Whistle-blowing is a recommendable practice whenever an organization engages in an unethical practice (Hoppe 2010). Stakeholders should reveal every form of abuse, danger, or negligence in order to safeguard the rights of many people. According to the case study, Hughes Aircraft Company’s Micro-electronic Circuit Division was producing numerous computer chips for different customers. The company was ‘required to ensure its chips passed specific quality assurance (QA) tests’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 2).
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The firm was also expected to present various documents showing that such chips met all the requirements. Ruth Aldred and Margaret Goodearl became aware of the malpractices at the company. They decided to report the matter to the relevant authorities. This discussion examines the findings of the case. It also offers powerful recommendations that can be used to deal with fraud in different companies.
Findings of the Case
Many companies engage in unethical or unacceptable business practices. Most of the chips produced by Hughes Aircraft Company were not being tested. Some of the chips also failed to fulfill the required military specifications. The supervisors at the company ‘forced the employees to keep quiet about the problem’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 2). Goodearl and Aldred later reported the malpractice to the authorities in 1986. The company had also harassed and intimidated the two whistle blowers (Bowyer 2000).
According to the author, the two employees lost their jobs after reporting the issue to the relevant authorities. After losing their jobs, the individuals ‘underwent significant lifestyle changes’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 5). For example, Goodearl and her husband became bankrupt. However, the workers ‘succeeded and eventually won the case’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 5). The False Claims Act (FCA) has been critical towards uncovering most of the crimes committed by many companies.
The company made it impossible for the whistle blowers to emerge victorious. The case study shows how the company was eventually forced to compensate the two employees. The government ‘used the FCA to take over the case in 1992’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 5). The firm ‘paid $3,159,000 to the government and $891,000 to the whistle blowers’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 5). The whistle blowers also ‘sacrificed their careers in order to achieve justice’ (Bowyer 2000, p. 5).
This discussion presents powerful recommendations that can support the needs of many companies. Employees should be ready to report any kind of abuse in their organizations (Lewis 2011). This practice will ensure every company produces quality products. The article “Goodearl and Aldred Versus Hughes Aircraft: A Whistle-Blowing Case Study” also encourages more students to equip themselves with new ideas about whistle-blowing. The practice will make it easier for them to understand the importance of the False Claims Act. Citizens and students should also read more cases in order to understand this issue much better (Bowyer 2000). Policymakers should also support the False Claims Act in order to protect every consumer.
Business organizations can also acquire new concepts from this case study. For instance, they should promote the best ethical practices in order to deliver quality services to their customers (Pierson, Forchit & Bauman 2010). The practice will ensure such companies remain ethical. They will also protect themselves from different civil litigations (Duska 2010). The practice will also ensure more businesses become socially responsible. Many companies will also intimidate and threaten their employees whenever they raise their concerns (Heywood 2009). That being the case, new policies should be implemented in order to protect every whistle blower. This practice will ensure more companies become ethical. The strategy will also safeguard the rights of many stakeholders.
List of References
Bowyer, K 2000, Goodearl and Aldred Versus Hughes Aircraft: A Whistle-Blowing Case Study.Web.
Duska, R 2010, Whistle-blowing and Employee Loyalty. Web.
Heywood, J 2009, Engineering Education: Research and Development in Curriculum and Instruction, Wiley, New York. Web.
Hoppe, E 2010, Ethical Issues in Aviation, Ashgate Publishing, New York. Web.
Lewis, D 2011, Whistle-blowing at Work, A&C Black, New York. Web.
Pierson, J, Forchit, K & Bauman, B 2010, ‘Whistle-blowing: An Ethical Dilemma’, AJIS, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 58-62. Web.