Archived Calling the integrity hotline.....

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is a lot like calling 911 when Burger King makes you the wrong hamburger.

I think it is time that a serious discussion goes on regarding what the integrity hotline is - and is not - for.

I was around the 1980's when Target first rolled out the hotline. Back then, it was made clear that the hotline was entirely intended for AP issues. (read: theft) The hotline was created as yet another tool to assist AP.

Since that time, TMs have gotten it into their head that the hotline is for HR issues, because your leader treated you unfairly, or any other personal issue.

The hotlines purpose has never changed - it is intended as a loss prevention tool. That is all. It is not there because your ETL-HR promised you an interview and didn't deliver, it is not there because your TL was rude to you, it is not there for any other HR related issue.

This is why - when TMs call the hotline - 99% of the time nothing changes. It is like calling 911 because you got the wrong hamburger. (yes, there are news reports of people actually doing this) In other words, it is not the correct avenue for solving your issue. And guess what? Just like calling 911 - you are probably going to get your ass in trouble.

You might be asking "Well, if that is the case, why doesn't Target tell people to stop? Why do they let TMs continue to do it?" - well, simple, the fact is the company has realized that the hotline is also a tool for finding malcontents. When you call the hotline, you are basically ratting yourself out as a troublemaker. Target loves this.

The integrity hotline is not a magic number to solve your problems. Do you know who answers the integrity hotline calls? Outsourced call center employees in India who don't even work for Target. Employees who probably make less per hour than you do. (read: about $2/hour) They have zero authority over anyone. In fact, they don't even have authority over regular TMs.

When you call them, do you know what they do? They look at their computer screen, fill out some fields, and select your store number from a drop down box. They type in the "issue" and then click "send". What happens next? The form gets sent to your STL. That's it. Done. Period. Finished. In other words, they sent your STL an email for you.

What does that email say? Something along the lines of "On 5-11-13 at 2PM a TM called to say that your ETL-HL was mean to him at your store. Have a nice day". That's it. There is no command to your STL. It doesn't say "STL, you are hereby ordered to do <whatever>", which is what lots of TMs seem to think it does. Your STL gets the email and says "So what?" Then your STL proceeds to wonder who it was so he can find you and find a reason to term you.

The hotline is an AP tool. Not an HR tool. It is intended to be used to rat out TMs and leaders who are doing something that it is an AP issue. (i.e. theft, violence at the store, etc.) Now, if you call the hotline for an AP issue, you can bet your ass it will solve the problem. What you are *supposed* to use the hotline for is to call up and say "Hey, Tom at store 0704 was pocketing SD cards in the electronics stockroom today". Then your ETL-AP is informed. Then Tom gets termed. See the point of the hotline?

Think about it this way - think of all the integrity hotline signage you have seen at your store. (including the ones in the trucks) What do they always say? Stuff like "See theft? call!". When was the last time you saw an integrity hotline signage that said "ETL was mean to you? Give the hotline a call!". The answer is never. Never has the hotline been promoted as a tool to call for HR issues.

Before you call the hotline - you need to ask your self the following question - is what I am calling about something my ETL-HR or ETL-AP would handle? If the answer is "ETL-HR" you are calling the wrong number. (think 911 and cheeseburger) If the answer is "ETL-AP" - you've got the right number. (think 911 and bank robber)

It just makes me cringe when I hear TMs say they are going to call the hotline or tell others to do so for an HR issue. 99% of the time all you are doing is getting yourself on the "TMs to find a reason to term list" of your execs. Instead of ratting someone else out, you are ratting yourself out.

I have spent more years than I can count with Target. Never in all those years have I seen an HR issue solved by someone calling integrity. But countless times, I have seen TMs pushed out the door after they did it.

Does this mean that the hotline has *never* solved an HR issue? Of course not. Your STL might the e-mail that says "ETL-HL was mean to TM Tony", and your STL might say to himself "You know, clearly this issue really bothers Tony. I think I will intervene"

But guess what, that is all on your leaders sense of honor. If it has gotten to the point you are thinking crazy thoughts of calling a theft reporting hotline for an HR issue, chances are your leaders are not those kinds of people. They are going to get that email and say "Fu**er trying to get me in trouble. I'm going to nail him to the wall"

Sad but true.
 
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This is what the hotline will do:

The integrity hotline is pretty much a "do or die" scenario for store Leadership. Hotline calls are often taken by the Group HR leader or a designated ETL-HR with years of experience. After a hotline call is made, reports are sent to district, group and Corporate level HR's and actions plans are created and must be carried out with 30 days. When calling you have the opportunity to remain anonymous and trust me, you will remain anonymous. We had one team member call the hotline anonymously and our STL was on the war path to find out who it was. Needless to say the day after, the STL started her War Path. She was out the door!!!! The Hotline is a serious matter, for team members and Leadership. Even thought the Hotline is there for Team Members, I do strongly suggest that you work out your issues first with store level leadership as everyone above have suggested.
 
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I've seen HR issues handled due to people calling the hotline. One example (and I won't go too much into it) was wrongful termination - TM called and stated the case, this was then escalated up to Corporate (who then reached out to the TM who was wrongfully termed), an investigation was opened, and a few weeks later, the TM was reinstated. I also know of cases where TMs have called the hotline on their TLs and then the TLs were called into the office and spoken to due to this.
 
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I have seen it work before in particular when multiple people report the same issue. Seen both a HR and STL get canned because of it. The issues were legit but, after getting no where at the store and district level people started calling and a sudden surge of visitors arrived in the store within a week a week after the offending HR and her boss the STL were gone. Of course the hotline should be used only after using your other leaderships options. It is promoted as part of your options along with BTS as a part of Targets open door policy.
 

StaticSun

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I reported someone due to a social media violation and they were written up. They were posting some very inappropriate things about other TMs and showing themselves doing dangerous things while on the clock. They were written up two weeks after I submitted my complaint, and performanced out shortly after.

I didn't like doing it, but it was the right thing to do.
 
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Hell...if I think someone is stealing something, or I see someone stealing something...why would I call the hotline? I'll pull AP aside myself and tell them what I saw or if something fishy is happening. I don't care if people think I'm a snitch. If you're stealing, then yes, consider me a snitch....better everyone knows it then think they can get away with it and make me have to say something.
 
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Hell...if I think someone is stealing something, or I see someone stealing something...why would I call the hotline? I'll pull AP aside myself and tell them what I saw or if something fishy is happening. I don't care if people think I'm a snitch. If you're stealing, then yes, consider me a snitch....better everyone knows it then think they can get away with it and make me have to say something.

Again, for those people who were not here when the hotline rolled out in the 80's, it was originally intended to report AP issues that you could not safely report in the store. (i.e. it was your DTL, Group leader, STL, ETL-AP, or other leader/person you felt could retaliate against you... remember, the hotline is for everyone... that includes STLs, DTLs, etc.... anyone who might have a boss, friend, or other person they wouldn't want to know was reporting them)
 
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I've seen HR issues handled due to people calling the hotline. One example (and I won't go too much into it) was wrongful termination - TM called and stated the case, this was then escalated up to Corporate (who then reached out to the TM who was wrongfully termed), an investigation was opened, and a few weeks later, the TM was reinstated. I also know of cases where TMs have called the hotline on their TLs and then the TLs were called into the office and spoken to due to this.

You have to remember that correlation does not equal causation. Because those people were spoken to, does not mean it was due to the hotline call. If someone felt the need to call the hotline, whoever they are calling about was already probably not on good terms with HR. Just because they happened to get spoken to after the hotline call does not mean that the hotline call caused it.

I think this is what people are not understanding.... the people they call the hotline about are probably already on someones sh** list. Otherwise, people wouldn't be trying to do something about them to begin with. It doesn't mean the hotline did anything, it just means that TM/TL/whoever finally pushed things to far with their leader all on their own.

To give you an example of this flawed way of thinking, we once had an elderly cashier who had a panic attack whenever she turned off the light at her register, and often refused to turn it off herself. (she usually asked other cashiers to do it) Why? Well, one day she turned off the light and shortly after here register locked up. The GSTL had to come over and restart it, and (being elderly and not very tech savvy) she had a freakout and thought she "broke the computer".

Because the register locked up right after she turned off the light, she thought that turning off the light increased the risk of the register locking up.

People make these kinds of mistakes all the time.... just because event A happens after you do action B doesn't mean that action B caused event A.
 
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One TL in particular that has had the hotline called on them by TM is actually a TL who is a big drinker of the Kool-Aid and works strictly according to Best Practice, so when that TL goes and coaches the TM or TMs for not following Best Practice they (one more so than others) call the hotline complaining. This TL is actually greatly respected by peers, Leadership inside the store, as well as on a District and Group level, so I have to disagree with your remark that people have to be on someone's ****list to be spoken to if a hotline call is made.
 
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I called the hotline once and got immediate, acceptable results. It was not an AP issue.
 
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I've had the hotline called on me several times throughout the years, there's an investigation into what happened, often done by interviewing various TM's, getting statements, etc. I have not been in trouble because of it once.
 
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SoT is correct but missing a key componet which can relate to HR issues. Im mobile right now so I cant get too much into it.
 

redeye58

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Couple of folks called the hotline on a GSTL & ETL involved with fraudulant credit apps. The GSTL was perpetuating it & the ETL was his buddy who looked the other way.
In too short a time to be considered mere coincidence, the GSTL was termed & the ETL told to resign.
 
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Here is my comment in the correct thread....

SOT, you do make some excellent point, however, I must disagree on the fact that the INTEGRITY hotline was designed to be an AP tool. Obviously any "crimestoppers" tip that the hotline fields will be welcomed with open arms by the STL, but it's true intent is to be a place to turn when a TM does not feel comfortable talking to ANYONE in the building (probably more specifically HR or STL) about a serious matter (sexual harassment, employee dating, etc.). Interestingly enough these types of team morale/leadership trust issues are the real point of the hotline. Since there are so many people that receive the email (SOT nailed that) about the hotline call, district/group/region/corporate holds the STL directly accountable for the inability to build that open door culture in the store.

<Begin rant> NO ONE should ever have to call the hotline. Man up and talk to a leader. You want to know why you aren't ever going to be a leader?.......you can't even have a serious discussion with your current leaders about a problem you are having. It's not ALWAYS about your feelings. It's not ALWAYS easy. SOMETIMES (not always) you have to through away your pride and take some real feedback. <End rant>

The way I look at it, is when I get the hotline called on me (yep, it happens and yes it is anonymous), I'm doing my job. For whatever reason, everyone thinks that life is full of rainbows, roses, and handouts. Not sure what life they live in, but that's not real life. Do your job, don't complain, and come to a leader with any concerns. It really is that easy. Again SOT nailed this, the STL's laugh when they get hotline calls about a TM getting their feelings hurt. Waaaaaaahhhhhhhh! SOT, I agree with you on much of everything, but just based purely on the name of the hotline.....it's more about HR than AP.

FYI, if you are abusing a discount or stealing merchandise, I would call you out in a huddle if I wouldn't get canned. It's just how I am. I face it head on. I will not cower in the corner and wait for someone to rescue me.
 
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TM Gossip

Seems like when TM's have issues with their GSA/TL, they tell everyone in their work center until it spreads throughout the store, and then get everyone else upset about their own issues with their leader (causing the entire environment to be negative) rather than going to the TL that they have the issue with to work it out. Then maybe after getting everyone else upset, they might go and talk to their leader but by then the overall culture in the building has turned negative. I have heard TL's say that they are afraid of TM's calling the hotline on them so they don't even challenge a TM who is being irrational about a situation or may be talking about a concern that the TM has behind their back. This behavior is very frustrating and I was just wondering if this this is common at every/most stores? I don't understand why. If I had a concern with my TL, I would go to her and let her know instead of talking behind her back and getting everyone else involved. I'm not here to judge anyone, I am just wondering what the reasons are behind some TM's doing this....
 

MrGSTLman

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Coming from a work center where all people did was complain, you have to realize that sometimes people are happiest when they are miserable. They always need something to complain about. I am not justifying it by any means, but that's just the nature of the industry we work in. I think the reason people do that, to be honest, is to somehow validate their complaint. If they tell 20 people and 20 people agree with them then the complaint seems valid. My advice is to just tune it out and don't let the negativity affect you. I came to realize that only after it got so bad it DID start affecting my performance, and my overall demeanor.
 
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In my work center I must admit we all like to complain but it all depends on who shares your views. There's some people who I could care less to hear about their gossip and venting "I got coached for being an hour late for the 3rd time this week but I couldn't get a ride to work". While there's other people who are upset but have concerns that are more legit in my eyes.
 
M

mxrbook

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A SFTM recently told me she was calling the Hotline because she didn't like the tone of voice the GE ETL used. I just laughed at her, so I guess she'll call on me also. I mean, really? Wouldn't you think you should go to your ETL first or HR ETL or something? What does she think calling the Integrity Hotline will do, other than get her performanced out?
 

buliSBI

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SoT, from what I remember you are correct. It was originally meant for anonymous calls to report theft and inappropriate behavior TM/TM or TM/Guest. And yes it can get yourself deemed as a troublemaker if you are identified. And not all complaints to the Hotline like not getting enough hours, getting scheduled outside availability, and that TM was mean to me are warranted.

However, if it is a STL, ETL-HR, or any other ETL...who can a TM go to. I had numerous ETLs say they have an open door policy...yet then they use the information you gave them (thinking that they will help you) against you.

I had a transfer conflict that could have been resolved easily if only my ETL-HR would have taken the time to call my last store. Just because they are management does not mean they know what they are doing or are always the good guy. Their sole purpose is get the situation resolved or swept under the rug for the time being.

I will say, before you call Integrity Hotline, consider all consequences (even for yourself). Will I be viewed as a troublemaker or complainer....have I done anything wrong to put myself in this situation. Basically, one just needs to consider. Is the situation large enough to call the Hotline and create official documention for this situation.
 
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I called the Hotline just over a year ago about one of my (now former) coworkers. He absolutely refused to stop being just plain mean to me. And, when I say mean, I mean the attacking kind of mean, the kind of mean that borders harassment. I told HR and my STL and Hardlines ETL at the time, but they told me that I would have to confront him to help solve the issue. So, I did. I asked him the next time I worked with him why he was always so mean to me, to which he replied "I don't need a reason". I tried to talk to him about how, though what he says doesn't usually hurt my feelings, it's detrimental to the team and that it's a distraction. He called me a "stupid *****" and continued to do the same things he did before. I went back to HR and my ETL and they said they'd talk to him. He was pulled into the STL's office that night and he basically told them that he was just playing around with me and that I don't know how to take a joke.

So, when nothing happened after that, I took matters into my own hands and now he no longer works for Target. The whole store knew I called even though I called anonymously And, here I am, a year later, still here. And, who's not here? That STL, ETL-HR, and Hardlines ETL. The STL retired, ETL-HR resigned because he found a better job, and the Hardlines ETL just sort of disappeared. She quit, supposedly.

So yeah. Sometimes calling the Integrity Hotline can make your work life a heck of a lot better.
 

pellinore

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According to our new handbook...page 38..."If you are uncomfortable talking to a Target leader or if you need help resolving a serious issue relating to dishonesty or unethical behavior you can call the Employee Relations and Integrity Hotline"....."We welcome all communication, whether you're sharing an idea, seeking a solution or just want to let us know what is on your mind. Every comment is reviewed and forwarded to the appropriate leader to make sure the right person reads your comments. You can request a response or remain anonymous-but either way we're listening."

So, while AP issues are addressed here, so are a number of other issues......it is called the Employee Relations AND Integrity Hotline.

SOT, while the hotline was established in the 80s for AP....a lot of things have changed.

Next time you choose to rant, while I'll read your posts, I'm not sure how much I'll pay attention.
 
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According to our new handbook...page 38..."If you are uncomfortable talking to a Target leader or if you need help resolving a serious issue relating to dishonesty or unethical behavior you can call the Employee Relations and Integrity Hotline"....."We welcome all communication, whether you're sharing an idea, seeking a solution or just want to let us know what is on your mind. Every comment is reviewed and forwarded to the appropriate leader to make sure the right person reads your comments. You can request a response or remain anonymous-but either way we're listening."

So, while AP issues are addressed here, so are a number of other issues......it is called the Employee Relations AND Integrity Hotline.

SOT, while the hotline was established in the 80s for AP....a lot of things have changed.

Next time you choose to rant, while I'll read your posts, I'm not sure how much I'll pay attention.

Sorry, you're wrong.

You made the mistake of forgetting I was just rehired, and therefore have my own handbook. You are quoting it out of context and you damn well know it. You also know that TM relations phone number in the book is a *different* number than integrity, and it clearly says the TM relations number is for HR issues.
 

pellinore

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Well, I don't think that I'm quoting out of context.
If you've been rehired, then you've got the same handbook that I have....and can see the same number that I see. What's the difference...the number that is in the handbook is the only number I'm concerned about.

In any case, we've got differing thoughts on this....and that's OK.
 
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It is suggested to look at the poster with the hotline number in your store, located near the break room. It's tells you why to call this number.
 
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The integrity hotline can be useful at times, but it's like a double edged sword. I saw the hotline used before at my store and the store team lead got canned, so no one is completely safe regardless of their rank, or it could backfire against the team member too. Since people on this website were claiming it backfired on team members. I recommend submitting to the website instead as a very detailed report, that is articulate and mature, document as much as you can and go for it if you feel you have no choice. The online form is better, because you can compose what you want to say in a detailed manner, whereas if you just call them it's harder to think on the fly. I'm not sure if there are Indians on the hotline since I didn't call it, but there aren't Indians on the online form it goes to corporate. I put in my last 2 weeks at target, and my hellish existence is almost over at the big spot =).



Here is the link for the online form https://www.letusknow-target.com/

What happens is when you submit the form it goes directly to corporate, filters down to the DTL, and than to your store. Normally, you would not be able to talk to corporate or the DTL.
 
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