What to Include When Drafting a Recommended Code of Conduct for an eCommerce Store
While all businesses should have a Recommended Code of Conduct for their employees, the issues that each individual industry must include will vary slightly. When it comes to eCommerce stores, however, a few other issues need to be considered and included so that the book is complete.
In addition to the standard statements against physical violence and physical theft, an eCommerce store needs to make sure that it makes other policies quite clear. Otherwise, it could be difficult to demonstrate that when employees act in this fashion that it is something the business has tried to avoid.
No Cyber Bullying
One of the growing problems in the Internet world is cyber bullying. Unfortunately, it is not only restricted to adolescents and college students. According to reports from Business Insider, adult cyber bullying is on the rise. While employees who work for businesses that monitor communications are not as likely to engage in this behavior, not all businesses can afford to have this level of monitoring. There’s also no guarantee that your employees won’t just snap. Since it can be done within the course of regular business conduct, you need to make sure that it is clear that it is prohibited in all its forms.
No Personal Use of Email, Instant Messaging, and the Like
If you provide your employees with email services, instant messaging services, and other similar online tools for communication, you need to make sure what your rules are for using these outside of business. You will also want to specify the appropriate usage of forums, even if they are just on the shopify forums. This is one of the more challenging rules to enforce. While you may not be able to keep all of your employees in line, you should at least try. The more important reason is that in some states conduct carried out through business email and communication services is imputed to the business owners’ knowledge.
Both the state and federal governments are starting to crack down harder on certain kinds of porn, primarily child porn. Under some of the new legislation, businesses that have not made it clear that employees may not download or view porn on their computers may be at risk for liability if their employees download and view child porn on company computers. Business Insider recommends having a general standard against all porn so that enforcement is easier. It is also best to avoid because of the potential for viruses and malware that can be downloaded.
No Gaming Online
Employees who log into online games could be doing far more than just wasting company time. If they log on using business information such as the business Paypal account, your business could wind up liable for the charges and unable to get the money refunded from the gaming service or other online service. While the business can always go against the employee, the fact is that the employee likely will not be able to reimburse the business, and the costs for the lawsuit may actually exceed the cost.