Ethical practices lead to efficient performance: USJ study

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By 2017-12-08

By M Rishar M Saleem

The importance of maintaining a high level of ethical practices that impact organizational efficiency was highlighted by the findings of a research study conducted by University of Sri Jayawardanapura (USJ).

The five objectives of the USJ study were: to find existing unethical HRM practices prevalent in the middle-management of organizations established in developing countries with special reference to Sri Lanka; to find the relationship between unethical HRM practices and job satisfaction of middle-management employees; to determine what values influence unethical HRM practices in middle-management; to uncover the consequences that the organization and middle-management employees face due to prevailing unethical HRM practices; and to develop effective recommendations and measures to overcome existing unethical HRM practices.
Professor Kennedy D. Gunawardana, under whose stewardship the research was carried out, commented exclusively to Ceylon FT that unethical practices related to human resource management are a growing hindrance to organizational efficiency.

Professor Kennedy D. Gunawardana is a Professor of Accounting Information Systems, formerly Chairman of Board of Management Studies' faculty of graduate studies, University of Sri Jayawardenepura, (USJ) and a winner of the Presidential Award for Scientific Research in 2017.

He highlighted that Transparency International, a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) that aims to control corruption and advocate ethical practices among the public, had released an index which reflects the perceived levels of corruptions among the business community, analysts and academics.

Gunawardana said that the index, which covered over 130 countries and rated ethical perceptions on a scale of one to ten, indicated that developing countries are the most common violators of these norms.

The list of countries perceived of having the most corruption, with a score of less than two, were Bangladesh, Nigeria, Haiti, Paraguay, Myanmar, Tajikistan, Georgia, Cameroon, Azerbaijan, Angola, Kenya and Indonesia, and these countries urgently need international assistance, he noted.

He noted that though the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report identified corruption as a major constraint to business operations, it was apparent that the corruption level in Sri Lanka was increasing. Though the corruption rate in Sri Lanka is at a moderate level in comparison to other countries in South and South East Asia, corruption levels happens to be extremely high in the public sectors. The reason for this would be insufficient legislation.

He urged that "respective Governments must implement result-oriented programmes to fight corruption. Thus this study finds it imperative to identify unethical HR practices prevailing in the middle-management level of developing countries."

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