An effective whistleblower hotline is a crucial part of building a best-practice organisation – it mitigates fraud and corruption risk; it demonstrates trustworthiness to your shareholders, clients and and employees; and likely has an actual impact on your bottom line.
Still not convinced? Here are four more great reasons to create an ethical business reporting system for your organisation.
1. Because a hotline creates a better company culture
If you create a practical, anonymous method for employees to report undesirable behaviour you’ll find out about problems sooner, letting you address them earlier. Not only that, but because the reporter is offered anonymity, they’ll be considerably more inclined to give you the full story, warts and all.
Essentially, you’ll be creating a culture that supports honesty, openness and speaking up.
2. Because you’re required to have one
Having a whistleblower hotline will help you meet regulatory requirements – especially if you’re a publicly traded organization. According to Harvard Law, tip offs are consistently the most common method of detecting corporate fraud, securities violations and employment discrimination or harassment. A well-set up hotline minimizes your organization’s exposure and let your stakeholders know you’re proactive about ethics and serious about best practice.
3. Because third party systems work better
Untangling employee harassment, dodgy dealings by management or the circumvention of proper processes can be difficult. Multiple versions of ‘the truth’, disparate allegiances and fear of reprisals can all muddy the water.
Offering a confidential and secure reporting system – independent of your organisation – makes it easy for employees to report on unethical, dishonest or inappropriate behaviour as it occurs. By moving the reporting process off site (and encouraging anonymity) you’re more likely to receive full and frank disclosure of any wrongdoing, making addressing the issue all the simpler.
4. Because hotlines work
Unethical behaviour costs New Zealand companies millions of dollars each year, with organisations on average losing 5% of their revenue to fraud each year*.
Research shows that organisations with an independent hotline facility cut those fraud losses in half.