Sometimes, employees want to go “on the record” about a grievance without formally pushing it through the formal complaint process. Part of the quandary here is that the issue of when and why HR should keep things confidential is not always well understood. In the case of issues mentioned during exit interviews, such as the example of one employee badmouthing another, there doesn’t always need to be a formal investigation per se, but it would be a good idea for HR to proactively check in with the team to see how team members are feeling and get a sense for whether there are any issues.
Reflect on these key points:
- 1HR professionals have a mandate to keep some items, such as health matters, confidential, secure and separate from other data.
- 2However, allegations, such as claims of sexual harassment, require questioning, which means they cannot be handled as completely confidential.
- 3Complaints made in exit interviews do not legally require follow-up, although doing so is usually in the best interest of companies.
“The law hasn’t been 100 percent clear on what HR has to keep things confidential. HR can’t ask employees to keep investigations confidential under the previous National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rules (albeit we have a much more employer-friendly NLRB now) but the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) wants us to keep some things confidential so retaliation doesn’t happen.”
Read the full story: https://www.hrbartender.com/2018/leadership-and-management/employees-want-record-hr/