Are you currently dealing with a number of challenging employees? Are you considering letting someone go in the near future? If so, make sure you’ve looked at all of your options before reaching that critical stage. Improper terminations can directly lead to increased unemployment insurance expenses, so you want to make sure you’ve covered your bases ahead of time.

One key part of that process is the written warning letter. Recently, Ajah Anderson, Dallas-based Director of Operations at Corporate Cost Control, took the time to chat about this document. Here Anderson shares some valuable information about warning letters, including how they can help you manage your unemployment costs.

“Written warnings, as well as documented verbal warnings, are important in establishing the employer addressed the issues with the employee to ensure they understand the employer’s policy and procedures,” Anderson stated via email. “It also communicates to the employee that their behavior – if not corrected – can lead to further disciplinary action up to and including termination. Warnings are also beneficial for the employees, as it helps them understand an area of concern and gives them the opportunity to correct or change their behavior.”

The written warning should be drafted by the employee’s direct supervisor, or a member of management of the human resources department, Anderson added. This same person should also be the one who presents it to the person in question to include a witness of the conversation.

Anderson further explained the seven specific elements that should be included in a written warning, such as:

  1. Description of the incident, including the date and names of involved parties
  2. Outline of future expectations related to the same or similar incident
  3. Recommendations of steps for improvement
  4. An area for the employee to respond and provide remarks
  5. Synopsis of the disciplinary action taken as a result of the incident
  6. Summary of the disciplinary consequences if behavior does not improve
  7. An area for the manager, employee and witness to sign and date

Writing the letter isn’t the only step
After the warning is delivered, other steps need to take place, including the opportunity for the employee to respond to the behaviors highlighted in the written warning.

“The employee should be given the opportunity to verbally respond as well as provide a written response on the warning letter itself or on separate piece of paper,” Anderson elaborated. “The employee should also be given a copy of the signed warning immediately following issuance. In addition to verbal and written warnings, placing employees on suspension or on a probationary period are useful steps to take as well.”

More so than any other step, Anderson emphasized the importance of early and immediate action so you can manage your unemployment costs. For example, any delay in addressing these problems could be interpreted as acceptance of the behavior, or a demonstration that you don’t follow your own rules and guidelines. So, to avoid any unfavorable outcomes, consider all options – including a written warning – prior to termination.

Juggling tax rates, expenses and difficult employees can become challenging at your company. Here at Corporate Cost Control, we understand these problems and are well positioned to help. Our extensive background in cost control and human resources will allow you to better manage your unemployment insurance expenses.


Contact CCC to see how we can save your organization time and money.
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(800) 207-6926

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