this.
As the notice of suspected disciplinary action is what the investigation will be based on, and the employee’s input will be to comment on this, it is important that this is clear & unambiguous: rather than writing ‘you are being investigated for poor time-keeping’, expand this to provide examples that support this – you apparently arrived at 10:10 on Monday, 1 December, and 10:30 on Tuesday… The letter should also make clear that this is alleged misconduct – for reasons that may not yet be obvious, it is possible that there will be perfectly reasonable explanations for the conduct.
Therefore, you should make clear that this is not a disciplinary charge, but an investigation into a disciplinary matter; a charge will follow if necessary. In all cases for which you have issued a disciplinary charge, you will then need to conduct an investigation. Consider Suspension During the disciplinary process, employers will need to actively consider whether suspension is appropriate. This decision does not need to be taken at the start of the process, it can be reached at any stage that it seems appropriate, if information comes to light that justifies the same.
Suspension during a disciplinary process is not a disciplinary penalty in itself. It is an option available, normally applied only for gross misconduct, that temporarily removes the employee while disciplinary matters are investigated & the facts determined. As this is not a penalty, employers should normally continue to pay the employee for the time suspended – which should be as brief as possible, and certainly no longer than a week. Formal Investigation
A disciplinary investigation does not always need to be exhaustive in its nature, leaving no stone unturned; these should be reasonable, given the nature of the alleged misconduct & all other circumstances. A charge of minor misconduct will not require an investigation as intense as a charge of gross misconduct; although the employer should still be satisfied they have investigated sufficiently to hold a reasonable view of what happened.
A charge of gross misconduct will often require the most intense investigation – this could justify dismissal, even as a first offence, so it’s important the employer has reasonable grounds to support this action – although even then, in some instances this could be brief if the evidence available is strong & the employee does not offer a convincing explanation for their conduct.
It is normally preferable wherever possible to have the investigation conducted independently – the manager that will make any decision based on the findings of the investigation should, wherever possible, arrange for another manager or someone external to gather the facts impartially, and present these in a balanced manner: remember, the investigation is intended to gather facts, not make or influence the final decisions. Once an investigation has been concluded, the employer should decide what action to take against the employee.
This will either be to treat the matter as minor misconduct that can be dealt with by an informal discussion; to proceed with disciplinary charges against the employee (in these cases, employers should again consider whether suspension is appropriate); or to conclude that there is insufficient evidence to proceed. Disciplinary Charges Issued If an employer holds a reasonably based view that there is a disciplinary charge to answer, the full details of this should be set-out in writing to the employee. The letter should also invite the employee to a disciplinary meeting, and fully explain their rights in regard to this.
Disciplinary Meeting A disciplinary meeting should be arranged, wherever possible at a time mutually convenient to all parties. In a small number of cases, the employee will claim all dates/times offered are inconvenient to them, or any companion. In these instances, the employee should suggest a suitable time within a reasonable time-scale (five days is typically fine although this may vary for different circumstances), but where agreement cannot be reached, the employer should set a final date, and advise the employee that the meeting will proceed without them if necessary.
It will be important, even if cases for which the employee does not attend, to proceed with a disciplinary hearing. This will typically involve a minuted record that the managers were present, and considered the investigation & any other information available to them, and also decided whether to proceed on the basis of that, or give the employee a further opportunity to attend a meeting (providing the manager has been flexible & given the employee a reasonable opportunity to attend a meeting, giving a further opportunity will not normally be necessary). Decision
The employer should reach their decision only on the facts of the case, as far as reasonably established. It is important not to allow prejudices or other suspicions to influence the decision-making. Employers should remember always to act consistently: there will be unique elements to any case, but in cases with predominantly the same issues, any actions or penalty should be similar. The employer should consider the current record of the employee in making any decision: a disciplinary warning will normally be exhausted after a period of time, so unless current these should not be considered in any decision.
In cases of gross misconduct, the decision may be to dismiss for a first offence. In other cases, dismissal will be exceptional, although it may be appropriate in some circumstances for serious misconduct. The decision should be reached as promptly as possible after the disciplinary hearing (while taking sufficient time to reflect on anything said at the hearing), and should be advised in writing to the employee. Appeal Disciplinary procedures should always include an opportunity for an appeal, wherever possible to a more senior person than that who took the initial ecision; in the smallest companies, this may not be possible, in which case a suitably qualified independent person may be brought in to hear this. Where the same manager needs to hear the appeal, they should act as impartially as possible from their earlier decision. The appeals process is not an opportunity for the employee to present new evidence, but for the employer to consider whether the original process was fair & reasonable in all the circumstances.
The appeal should be set out in writing, and should give clear details of what is being appealed – the findings, the disciplinary penalty, or both. Where the findings are being appealed, the main focus of the appeal should be to consider the original disciplinary process, and whether this was reasonable in all the circumstances. If the employer is satisfied this was, the appeal can be dismissed; if there is a reasonable argument that the investigation should have covered more, consideration should be given to upholding the appeal, and arranging a further investigation.
Where the disciplinary penalty is being appealed, the main focus of attention should be whether the original decision was reasonably made & was appropriate in all the circumstances. If this is not to be found so, the original decision should be substituted; otherwise the appeal may be dismissed – although the manager may still reduce the initial penalty if they consider it appropriate in the circumstances of the cases. This will normally be the final outcome in the case, so it is important to ensure you are comfortable with the decision being reached.
The decision from the appeal should be a reasonable one in all the circumstances (the confidence of the management responsible for earlier actions should not undermined, although bringing in a wider perspective & the knowledge of a more senior manager can assist the other manager in their judgment for future cases; overturning a decision on appeal does not mean the original decision was necessarily wrong in the circumstances). This should be reached as soon as possible & notified to the employee in writing.
In cases where a dismissal has been overturned, the employer should consider appropriate support in getting the employee back into their employment with minimum fuss or unnecessary attention. Final Outcome The employee will have no further appeal internally at this stage, so before this final decision is reached, the employer should satisfy themselves that all procedures have been properly & fully followed; the disciplinary penalty is appropriate in the circumstances; and they would be confident in defending this at an employment tribunal in case the employee elect to take a claim.
The final outcome should never be pre-determined, but will be a decision reached when all the facts have been considered in a balanced manner. After the appeal, it could be the case that the original decision is upheld, the decision is set aside, or the decision is substituted with an alternative decision. The decision needs to be reached in a reasonable time-scale, but should never be rushed out. Instead, as soon as the appeal has been received, the person due to make the final decision should set-aside sufficient time to consider & absorb all the facts before reaching a decision.
As soon as a decision is reached, this should be put in writing and provided to the employee. Given the difficulties the employee has gone through in this whole process, the employer should be supportive & considerate when delivering this final decision: rather than leave an envelope on the employee’s desk, give notice to the employee of when the decision is likely to be available, and book a meeting to deliver the letter in person.
While not legally obligatory, these little steps will at least help to demonstrate that the employer has been considerate in their processes, not crassly reaching decisions & then casually letting the employee know these. Regardless of the outcome, the employer should continue to be supportive of the employee. No Further Action In some instances, your suspicions of misconduct will prove to be unfounded – either the matter of concern was not actually as first perceived, or there were acceptable explanations for this that mean formal disciplinary penalties are not appropriate.
Employers should notify the employee as soon as possible when a conclusion has been reached that no further action is necessary – the employee will often be concerned about the threat of disciplinary action, so as soon as it is known that no further action will be required, this should be communicated to the employee – ideally, you should speak to the employee to advise them of the conclusion but always confirm this in writing. It will still be important to keep full records of the matter, noting that nothing further occurred as well as the reasons for this decision. Employment tribunals will always look for & expect onsistency from employers – you can’t treat one employee differently to another for the same offence and with the same circumstances. Having records to support your decision not to pursue action in any given instance will assist employers in defending their actions, should another employee bring a claim to an employment tribunal – the employer will be able to explain the reasons why the cases were not equal, and why action was justified in one but not another case. TIPS FOR DISCIPLINARY ACTION THE DAUGHERTY TEST Discipline may range from counseling to dismissal for serious offenses or continued infractions.
No matter what type of discipline the department applies, it should evaluate certain factors to ensure the discipline is fair and just. In Enterprise Wire Company, 46 LA 359 (Arbitrator: Daugherty, 1966), Arbitrator Carroll R. Daugherty used seven factors, which are now a basic part of arbitral common law called the Daugherty Test, to determine the fairness of a disciplinary action. The Seven Factors require that the correctness of discipline be determined in light of mitigating or extenuating circumstances, that is, judged against the seriousness of the infraction and the quality of the employee’s employment history.
The Seven Factors of the Daugherty Test are: 1. The warning must be adequate. 2. The rule the employee broke must be reasonable. 3. The employer must investigate the alleged infraction. 4. The employer must conduct a thorough and unbiased investigation. 5. The evidence the investigator uncovers must be strong enough to justify discipline. 6. The employer must apply the rule evenly to all employees required to follow it. 7. The level of discipline should be appropriate to the infraction. However, passing the Daugherty Test is not sufficient.
To ensure a successful disciplinary action, Employers should answer the following questions before administering discipline: • Does the law prohibit the proposed discipline? • Is the discipline consistent with public policy? • Did the organization follow established rules and regulations? • Did the organization follow its policies? • Did the employer meet contractual obligations? • Has the employer applied progressive discipline? • Has the employer offered the employee a hearing? If the answer is “no” to any of these questions, then the employer should stop and review the process.
The review should determine if the employer can continue or if it needs to correct the omission before proceeding so that a successful disciplinary process results. CAUSES OF INDISCIPLINE The statement that “discipline is what the leaders make it” is the observation of Henry Fayol on faults and lapses. Even where indiscipline results form the faulty attitudes and behavior of the subordinates, the responsibility lies with the management because it provides the leaders to guide the subordinates. The common causes of indiscipline in an organization may be stated as follows: 1. Lack of Effective Leadership:
Effective leadership is a must for maintaining the discipline, which means to seek cooperation of the followers (subordinates) to achieve the desired objectives. In India, effective leadership could not be provided either by the management or by the trade unions which caused indiscipline in the industries. 2. Varying Disciplinary Measures: Consistent disciplinary actions must be there in the organization to provide equal justice to all concerned. At different times and for everyone, the same standard of disciplinary measures should be taken otherwise it may give rise to growing indiscipline in the industry in future i. . , the judicious function on the past of management must be free form may bias, privilege or favoritism. 3. Defective Supervision: Supervisor is the immediate boss of the workers and many disciplinary problems have their in faulty supervision. The attitude and behavior of the supervisor may create many problems. As the maintenance of the discipline is the discipline is the core f supervisory responsibilities, indiscipline may spring from the want of the right type of supervision. 4. Lack of well-defined Code of Conduct:
There must be a code of discipline in every organization enlisting sufficient rules regulations or customary practices for the guidance and information of all employees. Such code should be communicated to all concerned in a clear and simple language so as to be followed by the concerned in a clear and simple language so as to be followed by the concerned parties in its true spirit. To be effective, the code should be adopted by the joint consultation of managers and the subordinates. In the absence of a well defined code of discipline, the disciplinary actions emanate form personal whims and temperaments which create indiscipline. . Divide and Rule Policy: Many mangers in the business obtain secret information about other employees through their trusted assistants. The spying on employees is only productive of a vicious atmosphere and of undesirable in the organization. Henry Fayol has rightly pointed out that dividing enemy forces to weaken them is clever, but dividing one’s own team is grave sin against the business. No amount of management skill is necessary for dividing personnel, but integrating personnel into a team is the challenging task of sound management. 6. Deferring settlement of Employee Grievances:
The employee grievances cannot be put off by deferring or neglecting their solutions. The grievances should properly be inquired into and settled by the managers in a reasonable period. Neglect of grievances often results in reduced performance, low morale and indiscipline among the employees. Strikes and work stoppages stem in many cases form the utter neglect of employee grievances. 7. Mis-judgment in Promotion and Placements: Mis-judgment in personnel matters like promotion and placements contribute to the growth of indiscipline in an enterprise.
Cases of mis-judgment are carefully noted, widely circulated, and hotly debated by the employees. Expecting discipline from misruled people is not possible. Sometimes, undesired persons are placed on the job which makes the employees discontented, then giving rise to the problem of indiscipline. 8. Inadequate Attention to Personal Problems: Actions or reactions of people are the direct outcome of their attitudes. Attitudes influence human beings and their activities. Discipline is the by-product of these attitudes and the attitudes in turn, is determined by the personal problems of employees.
In order to maintain the discipline, understanding of the personal problems and individual difficulties as well as counseling with employees, is necessary. Inadequate attention to the personal problems, thus, gives rise to indiscipline. 9. Victimization and Excessive Pressures: Sometimes the manager or the supervisor develops ill-feelings in him about some persons and victimizes them in his own way. It contributes to indiscipline. Moreover, the supervisor puts excessive pressure of wok on the employees under his strict control which they feel suffocative. It may result in indiscipline. 10. Other Causes:
There may be certain other causes of indiscipline among the workers. Economical, social and political factors may influence the disciplinary problem in the organization because industry is a part of the social and political system of the country. Political leaders very often use the work force for their own political interests. The general social environments also influence the workers’ disciplinary problem. Thus, there are certain external factors which contribute to the industrial indiscipline. IMPACT OF INDISCIPLINE ON PRODUCTIVITY Indiscipline means employees failure to comply with the organizations rules nd regulations. Indiscipline is origin of opportunism and basically it is opposite of Marxism. It is useless. Objectively it facilitates to enemy. This is the reason that enemy ever likes undisciplined people in revolutionary organizations and provides protection to them. Indiscipline is destructive tool and there is no space in organization for it. An organization suffers from organizational indiscipline has to face the various problems, including Absence from work Absenteeism Abusing customers Abusive language toward supervisor Assault and fighting among employees
Causing unsafe working conditions Damage to or loss of machinery or materials Dishonesty Disloyalty to employer (includes competing with employer, conflict of interest) Falsifying company records (including time records, production records) Falsifying employment application Gambling Horseplay Incompetence (including low productivity) Insubordination Leaving place of work (including quitting early) Loafing Misconduct during a strike Negligence Obscene or immoral conduct Participation in a prohibited strike Possession or use of drugs or intoxicants Profane or abusive language (not toward supervisor)
Refusal to accept a job assignment Refusal to work overtime Sleeping on the job Slowdown Tardiness All above mentioned problems are responsible for low productivity of the organization as well as production cost increase rapidly. Quality of product also decreased because of indiscipline. So in order to making efficient and effective product an organization must ensure discipline within the organization. IMPACT OF INDISCIPLINE ON ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR Indiscipline has the following impacts on organizational behavior. •Poor inter employee relationship. •Hampers skill development. Rise unethical practices among employee. •Lack of motivation for work. • Job dissatisfaction. •Low performance level of the employee. • Leadership opportunity and career development hampered. DISCIPLINARY ACTION PRACTICES IN BANGLADESHI PUBLIC ORGANIZATION In Bangladesh, disciplinary actions for public organization officials range, in principle, from notes of caution and censures to suspension and dismissal. In practice those options are rarely applied. One survey report show that only 33% of surveyed officials reported having seen official punished in the three months prior to the survey.
The possibility of punishment for wrong doing depends significantly on whether the official is posted in a district or in a ministry/autonomous body. In ministries, class I officers are punished two times more than class III and class IV stuff. In districts, officers are punished ten times more than stuff. At any rate, officers are punished more often class III and class IV employees. Whether this results from the strengths of employee union at this level, or because many of these are patronage appointees, is debatable.
Also fewer punishments for low grade employees could diminish support for higher grade officers and became a source of poor morale. With the formal punishment system in disuse, transfers and posting-such as Officer on Special Duty (OSD)-are used to punish officials and these are used quite arbitrarily. Now a day’s disciplinary action in Bangladeshi public organization is rarely practices. Political influences hamper those practices in public organization. Sometimes unethical action is charged because of political issues.
DISCIPLINARY ACTION PRACTICES IN BANGLADESHI PRIVATE ORGANIZATION In Bangladesh, private organization is less corrupted than public organization. Here, private organization is more advanced than public organization. Private organization practices HRM as well as proper disciplinary action. Most of the multinational company in Bangladesh maintains proper disciplinary action. But as a developing country most of company in Bangladesh is relatively small and medium size. These small types of company rarely follow the standard disciplinary action procedure. Here, Management is the autonomous body.
Sometimes they directly dismiss employee without following the disciplinary action procedure, which is unethical. CONCLUSION If a company is to have a successful employee disciplinary procedure, both the organization and the manager have important roles to play. In practice, companies assume the responsibility of establishing rules, communicating them to employees, and developing a penalty system for enforcing them. The manager’s role in the disciplinary procedure is distinct from that of the organization, yet the two overlap and support each other. Managers are responsible for implementing the organization’s discipline procedure.
This requires them to do several things: They must compare their organization’s rules with employee behavior to determine whether a rule has been broken; they must determine whether they have sufficient proof that the employee did indeed break the rule; they must decide what corrective action should be taken and then take it; and they must document whatever action is taken. To the extent that all managers perform these steps effectively, the disciplinary procedure will be effective and there is a very good chance that employee behavior on the job can be significantly improved.
REFERENCES Keith Davis & John W Newstorm,12th edition , Organizational Behavior. Chapter: 10 Mohammad Ehsan, PUBLIC SECTOR HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT IN BANGLADESH: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES IN LIGHT OF THE WPSR 2005. http://goliath. ecnext. com/coms2/gi_0199-5203209/Setting-up-a-disciplinary-procedure. html http://mbastudymaterial4u. blogspot. com/2011/07/discipline-disciplinary-action. html http://www. tbs-sct. gc. ca/pol/doc-eng. aspx? id=12596§ion=text http://www. mml. org/insurance/shared/publications/leaf_newsletter/200606. pdf http://employmentlawclinic. om/disciplinary-action-flowchart/ http://www. freemba. in/articlesread. php? artcode=2628&stcode=2&substcode=111 BIBLOGRAPHY Ranjana Mukherjee, Bangladesh: the experience and perceptions of public officials. A. T. M Obaidullah, Democracy and Good governance: The role of Ombudsman. Mohammad Ehsan, PUBLIC SECTOR HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT IN BANGLADESH: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES IN LIGHT OF THE WPSR 2005. http://www. enotes. com/employee-discipline-reference/employee-discipline http://www. questia. com/googleScholar. qst? docId=5001905164 http://www. ti-bangladesh. org/index. php? age_id=338 QUESTIONS 1. What is the difference between discipline and disciplinary action? 2. What are the importances of disciplinary action? 3. What is in indiscipline? 4. What are the causes of indiscipline? 5. What are the impacts of indiscipline on productivity? 6. What is disciplinary action procedure? 7. What are the objectives of maintaining discipline in an organization? 8. How disciplinary action is practiced in private organization in Bangladesh? 9. How disciplinary action is practiced in public organization in Bangladesh? 10. What are the benefits of disciplinary action?
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Disciplinary Action in Organization. (2016, Dec 23). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/disciplinary-action-in-organization/