Corporate India’s employees unaware of policies pertaining to anti-bribery and corruption
Deloitte Forensic (India) survey
This survey was conducted to understand the public perception of anti-bribery and corruption compliance efforts and to explore whether an approach led by employee activism on the issue of bribery and corruption compliance can provide some ‘food for thought’ to organizations.
Public perception of Anti-Bribery and Corruption Compliance efforts
Delhi, 08 December 2014: While corporate India is focusing on putting in place policies and frameworks to encourage a zero tolerance culture to bribery and corruption, it appears that employees are not cognizant of these efforts, according to the findings of Deloitte’s Forensics’ latest survey report titled Public perceptions of anti-bribery and corruption compliance efforts. Launched to commemorate the International Anti-Corruption Day, the report focuses on what employees, in their individual capacity, feel about their organization’s anti-bribery and corruption compliance efforts as well as seeks their views on how they can support their organization’s efforts towards managing this risk.
“In our experience, while corporate India is actively re-looking at strengthening its code of conduct and anti-bribery and corruption policies, it appears that the emphasis is on structuring the policy and preparing it for compliance with regulations and implementing it on business partners. In that process, organizations seem to have missed consistent implementation and communication of these policies with employees. In the long term, this can significantly impact companies from achieving their objectives of a zero tolerance culture,” said Sumit Makhija, Senior Director, Deloitte Forensic (India).
This has also been substantiated by the responses received in the survey with around 55 percent accepting that they were unsure if their organization had a specific policy on anti-bribery and corruption or on what the policy said. Further, 61 percent said that their companies did not discuss issues related to corporate bribery and corruption and 65 percent of the respondents said that they did not receive emails from senior management on the topic. These responses indicate that corporate India is perhaps facing implementation challenges while it aims to institutionalize anti-bribery and corruption.
The survey also highlighted that an organization’s perceived corrupt demeanor had an effect on its employees, with 88 percent of survey respondents saying they would not feel comfortable working for a company perceived to be indulging in corrupt practices. “While the attitude towards accepting corruption as ‘a standard practice’ appears to be changing, it is the responsibility of the senior management to lead, by following ethical practices. Making employees aware about incidents that have taken place in the organization and how they have been dealt with, having a clear gifts policy, encouraging training/ periodic eLearning modules that discuss ethical business practices, are just some of the steps that organizations can take to get closer to a zero tolerance culture,” Mr. Makhija elaborated further.
With around 81 percent of survey respondents indicating that practicing ethical behavior (in daily business activities) should be considered as an added parameter in an employee’s performance evaluation to help drive the message of anti-bribery and corruption; it is a clear sign of a changing environment.
While the report delves into certain challenges that employees tend to face, it also details out certain steps that can help organizations in implementing an employee-friendly anti-bribery and corruption policy. The survey was promoted exclusively on social media such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook to ensure wider reach to the working population, particularly those not involved in finance, risk management or compliance related roles. Close to 180 working professionals across Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities completed the survey.
Notes to the editor for reference purposes only:
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