NBES-CI Key Findings
When compared to the U.S. national averages, employees in the U.S. construction industry indicated that far more feel pressure to compromise standards (18%), they witness more misconduct (53%), and are significantly more likely to experience retaliation after reporting said misconduct (37%). These numbers are likely due to the inherent pressure of the work that construction companies undertake.
Among the more positive findings from the study were the reporting rates. An impressive 74 percent of construction employees said they reported workplace misconduct, a number that is higher than any other group of employees in all 19 years of ERC’s National Business Ethics Survey® research. To compare, the 2011 national average was only 65 percent.
NBES-sn Key Findings
- Among the more notable findings is the amount of time employees are spending on social networks. Almost three out of four social networkers (72 percent) spend at least some time of their workday on social networking sites, and 28 percent say such activity adds up to an hour or more of every workday. One third of those workers also admit that none of that activity is work related.
- the more active the social networker, the more likely they are to encounter ethics risks (witness misconduct, feel pressure to compromise standards, and experience retaliation for reporting misconduct).
- despite what many think, social networks are not only for younger employees. Forty-seven percent of active social networkers are under the age of 30, but not far behind, 40 percent are between the ages of 30 and 44.
2011 NBES Key Findings
- Misconduct witnessed by U.S. workers is now at historic lows, while reporting of misconduct is now at near highs.
- Retaliation against employee whistleblowers rose sharply.
- The percentage of employees who perceived pressure to compromise standards in order to do their jobs climbed five points from 2009 to 13 percent.
- The share of companies with weak ethics cultures also climbed to near record levels.
- Two influences stood out in the unusual shift in trends: the economy and the unique experiences of those actively using social networking at work.
- NBES continues to show that companies behave differently during economic difficulties. The decisions and behaviors of their leaders are perceived by employees as a heightened commitment to ethics. As a result, employees adopt a higher standard of conduct for themselves.
- As the economy gets better – and companies and employees become more optimistic about their financial futures – it seems likely that misconduct will rise and reporting will drop, mirroring the growth in pressure and retaliation that have already taken place and conforming to historic patterns.
- Active social networkers report far more negative experiences in their workplaces. As a group, they are much more likely to experience pressure to compromise ethics standards and to experience retaliation for reporting misconduct than co-workers who are less involved with social networking.
- Active social networkers show a higher tolerance for certain activities that could be considered questionable.
- There may be an opportunity for corporations to work with active social networkers in ways that they have not yet fully explored. Active social network- ers are somewhat more likely to use social networks to say positive things about their company and co-workers, than to post negative feelings.
- NEW: NBES of the Construction Industry: Gauging Industry Practices & Identifying Ethics Challenges
- NBES of Social Networkers: New Risks and Opportunities at Work.
- Generational Differences in Workplace Ethics
- Retaliation: When Whistleblowers Become Victims
- Inside the Mind of a Whistleblower
- 2011 National Business Ethics Survey®: Workplace Ethics in Transition