Progressive Discipline


DeFord Contracting Inc. has adopted a policy of progressive discipline to ensure that employees have the opportunity to correct any performance or behavioral problems that may arise. DeFord Contracting Inc. has established a set of reasonable rules and guidelines for employees to follow. These have not been put in place to restrict the freedoms of our employees, but rather they are in consideration of their safety, and the overall protection of DeFord Contracting Inc. employees, property, and our business practices.


In the event that an employee of DeFord Contracting Inc. violates company policy or exhibits problematic behavior, a system of progressive discipline shall be utilized.

Progressive discipline can be issued on either: attendance, conduct, health and safety or performance concerns.

Employees will be given four opportunities to correct the unwanted behavior, unless the behaviour or concern is one of a severe nature, in which case, progressive discipline can be accelerated to match the violation. Typically, progressive discipline will progress through the following steps:

  1. Coaching - informal
  2. Verbal Warning - formal
  3. Written Warning - formal
  4. Final Written Warning with Possible Suspension - formal
  5. Termination

With each violation or apparent problem, the employee will be provided with a written document to: (1) alert them to the problem, provide a reiteration of the correct company policy regarding the violation, (2) advise them of the consequences associated with further infractions, and (3) provide a suggestion towards a method of improvement.

All formal warnings will be kept on file for a period of 24 months. If no further discipline happens within the time period, the warning will become inactive. If further offences relating to the issue have taken place, the warning will be attached to the next set of progressive disciplinary actions.

Degrees of discipline shall be used in relation to the problem at hand. As the situation dictates, based on the past performances of the employee, and the seriousness of the violation, DeFord Contracting Inc. reserves the right to skip the four step disciplinary process and move straight to termination where necessary.

Vehicle & Equipment infractions

These infractions are of a serious nature and will be handled according. Each case will be looked at to determine the liability factors, safety factors, company image and the NSC exposure to the company’s Safety Profile, if any. All drivers will be responsible for all traffic violation costs and any NSC infractions when operating DeFord vehicles.

Investigation and Documentation

All violations or alleged violations will be properly investigated and documented by the Safety Manager, and/or Human Resources. All formal measures that have been taken within the progressive discipline process will be documented and kept in the employee's personnel file.

Suspension and Review Period

During the final written warning, an employee may be suspended and/or put on review.

  • Suspension: Employees put on suspension will be excluded without pay from the workplace and from the vehicle driven for a period of one to three (1-3) days depending on the violation. Typically suspension will be for three (3) days unless the employee is required at work to complete projects or perform required duties.
  • Review: Employees may be put on a review period following the final written warning. The review period will last several days, weeks and/or months based on infraction and Manager Discretion. During the review period the employee will be excluded from wage increases and advancement, in addition is discouraged from taking vacation.
  • Termination of Employment: The final stage of progressive discipline is termination of employment. Termination of employment with DeFord Contracting Inc. may occur following an employee committing multiple violations of company policy, after the logical steps for progressive disciplinary action have been taken or immediately following a severe violation.

Suspension with Pay – Pending Investigation

In the event that a DeFord Contracting Inc. employee is placed on suspension pending the results of an investigation, the employee will be notified of the decision, a stated timeline for the investigation and the actions that predicated the decision.

This form of suspension is not disciplinary but is intended to allow DeFord Contracting Inc. the time to examine the issues thoroughly and to determine appropriate action. Should the investigation not be completed during the stated timeline, DeFord Contracting Inc. will reserve the right to extend the suspension, as necessary.

During the course of the investigation, the suspended employee will be provided with the details of the allegations and given an opportunity to respond to them. The suspended employee must ensure that he/she is available for interviews during this period. If the suspended employee fails to make him/ herself available, DeFord Contracting Inc. will proceed with the investigation and make a determination based on the information available.

The suspended employee will have the right to legal representation, or a DeFord Contracting Inc. representative present at any such interview, and will be given 24 hours’ notice prior to any interviews taking place.

As the suspended employee will be suspended with full pay, he/she will be required to be available for interviews during this period. Should the suspended employee need to leave town or be otherwise unavailable for interviews, he/she must submit a request and be granted approved leave.

Any DeFord Contracting Inc. employee who is placed on suspension with pay will be required to temporarily turn over his/her office keys, access passes and DeFord Contracting Inc. identification and credit cards. Any and all DeFord Contracting Inc. property, business information, and confidential information are to remain at the worksite. In the event that any DeFord Contracting Inc. employee placed on suspension with pay maintains any files or equipment at his/her residence which are the property of DeFord Contracting Inc., he/she will be required to turn these items over to a DeFord Contracting Inc. representative, until such time as the investigation is completed.

DeFord Contracting Inc. employees placed on suspension with pay should not have contact with anyone from the office other than their designated point of contact.


In the event that an employee feels that they have been wrongfully accused, or disciplined, they may file a written appeal with Safety Manager, and/or Human Resources. Written appeals must contain:

  • Details of the discipline, Events surrounding the discipline, Why the employee feels the discipline is not warranted or appropriate, Human Resources shall review and respond to all written appeals within ten (10) business days.


If you have any questions or concerns about this policy or its related procedures please contact Safety Manager, and/or Human Resources.

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Safety. Respect the unexpected.