A whistleblower hotline, sometimes known as an ‘ethics line’ or a ‘whistleblowing platform’ more generally, is a way for your employees to anonymously speak up when they witness misconduct, workplace bullying, fraud, or simply wish to offer suggestions and ideas for improvements.
These days, a whistleblower hotline is usually a standalone online tool, or is part of a HR programme through which individuals can submit reports, usually anonymously. In the past, whistleblower hotlines were often actual telephone lines that employees could call to express their concerns, or a physical trust box where slips of paper with the report details could be deposited.
Introducing a whistleblowing hotline has a multitude of benefits.
Primarily, they are a sign to your employees that you are an open and transparent company which values feedback and takes concerns of misconduct seriously.
Moreover, providing your employees an anonymous channel to share their concerns demonstrates that they will not be on the receiving end of any recrimination or abuse for doing so. This in turn can mean that they stay with you for longer, thus saving your company on the recruitment and onboarding costs associated with high employee turnover
Financial gains can also be felt in other ways, such as the prevention of internal fraud and other loss prevention due to whistleblowing, as well as the increases in productivity brought about by a happier, more engaged workforce.
Of course, choosing the right whistleblowing hotline is only the first step. Effective implementation is key to ensuring that the system is used and valued by everyone in your organization. It is important to devise a communication plan for the introduction of the whistleblowing system, utilizing internal channels such as email and intranet to make sure all stakeholders are aware that the system is available for use.
It is also key to offer some kind of training and guidance materials so that your employees know how to get the best out of the system that you have chosen and that it is truly serving the purpose for which it was brought in. FaceUp provides its clients with examples of communication templates and guidance materials so make all this run as smoothly as possible.
Finally it’s important to decide who will be responsible for receiving and resolving reports, whether that’s within your company, perhaps in the HR department, or an external specialist.
FaceUp represents a perfect choice for any organization, big or small, looking to introduce a whistleblowing hotline. FaceUp whistleblowing system is rich in features such as anonymity, attachments, customizable forms, follow up communication, the ability to set deadlines and allocate assignees to reports, plus much more. FaceUp also ensures that you meet all the requirements of the EU Whistleblowing Directive and other whistleblowing laws around the work, plus it helps you adhere to the stipulations of any certifications and standards you employ in your operation.
Whistleblowing - just a bureaucracy or an opportunity for your company?