Sample Memos for Workplace Issues

From the book: The HR Toolkit: An Indispensable Resource for Being a Credible Activist by Denise A Romano, MA, EdM

MILLIONS of Americans are UNEMPLOYED or UNDEREMPLOYED because they have been UNLAWFULLY TERMINATED.

These Sample Memos are written from the perspective of a Human Resources Professional –

HOWEVER

- Any Employee in ANY JOB at ANY LEVEL can use these memos and remove the references to being an HR professional and use these at work.

Note: Even though retaliation from workplaces for raising these issues IS unlawful,

you use these memos at your own risk

because there IS an epidemic in the US of workplaces that will unlawfully retaliate against people who raise such issues.

I STILL hope that EVERY US employee will speak up and demand legally-compliant workplaces!

The MORE People who Speak UP, the less they can get away with legal noncompliance.

To address UNLAWFUL Discrimination against the UNEMPLOYED, visit the EEOC – http://www.EEOC.gov/

SAMPLE MEMO ON ADDRESSING EMOTIONS IN THE WORKPLACE

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To: Your Supervisor (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Addressing Emotions in the Workplace Culture at (Company)

I want to make several suggestions regarding addressing emotions in the workplace that I believe we should remain aware of.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation relate to this matter, my concern is that by (employee)’s supervisor telling her/him that she/he may not express any negative emotion in any way either verbally or nonverbally, that a grave mistake is being made. I do believe this requires immediate remediation.

Moving forward, I recommend that the/an HR Director must review all written directives to employees before they are given to employees to avoid the communication of inappropriate directives such as in this example. Additionally, I recommend that all (Company) management employees who supervise employees attend formal trainings on discipline, communication, emotional intelligence, and sound management skills for handling challenging situations.

I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar, and/or I can create a training on my own that will cover the necessary topics.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with EEO laws. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

Specifically my concerns about this directive to this employee are:

Emotions are part of being human; therefore, this request is unrealistic and unreasonable.

This directive is not being given to other employees that I am aware of, and could be an example of disparate and inconsistent treatment.

The directive may appear to be gender discrimination and/or harassment since it has not been given to members of the opposite gender. Many other employees have cursed, yelled,  slammed doors, raised their voices, or hung up on other employees during moments of anger; yet those have not been given such a directive, so there is a consistency issue.

The reasons for this employee’s anger must be explored, understood, considered, addressed, and resolved.

This could easily appear to be an example of disparate treatment for any reason including related to personal conflicts of interests. I am unaware of this employee ever engaging in behavior that has been characterized as threatening or violent, and I see no reason for such a directive to be given to this or any employee.

In fact, directing any employee to suppress anger is a risk for creating workplace violence.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING EEO COMPLIANCE CONCERNS

On letterhead, interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To: Your Supervisor

       (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with EEO Laws

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to EEO and Sexual Harassment Prevention Laws.

As you know, the EEOC has determined that if a workplace environment is such that employees are afraid to make complaints; this environment can contribute substantially to a viable retaliation claim. Additionally, now any employee who participates in an investigation is also protected from retaliation. Additionally, we have a responsibility to investigate complaints promptly, thoroughly, and soundly. Just as important, we have a legal responsibility to prevent any harassment, discrimination, and/or retaliation based on any category protected by our city, state, and federal laws.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name or complaint) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical EEO and Sexual Harassment Prevention (SHP) assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of any aspect of EEO law.

If we learn that any errors have been or are being made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in EEO complaint-receipt, investigations, or determinations attend formal training on EEO and SHP compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with EEO laws and training requirements. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and cutting-edge research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle EEO and SHP-related issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally complaint decision-making processes related to EEO and SHP issues.

http://www.eeotraining.eeoc.gov/viewpage.aspx?ID=030b9cb8-8e56-433c-a410-cc94ccb64b3a

http://www.eeoc.gov/outreach/index.htm

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as legal compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to EEO laws.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of EEO issues in a legally complaint manner.

SAMPLE MEMO CAUTIONING AGAINST UNLAWFUL RETALIATION

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To: Your Supervisor

(Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Concerns about (Company) Engaging in Actions That Could Be Characterized as Retaliatory

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to unlawful retaliation under EEO and other laws.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of laws that prohibit unlawful retaliation.

If we learn that any errors have been made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in any employment decision or action that could be characterized as unlawfully retaliatory attend formal training on these important compliance issues in order to prevent costly errors and noncompliance. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with laws governing issues related to unlawful retaliation. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle issues that could be characterized as unlawfully retaliatory. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally compliant decision-making processes likely to assist us in avoiding any actual or appearance of unlawful retaliation.

http://www.eeoc.gov/types/retaliation.htm

http://www.eeoc.gov/policy/docs/retal.htm

http://moss07.shrm.org/hrdisciplines/employeerelations/Pages/retaliation.aspx

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.jan.wvu.edu/

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to consistent application of all (Company)’s policies regarding zero tolerance for unlawful retaliation as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of issues that could be characterized as retaliatory in a legally complaint and ethically sound manner.

SAMPLE MEMO CONCERNING OSHA’S PROHIBITION AGAINST RETALIATION

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To: Your Supervisor

(Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with OSHA Prohibitions against Retaliation

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to Occupational and Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) prohibition against retaliation against an employee for raising concerns about workplace safety issues.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical OSHA assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of OSHA regulations.

If we learn that any errors were made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in workplace safety, performance evaluation, discipline, and related decisions attend formal training on OSHA compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with OSHA regulations. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle workplace safety and retaliation-prevention issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally compliant decision-making processes related to OSHA and retaliation-prevention issues.

http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=FEDERAL_REGISTER&p_id=19814

http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=DIRECTIVES&p_id=1830

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.jan.wvu.edu/

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to workplace safety and prohibitions against unlawful retaliation under OSHA.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the important of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of workplace safety issues in a legally complaint manner.

SAMPLE MEMO CONCERNING COMPLIANCE WITH THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To: Your Supervisor

(Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and ADAAA

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and ADAAA.

As you know, the ADA was recently changed and made more robust. I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical ADA assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of the ADA/ADAAA.

If we learn that any errors were made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in ADA decisions, contributing to job descriptions, and involved in interviewing and hiring decisions attend formal training on ADA/ADAAA compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with ADA and ADAAA. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle the ADA and related issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally complaint decision-making processes related to ADA/ADAAA issues.

http://www.ada.gov/

http://www.jan.wvu.edu/media/accessibilityfact.doc

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to the ADA and ADAAA.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of ADA issues in a legally compliant manner.

SAMPLE MEMO CONCERNING/ALLEGING RETALIATION FOR ADVOCATING FOR THE ADA/ADAAA

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To: Your Supervisor

(Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Concerns about (Company’s) Compliance with ADA, the ADAAA, and Retaliation

I am compelled to express concern about the response to my memo regarding how we at (Company) handle issues related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA and ADAAA).

The ADA protects against retaliation to any employee who advocates for the ADA to be properly administered, even if that employee is advocating for another employee’s disability or is ultimately mistaken in his or her recommendations.

I documented my concern about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) was handled, and since then, I have experienced greater scrutiny of my job performance. I have also experienced disparate treatment of any ordinary minor errors I have made both as compared to those of my colleagues and as compared to treatment given to minor errors I may have made prior to my having raised my ADA concerns.

These instances fit the definition of retaliation against me under the ADA. I request and recommend that we address these issues with an experienced, impartial external mediator and/or investigator who is knowledgeable about ADA law, retaliation, and sound conflict resolution methods. The EEOC has an excellent mediation program.

I recommend again that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors around retaliation in the future. Additionally, I again recommend that all persons involved in decisions that have salience under ADA as stated in my previous memo attend formal training on ADA prohibitions against retaliation and related compliance issues.

I did send a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar to you on (date). I recommend that we all attend the same training and/or webinar so we are all on the same page regarding our understanding of our shared compliance responsibilities under the ADA, including those prohibiting retaliation. I would be more than happy to arrange our attendance at any of these available trainings; please let me know if you have any thoughts on which trainings we might attend either separately or together, and I would be more than happy to make all registration arrangements. If you would like to meet to discuss these trainings, I would be happy to do that as well.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with ADA and ADAAA. I know that we also share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure. I know that we also share a commitment for zero tolerance for retaliation against anyone who raises ADA concerns.

Again, the resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle the ADA and related issues. I again recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally complaint decision-making processes related to ADA issues.

http://www.ada.org

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.jan.wvu.edu/links/adasummary.htm

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

It is my hope that we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to the ADA, which includes zero tolerance for retaliation against any employee who raises an ADA concern, as I did on (date).

Additionally, I hope we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of ADA issues in a legally complaint manner, including refraining from any form of retaliation against any employee who raises ADA concerns.

SAMPLE MEMO ADDRESSING WORKPLACE SAFETY CONCERNS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To: Your Supervisor

(Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From: Your Name

Date:

Re.: Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with OSHA Workplace Safety Regulations and ADA/ADAAA Compliance

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to workplace safety compliance combined with ADA/ADAAA issues.

I am specifically concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical workplace safety assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of OSHA or the ADAAA.

As you are aware, workplace safety issues also have relevance for our workers’ compensation (WC) employee injury and illness records as well as our WC insurance rates.

If we learn that any errors were made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in workplace safety decisions attend formal training on workplace safety compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with OSHA rules and regulations. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle workplace safety and related issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally complaint decision-making processes related to job descriptions, job hazard analysis, personal protective equipment, record-keeping requirements, ADA accommodations for injured employees, WC law for our state, and all other relevant supervisory and policy issues that relate to workplace safety. Additionally, there are OSHA programs and DOL-DOSH programs that provide free safety trainings, which I will research and report on.

http://www.osha.gov

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.dol.gov/dol/topic/workcomp/index.htm

http://www.jan.wvu.edu

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to workplace safety laws.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of workplace safety issues in a legally complaint manner.

I have attached information from the Job Accommodation Network’s (JAN’s) website that I believe will assist us in ensuring that our corporate governance practices around ADA (and ADAAA) and related issues are handled in a legally complaint manner.

Please review the attached when you have time or visit the Web site at http://www.jan.wvu.edu/. I am also including information from JAN on recommended formats for employees requesting accommodations. This will ensure that we are prepared to respond appropriately and proactively provide forms for employees who may require reasonable accommodations and continue to provide excellent internal HR customer service to (Company)’s employees while also remaining in compliance with ADA and related laws.

SAMPLE LETTER TO MEDICAL PROVIDERS WHO ERRONEOUSLY BILL EMPLOYEES OR COMPANY FOR WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BILLS

On letterhead, via postal mail, fax, or e-mail

Date

To Whom It May Concern:

The bill we are sending to you was erroneously sent to either an employee or this workplace. This relates to a workers’ compensation injury; therefore, only the workers’ compensation (WC) carrier listed below should be billed by any medical provider related to this case.

All of (Company)’s employees present a card to any WC medical provider, which includes all of the necessary WC billing information needed by the medical provider.

In case you no longer have that information, I have provided it for you below:

Name and full address and contact info for (Company)’s WC Insurance carrier:

(Company)’s WC Policy Number:

(Company)’s FEIN (Federal Employer Identification Number):

Our UI (Unemployment Insurance) Reg. Number:

The State in which this employee works:

For any billing inquiries related to this or any other workplace injury related to (Company), please call: ________________ (phone number for Company’s WC carrier)

Thank you,

Your Full Name

Full Contact Information

Company Web site

CC:         Injured Employee

                Injured Employee’s file

SAMPLE MEMO: LEAVE DONATION POLICY

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

Date

Dear Staff,

(Company) has a leave donation program for staff members who are out due to injury or illness and have run out of paid time off. _______________ has requested leave donation. She is expected to be absent until further notice. She does not have sufficient leave accruals to cover her expected time out of work.

This program allows staff to voluntarily donate vacation, sick, and personal leave accruals to employees who are on medical or disability leave and don’t have enough leave accruals to cover their salary. Your donated leave is used to cover the recipient’s salary during their waiting period for disability and/or to delay the use of disability benefits, which pay only partial salary.

This is voluntary.

Eligibility to Donate:

In order to donate you must:

ÿ        be an employee

ÿ        have a minimum of 1 weeks’ paid time off vacation leave after the donation; and

ÿ        make donations in 8-hour unit

If you wish to donate unused vacation, sick, or personal leave accrual, please let me know by responding to this message. The identity of donors remains confidential and is only disclosed to certain members of HR and Finance for tracking purposes.

To review this policy, please review the Employee Handbook. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thank you,

HR Name, Title

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING FMLA COMPLIANCE CONCERNS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor (also include the supervisor of an employee, or any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with FMLA

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues relate to

the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name) is being

handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to

this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical FMLA

assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of the

FMLA. There are times when FMLA issues include ADA and EEO issues, and I have

included a link to the EEOC’s guidance on this below as well as other informational links

that relate to my concerns about the situation involving (employee’s name). There is

also an informational link to Company’s obligations to provide reasonable

accommodations under ADA.

If we learn that any errors have been made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in FMLA decisions attend formal training on FMLA compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with FMLA. We also share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle the FMLA and related issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally complaint decision-making processes related to FMLA issues.

http://www.eeoc.gov/policy/docs/fmlaada.htm

http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/fmla/

http://www.shrm.org/

http://www.jan.wvu.edu/Erguide/Three.htm

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to consistent application of all (Company)’s policies to all employees as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to the FMLA.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of FMLA issues in a legally compliant manner.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING FLSA CONCERNS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          President of (Company) (also include your supervisor, Legal, Finance, payroll)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        (Company)’s Compliance with FLSA

I am recommending that my attached audit dated ___________ be used to change the FLSA status of the attached list of employees so that (Company) avoids FLSA penalty fines from the DOL, lawsuits from those who have not been compensated properly according to FLSA laws, the possibility of angry employees voting to bring a union to (Company), and negative publicity for (Company).

I have reviewed all up-to-date job descriptions for these employees, have confirmed with their supervisors that they are accurate, and have reviewed their job duties with the most recent FLSA training and guidance information available from the DOL. (If true: I have cultivated an excellent working relationship with ______________ at the DOL, who has given me guidance regarding any of the job descriptions that may land in an FLSA-status that is unclear.)

I also recommend that (Company) acknowledge previous misclassification of those employees listed with an asterisk next to their name, apologize for the error, and reimbursed them for any unpaid wages plus interest going back to whatever date is necessary. This will demonstrate (Company)’s good will and commitment to remaining legally complaint with all relevant labor laws, and will serve to help keep (Company) union-free.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING KNOWLEDGE OF THREATS TO PUBLIC SAFETY UNDER CPSC

CONFIDENTIAL

On letterhead, interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with Public Safety Standards

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to

public safety.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (product or employee) was

handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to

this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and that we seek technical

product and public safety assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any

errors in violation of product and public safety law.

If we learn that any errors have been made, I recommend that we remediate those as

soon as possible. Moving forward I recommend that we consider implementing a

decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-

cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I

recommend that all persons involved in issues related to product and public safety

decisions attend formal training on prevention and compliance issues. I will follow this

memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with product and

public safety laws. We also share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for

(Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in

SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research

capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle product and public safety-related

issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally

compliant decision-making processes related to issues concerning product an public

safety.

http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/odp/training_other.htm

http://www.ehso.com/oshaguidance.php#P

http://www.business.gov/business-law/contacts/federal/cpsc

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s

policies to all employees an situations as well as compliance with all relevant city, state,

and federal laws related to product and public safety.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our

decision-making processes and our handling of product and public safety issues in a

legally compliant manner.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING CONCERNS ABOUT RETALIATION AGAINST EMPLOYEE

FOR RAISING PUBLIC/PRODUCT SAFETY CONCERNS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Your Supervisor (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with Public/Product Safety and Whistleblower Protection Laws and Prohibitions against Retaliation

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to

Public/Product Safety, prohibitions against unlawful retaliation, and Whistleblower

Protection Laws.

Additionally, we have a responsibility to investigate concerns about public safety or

product safety promptly, thoroughly, and soundly. Just as importantly, we have a legal

responsibility to prevent retaliation against any employee who comes forward with such

concerns.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name or complaint)

was handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related

to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical

_____________ assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in

violation of any aspect of any law.

If we learn that any errors have been or being made, I recommend that we remediate

those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider

implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance

consultation from no-cost government nor SHRM resources to prevent errors in the

future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in public and/or product-

safety concerns or complaint-receipts, investigations, or determinations attend formal

training on these technical compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of

quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with public and

product safety laws that prohibit retaliation against any employee who raises concerns

about public or product safety. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability

exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us for use at any time. My membership in

SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research

capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle issues concerning the prevention

of inadvertent or intentional retaliation. I recommend that we use these resources in

the future to ensure complaint decision-making processes related to these issues.

http://www.osha.gov/dep/oia/whistleblower/index.html

http://www.shrm.org/

http://www.dol.gov/compliance/guide/whistle.htm

http://www.dol.gov/compliance/laws/comp-whistleblower.htm

http://www.workplacefairness.org/resources

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s

policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to

these important issues around safety.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our

decision-making processes and our handling of these issues in a legally compliant

manner.

SAMPLE FALSE CLAIMS ACT “BLOWING THE WHISTLE INTERNALLY” FRAUD-PREVENTION MEMO

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Whom It May Concern:

From:    Your Full Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about (Company)’s Fraudulent Activity Re.:_________________

I am concerned that (Company)’s current practice of ____________________ might be fraudulent.

My specific concerns are:

[List Concerns]

SAMPLE MEMO ASSERTING RETALIATION FOR HAVING RAISED CONCERNS ABOUT FRAUD OR POSSIBLE FRAUD

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

(You may also want to have your attorney write a companion letter on his or her letterhead for you from him or her alleging the same things.)

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Whom It May Concern

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Allegation of Retaliation for Having Raised Concerns about Possible Fraudulent Activity at (Company)

I believe I am being unlawfully retaliated against for having raised my concerns about practices at (Company) that seem to result in fraud.

 Ever since I sent a memo dated _________, my job performance has been scrutinized much more than it was before I sent that memo, and my job performance is currently most certainly being scrutinized much more than that of my colleagues. My job performance is also being much more harshly evaluated than ever before. I believe I am being treated in disparate ways from my colleagues who have not raised such issues.

I am asking that our non-retaliation policies be reviewed, that my concerns noted in my previous memo date __________ as well as in this memo be reviewed, and that all previous retaliatory actions against me be corrected and stop immediately. I also request that you review all federal, state, and city laws addressing prohibitions against unlawful retaliation with which (Company) is required to comply.

SAMPLE MEMO ADDRESSING INCONSISTENT POLICY APPLICATION

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Leadership (by name) (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    HR Professional’s Full Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about Individual and Company Liability at Company

I have concerns about personal liability and liability for (Company) due to:

Inconsistent application of (Company) policies to staff seemingly driven by conflicts of interest issues in application of policies that result in disparate treatment of staff.

Lack of leadership and legal’s technical compliance knowledge, which I believe explains inadvertent errors that have been made as (Company) grows. I recommend that we review, note, and learn from these errors and in some cases revisit and correct them.

I have responsibility to adhere to SHRM code of professional conduct and our legal staff has an obligation to adhere to their own code of professional responsibility. We are all responsible for complying with city, state, and federal laws.

I believe we will realize we all have the same goals once more clarity is gained regarding technical compliance knowledge and once the codes of conduct mentioned above are reviewed. I have made several recommendations throughout this memo because the SHRM code of Ethical and Professional Standards require me to address these issues and because I value (Company).

I have a responsibility under SHRM Code of Ethical and Professional Standards to, among other things:

Comply with the law.

Advocate openly and within the established forums for debate in order to influence decision making and results.

Question pending individual and group actions when necessary to ensure that decisions are ethical and are implemented in an ethical manner.

Seek expert guidance if ever in doubt about the ethical propriety of a situation.

Treat people with dignity, respect, and compassion to foster a trusting work environment free of harassment, intimidation, and unlawful discrimination.

Ensure an environment of inclusiveness and a commitment to diversity in the company.

Develop, administer, and advocate policies and procedures that foster fair, consistent, and equitable treatment for all.

Adhere to and advocate the use of published policies on conflicts of interest within the company.

Prioritize obligations to identify conflicts of interests or the appearance thereof; when conflicts arise, disclose them to relevant stakeholders.

Acquire and disseminate information through ethical and responsible means.

Ensure only appropriate information is used in decisions affecting the employment relationship.

Investigate the accuracy and source of information before allowing it to be used in employment-related decisions.

I recommend that leadership and HR review SHRM’s Code of Ethical and Professional Standards as well as develop sufficient technical knowledge of ADA, EEO, State Human Rights laws, and other laws, so  there is clarity regarding how these must inform our compliance roles and responsibilities at (Company).

I recommend that we create a structure for rational, informed, respectful discussion of all employment decisions to ensure that we are acting consistently, ethically, and in compliance with laws and policies. I also recommend that those included in these discussions be encouraged to contribute their knowledge, research, questions, and concerns and that we consider who, if anyone, should recuse themselves from involvement in the decision-making process. I again recommend that we take full advantage of technical assistance resources available to us when there is disagreement among us, including the following:

ÿ        ADA and ADAAA Technical Assistance

ÿ        EEOC Technical Assistance

ÿ        State Division of Human Rights Technical Assistance

ÿ        City Commission on Human Rights

ÿ        OSHA Technical Assistance

ÿ        DOL DOSH Technical Assistance

ÿ        FLSA Technical Assistance

ÿ        FMLA Technical Assistance

ÿ        JAN Technical Assistance

ÿ        DOL Technical Assistance

ÿ        Others, as needed

INCONSISTENT APPLICATION OF POLICIES

There are significant inconsistencies that are liability risks in terms of disparate policy application to different employees without justification. It is my observation that several instances of policy interpretation and application have been made based on personal relationships and personal conflicts of interest and not according to actual policy, to previous interpretations and applications of policy. This has happened with no attention to precedent and no attention to the spirit of the policy.

I have observed, as have other employees who have raised these issues with me, that this positive bias extends to performance evaluations, promotions, raises, tolerance of unacceptable behavior, company influence allowed, hiring decisions allowed, allowance of several policy violations, and various other inconsistencies that are problematic.

I have also observed, as have other employees who have raised these issues with me, that this positive bias also extends to whether or not problematic job performances is noted, addressed sufficiently, documented, or acknowledged at all.

There have been inconsistent responses to different employees regarding certain policy infractions. I recommend that we apply responses to policy infractions consistently to all employees. There are staff members at (Company) who have not received any response to policy infractions despite engaging in problematic behaviors regularly, even daily. There are other employees who don’t enjoy the privilege of personal relationships that have the outcome of protecting them from the consequences of policy violations who have been disciplined and/or terminated for the very same or even lesser policy infractions.

There are also several examples of staff members who have regularly and repeatedly engaged in policy infractions yet have been given praises, promotions, public praise, and extremely unusual privileges without having their regular policy infractions addressed at all. If these policy infractions have been addressed, I have no documentation of these for  these employees’ personnel files and have not been made aware of any documentation or actions taken.

When our policies are not consistently applied, it becomes extremely difficult for me to perform my job ethically or well. I can almost never predict how a policy will be interpreted or implemented because of these inconsistencies. Furthermore, this inconsistent application of policies creates a serious morale problem among staff, who notice this disparate treatment, discuss it amongst themselves, and now experience diminished trust in both HR and (Company).

I recommend that conducting sound staff performances evaluations be made mandatory, that those supervisors not conducting them have this noted in their own performance evaluations, and that new firm deadlines be given to those supervisors. I also recommend that all managers (including leadership) be trained in effectively evaluating staff without personal bias or attribution error and in preparing and giving feedback soundly. I recommend that HR and/or leadership review all performance evaluations before they are presented to employees to ensure they are sound and free of rater-bias and attribution error.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING BULLYING AND WORKPLACE VIOLENCE

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Recommendation to Implement a Workplace Violence Prevention Policy at (Company)

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) might better handle issues related to risk factors for workplace violence.

As you know, there are no laws in the United States addressing workplace bullying. I am concerned about how the (topic, employee name, incident) matter is being handled, I a recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical assistance to ensure that we at (Company) fully understand what workplace bullying is. I further recommend that we evaluate its presence, frequency, and severity at (Company) with the intention to both prevent workplace violence and to actively support the creation of a workplace that is psychologically, emotionally, and physically healthy for all employees of (Company).

Other risk factors for workplace violence include domestic violence issues our staff may have about which we may be unaware, poor conflict resolution skills of some staff, and any drug or alcohol abuse by any staff members while at work.

We can do more to prevent workplace violence. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider reading the FBI’s report on workplace violence at http://www.fbi.gov/publications/violence.pdf and also consider technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources so that we remain appraised of and follow current best practices for workplace violence prevention and implement a policy.

Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in decisions related to addressing possible complaints about workplace bullying or workplace violence attend formal trainings on these issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with OSHA workplace safety regulations. We also share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle workplace bullying and workplace violence issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure prudent and educated decision-making processes related to instances of workplace bullying and workplace violence.

http://www.fbi.gov/publications/violence.pdf

http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/workplaceviolence/index.htm

http://www.workplacebullying.org/

http://www.shrm.org

http://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/osnr0026.pdf

http://NoJobIsWorthThis.com

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to workplace safety.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of workplace safety issues in a prudent, responsible, and legally compliant manner.

SAMPLE MEMO DEFINING BULLYING

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Recommendation to Implement an Anti-Bullying Policy for (Company)

I would like to suggest that (Company) implement an Anti-Workplace Bullying Policy.

It is my observation that (Company) does in fact have a workplace-bullying problem. The situations that occurred with (employees’ names) are examples of bullying.

While workplace bullying is completely legal in the United States, it has been cited by the FBI as a precursor to and risk factor for workplace violence; for more information please see: http://www.fbi.gov/publications/violence.pdf. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recognizes bullying as a form of workplace violence: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/updates/upd-07-28-04.html.

Unless you have an objection, I will draft a sample policy for your review.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING (COMPANY)’S COMPLIANCE WITH THE NLRA

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about (Company)’s Compliance with the NLRA

I am compelled to express concern about how we at (Company) handle issues related to employees’ rights to organize.

As you know, employees do have right to organize under the NLRA. I am concerned with how the recent situation with (employee’s name or incident involving company response to know that union organizers are talking with employees) is being handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we revisit this situation and seek technical assistance to ensure that we at (Company) have not made any errors in violation of the NLRA.

If we learn that any errors were made, I recommend that we remediate those as soon as possible. Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all persons involved in any action or official statement regarding issues concerning unions and employees’ rights to organize be mandated to attend formal training on the relevant compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings on our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with the NLRA. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure. Some examples of employer conduct which violate the NLRA are:

ÿ        Threatening employees with loss of jobs or benefits if they join or vote for a union or engage in protected concerted activity.

ÿ        Threatening to close the plant if employees select a union to represent them.

ÿ        Questioning employees about their union sympathies or activities in circumstances that tend to interfere with, restrain, or coerce employees in the exercise of their rights under the Act.

ÿ        Promising benefits to employees to discourage their union support.

ÿ        Transferring, laying off, terminating, assigning employees more difficult work tasks, or otherwise punishing employees because they filed unfair labor practice charges or participated in an investigation conducted by NLRB.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle union and related issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally compliant decision-making processes related to union issues:

http://www.shrm.org/

http://www.nlrb.gov/Workplace_Rights/nlra_violation.aspx

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to employees’ rights to organize and choose union membership.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of union issues in a legally complaint manner.

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING CONCERNS ABOUT UNION COMPLIANCE WITH THE NLRA

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

CONFIDENTIAL

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Concerns about (Union) Compliance with NLRA

I am compelled to express concern about how [Name of Union(s)] at (Company) is operating.

I am concerned about how the recent situation with (employee’s name or department or situation or contract negotiation) was handled. Unless I am unaware of additional information or documentation related to this matter, I recommend that we take appropriate and legally complaint action to formally address this concern with (Union)’s leadership.

Moving forward, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol that will include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to prevent errors in the future. Additionally, I recommend that all (Company) employees involved in communications with (Union) attend formal training related compliance issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area or via webinar.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with NLRA. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure. Briefly, examples of labor organization conduct which violate the NLRA are:

ÿ        Threats to employees that they will lose their jobs unless they support the union.

ÿ        Seeking the suspension, discharge or other punishment of an employee for not being a union member even if the employee has paid or offered to pay a lawful initiation fee and periodic fees thereafter.

ÿ        Refusing to process a grievance because an employee has criticized union officials or because an employee is not a member of the union in states where union security clauses are not permitted.

ÿ        Fining employees who have validly resigned from the union for engaging in protected concerted activities following their resignation or for crossing an unlawful picket line.

ÿ        Engaging in picket line misconduct, such as threatening, assaulting, or barring non-strikers from the employer’s premises.

ÿ        Striking over issues unrelated to employment terms and conditions or coercively enmeshing neutrals into a labor dispute.

The resources below are free and available to us to use at any time. My membership in SHRM provides free information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle union-related issues. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally compliant decision-making processes related to union-related concerns:

http://www.nlrb.gov/Workplace_Rights/nlra_violations.aspx

http://www.shrm.org/

I know we share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to the NRLA.

Additionally, I know we share an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes and our handling of union-related issues in a legally complaint manner.

SAMPLE MEMO REQUESTING (COMPANY)-SPONSORED SHRM MEMBERSHIP

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:    

Re.:        Request for company-sponsored SHRM membership for HR personnel

I would like (Company) to purchase a SHRM annual membership in my name so that I am able to remain as educate as possible regarding any HR issue and remain informed about changing legislation, high-profile case studies in the news, important research, and high-quality educational opportunities.

SHRM’s annual membership is currently $160.00 per year. SHRM’s more than 250,000 members come from all over the world and work in all disciplines of HR. I will have the ability to communicate with them and learn from them.

We share a collective responsibility to ensure (Company)’s compliance with all relevant employment laws, which frequently change. SHRM will help keep me and us credibly informed of any changes. I know we share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) as well as personal liability exposure.

My membership in SHRM will provide free access to information, white papers, case-law information, and research capabilities along with toolkits for how to best handle every HR issue. I recommend that we use these resources in the future to ensure legally compliant decision-making processes related to any matter for which we require technical assistance.

I know we share a strong commitment to consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws.

I also wish to include for you the SHRM Code of Ethics, which I endeavor to follow in my role as (title) at (Company). Please let me know if you would like to discuss these as they relate to my role at (Company).

If you would like to review the Web site, the address is: http://www.shrm.org/

Thank you very much.

SAMPLE MEMO TO INFLUENCE LEADERSHIP ABOUT SHARED COMPLIANCE RESPONSIBILITIES

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor(s)

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Shared Compliance Responsibilities

Given that we share legal and ethical compliance responsibilities, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol for any HR issue that requires input from multiple perspectives, such as from HR, Legal, Leadership, and/or Finance.

Such a protocol would include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to ensure the use of current and correct information, build consensus, and prevent costly errors. There are a number of no-cost governmental accurate technical assistance resources available to us. I will forward those to you regularly as needed.

Additionally, I recommend that any of us involved in decisions related to discipline, demotion, probation, termination, or the investigation of harassment, discrimination, or retaliation complaints attend formal training on these issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area and/or via webinar.

We share a commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) and for ourselves personally. We also share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to employment and an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes.

SAMPLE MEMO TO A COLLEAGUE ABOUT SHARED COMPLIANCE RESPONSIBILITIES

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Colleague(s)

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Shared Compliance Responsibilities

Given that as supervisors we share legal and ethical compliance responsibilities, I recommend that we consider implementing a decision-making protocol for any HR issue that requires input from multiple perspectives, such as from HR, Legal, Leadership, Operations, Safety and Health, and/or Finance. (List any other relevant departments.)

Such a protocol would include technical assistance consultation from no-cost government or SHRM resources to ensure the use of current and correct information, build consensus, and prevent costly errors. There are a number of no-cost governmental accurate technical assistance resources available to us. I will forward links and other relevant information to you regularly as needed.

Additionally, I recommend that any of us involved in decisions related to discipline, demotion, probation, termination, safety and health, or the investigation of harassment, discrimination, or retaliation complaints attend formal training on these issues. I will follow this memo up with a list of quality upcoming available trainings in our area and/ or via webinar.

We share a strong commitment to prevent liability exposure for (Company) and for ourselves personally. We also share a strong commitment to the consistent application of all (Company)’s policies as well as compliance with all relevant city, state, and federal laws related to employment and an awareness of the importance of precedent in our decision-making processes.

SAMPLE MEMO ON HEALTHY HUMOR

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Recommendation Regarding “Healthy Humor” Policy

I recommend that (Company) implement a “Healthy Humor” Policy by mandating an annual hour-long training for all staff and presenting a written policy, along with the attached chart by Joel Goodman, Ph.D. I would be happy to design and present this training, which would simply explain the differences between each example of healthy and unhealthy humor and elaborate upon the many ways in which unhealthy humor is destructive at the workplace. I can provide you with a training draft for review within two weeks if you have no objections.

The benefits of implementing a policy around healthy humor using guidelines such as these are that a firewall is created that forces employees to stop short of inappropriate behavior before they even approach the danger zone of EEO issues and that employees feel confident that they can work in an environment of dignity, respect, and security. As we know, such an environment contributes to productivity, effectiveness, and equanimity.

We also know from research in the emotional intelligence field that both emotions and conflict can be highly contagious and that unhealthy humor will only encourage the spread of destructive emotions and lateral conflict among employees, which ultimately adversely affects communication, collaboration, cooperation, teamwork, and efficiency.

This policy would also support a code of conduct and an anti-bullying policy, thus reinforcing a psychologically, emotionally, and physically safe workplace for all employees.

I look forward to rolling out this important improvement to (Company)’s corporate culture and I would appreciate your support to ensure that this important new policy is consistently and soundly enforced.

SAMPLE MEMO VIA E-MAIL

To:          HR Assistant (Person’s Name)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Acronyms in Communications with Company Staff

Please keep in mind that most (Company) staff don’t understand the many acronyms for HR Technical terms as we do. Please be sure to spell out the acronym the first time you use it in any communication with an employee.

Thank you,

Your Name

Title

SAMPLE MEMO REQUESTING TRAINING FOR YOURSELVES AND OTHERS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor

From:    Your Name

Date:    

Re.:        Request for NYSDRA Workplace Conflict Management Training for all Managerial Staff

I request that (Company) management staff attend the NY State Dispute Resolution’s (NYSDRA) Workplace Conflict Management Training as their schedules allow, or that (Company) retains NYSDRA to bring this excellent training to (Company).

This training does not just teach conflict resolution and introductory mediation skills; this training teaches the four distinct types of conflicts that affect workplace and what can be done to prevent and effectively handle them, and also addresses common dysfunctional beliefs about conflict in general.

The training also addresses constructive and destructive responses to workplace conflict, as well as how the organizational power and roles of those involved in a conflict have significant influence upon how the conflict will be handled, which is very significant for managers and leaders to be aware of.

This training addresses group conflict, interpersonal conflict, the costs of unresolved conflict, and successful options for conflict resolution. This training would serve to prevent bullying, harassment, discrimination, retaliation, workplace violence, and entrenched costly unresolved conflict that can easily spread from individuals to groups.

I believe this training would be enormously helpful to (Company)’s staff among managers, with managers and their staff, and that it could eventually be taught to all staff.

I have attached a copy of the materials from my attendance at this training last week.

SAMPLE LETTER (NONANONYMOUS VERSION): FORMAL EXTERNAL COMPLAINTS

On letterhead (if possible, but not necessary)

Date:

Name and Address of Person/Commission/Agency to Whom You Are Complaining

To Whom It May Concern: [Individual(s) or Commission to which you are complaining]

First and foremost, ,I am/we are requesting whistleblower protection inasmuch as it applies to me/us at the city, state, and/or federal level for myself (and others if relevant) for making this/these complaint(s). I/we are also requesting any other protections against retaliation to which this complaint may entitle me/us.

I am/we are a current (and/or former) employee(s) of (Company), and I/we implore you to initiate an official, prompt, sound, and impartial investigation into issues concerning (choose one as many as apply: unethical, unlawful, retaliatory, conflicts of interest, financial mismanagement, harassment and discrimination, unsafe working conditions, public health and safety issues, environmental illegalities, etc.).

I/we have enclosed copies of evidence for your review with a cover sheet identifying each piece of evidence and explaining its relevance and my/our concerns.

(Only include this statement if it is true): I/we have communicated our concerns regarding these issues with (Company)’s leadership; however, these problems have not been remediated.

(Only include this statement if it is true): I/we are being (or have been) retaliated against, and I/we do fear that I/we will be wrongfully terminated in retaliation for having raised these issues. I/we implore you to contact (Company)’s leadership and order a freeze on all employee terminations until the conclusion of an official, prompt, sound, and impartial investigation. We are also concerned about incriminating evidence being removed from main system computer, BlackBerry, and other servers, and I/we ask that a forensic investigation of all (Company)’s servers be conducted as well.

If your office is unable to assist me/us with this/these complaint(s), or if these complaints do not fall within the jurisdiction of your office, please direct me/us to the appropriate place to bring these complaints as soon as possible.

My/our complete contact information (address, e-mail, phones) is below.

Thank you.

Sincerely yours,

Type and Sign Name(s)

Include full contact information for all complaints.

SAMPLE MEMO FOR RECOMMENDING A SUGGESTION BOX

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Recommendation to Install and Announce Boxes for Employees to Use Anonymously

I would like to suggest to that (Company) install suggestion boxes in each location where employees regularly gather, such as the lunchroom, the time clock area, or the kitchens.

This will give employees an opportunity to make suggestions for (Company) without having to identify themselves, which includes employees in a way that allows them to be comfortable but still know that their ideas and suggestions for (Company) are welcomed and invited.

I can regularly collect any suggestions and relay them to leadership in my (choose which you use: weekly/biweekly/monthly/quarterly) reports. I can also comment on the suggestions if you would like and let you know if I believe the suggestion is on (Company) would benefit from pursuing.

Unless you have an objection, I will draft a memo announcing this new initiative that will solicit and welcome employee feedback and contribute to an optimally functional workplace.

SAMPLE MEMO RECOMMENDING AN UNPAID INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

On letterhead, interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Proposed Unpaid Internship Program for (Company)

I propose that (Company) implement that unpaid internship program I have outlined below. Each of our ___ (number of departments you have that could use an unpaid intern) could use an unpaid intern during the ____________ times of the year (or you may want to say year-round, depending on your industry and company).

 

SAMPLE MEMO REGARDING REWARDING INTERNS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via e-mail

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

 

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Recommendation to Reward Unpaid Interns with Recognition Awards

I would like to suggest that (Company) reward unpaid interns with lunch with their supervisor paid for by (Company) and a (Company) t-shirt at the end of their internships.

I would also like to suggest a recognition program in which each month, (Company) staff can nominate an unpaid intern to be “Intern of the Month” and be rewarded with $25 from (Company).

Rewarding our unpaid interns is a way for (Company) to show its appreciation for the hard work and dedication they provide. This initiative will also contribute to a workplace culture that acknowledges and appreciates those with whom we work.

I have attached a draft nomination form as well as a draft form for approval of the $25 reward, which I will forward to Finance for approval.

Unless you have an objection, I will draft a memo announcing this new initiative to all staff.

 

SAMPLE MEMO FOR RECOMMENDING A REASONABLY RELAXED DRESS CODE FOR MOST DAYS

On letterhead, in interoffice memo format, or via-email

To:          Your Supervisor

                (Include any others on this list to whom this memo should be addressed.)

 

From:    Your Name

Date:

Re.:        Recommendation to Implement a Defined, Relaxed Dress Code for Most Days

I would like to suggest that (Company) implement a defined yet relaxed dress code for (Company) employees for most days. The exception would be for any formal (Company) events, while representing (Company) at certain specified events, or with certain clients whether at (Company) offices or elsewhere.

This will give employees a benefit they will greatly appreciate that costs (Company) nothing. Employees who are physically comfortable produce better quality work and are happier, thereby providing them with more energy for solving difficult challenges. Employees who are physically comfortable are less likely to be on edge, and are therefore less likely to become involved in conflicts based on misunderstandings. Employees who are physically comfortable think more clearly and perform better.

Allowing t-shirts, neat jeans, and sneakers as long as they are clean, not inappropriately revealing, not ripped, and don’t have anything potentially offensive written on them is a policy that will save employees money on dry-cleaning bills, save them time, lessen the likelihood of employee lateness, and keep them physically comfortable while they’re at work. This can also be publicized as a “greener workplace policy” or a “healthy workplace policy”

Most sneakers are much healthier for the human foot than any formal work shoe. Additionally, traditional dry-cleaning methods have been reported to have a deleterious effect on the environment as well as on human health. Allowing employees to avoid “formal” office attire is like giving them a small raise, encouraging improved employee health and, as a result, lowers health insurance bills, and supports a healthier environment.

Employees will greatly appreciate this benefit, which will increase their loyalty to (Company) and cause them to perform better and be more invested in their positions and work at (Company).

Unless you have an objection, I will draft this memo announcing this new initiative that will allow employees to be more physically comfortable as well as happier at (Company).

 

SAMPLE FLEXTIME MEMO

Via e-mail or in interoffice memo format

To:          All Staff

From:    _______________, HR

Date:

Re.:        Flextime

We are pleased to announce a new Flextime Policy for (Company)

Please see the policy guidelines below and let me know of you have any questions.

Flextime may be used by both exempt and non-exempt staff.

Employee requests must be submitted via the Time Away form and MUST be approved by employee’s supervisor and HR.

Flextime can be requested by staff to  address temporary and occasional personal situations (work/life balance issues) by any staff member, regardless of hourly/salaried status.

Flextime can also be requested by supervisors via e-mail, copied to HR, to address scheduling or changing work needs.

A minimum of 160 hours must be worked in a single month, and the request must be approved by a supervisor before it is taken. (You may customize this to your company.)

Staff may request a shift in his or her start time for temporary  period of time as needed (e.g., for regular MD visits or other reasons). This request must be approved by a supervisor. Medical providers notes may be requested by HR, and FMLA may be discussed as needed.

If emergency circumstances create lateness or absences that can be made up on another day during the same pay period, flextime can be implements, with supervisor approval, and without use of the Time Away form or notation of “flex” on the timesheet.

Flextime can be requested either by an employee or by a supervisor. For example, a  supervisor may ask an employee to work on a weekend day and take other time off.

A staff member’s request should be in writing via the Time Away form to a supervisor unless it was unplanned and emergent, and then reviewed by HR.

A manager’s request for an employee to change his or her schedule should be put in writing via e-mail and copied to HR. Employee response should also be copied to HR and payroll. Any private health information (PHI) or specific health information (SHI) will be redacted or XXXX’d out by HR before the information is passed on in accordance with HIPAA.

Employee Flextime requests can be applied to whole days as well as partial days and are always at the discretion of the supervisors(core workdays remain-insert your company’s core hours-for most staff). In addition, a supervisor may request that an employee substitute a weekend day for a weekday on a case-by-case basis.

Flextime is limited in terms of usage:

Flextime should be used WITHIN a single pay period whenever possible.

If a weekend day is substituted for a weekday, at a supervisor’s request, the number of hours worked should be noted on the timesheet under the day actually worked, and “flex” should be noted in the weekday.

With the approval of a supervisor and HR, flextime may extend beyond one month. The employee notes the days that are being requested, as “flex”, as compensation additional hours worked.

Employee must use the Time Away form and approval from the supervisor. The approved form will be forwarded to HR for inclusion in the employee file. HR will forward this form to Payroll.

A copy of the timesheet for the period during the hours in excess of 80 hours were worked must be signed and submitted prior to usage.

 

SAMPLE MEMO ANNOUNCING EI ASSESSMENT AND TRAINING

To:          All Staff

From:    ______________, HR

Date:

Re.:        Emotional Intelligence (EI) Training Initiative

I’m excited to announce that (Company) will be bringing in a Certified Emotional Intelligence Consultant, who will meet with us as a group and then individually.

We will each take a short EI self-test. In about two weeks, we’ll meet with our consultant again and discuss our results privately. We will then each choose 3 of the 15 EI subscale skills to focus on improving over the next year.

Please give the consultant your full cooperation, and don’t hesitate to come to me with any questions or concerns. I do believe this will be an exciting process for us all.

 

 
 
 

6 responses to “Sample Memos for Workplace Issues

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