What constitutes misconduct?

Dec 14, 2016

misconduct
There is no complete or definitive list of types of misconduct that employees can commit at the workplace. Types of misconduct may also differ from company to company as what may be considered as misconduct in one company, may not necessarily be misconduct in another. It depends on the type of industry that the company is operating in, the company’s culture and specific workplace rules and regulations.
The following list shows 16 of the more common offences committed in the workplace:

  • Theft;
  • Unauthorised possession of company goods;
  • Fraud;
  • Bribery;
  • Clock card fraud;
  • Threatening conduct;
  • Intimidation;
  • Sleeping on duty;
  • Fighting at work;
  • Assault;
  • Wilful or negligent damage of company property;
  • Deserting post or work station without permission;
  • Unauthorised possession or consumption of liquor or drugs while on duty;
  • Wilful poor performance;
  • Sabotage; and
  • Sexual or racial harassment.

The above are common forms of misconduct, also referred to as offences, misdemeanours or transgressions.
Is there a way to regulate offences that constitute misconduct?
Yes, misconduct can be regulated with a disciplinary code. In every case of misconduct there needs to be a rule, norm, standard, policy or practice in place. An employee, either by an action or by failing to act, breaks this.
So a disciplinary code is the framework that stipulates how  employees must conduct themselves and behave at work or face disciplinary action.
While  employees have a right to be not treated unfairly or be dismissed unfairly, on the other hand, employers have a right to expect acceptable conduct and satisfactory performance by employees.
Misconduct can become a serious problem if it is not managed properly and fairly. A disciplinary code must outline the offences that constitute misconduct and reflect the guidelines for managing misconduct in the workplace.
In our next article we shall look at formulating misconduct for a disciplinary enquiry.

The content does not constitute legal advice, are not intended to be a substitute for legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Kindly contact us on info@labourman.co.za or 021 556 1075 to speak to one of our consultants.

Author:

Wallace Albertyn

Wallace Albertyn is a Senior Associate and Legal Advisor at LabourMan Consultants.

Recent LabourTalk Articles

Minimum Wages

Minimum Wages

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) in South Africa is currently R25.42 for an ordinary hour of work. On 01 February 2024 the Minister of Employment and Labour announced that the NMW...

Collective and Derivative Misconduct

Collective and Derivative Misconduct

Specific problems arise when a number of employees who were involved in the same act of misconduct are subjected to disciplinary action. These problems relate to the selection of...

LabourTalk Newsletters

Subscribe and receive labour related information

Follow us

Review-Us

 

© 2024 ~ All Rights Reserved  |  Privacy Policy