Framed into a laptop theft - what can be done? - CiteHR
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Raj Kumar Hansdah
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hello seniors, I have a question from the leading HR. My frnd is working in the logistic organisation as logistic associate. He is facing a big problem. On Sat. he closed his office, and give keys to reliable person to further give these keys to guard who was late to his duty. On monday morning one of the laptop was missing from the lot which was received by the organisation on saturday. His seniors blaming him for missing laptop.
What he have to do now. he is not guilty. He was doing 8 A.M to 8 P.M at that week because his senior was on leave at that time. His organisation should have to recruit a guard for day also but they didn't because of cost cutting. pl. help at should he do?
Thanks& regards

Dear Medini,

Bad news, there are few options for your friend. He is rightly being blamed by his management for the missing laptop. Have they asked him to pay the amount ? Did they lodge a police complaint ?

However, the good news is who is the 'reliable person' ? Its not about passing the buck, but working along to bring the laptop back.

I am certain all these people in line have been questioned and is still being interrogated. No matter how high the pressure runs, stay focussed in finding the laptop.

The machine have been taken away only by the one who had an access. Take the fear of punishment away , and partner with the 'reliable person' and the security guard to bring it back.

Your friend might leave this job one day and move away with another. This incident mustn't create any dent in his career.

Pleading innocence might not help him out, unless it is proven. Assuming that there was no CCTV or even an account of how many people entered office at what time from the register , his options are few but to zero down upon these two people.

Thank u very much for guidance.
There is no cctv. He was accused by his about the negligence bcz No body knows that it is a theft or Not. May be lot comes with one less laptop. There are too much loopholes in there organisation,
They said him to pay for the laptop. They Can't complain bcz they have too much loopholes in their security.
Thanks & regards

Dear Medini,

Tracing the missing laptop is one issue but the key issue is to take preventive action as this could be a recurring feature in that organisation. I agree that providing a CCTV will be a solution but the easier option in this instance is fixing the responsibility on the person.

There seems to be no formal procedure for key control. Key control can be done by the person who hands over the keys of a location and signs in a register indicating the date and time of closing. The same information is replicated on a small tear off slip. Thereafter the key is sealed inside a pouch and the pouch is then sealed with sealing wax alongwith the tear off slip. Anyone who wants to open the location once again has to tear open the pouch to access the keys. Upon opening the person who opens the pouch has to sign in the key register for having opened the location. Hence, the system of opening and closing becomes fool proof.

In this case when your friend left he should be checked by the colleague himself as you have mentioned that there is no security guard in place and confirmed that he did not carry any company property. But if a security guard is in place he will do the job.

Though I have not offered a solution to your immediate problem, I felt that you can prevent recurrences in future. In the present case filing a police complaint will be the solution.


Dear Medini

What appears from your post is :

"On monday morning one of the laptop was missing from the lot which was received by the organisation on saturday."

i.e. from the newly-received laptops one is missing.

In your second post, you have raised doubts on whether one laptop was short-delivered by the courier.

The questions that are pertinent, are :

- At what time on saturday, these laptops were delivered ?

- Was your friend on duty/present at the time ?

- Who officially "received" the laptop ? Did that person sign the Receipt Note ? Did he ascertain the quantity (and quality) of the consignment received ? Was he an authorized person to receive it ? If not, why did not he refuse to accept and defer the receipt to Monday when the office will be open and authorized persons would be present ?

- Was your friend authorized to receive materials ?

If Yes. then his responsibility for safe-keeping of received material can not be denied.

If No, he should not have received the materials at all after the closing hours.

In any case, he should have informed or consulted the right person on phone and asked for advice.

- Who was the "reliable person" ?? was it customary to hand over the keys to him ?

Your answers to the above will guide further course of action.

In any case; Responsibility for the lapse has to be fixed.

If it was not part of his duty to receive office materials then he can not be blamed for the theft, but for his carelessness and not informing the right person.

If he was not present during the incident, then he can not be penalized.

About your doubts on the courier agency; I agree with it. I personally know of two instance in our office where we have received one less laptops of one of the best companies delivered by one of the most reliable couriers. These laptops were being delivered in lots of 18-20s. However, the person receiving it and the delivery person endorsed it accordingly in the receipt note and proper follow-up was done; this prevented any further problem, as it was acknowledged by both the manufacturer and courier agency that the available numbers of laptop were being despatched, however due to oversight in some documents the total quantity ordered was being reflected.

Hope the issue is resolved satisfactorily and everything ends well.

Warm regards.

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