Whistleblowing software (sometimes called an ‘ethics hotline’ or similar) is a channel, usually anonymous, by which employees or other stakeholders within a company or organization can report instances of wrongdoing or unethical conduct.
In the past, whistleblowing systems came in the form of telephone hotlines or physical trust boxes. These days, they are often stand-alone software platforms or a module within a HR tool.
If you’re not convinced that your organization needs whistleblowing software, here are some of the key advantages implementing one can offer:
A culture of openness and transparency
First and foremost, offering an anonymous channel to report wrongdoing is a signal to your employees that you value them, that you want to create a workplace where people are free to speak out without fear of retaliation.
Anonymous reporting softwares in particular are extremely effective at unearthing unwanted behaviors, since they help prevent the ‘onlooker effect’, whereby people do nothing in the face of misconduct, wrongly assuming someone else will speak up instead.
According to research, companies lose an average of 5% of their revenue to internal fraud. Whistleblowing software can help mitigate these losses. Furthermore, fostering the culture described in the point above helps to reduce staff turnover, which is both disruptive and costly in its own right.
Protect your reputation
No organization wants their dirty laundry aired in public. Without an established channel to anonymously report grievances, individuals are more likely to turn to external third parties. A whistleblowing channel facilitates the resolution of issues internally, without attracting the gaze of the media and outside world.
Can introducing whistleblowing software really improve productivity? Well that’s exactly what happened with one of FaceUp’s clients, the Brno Municipal Office. They uncovered instances of bullying perpetrated by one particular individual. After the individual was dismissed, productivity in that office increased.
Discover areas for improvement
People might assume that a whistleblowing software is only for reporting misconduct. However, it can also be used as a way for employees to anonymously offer up valuable feedback, insights which a leadership team may not otherwise have known about and which could potentially save time and money, or represent a new revenue stream.
Compliance with the relevant legislation in your region
In the EU, it is now mandatory to have anonymous whistleblowing software for organizations with more than 50 employees. It is a similar story in other countries and regions around the world. A properly implemented whistleblowing software and policy is imperative for ensuring you stay in line with the latest legislation and standards. More about this below.
All organizations could benefit from implementing whistleblowing software for the reasons outlined above. But if you are in the EU and your organization has more than 50 employees, then you definitely need to have whistleblowing software. You can read more about the EU whistleblowing directive here.
Furthermore, if your organization adheres to any particular standards and certifications, such as ISO 37001 or IATF 16949 etc, then whistleblowing software is a must. Read more about standards and certifications and whistleblowing in our post.
There are now a wide range of options when it comes to choosing whistleblowing software for your company. Fortunately, we did some of the hard work for you and put together a list of the best whistleblowing software and hotline vendors on the market in 2023. For more about how FaceUp could help your company, take a look at our (recently updated) whistleblowing software features.
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