Manage an Employee Whistleblower

Key Points

  • When an employee blows the whistle on perceived employer or co-worker illegal or unethical behavior, workplaces may become strained, and collaborative relationships may be tested. Employers can encourage integrity in the workplace so that whistleblowing incidences are kept to a minimum. Inspire employee participation in workplace decisions by enacting an employee comments program, and offer internal avenues guaranteeing anonymity (to the greatest extent possible) for processing employee concerns or complaints.
  • Employers should minimize the potential for greater future liability due to employer negligence through awareness and enforcement of work rules and ethics. Workplace policies, and the disciplinary procedures used to enforce them, should be communicated clearly and implemented fairly so as to avoid discrimination or retaliation claims. Employers should provide adequate training regarding policies and procedures to employees on a regular basis.
  • When disciplining an employee whistleblower, an employer should ensure that the process is fair and equitable, and that it promotes overall ethics compliance within the workplace. Employers should promptly discipline any employees or supervisors who retaliate against the whistleblower.

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