This progressive discipline follows the same process as other types of employee misconduct, but there are a few issues supervisors must keep in mind when issuing discipline for performance-related issues.

Giving employees notice of reasonable rules

One key element of “just cause” discipline is that the employee is provided notice of reasonable rules. For performance-related discipline, you need to provide this notice by meeting with the employee to communicate expectations, having those expectations outlined on the position description, and by providing ongoing and well-documented feedback. By setting expectations and goals and monitoring and supporting employees, you establish justification for performance-related discipline when needed.

Read detailed information about just cause discipline.

Clear delineation of when training has ended

There should be clear delineation between when an employee is in training and when that training period has ended and they are expected to meet position-specific expectations. A letter of instruction can serve this purpose, and also let an employee know that their continued failure to meet expectations could result in disciplinary action.

Identifying the work rule violated

When considering the appropriate level of discipline for a performance-related work rule violation, first determine the appropriate work rule involved (see APM 2-33, Standard Expectations and Rules of Conduct). Examples include:

  • Insubordination including disobedience, disrespect, failure to perform work assignments or duties, or failure to accept direction from authorized personnel.
  • Negligence in the performance of assigned duties, loafing, loitering, or engaging in unauthorized personal business during work hours.
  • Any other conduct that would inhibit the ability of the individual, fellow employees, or management to adequately carry out duties and functions.

If willful or serious misconduct is involved (direct insubordination), some of the steps of progressive discipline may be skipped. Consult with Labor Relations if this is the case. If the performance-related work rule is more negligent than willful, progressive discipline will apply.

Implementing progressive discipline

After taking the above into consideration, you would follow the City process for progressive discipline.