We are planning to start New recruit induction with a pledge similar to presidents etc pledge which they take.
Would be thankful to the members if they share valuable inputs on how do I take it forward.
Ekta Tekawade

From India, Mumbai
Dear Ekta,

You wanted to conduct swearing ceremony for the newly joined employees. But then would you mind to tell whose brainchild is this and why need was felt to do it?

The oath that elected representatives take is to protect the constitution of India (or constitution of that respective country, if it is a democratic country). If it is proved that the oath is violated then privilege motion is moved against the elected representative. Oaths are also taken by judges, senior level bureaucrats, armed forces personnel. However, the oath taking ceremony has legal sanction. In your case where is the question of legal sanction?

Through swearing in, it appears that you wanted to promote ethical conduct. However, there are other means to promote the ethical conduct. One is to live with the values of the organisation. Have you promulgated the values of the organisation? If yes, then have employees understood these values? Do employees perceive that organisation's values are respected in their organisation?

Second means of promoting ethical conduct to promote environment of justice. No person should feel that he/she has been let down. Have you done that?

You may give oath to the newly joined employees. However, what about violation of oath? What are the penalties attached? What about the transgression by those who joined earlier and did not taken any oath? What if a person takes oath and then you take him/her on task for his/her actus reus but find that he/she starts pointing out finger at others too?

Can juniors point out seniors for violation of oath? Will seniors get irritated because of this strange empowerment of the juniors? Have you thought of this risk?

It is important to create culture of openness and transparency in the company. In the town hall meeting of Google, any juniors is empowered is ask any question, if he/she feels that the company is not living with the values or their vision or mission statement. The brief that CEO gives to the Board of Directors is circulated across the organisation. They do not hide anything from their employees. This exactly is the starting point of motivation for Googlers. Therefore, your challenge is to create culture of motivation and a route of oath taking may not be that conducive for the culture formation. They could get weighed down by the invisible burden of the oath!


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Dear Ekta ,
Dineshji has given a comprehensive answer .I think the very idea of this oath taking has come from your apprehension that in this fast changing world of high attrition , the employees leaving your organisation may divulge your trade secrets.I think you can tackle this by including a clause in the appointment letter about employees maintaining desired secrecy. Although it is not a foolproof method but there is little else you can do !

From India, New Delhi
Madam Ekta,

I appreciate this novel initiative from HR of oath taking by new joiners as a part of induction process.But in my view it has to gel with the mission and values of the organisation. First of all you should be clear about the very purpose of this oath taking intervention.It is better if the purpose is to create moral bonding and align employee's thinking with company's values. But to equate it with the President's oath taking is far-fetched and out of place. Basically, the oath should be couched in simple language emphasizing carrying duties and responsibilities with utmost sense of devotion and dedication and giving one's best to the organisation by diligently following the rules, regulations and policies of the organisation.

With the such limited purpose in mind, I presume this might be an impressive start of employee's career with the company together with other part of the well-designed induction process.

Wish good luck Ekta for this new HR initiative.



From India, Mumbai
Dear Mr Vinayak Nagarkar,
Taking oath is easy but living with the oath is quite difficult. It is not easy. Oath-taking should not turn into symbolism.
Let us look at wearing Gandhi cap. Those who wore Gandhi caps, did they adhere to the Gandhian values? Not necessarily! Gandhi cap and white shirt remained just a symbol and beyond that nothing else. Unfortunately, it was felt that Gandhism also died with him.
Adherence of organisational values is important to the business enterprise as much adherence of political ideology to a political party. Ultimate goal of business leader is to create an organisation culture based on the values. The culture manifests in the decision that he takes, the rules that he makes and above all his behaviour. Lest the oath taking could turn into a farce!
Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Ekta Madam,

Your idea is good but there are practical problems. Could you think of introducing during the induction process a welcome speech for the new joinees from the director or somebody from HR who would talk about the company's value system and also cover the Company's expectations from the employees. It can be a PPT Presentation or a speech.

If you have any induction manual for the new employees or you intend to prepare one then the above part can be covered through the induction manual for new employees.

The idea is that the employees must understand that they are vital link in company hierarchy and their contribution is highly desired in a particular way and that part you are covering through expectations of the company from new employees.

The other idea can be to facilitate discussion amongst the new recruits on this subject as a part of Induction Process.

Whatever you decide to introduce, please see that the superiors agree with the new concept, so as to have acceptance of these changes with higher Management.

With Best Wishes and Regards

From India, Mumbai
Dear Dineshji,
I beg to differ with your rather negative views on the introduction of oath taking as a part of an induction process.
I subscribe to this new idea coming from the new-age HR professional like Ekta.If the purpose of this idea is honest and transparent, then I have reason to believe that it will succeed. At the same time I do not expect it to make a great impact as to create magic.But certainly it needs to be tried out as an integral part of the induction process.
Go ahead Ekta and wish you great success!
V. L. Nagarkar

From India, Mumbai
I presume your question is limited to the introduction of pledge similar to that is administered in Parliament and President. You definitely understand the contents of pledge. Introduction of pledge is a good idea and I hope that this will be regarding protecting, preserving and serving the interest of the Company.
There is nothing wrong in it but if you stop midway and/or do not follow and/ or it is not followed by the seniors or at it creates a doubt that seniors are neither following nor they are serious about it, it will cause severe withdrawal symptoms detrimental to the interest of the company.
Juniors observe actions and words both of the seniors.

From India, Thane

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