A member of my team (A) assists me with the administration of our company car scheme.

Last Friday we received an urgent request from a Director (B) to arrange a company car for an employee (C) for Monday morning.

I had a discussion with ‘A’ about the car ordering process and established what we needed to know from ‘B’ & ‘C’ before we could proceed i.e. location for delivery, length of hire period.

‘A’ spoke to ‘C’ and determined the delivery address. We have a company vehicle in the car park which is currently unallocated. ‘C’ asked ‘A’ if he could use that.

I spoke to ‘B’ about the length of the hire period and reasons. There wasn’t a permanent need for a vehicle but as ‘C’ would be taking the vehicle home and personal use would be allowed there would be a tax implication for ‘C’.

I explained to ‘A’ that ‘C’ could not use the unallocated company vehicle as we did not have copies of his driving licence on file (insurance restrictions). A further consideration was the monthly rental costs of the vehicle as it was higher than the cap for his grading. The tax implications for ‘C’ would also be high.

I explained to ‘A’ that a Short Term Hire vehicle should be ordered for one week preferably to be delivered that day. Thus allowing us time to talk to ‘B’ about the budget costs and ‘C’ about the tax implications and driving licence. ‘B’ and ‘C’ were not available Friday afternoon for these discussions. I discussed the process of ordering a short term hire vehicle with ‘A’ and he made notes as we spoke.

I stressed the urgency of ordering the hire vehicle urgently to give the company time to source and deliver the vehicle. I also reiterated the reasons why ‘C’ couldn’t take the unallocated company vehicle.

I left shortly after to go to a meeting and told ‘A’ to call me if there were any problems.

When I came into the office on Monday there was an email from ‘A’ copied to ‘B’ (sent at 15.38pm) informing us that he had spoken to ‘C’ and he had agreed to take the unallocated vehicle.

When ‘A’ arrived I asked him why he had done that and he said it seemed the most sensible solution. I asked him why he hadn’t booked a short term hire vehicle and he said he thought giving ‘C’ the unallocated vehicle was easier. I asked him whether he had taken a copy of ‘C’s’ driving licence and he said no. I asked whether he could think of any consequences that may result from his actions and he said no.

I raised this as a potential disciplinary issue with our HR Team. They suspended ‘A’ whilst they investigated and have now told me that as they can find no evidence of any training taking place or that ‘A’ had hired a short term hire vehicle previously there was no evidence to take this forward to a disciplinary.

I am really annoyed about this. I wasn’t expecting it to be gross misconduct but feel something should be recorded.

‘A’ has less than 12 months service (9 to be precise) and my manager felt we should just cut our losses – there have been other issues prior to my appointment with this individual that have gone unrecorded.

Any advice would be gratefully appreciated.
Ellen Brown

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