Social media-disciplinary

(32 Posts)
Moxiegirl Sat 18-May-13 20:14:46

Hi, name changed and can't give away any details that might identify me but I'm currently suspended from work due to a complaint from someone outside work (who I know wanted to get me in trouble)for using social media in work time.
I've had my investigation meeting after 2 months suspension and I'm waiting to hear whether it will go to a hearing.
Does anyone know if evidence has to be shown in the meeting or whether it can be held back to the hearing?
If all they have on me is what I was shown then I think I will be ok.
I'm being investigated for gross misconduct.
No messages were made on my work pc and only a couple can be proven to be on work time although not at my desk.

WipsGlitter Sat 18-May-13 20:16:45

What were you doing? Twitter?

knackeredmother Sat 18-May-13 20:17:37

No advice, but sympathy. I hope it goes ok. I often Have a quick shifty on fb on my phone when I go to the toilet or on my lunch break. Sounds like something similar has happened, seems very harsh.
Good luck.

Moxiegirl Sat 18-May-13 20:22:54

Yes twitter. I'm twittering no more!

Hellosummer Sat 18-May-13 21:34:38

How was the investigatory hearing moxie?

Moxiegirl Sat 18-May-13 21:36:00

I have to wait to hear if it will go to a hearing. I hope not but wouldn't be surprised.

Can I advise everyone please to read the company policies on access to the internet/email use when they sign them.

Just to avoid things like this.

Hellosummer Sat 18-May-13 21:50:33

The meeting then- how was that?

Moxiegirl Sat 18-May-13 22:00:25

Sorry, it was ok, I gave my side of events, mitigating circumstances etc but I'm wondering if what I was shown is it, or whether there is anything else they can surprise me with at a hearing if you see what I mean.
I don't think I've ever signed a policy although we do have one.

MrsPoglesWood Sat 18-May-13 22:10:28

Company policies usually cover 2 elements of social networking or internet access.

The first is usually not to post comments about your company/organisation that might bring them into disrepute or where your views could be construed as being company views. As in if you work for HMRC or Tesco for example you wouldn't post your opinions about them being useless or delivering crap customer service.

The second is normally about accessing the internet during work time. In my experience this only ever stipulates not using work IT to do so. My employer lets us access the internet during break times. FB and YouTube are blocked but we can access anything else. We can also use our work emails for personal stuff. But there is nothing to say that we can't post to Twitter on our phones whilst we're sat on the loo.

I have NEVER EVER come across a policy which states that employees must not access the internet or social networks on their own smartphones or post when they are on a toilet, lunch or other sort of break.

I would be very, very surprised if your employer has documented this as forbidden in any employee code or guidance. And I think they would have a difficult job in proving gross misconduct. Gross misconduct is normally very serious stuff. Like theft, dishonesty, assault etc.

I would check your electronic media/disciplinary policies very carefully.

Moxiegirl Sat 18-May-13 22:46:05

The policy said no updating of blogs or social media in work time, doesn't specify work pc or phones. I always assumed Internet policy just covered work pcs!
Luckily I didn't ever talk about work.

MrsPoglesWood Sat 18-May-13 22:56:13

Ah well. Perhaps you could argue that the time stamp shown on the blogs didn't accurately marry up to to when you posted? Your employer would have a horrific time trying to prove it. But if you know you did it in work time against policy then it's your own look out sadly. Sounds shitty but I can't see you have any defence.

Moxiegirl Sat 18-May-13 23:05:31

Most of the 'evidence' didn't have dates attached! That's why I wondered if they can produce more evidence for a hearing. I think only 2 posts were in work time and I know I wasn't at my desk when I did them.

TheSecondComing Sat 18-May-13 23:13:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsPoglesWood Sat 18-May-13 23:16:16

Well then go for it and challenge it. If they can't prove anything then they can't prove you did anything wrong!

TheSecondComing Sun 19-May-13 01:04:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

If it says no social media then that means no social media.

It all depends what the policy says, how you were informed of it etc.

vanillavelvet Sun 19-May-13 08:08:44

Moxie, they should have provided all the evidence they have against you already and not surprise you with anything new if it goes to a disciplinary hearing.

vanillavelvet Sun 19-May-13 08:11:55

An assuming you've already attended an investigation, where they presented the evidence?

vanillavelvet Sun 19-May-13 08:12:58

Ok, just re-read OP. ignore my last post wink

flowery Sun 19-May-13 08:45:09

I know HR policies are boring, and understandably, most employees don't read them until they need to find out something.

But your organisation's social media policy is something I would strongly urge everyone to actively read. A huge percentage of the disciplinaries I help clients with are wholly or partially social media related, including dismissals.

Moxiegirl Sun 19-May-13 08:51:15

Flowery I know and I agree. I have worked there many years and although I read the policy ages ago, I had not seen the social media bit. I know it's my own fault but I think gross misconduct is harsh!

Moxiegirl Sun 19-May-13 08:53:46

I pointed out in my interview that 'excess Internet use' has traditionally been an informal verbal warning- as colleagues have been pulled up on it before! (Reports have been produced).
I think it's all because someone has actually complained about me, rather than they discover it themselves.

flowery Sun 19-May-13 09:17:09

I agree it sounds harsh, so hopefully it won't come to that.

I'm just giving a general plea really. And people thinking tweeting and Facebooking are the same as texting is part of the problem.

I agree with Flowery.

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