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IL - Suspension Question

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  • IL - Suspension Question

    We have a full-time administrative employee who does not talk with many of her coworkers. She is not just shy -- it is to the point where someone will say hello to her and she will just totally ignore him or her.

    Her supervisor asked her to let him know when she was finished inputting certain info into our database because we needed this info for publication ASAP. She never responded to him, even though we are deadline.

    Would a week's suspension without pay be out of line? This behavior has gone on for a very long time, and this is just the latest in a string of strange occurences.

  • #2
    SOLELY on the basis of what you have posted, I'd say yes, a week's suspension is overkill.

    You really can't discipline her for not saying hello to the co-workers. The only thing you have mentioned for which discipline would be appropriate would be failing to follow instructions and notify the manager when she was completed with the data entry, and for that I think a written warning would be sufficient.

    I'm not a big fan of suspensions in general. They often don't accomplish much and in many cases are playing right into the employee's hands.

    If there is more to this story that you think might change my answer, by all means post it. I understand that you have not included all the details and it's not impossible that I might change my mind if there is more.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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    • #3
      Other examples:

      She does not follow procedure of sending out confirmations to companies once they have paid us. She has been told about this several time, but we still find evidence of her not doing this.

      Also, she disappears several times a week. She goes out the back door where people don't see her leave, and then reappears 30-45 minutes later.

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      • #4
        Well, as I said, I'm not a big fan of suspensions in general. You won't be violating the law if you do so, but I still think you'd be better off with a come-to-Jesus meeting in which she is told in no uncertain terms that she will follow procedure, she will report the information she is told to report and she will be on site and available at all times; and that the next time she fails to comply with any of the above she will be out the door.

        In my opinion, suspension is just a way of not dealing with the problem. Many employees are just looking for a vacation from work, even unpaid, and by suspending them that's exactly what you're handing them. Then they come back and the problem's still there.
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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