Written Warning For Misconduct
Misconduct needs to be dealt with appropriately and one way to do that is by issuing a written warning. What are the types of behaviors that would be categorized as misconduct? Just to list a few there is sleeping on duty, horseplay, intentionally damaging company property, sexual harassment, fighting, arguing, using inappropriate language, loafing, stealing, falsifying a time card, and many more.
A warning is just one part of a progressive discipline program. Progressive discipline is a series of disciplinary actions that go from the least amount of discipline to ultimately dismissal from the company. Generally speaking most progressive disciplinary programs begin with a written counseling, progress to a first and then second written warning, suspension, and then possibly dismissal. The disciplinary actions do not need to be for the same violations. As an example an individual might violate your attendance policy and receive a written counseling. They then violate a different employment policy and receive the next step of disciplinary action, until finally being dismissed if their behavior does not improve.
Misconduct can be so serious in some cases that it merits immediate dismissal. As an example stealing most likely will merit immediately being let go. Each situation is going to be a little bit different and based on what you determine through your employee investigation, sometimes referred to as fact finding, you will need to determine the level of discipline to issue.
One important factor in any progressive disciplinary program is having an employee handbook that spells out all your employment policies. Not only the ones listed above but additional very important policies like an attendance policy. The important thing to remember is that you don’t need to make developing an employee handbook complicated or expensive. There are plenty of computer programs on the market that can assist you in producing a complete handbook without costing you a fortune. In fact there are many for less than fifty dollars. Do your own research but make sure you produce an employee handbook.
Although I will provide a sample of a written warning for misconduct I prefer using employee discipline forms instead. They are quick and easy and they make sure you provide all the necessary pieces of information in case the employee files legal action against you. Here is that example:
This warning letter is being issued to you for violating our company policy on misconduct, as outlined in our employee handbook. You signed acknowledging that you received a copy of our employee handbook on March 3, 2011.
Specifically, on July 7, 2013, at approximately 2:45pm you were observed throwing your stapler across the office hitting the wall creating a small hole. After we spoke you stated that you were upset from a conversation you had with your spouse. Although you did apologize your actions resulted in $267.47 in damages to the wall.
You are instructed to act appropriately at all times while in the workplace. I am providing you with another copy of our employee handbook.
It is important to understand that any future violations of our policy on misconduct or any policy you will be subject to our progressive discipline program, up to and including, possible dismissal.
Thank you and May God bless you!
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