SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Three-quarters of office workers in US businesses (75%) have either witnessed or personally experienced some form of misconduct at some point in their careers, according to a landmark study commissioned by Vault Platform, the pioneers in workplace ethics and compliance technology.
More than half (51%) of office workers in the US have personally been a victim of misconduct, including bullying, sexual harassment, discrimination, fraud or bribery.
Vault's first ever "Trust Gap" report polled 2,000 office staff across the US and UK to understand experiences of misconduct in the workplace, before putting the results to 500 HR and compliance decision makers to highlight the gap between employees and their employers. The research was independently collected by Norstat, Europe's largest data collection agency.
The inaugural report highlights an alarming systemic issue, with 84% of workers witnessing or personally experiencing more than one form of misconduct in their careers. Worryingly, a deep-rooted nature of systemic misconduct was found, with almost half (48%) of respondents in the US stating they witness or experience misconduct at least once a month.
Neta Meidav, founder and CEO of Vault Platform, commented: "It is hugely concerning to see just how many people witness or fall victim to misconduct in the workplace. Our study shows that these aren't one off, isolated incidents, but rather signs of an alarming, systemic issue in businesses across the UK and US."
Exactly half (50%) of employees in the US have witnessed or been a victim of bullying, with the same percentage for harassment, followed by discrimination (46%) and health & safety failures (41%).
More than a third (37%) of US office workers said they believe their organization would brush aside at least one form of workplace misconduct. The Trust Gap study showed that HR and compliance decision makers agreed, with just under a third (30%) believing their organization would ignore an instance of misconduct if it was set to damage profits or reputation.
Meidav added: "Our findings suggest a worrying trend that employers would readily admit to brushing misconduct under the carpet to protect reputation and profits. There is an obvious gap between the expectations employees rightly have of their employers to protect them in the workplace and the reality of how well set up employers are to meet their obligations to stamp out instances of misconduct and ethical breaches.
"Misconduct is no longer an issue that can be ignored, as the global rise in social activism is empowering a Speak Up culture in the workplace, meaning employers need to become much more proactive in their approach to managing and preventing misconduct and build back trust with their staff."
Younger workers aged 18-34 are significantly more likely (64%) to experience misconduct at work than older colleagues (44%). Incidents for the younger age bracket saw higher levels of harassment and bullying, while company directors saw markedly higher levels of fraud, bribery, corruption and ethical malpractice.
Every employer with more than 50 employees in the European Union will soon need to comply with the EU Whistleblower Protection Directive, due to come in to force in December 2021. "On both sides of the Atlantic, regulators are introducing bold initiatives to tackle workplace misconduct and employers can't afford to be left behind," concludes Meidav.
To learn more about Vault Platform, visit www.vaultplatform.com.
Vault Platform is pioneering "TrustTech," a new category of workplace technology. Designed to enable risk detection, build a culture where it is safe to speak up through digital internal channels, and drive operational efficiencies in investigations and resolution, Vault's products create a confidential space for employees and third parties to submit records of misconduct they experience or witness coupled with unique capability to "connect the dots" on repeated patterns. Vault was founded in 2018 and is based in London, UK with offices in San Francisco, New York and Tel Aviv, Israel.
SOURCE Vault Platform