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HR's Role in Business Ethics

Authors: Meredith Gaunce and Kevin D. Zwetsch, Ogletree Deakins


HR professionals are well versed when it comes to understanding the myriad of employment-related laws. But in addition to understanding the complexities of employment law, HR professionals should play a strong role to when it comes to promoting ethical business practices in their organization; ensuring business leaders follow the right path.

Embedding ethical values throughout the workplace not only helps to avoid legal problems, but can also serve as a source of competitive advantage for an organization and help to recruit, retain and motivate employees. Failure to do so can hurt an organization's bottom line, reputation and brand.

This guide discusses:

  • The difference between legal mandates and ethical principles;
  • Select laws with ethical obligations;
  • Policies and procedures for ethical conduct;
  • Employee and management on ethical conduct requirements;
  • How to investigate possible ethical violations; and
  • Unique ethical issues for HR.