It often happens that prospective employees are dishonest about their qualifications or experience and in certain instances, their criminal records. Sometimes employers only realise this after appointing the employee. Dishonesty is a serious offence and although the employee was not in your service when he/she lied to you, there was intent to mislead in order to gain employment. The employer may proceed with a disciplinary hearing to prove that the person lied and would not have been appointed had the employer known the truth
Forms of dishonesty on a CV and during an interview can include the following:
- The necessary qualification
- Previous work experience
- Falsification of references
- Not disclosing previous misconduct committed which may be relevant to the specific position
- Failing to provide important information relevant to the employer
Once the employee has accepted the offer of employment, the employee has to provide a specific service to the employer in return for remuneration. If the employee is unable to provide such a service, it becomes difficult for the employment relationship to continue.
How does dishonesty affect the working relationship?
The employment relationship is essentially built on trust and confidence. It is the employee’s legal duty to always act in good faith, be loyal and have the employer’s best interest at heart.
Dishonest conduct can negatively impact the employment relationship, rendering trust irreconcilable. Once the employer becomes aware of the employee’s dishonesty, a disciplinary hearing should be scheduled immediately. Take note of the following:
- The employee should receive sufficient notice (at least 48 hours) of the disciplinary hearing;
- The notice should list the charges of dishonesty providing sufficient details;
- The employer should have all he evidence available at the hearing to prove the case, should the employee dispute the charge at the disciplinary hearing;
- All dismissals must be procedurally and substantively fair.
We advise all employers to be proactive and contact previous employers before appointing an employee to enquire about the prospective employee’s employment and reason for the contract terminating. If necessary, the employer can also use available search engines to verify the existence of previous employer. Employers should also request proof of the candidate’s qualifications before making a decision.
When an employee is appointed, it is important to provide the employee with an employment contract with the job specifications and list of duties which should be signed by both parties and witnesses