Human Resources Policy Manual Section-9 (DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURE)


 

SECTION 9. DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURE

 

  1. Disciplinary Action.

 

    1. Scope.   The Company Disciplinary Procedure will be used only when necessary and as a last resort. Where possible, informal and/or formal counseling or other good management practices will be used to resolve matters prior to any disciplinary action being taken. The procedure is intended to be positive rather than punitive but takes cognizance of the fact that sanctions may have to be applied in some circumstances. Unsatisfactory job performance, misconduct, habitual lateness, absenteeism, failure to comply with _________'s policies and procedures or any other breaches of employer/employee relationship may result in disciplinary action. _________'s policy is that disciplinary action against employees should:

 

      • be undertaken only in cases where good reason and clear evidence exist;

 

      • be appropriate to the nature of the offence;

 

      • be demonstrably fair and consistent with previous action in similar circumstances;

 

      • take place only when employees are aware of the standards that are expected of them or the rules with which they are required to conform;

 

      • allow employees the right to be accompanied by a colleague of their own choice;

 

      • allow employees the right to answer charges against them; and

 

      • allow employees the right to appeal against any disciplinary action.

 

    1. Procedure for Formal Investigation.

 

        1. Formal investigations should be carried out by the most appropriate manager or an officer appointed by the Management who is not directly involved with the incident being investigated. The investigating officer may involve others to assist with the investigation process. All the relevant facts should be gathered promptly as soon as is practicable after the incident. Statements should be taken from witnesses at the earliest opportunity. Any physical evidence should be preserved and/or photographed if reasonable to do so.

 

        1. A report should be prepared which outlines the facts of the case and one of the following recommendations: 

 

          • Take no further action against the employee.
          • Recommend counseling/warning for the employee
          • Proceed to a disciplinary action with suspension or without suspension.

 

The report should be submitted to the authority ordered for the investigation who will decide whether further action is required. Where appropriate, this report may be made available to the individual and his representative.

 

 

    1. Disciplinary Actions.     Depending upon the circumstances, employees may be subject to the following reprimand or disciplinary actions:

 

9.3.1 Coaching or Counseling.    Counseling is an attempt to correct a situation and prevent it from getting worse without having to use the disciplinary procedure. If an employee falls below  the normal or acceptable requirements as specified in the Human Resources Manual, coaching and counseling by his superior should take place as soon as practicable to prevent the situation from deteriorating to a more serious one, or becoming a habit. The superior or the Head of Department should, first of all, find out what causes such behaviors, and assist the employee to rectify the shortcomings.

 

Counseling normally should be done by the immediate superior or the departmental head. Where improvement is required, the employee must be given clear guidelines as to:

 

        • what is expected in terms of improving shortcomings in conduct or performance.
        • the time frame for improvement
        • when this will be reviewed 
        • the employee must also be told, where appropriate, that failure to improve may result in formal disciplinary action. 

 

A record of the counseling should be given to the employees and a copy retained in their personnel file. It is imperative that any counseling should be followed up and improvements recognized and recorded. 

 

If during counseling it becomes clear that the matter is more serious, then the discussion should be adjourned, and pursued under the formal disciplinary procedure.

 

9.3.2 Verbal Warning.   If no improvement is made by the employee after coaching and counseling, a verbal warning must be given to him. The areas for improvement and the consequences of failure to make improvement within a specified period of time should be clearly explained to the employee. The warning should be recorded in a memo, acknowledged by the Head of Department and a copy of which should be sent to the Human Resources Department for retention in the employee's personal file. A verbal warning should be given to employee in the first instance of a minor offence.

 

9.3.3 Written Warning.     If there is no improvement after the verbal warning has been given, a written warning must be given to the employee. He may be accompanied by a colleague of his own choice when attending the meeting. The written warning should state the following:

 

‐     the nature of the offence with reference to _________’ policy, instruction or procedure which prohibits it;

 

‐     any past warning or action taken for similar violations;

 

‐     the expectations or improvements required of the employee; and

 

‐ the future disciplinary action which will be taken against the employee if the offence is repeated within a specified period of time.

 

Depending on the situation, the warning may be given by the Head of Department or his designated officer together with a representative from the Human Resources Department, if required. The warning letter must be explained clearly to the employee. He will be requested to acknowledge his understanding of the warning letter should circumstances warrant. A copy of the written warning should be sent to the Human Resources Department for retention in the employee's personal file.

 

Improvement by an employee after disciplinary action should be noted in the employee's personal file. The Head of Department must constantly monitor the performance of the employee to ensure that he maintains a satisfactory performance over a specified period.

 

A written warning should be given to the employee in the first instance of a more serious offence or after repeated minor offences.  

 

9.3.4      Suspension.   

 

      1. The purpose of suspension is manifold and can be used when it is necessary to remove an employee from the workplace pending an investigation/enquiry for example, to allow time for a 'cooling down period' for both parties, for their own or others’ protection, to prevent them influencing or being influenced by others or to prevent possible interference with evidence. Only the Management has the authority to suspend an individual. 

 

      1. An employee charged for inefficiency or corruption or misconduct may be suspended pending enquiry into the charge against him/her, but the period of such suspension shall not exceed 60 days. If, however, the period of suspension is necessary to be further extended the concerned person shall receive full pay for the period exceeding 60 days till the finalization of the case against him/her. 

 

      1. During the period of suspicion, within the 60 days as aforesaid, the concerned employee shall be paid a subsistence allowance equivalent to half his/her salary including dearness allowance, if any. 

 

      1. The order of suspension pending enquiry shall be in writing either separately or incorporated in the charge sheet.

 

      1. In an enquiry, if the charge sheeted person is found guilty of any of the charges alleged and is punished he/she shall not be entitled to pay for any period of the suspension pending enquiry (up to the sixtieth day) but shall be entitled to the subsistence allowance only.

 

9.4           Disciplinary Procedures for Misconduct.

 

9.4.1 Acts and Deeds Constituting Misconduct.    The following acts and deeds shall be treated as misconduct:

 

      1. Willful insubordination or disobedience, whether alone or in combination with others, to any lawful or reasonable order of a superior.

 

      1. Theft, fraud or dishonesty in connection with _________.

 

      1. Taking or giving bribes or any illegal gratification.

 

      1. Habitual absence without leave or absence without information for more than ten days. 

 

      1. Habitual late attendance.

 

      1. Habitual breach of any law or rule or regulation of _________.

 

      1. Riotous or disorderly behavior or any act subversive of discipline.

 

      1. Habitual negligence or neglect of work.

 

      1. Frequent repetition of any act or omission for which a fine was imposed. 

 

      1. Resorting to illegal strike or ‘go slow or inciting others to resort to illegal strike or ‘go slow’

 

      1. Falsifying, tampering with, damaging or causing loss of _________ and/or related parties.

 

      1. Habitual insobriety, addiction to drugs or alcohol or any act of moral turpitude.

 

9.4.2 Steps in Dealing with Major Offences/Misconduct. An employee found guilty of

misconduct or violation of other rules shall go through the following disciplinary procedures: 

 

      1. Step‐1.       If any allegation comes against any employee, s/he shall be issued with a Show Cause letter.  

 

      1. Step 2.  If the answer of the Show Cause is not satisfactory but the accused employee deserves consideration, a warning letter may be issued or suspended for a short period without pay (Suspension period not exceeding seven days without salary as well as subsistence allowance). 

 

      1. Step ‐3.     If the accused employee is found doing the same mistake again yet after warning or suspension, an enquiry committee will be formed and a letter shall be issued to the Enquiry Officer(s) to be presented on the enquiry session of the accused employee. 

 

      1. Step‐4.  On recommendation of the enquiry committee s/he will be discharged/ dismissed on the approval of the Management. 

 

(Samples of various disciplinary letters are shown at  Annex  V)

 

9.4.3 Procedure for Punishment.  An employee shall not be dismissed or discharged or otherwise punished unless: 

 

      1. The allegations against him/her are recorded in writing (framing of charges).

 

      1. He/she is given a copy of the charge sheet and given at least 3 days time to explain the charge in writing. 

 

      1. He/she is given a personal hearing by way of domestic enquiry.

 

      1. The           Chairman/Managing       Director                of            Pretty   Group   concurs                with       the recommendation of the Enquiry Committee for punishment. 

 

      1. A copy of the order inflicting such punishment is provided to the punished employee. 

(If an employee refused to accept any notice, letter, charge‐sheet, order or any other document addressed to him / her by the Appointing Authority, it shall be deemed that the same had been delivered to him / her if a copy of the same has been exhibited on the Notice Board and another copy has been sent to the address of the employee as available from the records of the office, by registered post).

 

9.5 Acts and Omissions.  There are certain acts and omissions which though not of very serious nature but calls for disciplinary action for corrective measures. Repetitions   of such acts and omissions would amount to misconduct. Such acts and omission are: 

 

      1. Carrying on any private business without the permission of the company.

 

      1. Refusal to work on a different job.

 

      1. Gambling within the Company’s premises or premises utilized by the Company.

 

      1. Sleeping while on duty.

 

      1. Theft of any other employee’s property inside the Company’s premises.

 

      1. Leaving the work spot without permission.

 

      1. Instigation and or abetment of or attempt at any of the acts of misconduct.

 

      1. Non acceptance of an explanation letter and any other communication from the company, and refusal to accept and/or admit any communication.

 

      1. Commission of any act subversive of discipline or good behavior, drunkenness etc.

 

      1. Supply and use of toxic material such as heroine, ganja etc. in the Company premises.

 

      1. Disregard or disobedience of rules or orders.

l.              Inefficient, dilatory, careless or wasteful working.

 

9.6 Penalties.     There may be two kinds of penalties which may be imposed under these Rules namely, minor penalties and major penalties.

 

9.6.1      Minor Penalties

 

      1. Censure / Warning.

 

      1. Withholding of increment or promotion including stoppage at efficiency bar for a specified period. 

 

      1. Recovering from pay, the whole or part of any pecuniary loss caused to _________ by negligence or breach of order. 

 

      1. Suspension for a short period.

 

9.6.2      Major Penalties.

 

      1. Demotion to a lower post.

 

      1. Compulsory retirement.

 

      1. Removal from service.

 

      1. Dismissal from service.

 

9.7          Review and Appeal.

 

      1. An employee on whom punishment or penalty has been imposed may apply to the Chairman/Managing Director for review of the decision. 

 

      1. Every employee preferring review/appeal shall do so separately and in his/her own name. Such an appeal shall contain all material statements, arguments etc. It shall contain no disrespectful or improper language and shall be complete in all respect. 

 

      1. Review/appeal shall be submitted through the Head of the Department to which the appellant belongs or belonged.  

 

      1. The authority may call for any paper connected with the appeal. 

 

      1. An appeal shall be filed within two weeks from the date on which the incumbent was informed of the punishment order. 

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