Davide Caiazzo, CEO and Co-Founder of My Governance, is a business and corporate lawyer with many years’ experience as a company lawyer for multinational companies. In his previous position he was responsible for a well-known American multinational company. In 2017, together with his partner, Davide decided to capitalise their direct knowledge of business processes and the needs of modern companies by creating My Governance, software that changes the current approach to document approval via paper, transforming it to digital and allowing you to track the document journey.
What is My Governance?
My Governance wants to change the corporate governance management and digitise not just the signature but the whole process involving the corporate population, customers, agents, suppliers etc. The software is particularly useful for companies that are struggling to adapt their processing of personal data for GDPR and whistleblowing. My Governance is able to ensure total corporate compliance under both profiles.
What is whistleblowing in the workplace and how is it regulated in Italy?
Whistleblowing is the activity of reporting illegal conduct. This is a legal institution of Anglo-Saxon derivation that aims to bring out the those conducts in the companies and to protect those who promote the law. It is an important tool to promote greater legality in both the public and private sector and to develop a sense of widespread ethics, in which everyone is in a certain sense responsible to report illegal conducts.
What challenges will companies in Italy have to face?
First, we must distinguish the public sector from the private sector. The recent Law 30 November 2017, no. 179 introduces a differentiated regulation according to the public or private nature of the company or institution. In the first case, whistleblowing is included in the current anti-corruption legislation. In the second case the discipline is referred to in the Legislative Decree No. 231/2001. The challenge behind the introduction of whistleblowing is, however, the same: all institutions and companies have to implement technological tools able to track the whistleblowers’ notification granting that no one will have access to his/her data. It is only possible with a specific software as My Whistleblowing.
What will be the results of failing to comply with this legislation?
It is necessary to make some distinctions with reference to the sanctions. In the public sector, Law no. 179/2017 provides three types of sanctions.
- In the case in which the company takes discriminatory and unlawful measures against the whistleblower, National Authority Against Corruption (ANAC) could apply to the responsible that takes such measure an administrative monetary sanction from Euro 5.000 to 30.000.
- In the case in which it is established the absence of procedures to the sending and to the management of whistleblower’s reports National Authority Against Corruption (ANAC) could apply to the responsible an administrative monetary sanction from Euro 10.000 to 50.000.
- In the case in which it is established that the responsible does not verify and does not manage the reports received, National Authority Against Corruption (ANAC) could apply to the responsible an administrative monetary sanction from Euro 10.000 to 50.000.
In the private sector, direct sanctions are not provided by the law. Such circumstances could generate the conviction that the recent rules are not mandatory. The latter could be a serious error. The law, in fact, provides that the companies update the Organisational Model pursuant to Legislative decree no. 231/2001 to the new legislation regarding whistleblowing. If the company does not comply with such provision, a problem of company’s compliance to Leg. dec. 231/2001 may arise. In short, if the company does not comply with the new legislation regarding whistleblowing, the Organisational Model 231 could be considered as not updated and not able to protect the company from criminal responsibility.
How can organisations best prepare for these upcoming challenges?
Companies should be assisted by a professional consultant specialising in the revision of Organisational Models provided by Legislative Decree no. 231/2001.
As a main focus, companies should have in place a software able to guarantee effective tracking of reports received by the whistleblower and ensure they are able to keep the whistleblower’s details private and confidential.
It is only as per these pieces of advice the companies could demonstrate their compliance in relation with the recent whistleblowing legislation.