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Hi I'm new here, been reading through some of the threads on this board which has been helpful.

 

Have Disciplinary hearing coming up due to unacceptable mobile phone usage.

 

Back story - Work at a large company with an open plan office, last June got a promotion into another department. After a few months had a performance review where some feedback was given (from someone in another team who I have to interact with) that i was checking my phone too much (messages) OK duly noted, i had come from a department where the working environment was more relaxed & where this wasn't so much of an issue.

 

Few weeks ago my department are on an away day team bonding session, my manager's manger is doing a talk & notices me checking my phone which they're talking( i was a little late arriving & my phone may have vibrated a few times, so I may have taken it out to put it on silent - having trouble remembering if i'm to be honest. Certainly wasn't sending any texts messages or leaving the room to answer my phone). Manager's manager makes complaint to my manager (after the event) who then tells that this could lead to a disciplinary hearing as it isn't the first time that this has been mentioned.

 

Since then my manager has emailed selected people within the team to gather feedback/evidence & now has 2 witness statements against me. 1st witness statement was from someone in my team backing up what my manager's manager complaint.

2nd witness statement was from the person in another team who had given the original feedback except this time goes in to such detail that i'm beginning to think they're spying on me ( also i've noticed this person to have ipod earphones on at times at work but can't prove that whatever they are listening to is work related or not)

 

.... So this is where I need the advice, do I :

 

1. Go into the hearing apologise for my behaviour & they going forwards keep my head down, be whiter than white & find a new job somewhere else within the company or ....

 

2. Apologise for my behaviour at the team away day but defend myself as i feel certain people are going out of there way to give evidence against me & i'm starting to feel that I'm being picked on. As i said before i work in a large open plan office seated near lots of other people in different teams & if i had to log every time I saw someone using their phone for personal reasons i would have a very long list. Starting to feel as if everyone in the company was being given the same treatment as what I'm being given then they would be no work force left.

 

I'm finding it difficult to figure out how I want to get my point across & any advice would be greatly appreciated

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I suggest that you do no.1 but also start keeping detailed notes of everything that has happened so far and which happens in the future. Jeep the notes off site and keep them up to date - in case you get more of the same.

 

I have to say that I'm not surprised that a manager is a bit narked that you are consulting your phone while he is talking. I would be too.

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I agree. Stick to number one and express your apologies and just be seen to be whiter than whiter. Only if the situation continued and you came under micromanagement for example would I advise making a complaint.

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Is there anything about phone usage in your written statement of T&C's, or the company handbook?

Are there any other issues at work that might make you feel the phone issue has an ulterior motive?

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All that the letter says is the hearing is to discuss personal mobile phone usage during company time.

 

Are there any other issues at work that might make you feel the phone issue has an ulterior motive? Yeah i was signed off sick with anxiety/stress from october through to December. Maybe I'm just wanted out the team.

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I can understand how your manager may have felt, given that you were 'using' your cellphone whilst he was talking.

 

However, his/her actions in engaging other employees to spy on you, may amount to a breach of the mutual trust and confidence. EDIT.

 

Your employer should not 'instruct or engage' other 'ordinary employees' to furnish information, with regards to your person, work, or performance. It is my opinion that management have taken this too far, and are 'acting in a manner which is very likely to destroy' the mutual trust and confidence.

 

Further, under the auspices of the DPA 1998, I would be inclined to ask for copies of the witness statements which have been submitted to management, as you have every right to see what your employer holds on you in written form.

 

It is my belief, that your employer is seeking to 'stigmatise' you, and urge you to google [Malik -v- BCCI].

 

Any defamatory or disparaging comments, which have been made against you in these statements, can be used as 'evidence' of management acting in a 'capricious manner'.

 

Good luck - Giggins

Edited by caro
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All that the letter says is the hearing is to discuss personal mobile phone usage during company time.

 

Are there any other issues at work that might make you feel the phone issue has an ulterior motive? Yeah i was signed off sick with anxiety/stress from october through to December. Maybe I'm just wanted out the team.

But is there anything in your contractual terms about use of mobile phones?

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hi

thanks for the reply giggins

 

i have been given copies of witness statements & also the original email asking for feedback although it is being with held from me to exactly how many people the email was sent out to. Also in the email sent from my manager it states that i have already been given several " warnings" which simply isn't true

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It appears to me that your are being shown the door, and you have to make a

decision about what to do.

 

You know your situation better than anybody. You have to decide whether to invoke the grievance procedure, and whether it could make things worse.

 

I would read through the pages on "breach of contract" edited and see if anything is relevant to your circumstances, which you could use. It may help - it may not.

 

Kind regards - Giggins

Edited by HSBCrusher
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Me id go for option 2 you have to defend your self but be nice dont mention names as to the other people who are doing similar things unless asked to, say that they are ,say you are sorry and wont do it again.

 

If the worst happens ypu will at least have a comparitor for tribunal purposes

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Hearing lasted 15mins Adjourned for another 30mins then giving written warning.

 

Deciding if to appeal or not. Have been reading the Disciplinary and grievance procedures on the ACAS website.

 

I do have one question though:

 

If a disciplinary manger is investigating a complaint & uses email to gather evidence/feedback, is the accused (for want of a better word) allowed to know which work colleagues the email was sent to ?

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