Progressive steps towards intervention in inappropriate conduct and the balancing of workloads

Based on the results of an employee survey, the Aalto University Board confirmed in December 2017 that preventing inappropriate conduct and balancing workloads are the university's common development areas.

This spring there has been progress towards the prevention of the harassment and inappropriate conduct in many ways.

Inappropriate conduct at Aalto will lead to intervention

Anne Petroff and Mikael Henny began as harassment contact persons for Aalto University’s staff in May.

At Aalto, information on harassment and inappropriate conduct is collected more systematically than ever. The The schools report all notified incidents of harassment and inappropriate conduct anonymously so that information about individual students or employees cannot be seen.

Sixteen notifications of incidents of harassment and inappropriate conduct had been made by the end of the May this year, while last year the number was 18. In both years, the majority of the notifications have concerned inappropriate conduct. Notifications have been made by both students and staff.

Cases have been dealt with through discussions with the persons concerned and by means of negotiation through arbitration procedure and hearings. A portion of the cases have led to written notifications and warnings or task reassignments. Dealing with incidents has also highlighted misunderstandings and deficiencies in the guidelines or procedures, and of these Aalto's induction guidelines, among others, have already been corrected.

‘The numerical increase is explained in part by public discussion of the issue and an increase in awareness and in the ability to identify situations where there is inappropriate conduct. At the same time, we have reviewed the relevant procedures and operational guidelines in Aalto, and this has also lowered the threshold for intervention,’ says Aalto University President Ilkka Niemelä.

‘It is important that each of us builds a work community based on mutual respect and trust. For this reason, our day-to-day operations and our university's productivity are both better than ever.'

Work wellbeing-related Exponential research project to commence in the autumn

The wellbeing of both the individual and the whole work community has a significant effect on the prevention of inappropriate conduct and workload balancing. Aalto University has decided to participate in a joint Exponential research project with Hintsa Performance, which will explore the wellbeing of organisations and their members as working life changes. There are over 50 Finnish companies and organisations involved.

Next autumn, the research will be implemented as questionnaires. Hinstsa Performance will work on the survey results for each individual participant. Only the individual will be able to provide information on himself/herself, which will be in the form of a wellbeing report. Additionally, Hintsa Performance will report the anonymised results to Aalto as summary reports at the school and university level, which will describe in more general terms the well-being of Aalto's employees and its effect on the organisation's atmosphere and success.

Aalto Code of Conduct: have you already done the online course?

An online course for all employees has been developed to support them in internalising the Aalto University Code of Conduct. The course is easy and can be done quickly on MyCourses

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