It’s natural for employers to feel as if they are in a tough spot when it comes to protecting confidentiality related to whistleblower claims, as these actions inherently come from an employee’s ability to report wrongdoing to enforcement agencies. However, there are steps companies can take to strengthen compliance and support would-be whistleblowers.
The Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee released a best practices memo last year outlining some important elements to promote effective whistleblower protection and anti-retaliation programs within organizations. Here are a few quick points:
- Businesses should demonstrate their commitment to addressing internal complaints and emphasize that retaliation is strictly prohibited. This commitment should start with leadership of the company and trickle down the ladder.
- Companies should seek to develop a culture that promotes an open-door policy for reporting and addressing any issues that arise, again emphasizing the prevention of retaliation by management.
- Organizations should install independent systems to resolve any allegations of retaliation that arise.
- Businesses should implement training for employees and managers alike so they are aware of their rights, including information about both external and internal protection programs.
- Companies should have various monitoring processes established to ensure no factors within the company are preventing whistleblowers from reporting wrongdoing. These measures should also be able to gauge exactly how effective a company’s open-door policy truly is.
- Organizations should perform regular audits to determine the effectiveness of the program.
Having these elements in place can not only improve a company’s overall compliance and avoid potential litigation, but it can also go a long way toward improving its culture and the general satisfaction of employees.
For further guidance on boosting compliance and establishing a true open-door atmosphere for reporting issues, contact the experienced team of Dallas lawyers at Whistleblower Law for Managers today.