MONEY MORAL DILEMMA: Should Theo tell the boss about Wayne and Jermaine?

Here's this week's hypothetical situation for you to cogitate on:
Should Theo tell the boss about Wayne and Jermaine?

Theo works at a call centre where all staff get overtime at time-and-a-third. Yet one night at the pub, his colleagues Wayne and Jermaine reveal a computer glitch means they get paid overtime at double time. They've raked in £100s in extra cash over several months. Theo is vexed that they are getting extra, but if he tells they could be sacked. Should Theo tell his boss about Wayne and Jermaine? Based on a true story.
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  • ThinkingOfLinking
    The boss would be grateful for his honesty, and may promote him or offer him overtime.

    The colleagues would see it as sour grapes, possibly ostracise him and make his life hard, but also could get themselves sacked, and would also argue that they deserve the extra money as they make so much for the company.

    Personally, I'd say nothing although I'd try and get some overtime too.
  • scotsbob
    scotsbob Posts: 4,632 Forumite
    If they were two MPs, this would be headlines for a week and we would all be screaming for them to be sacked AND pay back the money.

    Yes, Theo should inform the company and they should have to pay back the money.
  • Gavin83
    Gavin83 Posts: 8,756 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    Could they actually get in trouble for this? Surely it's the company responsibility to ensure they are paying their staff correctly and they could just plead ignorance. I couldn't tell you if I was being overpaid at work. I'd imagine they'd have to pay it back though.

    If I was in Theo's position, I wouldn't say anything, only because I know they'd get found out at some point and also because I wouldn't want to be the office grass, no one likes that person and frankly if everyone dislikes you at work it's going to make your working day very miserable indeed.

    They really shouldn't be going round discussing their pay though, never a good idea.
  • Phyre_Faerie
    Just because they've found a loophole doesn't make it right. Most companys now have a confidential line employees can call if something is not right somewhere. He should do something anonymously so it can be investigated properly and his collegues faced with hard evidence of their misdeeds. They are knowingly taking advantage and know exactly what they should be getting paid so this is clear cut fraud. If this was a shopworker with their fingers in the till there wouldn't be any discussion. If people were honest at work maybe we'd all get paid a bit more.... :)
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  • collingbone614
    scotsbob wrote: »
    If they were two MPs, this would be headlines for a week and we would all be screaming for them to be sacked AND pay back the money.

    Yes, Theo should inform the company and they should have to pay back the money.

    And the MPs would appeal, rock all would happen, and once the headlines had died down everyone would have forgotten about it again.

    I say take all the money, Wayne and Jermaine, and spend it on a Deed Poll.
  • enbrennan
    enbrennan Posts: 33 Forumite
    Only if they refuse to pay the blackmail!
  • PoorPennilessMe
    PoorPennilessMe Posts: 81 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited 9 March 2010 at 11:55PM
    I would tell the boss. Lost profits mean smaller (if any!) pay rises for everyone else, so in effect they are stealing from their colleagues.

    I think I would be as discreet as possible about it though to avoid any backlash...

    In reality, the company would be very hard pushed to justify any disciplinary action, or to claim the money back - the legal aspect is that it's the firm's fault (unless Wayne and Jermaine have done something to cause the glitch), but at least they could prevent it happening again.
  • olly300
    olly300 Posts: 14,736 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Why would they be sacked? There are lots of good reasons the staff could come up with on why they didn't notice the over payment so the most they could get would be a warning and even then they could argue it's unfair.

    Also if the management are too incompetent to notice that some of there staff are being over paid then it's their own fault.

    BTW I worked at a call centre years ago and my job was spotting things like this.
    I'm not cynical I'm realistic :p

    (If a link I give opens pop ups I won't know I don't use windows)
    In an ideal world yes he should tell his boss because it is not right that they are getting paid more than they should without the company knowing about it plus its not right they are getting paid more then other people doing the same job. However if he tells they will know he told and if they do not get sacked they will more than likely make his life a misery. However the more I think about this, they are probably not that nice anyway as they should have told their boss themselves plus they have now included some one else into their deception. May be an anonymous email might be the answer and the ability to deny all knowledge when his colleagues confront him.
  • Stryder
    Stryder Posts: 1,134 Forumite
    option 1)
    Blackmail, although just as morally wrong as theft, could get him a 25% cut of each friend for doing no work. Also, easily deniable. Schimples.

    option 2)
    Why not let it be known to his friends that the company are aware of the scam and are monitoring it. a faked "called into the office and was asked if i know anything about this" kinda of thing should be easy enough. Company do not find out, work mates scared off the scam

    option 3)
    Join them

    option 4)
    register the information of MSE so more people can do it

    option 5)
    Use a go between to sell the information of the flaw to the company as part of a software engineering review

    option 6)
    combine grassing up your colleagues with asking for extra training/holiday/pay/promotion.

    option 7)
    Tell a secretary - who is guaranteed to tell everyone in the company.
    ............... Have you ever wondered what
    ¦OO¬¬ O[]¦ Martin would look like
    ¦ _______ ¦ In a washing machine
    ¦ ((:money:)) ¦
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