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Use this checklist to verify that your disciplinary procedures are procedurally fair

by , 30 September 2014
Your disciplinary procedures must be procedurally fair.

A process is procedurally fair if you conduct it according to the process set by a recognised authority. For example, if you want to dismiss an employee, dismiss him according to the procedure laid out in our labour laws.

If you overlook procedural fairness, you could be taken to the CCMA.

Since that's a risk you can't afford to take, our experts recommend you use the following checklist to verify that your disciplinary procedures are procedurally fair.


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Want to verify that your disciplinary procedures are procedurally fair? Use this handy checklist 


Experts behind the Practical Guide to Human Resources Management say if you answer 'yes' to all these questions, your disciplinary procedure is likely to be procedurally fair
 
  • Did I receive the original complaint in writing?
 
  • Did I investigate the complaint fully?
 
  • Did I record all aspects of the investigation in writing?
 
  • Did I take written statements down from the complainant and all witnesses?
 
  • Did the accused get advise in writing of the date, time and venue of the disciplinary hearing?
 
  • Did the accused have reasonable time to prepare his defence and appoint a representative?
 
  • Did the accused get advise in writing of the full nature and details of the charge/s against him?
 
  • Did the accused receive in writing, his/her rights?
 
  • Did the complainant provide copies of all written statements to the accused?
 
  • Was a chairperson appointed from outside the organisation?
 
  • Was a disciplinary hearing held?
 
  • Did the accused get an opportunity to plead to the charges?
 
  • Did the complainant put their case first, lead evidence and call witnesses to testify?
 
  • Did the accused get an opportunity to cross examine witnesses?
 
  • Did the accused provide evidence in his defence?
 
  • Did the accused call witnesses and provide the complainant an opportunity to cross question these witnesses?
 
  • Did you hand the accused a copy of the minutes immediately?
 
  • Did the Chairperson consider whether a fair procedure was followed?
 
  • Did the Chairperson decide on guilt or innocence based on the evidence from both sides and on the balance of probability?
 
  • Did the Chairperson reconvene the hearing?
 
  • Did the Chairperson advise the accused of the verdict?
 
  • Did the Chairperson ask the accused if he had anything to add in mitigation of sentence?
 
  • Did the Chairperson adjourn the meeting again to consider any mitigating facts?
 
  • Did the Chairperson consider these facts and decide on a fair sanction?
 
  • Did the Chairperson reconvene the hearing and deliver the sanction?
 
  • Did the Chairperson advise the accused of his rights to appeal and to refer the matter to the CCMA?
 
Keep this checklist safe. It will help you every time you need to verify that your disciplinary procedures are procedurally fair.
 
PS: We strongly recommend you checkout "You're Fired" Your guide to substantively and procedurally fair dismissals. Which shows you how to fire that problem employees without worrying about the ccma.

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