Ethics in the Workplace

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Jim Corkill Controller Accounting Services & Controls
(Rev. 1/07)

Today’s Goals
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Awareness Areas of Concern Tools for Decision Making UC Standards of Ethical Conduct Role of the Business Officer Resources

Ethics: A definition
“Relating to what is good or bad, having to do with moral duty and obligation.” 1 (Moral is defined as relating to principles of right and wrong.) “Ethics is not about being better than someone else; it’s about being the best we can be.” 2
1Webster’s New World Dictionary, 3rd College Edition 2 © 2000 Josephson Institute of Ethics - Reprinted with permission.

Personal Ethics vs. Business Ethics Is there a difference? .

the policies of the organization. such as the laws of the land. the customs and expectations of the community. the principles of morality. .Business Ethics l Acting with an awareness of the need for complying with rules. and such general concerns as the needs of others and fairness.

.Consequences When the stakes are higher. doing the right thing is harder.

Consequences to UCSB l Public Trust – Stakeholders l l l l l l l l l Public Image Loss of Funding Perception of Department or Organization Criminal or Civil Investigation Taxpayers Donors Funding Agencies Parents Students .

Areas of Concern l l l l Travel Conflict of Interest Personal Use of Goods. Services and Staff Resources Hiring/Staffing Practices .

Travel l l l Taking the maximum daily meal allowance Meal reimbursement even though meals were provided as part of cost of event Purchase airline tickets from a carrier that offers free miles even though the fare might be higher than another carrier .

Conflict of Interest l l l Personal gain or gain for friend/relative Accepting gifts from vendors Hiring friend/relative as an employee or contractor .

Personal Use of Goods and Services l l l Office supply cabinets University equipment/vehicles Computing resources UCSB .

Personal Use of Staff l l l Asking clerical assistance for external committee involvement Asking someone to order flowers for a friend Asking someone to make personal travel arrangements while they are making business travel arrangements .

timekeeping Allowing a limited appointment FTE to work even though their paperwork has not been formally processed/approved Misrepresenting work performance on performance evaluation Not communicating work performance issues to employee .Hiring/Staffing Practices l l l l Falsifying hours worked.

. maybe just this once” “No one will ever know” “It sounds too good to be true” “Everyone does it” “Audit will never catch it” “We have always done it this way” 1Lockheed Martin: Code of Ethics and Business Conduct.Making the Right Choice: How Can You Be Sure? l Listen for the bells warning you are on “thin ethical ice” – – – – – – “Well. July 1999 2 © 2000 Josephson Institute of Ethics .Reprinted with permission.

July 1999 2 © 2000 Josephson Institute of Ethics . .are my actions legal? Check to see if there are regulations or rules which restrict your choices Will I sleep soundly tonight? How will your decision look in the NewsPress? To your family? 1Lockheed Martin: Code of Ethics and Business Conduct.Making the Right Choice: How Can You Be Sure? l l l l Ask yourself .Reprinted with permission.

and consequences If you are uncertain. Ombuds 2 © 2000 Josephson Institute of Ethics .g. issues.Tools for Decision Making l l l l l l What would a reasonable person do.Reprinted with permission. talk with someone you trust. or how would they perceive your decision? Think of someone whose moral judgment you respect .what would that person do? How would my family perceive my actions? Policy Compliance Evaluate the options. or a campus resource. e. .

Tools for Responding l How do you respond to someone who asks you to do something that you think is inappropriate. unethical and/or a violation of UC Policy? – Share your concerns – Use University policy – Offer alternatives. options – Seek advice – UC Standards of Ethical Conduct .

legal and professional behavior in all of our dealings inside and outside the University. Statement of Ethical Values: – – – – Integrity Excellence Accountability Respect .UC Standards of Ethical Conduct l l Statement of UC’s belief in ethical.

UC Standards of Ethical Conduct – – – – Fair Dealing Individual Responsibility and Accountability Respect for Others Compliance with Applicable Laws. University Policies. Procedures and Other Forms of Guidance – – – – – – Ethical Conduct of Research Records: Confidentiality/ Privacy and Access Internal Controls Use of University Resources Financial Reporting Reporting Violations and Protection from . Regulations.

UC Standards of Ethical Conduct l Recent events involving public review of UC compensation practices – UCSB’s “climate” for ethical conduct .

or do we follow policy because it is the right thing to do? l l Policies exist for a reason Policies protect not only the University but also the employee – Examples: Hiring of outside contractors. caterers .Policy Compliance Do we follow policy only to avoid audit issues.

Perception Often times. should you do it? . perception is just as bad as the real thing. Even if something is allowed.

Real Life Situations l l l l What are the options? What are the issues? What are the consequences? What is the right thing to do? .

The chair plans to pay the department back. she will benefit from the University discount. By using the contract. Is this ok? .Discussion Item #1 l Your chair asks you to purchase software for her personal use using the University contract.

Discussion Item #2 l A faculty member’s award will run out in June. so she asks you to pay a student in June for time the student will work in the summer. What do you do? .

What do you do? .Discussion Item #3 l A career employee is hired on September 1. For the December holidays he wants to be with his aged father who lives on the east coast. but he is short eight hours of vacation time. and lives paycheck to paycheck.

”1 l Ethical leadership – – l l Let someone know Be consistent 1Larry Hubbard & Associates.Role of the Business Officer l Faculty/Staff rely on you to explain the rule/policy – Be able to say no and explain why Be the example.What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You” . if you were sure no one would see you. “Ethical Risks . not the exception “Ethics are what you would you do.

department head.Allegations of improper governmental activity should be reported to an immediate supervisor.Campus Resources l l l l l l Department Chair Control Point Audit & Advisory Services Accounting Services & Controls Office of the Ombuds Policy – Whistleblower Policy. . LDO or another University official with appropriate responsibility or authority to review the alleged improper governmental activity.

Safe. confidential. informal.Office of the Ombuds l l l l Confidential. independent. dispute. or conflict. Provides informal and private consultation. . Helps with identifying options to effectively address a complaint. and neutral resource. and impartial.

Questions? .

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