Aside from this, some issues go against the terms of the contract or the employee handbook. During these times, an employee disciplinary action form is an employer’s way to reach the employees. These are vital to any company and must follow according to company policy. Here is the information relating to employee disciplinary action forms, their nature, parts, and creation. Check out the article concerning the forms below to find out more.

38+ Sample Employee Disciplinary Action Forms

What Is an Employee Disciplinary Action Form?

Employee disciplinary action forms inform employees about their inabilities to meet the terms of the contract and the actions the involved employee takes as a consequence of the violation. Before an employee disciplinary action form presents itself to the employee, it is necessary to exhaust all resources available in giving out warnings, counselings, and all forms of reprimand until there is no other option available. These forms document the violations made by the employee and ensure professional cooperation during the term of disciplinary actions and procedures. The warnings reduce employee turnover by assuring a well-defined description of steps to improve performance and clarify problems. When the worker completes the form, the employer issues a copy to the employee and keeps another for the employee’s file, providing the employer with a complete account of employee behavior.

The dissertation published by the University of Central Florida entitled “A Survey Of Progressive And Affirmative Employee Discipline Systems In Florida’s Hospital” published in 2015 shows that one hundred percent of employees believe that open communication ensures improved employee compliance. The data reveals the importance of communication between employees and employers in any organization.

Components of Employee Disciplinary Action Forms

Each disciplinary action form varies from company to company, and it depends on the format used. Despite this, several sections must reflect in the paper to have detailed information about the disciplinary procedure the employee will take. Here are the essential parts of an employee disciplinary action form.

Employee details: The section contains employee data, including their full name, employment number, position, team or department, and contact information. It is necessary to include these pieces of information for an accurate record of employee behavior.Details of the incident: It is critical to indicate the filing and date of the incident and a brief description or classification of the committed infraction. It is helpful to cite the exact violation written in the contract, company handbook, and company policies. In doing so, the employee can verify the violation made and the possible disciplinary procedures. It also allows the employee to communicate the circumstances to the human resources department in some cases.Summary of the incident: In this section, the human resource representative summarizes the issue, including the witnesses, location, date, and time of the event. The details gathered by the human resources department come from the statements made by the witnesses comprising the incident. The creation of a proper disciplinary action regarding the employee involves considering all relevant information regarding the event. The witnesses must state various sides of the story to have a fair understanding and justification of the disciplinary action to be taken into consideration.Past events or behavior: There are possibilities that the present action involving the employee resurfaces from past events or behavior. The human resource department looks at employee files that contribute or relate to the situation at hand. It helps explain why such action happened and the cause of the movement made by the employee. Employee comments: In this section, the employee or employees involved share their claims and stories about the incident. They also express their comments regarding the allegations made by the witnesses. The employer needs to hear the employee’s side of the story because it is their right to state their claim about the incident. It is essential to understand all facets of the account to have a just and proper execution of disciplinary actions.Corrective actions and dates: Disciplinary actions are a process that involves both employer and employee engagement. It is relevant to list all corrective actions, including the dates of the performances of these actions. The human resources department must record the dates to see if there is an improvement on the employee. It also helps keep track of all the developments made by the worker to gauge which of the activities or responses are effective.Additional comments: The human resources representative handling the incident writes out necessary remarks about the incident by reviewing all available evidence to conclude a fair and just disciplinary action for the employee.Other information: It is a must to indicate the name of the employee’s immediate supervisor to note the performance or if there are additional queries about the employee. Signatures: The employee must sign the employee disciplinary action form to acknowledge the receipt of the action, along with the suggested improvements from the human resources department. It must also contain the signature of the representative who created the form to ensure the issuance by the organization. It also serves as company documentation for the employee’s behavior.

How to Create Employee Disciplinary Action Forms

Employee disciplinary action forms vary in physical appearance but serve similar purposes. Completing the form is self-explanatory and must be completed to the best of your ability and with accuracy. Some sections are complicated to fill than others and require thorough investigation. Here are the steps to creating and filling out employee disciplinary action forms.

Step 1: Ensure Sufficient Warnings Are Given to the Employee

Writing an employee disciplinary action must be used only as a last resort. Do not write out an employee without giving sufficient warnings. Provide the employee fair chances to correct the unwanted behavior and ensure the employee is aware of the consequences following the behavior. By not giving the employee appropriate warnings, it causes a rift between the relationship of the employer and employee, and the employee can use it as grounds for legal action due to illegal termination.

Step 2: Classify the Type of Issue

It is essential to identify the type of issue the employee exhibits. If it involves behavioral problems, consider counseling services to address the issue. If the employee faces problems regarding workplace performance, analyze the reason behind the problem and offer necessary training and coaching. Different types of obstacles require various long-term solutions to help the employee throughout the stay with the company.

Step 3: Be Specific and Concise In Detailing the Incident

Ensure a direct approach in addressing the employee’s behavior and what needs to change; do not sugar coat the words. Be concise to alleviate the confusion or intent, and ensure that the meeting with the employee does not exceed more than a couple of minutes. Allowing the conversation to be longer will cause the employee to be defensive and restless.

Step 4: State Clear and Concrete Examples of the Changes

Before setting up the employee for writing, the human resources representative must present sufficient information to justify the disciplinary action. It is essential to record instances of the employee displaying situations of negative behavior and use them as examples for behavior that needs change. It also allows the representative to appear detached and objective when disciplining the employee and offers an outlet for professionalism in a situation where emotions are present.

Step 5: Provide Expected Improvements and Deadlines

Ensure the employee understands the consequences of improving their performance and behavior. Provide the employee a clear timeline of when to anticipate the behavior development, even if it is immediate. It is also essential to remind the employee of the consequences if they do not accomplish or implement the change.

Step 6: Provide an Official Agreement between the Employee

Never forget to make the agreement official by issuing written documentation. Have the employee sign the document and include it as an official report. It is a form of acknowledgment of the behavior change and the following consequences if there is no improvement in the behavior.

Types of Disciplinary Actions

Disciplinary actions take on many forms and are according to the gravity of the violation. Enforcing disciplinary actions are mandatory to maintain a positive and productive work environment.

Verbal warnings: A verbal warning is an initial step taken in a disciplinary process and is also a common form of disciplinary action given by an organization to employees. It is necessary to advise an employee in private and not in front of a team or group. Immediate supervisors are usually the people who give oral reprimands. Issuing verbal warnings is done before any other reprimands to encourage or motivate individuals to correct their behavior. The supervisor must inform the human resources department of the issuance of the warning. Written warnings: When an employee continues to violate workplace standards and regulations, the supervisor implements corrective action through written warnings. It is also known as a write-up and follows after a verbal warning when there is no improvement. The manager and supervisor write details about the incident along with corrective actions the employee must undergo. The employee must acknowledge and sign the warning, attaching it to the employee’s files.Performance Improvement Plans: A performance improvement plan (PIP) is an effective discipline method. It is a constructed system based on the areas needing improvement, with a series of steps an employee takes to correct employee behavior or performance. The HR department gives PIPs when an employee’s production declines company expectations. The plan incorporates actionable and achievable steps for the employee, quantifiably and quantitatively measured.Suspension: If the first three solutions fail, the action is advisable to be given. The HR representative must record the employee’s actions and behavior, corrective measures, and the reason for serving the suspension. Remember, the disciplinary action considerably affects an employee, depriving them of pay, demotion, and other necessary penalties.Termination: When an employee refuses to correct behavior, an employee is subject to dismissal because of continued violations. The HR department implements the final decision after a just and thorough investigation.


How long does disciplinary action stay on record?

Under the federal nondiscrimination laws, Title VII, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the employer must maintain records about employment actions for at least one year from the date of the action. For employers that have federal contracts, they must keep documents relating to employment actions for at least two years upon the date of claim in the employee’s account. Corrective action documents support employment actions can become a permanent record in the personnel’s file. Employers find keeping these documents on file for an indefinite period attached to present employees because these provide employers with the employee’s history and overall job performance. If an employee maintains a certain level of behavior for more than a year, employers agree that past disciplinary actions no longer affect future decisions. Discarding these documents after a year enables employers not to correlate negative performances in the past with guiding future corrective actions relating to the employee. However, employers opt for warnings when handling employees with patterned behavioral issues. The disciplinary action on file helps organizations to determine the required action if the behaviors influence future performances. It is beneficial to consult a legal attorney before disposing of any employee disciplinary actions.

Are disciplinary actions considered confidential?

Confidentiality is one of the most significant aspects of human resources and is critical in certain situations, including workplace investigations and performance and disciplinary actions. It is still challenging when certain information needs disclosure and discussion between individuals involved in an inquiry or disciplinary development where all related data needs evaluation. In such situations, the human resources representative must deliver impartial decisions while maintaining the employees’ confidentiality and guaranteeing a meticulous investigation that is fair and just to all individuals and groups.

Will a disciplinary action be shown on a reference?

In transferring jobs or looking for a new vacant position, most employers ask for reference letters. It gives the employers an idea of how a particular employee faired during their stay with the previous employer. It details the employee’s past job position, performance, duties, and skills in performing the job description assigned to them. However, if the employee faced disciplinary action before leaving the company, it poses a complicated question. Will disciplinary actions appear in the reference letter or during an interview between the previous and hiring companies? Most HR personnel respond honestly about employment-related processes. The employer only discloses information about completed investigations or disciplinary actions. It is advisable to stay with the company until the completion of the process or examination, even if it results in dismissal. If the employee is innocent, the employer must not mention the disciplinary action in the reference. However, if the result equates to dismissal or any other disciplinary action, the previous employer must include it in the recommendation letter. It ensures a fair and objective evaluation of the employee’s performance.

Discipline is a trait that all people must possess. For work, daily activities, and other circumstances, it pays off to have the discipline to achieve goals. In the workplace, discipline plays a significant role in employee performance, productivity and behavior. It is also advisable to keep employees driven in work by providing means and activities that improve their skills. The employer and employee must work together to achieve a common goal and establish a positive relationship. In the words of Steven Pressfield, “We must do our work for its own sake, not for fortune or attention or applause.” Save the employee disciplinary action forms found in the article above.