Employee fired for using phone for non-business purposes

Watch who you call at work. It could get you fired.

An employee, a receptionist, who had an impeccable record as an employee for 10 years at the company, was fired at a Quebec company because the employee used the company phone line to make personal [non-business] phone calls – some of them long distance – without reimbursing the company.

The receptionist [actually a male receptionist] was part of a union and the union appealed and lost. The union argued that the employee’s actions weren’t a serious issue and that the employee refused to cooperate during the investigation process and was dismissed after.

The receptionist is not directly supervised and was given a lot of autonomy and a high level of trust. The company says that employee breached his duty of loyalty, for using the company’s phone system for personal use during company time and for having lied during the investigation of the issue.

What I found odd is that it doesn’t even look like they gave the receptionist any warning at all. Something like, “We noticed that you are using company phone time for non-company purposes. Stop. [And pay for the long distance charges.]”

If this was an ongoing thing wouldn’t the company give notice? Or how about the fact that it was going on for a while. Maybe the receptionist figured it was OK to do as he wasn’t notified to the contrary.

Was the phone use for non-business purposes part of any previous company policy such as an employee handbook?

Maybe they dumped him to get someone who would work for a cheaper salary. You never know. Maybe it was an added bonus to dump him.


About ebraiter
computer guy

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