Gross misconduct | Boss sacked after giving inside information to promotion candidate

Boss sacked after giving inside information to promotion candidate

A police officer has been dismissed for twice providing a candidate with confidential information during a promotion assessment.

A disciplinary hearing at Greater Manchester Police’s headquarters found the actions of Chief Inspector Nicola Demaine, who worked in Corporate Services, amounted to gross misconduct and breached the expected standards of professional behaviour.

Demaine will also be added to the College of Policing Barred List.

Chief Superintendent Michael Allen, head of GMP's Professional Standards Branch, said: "The integrity of all force promotion systems must hold firm to ensure GMP selects the very best people to lead its workforce at every level.

"Where that integrity is lost and a candidate is exposed to an unfair advantage it risks bringing selection methods into disrepute, countering the accomplishments of our very best people who deserve an incorruptible platform on which they can evidence their suitability to lead in GMP.

From our content partner

"As a then senior leader in GMP, Nicola Demaine’s actions put at risk the integrity of a Chief Inspector promotion board and she failed to demonstrate the very highest standards of professional behaviour that the public and our workforce should rightly expect.

"As a Chief Inspector herself, she carried the privilege of rank and with rank comes responsibility.

"Necessarily, high-ranking officers can expect to suffer a hard fall when their actions are found to amount to gross misconduct and in this case, Nicola Demaine’s actions have resulted in her dismissal from GMP as decided upon by a misconduct hearing panel headed by an independent legally qualified chair."

The Guide to Hiring for Potential

The Guide to Hiring for Potential

Today’s hiring teams struggle to find candidates with the specific skills and work experiences needed for not only today’s jobs, but also tomorrow’s challenges.

According to HireVue's 2023 Global Trends Report, 40% of hiring leaders say a lack of qualified candidates is the biggest barrier to finding top talent—making it the top challenge for the third year in a row.

With birth rates declining, a tight labour market predicted to be the new normal, and the skills required to perform a job forecast to change by up to 50% (Fast Company) by 2027 - it's essential that talent acquisition leaders look at hiring through a new lens.

But at the end of the day, hiring processes should be focused on one key point: are you really hiring the most capable candidates? The ones who will adapt to tomorrow’s challenges.

Download this guide to learn:

  • The frustrating experiences candidates have during the interview process

  • How to harness the power of skills and data and hire the right person at the right time

  • How hiring for potential achieves multiple hiring objectives

  • How to help candidates see their own potential and consider more roles

  • How global brands are successfully hiring for potential

Show more
Show less

The force did not reveal what information had been disclosed to the candidate and only stated they had been “exposed to an unfair advantage”. However it’s not hard to imagine what kind of information Demaine might have provided the candidate with; possibilities ranging from what questions might be asked by interviewers or what to expect from the process.

What’s also not certain is the reason why Demaine did what she did, but at the risk of speculating, someone in a position as senior as a Chief Inspector is unlikely to have unwittingly given a promotion candidate a leg-up. And what’s unfathomable is the idea that someone who HAD done this unintentionally would be found guilty of gross misconduct by a disciplinary panel.

As such, this case has all hallmarks of favouritism and bias in the recruitment process, an issue which is taking on growing concern among HR leaders.

A 2022 poll of 1,000 UK employees which was conducted by UK-based online printer instantprint, to determine the prevalence of toxic workplaces in the UK. 35% of respondents said one of the biggest red flags for a toxic working environment was blatant favouritism for certain colleagues by those within a more senior role.

You are currently previewing this article.

This is the last preview available to you for 30 days.

To access more news, features, columns and opinions every day, create a free myGrapevine account.