Uncategorised This Month’s Hot Topics – Bullying Claims in Downing Street, Employee Fraud & Instant Messaging False Statements

APRIL 2023. By Kimberly Bradshaw (CEO, Spotlight HR.)

Today’s topics range from bullying claims in Downing Street to preventing employee fraud, but first off, we have some exciting news to share from the Spotlight HQ. The brilliant Ritza Marley has joined our team as an HR management specialist, bringing her expertise in talent management and workplace learning & development. We are thrilled to have Ritza as our in-house specialist and welcome her to the team with open arms!

The Raab workplace bullying accusationsAnd what SMEs should take from these?

Dominic Raab’s recent resignation as the deputy prime minister due to allegations of bullying and harassment highlights the importance of workplace behaviour.

SMEs can learn from this incident by ensuring managers clearly distinguish between direct critical feedback and bullying. Managers need to be trained to deliver constructive feedback effectively and recognise and address bullying and harassment in the workplace. We must also take complaints of bullying and harassment seriously, conduct thorough investigations, and support victims.

Promoting a safe and inclusive workplace culture is crucial to creating an environment where employees feel comfortable reporting incidents of bullying and harassment without fear of retaliation. The aim has to be the promotion of culture, respect and professionalism. To create a positive work environment where employees can thrive and contribute to the business’s success.

Through the HR lens – Preventing employee fraud – A Home Office crackdown, but what does this mean for SMEs?

The latest Home Office crackdown on employee fraud places a considerable burden of responsibility on employers – below, we summarised what SMEs need to know about this.

The UK Home Office has introduced new legislation called the failure to prevent fraud offence, which places a “huge onus” on large organisations to demonstrate reasonable measures to prevent employee fraud. This law will not apply to small and medium-sized businesses, but owners of these companies need to be aware of fraudulent practices and the need to deter them. Fraudulent practices include:

  • Dishonest sales practices
  • False accounting
  • Hiding important information from consumers or investors

Top tips for SMEs to prevent employee fraud

Small and medium-sized business owners should consider the following:

  • Create policies and procedures that set out clear expectations for the standards expected
  • Explain how employees should carry out their roles
  • Provide adequate training

It is also essential to have stringent controls and checks in place to monitor and prevent fraudulent practices. If an employee falls foul of the rules, swift and appropriate action should be taken to stamp it out.

While the Home Office legislation presents a significant obligation to large employers, protecting consumers and holding offenders accountable is crucial. Small and medium-sized businesses should review their internal procedures and ensure that fraud prevention is addressed. You can find the fuller article about this here.

SMEs can benefit from the best practices and learnings from this law to safeguard their business from fraudulent practices.

Need some HR advice on how best to achieve this? Please do get in touch.

Employment Tribunal in focus – Making false statements on instant messages

A recent tribunal case highlights the crucial role of effective communication with employees.

A plant nursery manager was unfairly dismissed after being accused of lying and making false statements via instant messaging by his boss, despite requesting professional communication.

The tribunal found the accusations to be unfounded and lacking any objective basis. This case emphasises the need for employers to be mindful of communication, even in informal settings, to avoid costly legal battles.

Seeking guidance or training on handling internal communication can prevent misunderstandings and promote a positive work environment – please do get in touch.

If you’re affected by any of these issues, please get in touch for dependable HR advice that you can trust. We are here to help.