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Employee amnesty programs: Strategic move or act of desperation?

Jaclyn Jaeger | November 14, 2017

As part of an internal probe into safety lapses that recently caused a train tunnel to flood in Singapore, transport operator SMRT decided to employ a unique tactic: offer amnesty for employees who came forward and owned up to cutting corners in their work—ahead of an internal audit.

SMRT’s offering of an employee amnesty program is the latest example of an uncommon internal investigative tactic compliance departments sometimes use to get deep into the weeds of compliance lapses and help prevent future misconduct. As one chief compliance officer put it: “Amnesty programs are known to be a highly effective means of getting to the bottom of ethics and compliance issues in large organizations.”

Furthermore, the Department of Justice has said it views “innovative and effective” employee amnesty programs as part of “exceptional cooperation.” The gist of an employee amnesty program is that the... To get the full story, subscribe now.