Business Social Function

Are you aware that Employers can be vicariously liable for an employee’s behaviour whilst attending a business social function?

Even if:

  • the business social function is in the employee’s own time and voluntary to attend,
  • the behaviour is directed to a manager or contractor, let alone a co-worker or subordinate

This is a timely reminder for Employers to re-familiarise their Employees with the code of conduct expected at a business social function.

An easy way to do this is hold a 5 minute discussion at the next team meeting or add a little reminder to the next staff Newsletter.

The aim of such reminder is to make sure everyone enjoys themselves, socialises with co-workers, but do not to forget about the requirements for Safety and Appropriate Behaviour.

Employees need to be reminded that un-safe behaviour, discrimination, harassment and bullying at a business organised social event will not be tolerated. And that any breach of these usual standards of the workplace, though in their own time, will jeopardise employment.

Also, employers are encouraged to give a timely reminder to have a designated driver, taxi or courtesy bus organised. Employees are discouraged from drinking and driving under any circumstances.

Employers are encouraged to review your policies and procedures to ensure:

  1. Your organisation has a clear policy and procedure covering standards of behaviour in relation to bullying, harassment, discrimination and consumption of drugs or alcohol.
  2. These policies and procedures have been communicated with ALL employees – and you have evidence of such.
  3. These policies and procedures have clear strategies in place to deal with breaches.

If you would like some assistance in reviewing or developing comprehensive policies and procedures on Preventing Inappropriate Behaviour (Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination) and Drugs and Alcohol Management, please contact Solutions4HR HERE or;

Hellen Ryan, Principal Consultant, Solutions for Human Resources email: or phone: 0429 410 991