Here at Flow Power we like to do things the right way.
As such, one of our biggest priorities is ensuring we’re leading by example with every action we take as an organisation. Below you will find a foreword from Flow Power’s CEO Matthew van der Linden about our company’s Whistleblowing Policy.
“As CEO of Flow Power Group, I take pride in our culture which revolves around people – i.e. the people we employ, those we engage with and those we do business with.
Transparency, honesty and fairness are essential to good relationships and these principles, which were among our founding principles, remain etched in our DNA today. We take care to do the right things in the right way. However, like any organisation, I know we could face the risk of something going wrong sometimes. And if something does go wrong, or just doesn’t seem quite right, I want to know about it.
Our Shine a Light programme is one of the steps we’ve taken to support our commitment to high standards of ethics. The Policy has been developed in line with Australian legislative provisions which provide protections to certain categories of people who ‘blow the whistle’. At Flow Power Group, we are extending those protections (as much as we can) to customers and prospective customers.
I invite any individual who has a serious concern about the conduct or behaviour of a Flow Power Group representative to come forward and let us know.
You can choose to remain anonymous, but please don’t choose to remain silent. I understand that deciding whether or not to speak up can be difficult. However, in shining a light on something you believe to be inappropriate, you are helping us to honour our commitment of operating with the highest standards of professional ethics at all times.
You can find more information, including the types of things that can be reported and how you can make a report, in this Policy.”
– Matthew van der Linden
‘Flow Power Group’ means Kin Power Group Pty Ltd and each of its related bodies corporate (as that term is defined in the Corporations Act 2001). Related bodies of Kin Power Group Pty Ltd include, but are not limited to, Progressive Green Pty Ltd, Progressive Green Trading Pty Ltd and Utilacor Pty Ltd.
‘Reportable Conduct’ means the conduct set out in clause 4 of this policy.
‘Responsible Manager’ means a person or body who is authorised to receive reports or disclosures under this policy.
‘Whistleblower’ means any person who makes a report and who is eligible for protection under Australian Federal Whistleblowing laws. This includes:
This Whistleblower policy is intended to provide safe mechanisms for the reporting of actual or suspected illegal, fraudulent, corrupt or unethical conduct by Flow Power Group or any of its existing or former directors, employees or contractors. This could include actions which have occurred prior to the implementation of this policy.
Although this policy doesn’t extend to cover customers and prospective customers (together ‘customers’), customers who have concerns of Reportable Conduct are encouraged to contact one of our Responsible Managers, our independent Whistleblower Service or, in the case of tax or financial matters, our auditors. Contact details for these parties can be found in clause 6 of this policy.
Flow Power Group will not tolerate any illegal, fraudulent, corrupt or unethical activity.
For the purposes of this Policy, Reportable Conduct means any fraud, corrupt conduct, inappropriate behaviour or illegal activity involving any Flow Power Group director, officer, employee or contractor, whether:
This includes, but is not limited to, behaviour which
Conduct that is not reportable under this policy includes conduct that is more appropriately raised under an alternative policy. For example, this policy is not intended to cover grievances which have personal rather than organisational impacts. Examples of personal grievances could include:
This policy is not intended to replace normal communication between employees and their managers (or HR). Employees with questions, concerns, suggestions or complaints that are not covered by this policy are encouraged to speak with their manager or HR in the usual way.
You can make a report in a number of different ways and to any of the parties listed in clause 6 of this policy. Firstly, we will address your right to anonymity.
You are encouraged to report your concerns openly (i.e. by identifying yourself) but, if preferred, you may do so anonymously.
In choosing to identify yourself, you may provide Flow Power Group with greater ability to follow up on your report, seek any additional information or clarification required and, ultimately, to close the report out with you. Please note, however, that in closing out a report with you, we are likely to be very limited in what we can disclose.
If you have disclosed, or agreed to disclose, your identity to a Responsible Manager, your identity will not be shared with any other person or body without your express permission (except as provided for in clause 8 of this policy).
If you would prefer to remain anonymous, you may send your report to a Flow Power Group Responsible Manager by post. Alternatively, you may wish to contact our Whistleblower Service. The Whistleblower Service can accept reports over the phone, via email, post or fax, or via a confidential portal. If you choose to send your report by email, we recommend not using your work email address for this purpose.
In the event you choose anonymity, we ask you to be cognisant of the fact that investigations can sometimes be hampered or stalled by a lack of information or detail.
Where possible, and particularly if you have chosen to remain anonymous, you should include the following information:
Those able to receive reports under this policy are called Responsible Managers.
The Responsible Managers are listed below:
Matthew van der Linden
D: + 61 3 9069 8898
Chief Financial Officer
D: + 61 3 9069 1231
General Manager, Human Resources
D: + 61 3 9069 1221
In addition to the above, Flow Power Group has engaged the services of Stopline, an independent Whistleblower reporting service.
The Whistleblower Service reporting options include:
Phone: 1300 30 45 50 (in Australia)
Fax: Flow Power, C/- Stopline + 61 3 9882 4480
Mail: Flow Power, C/- Stopline
Locked Bag 8
Hawthorn Vic 3122
You can learn more about this service in clause 6.3 below.
In the event the matter relates to Flow Power Group finances or tax, you may choose to make your report to a Responsible Manager, the Whistleblower Service or, alternatively, you can choose to contact Flow Power Group’s auditors instead. The contact details for our auditors are below:
D +61 3 8663 6273
M +61 407 439 677
If you feel uncomfortable or unable to report concerns internally, you can make a report via our external and independent whistleblowing service provider, Stopline (“Whistleblower Service”). The Whistleblower Service acts as an intermediary, giving Whistleblowers the ability to remain anonymous, whilst giving Flow Power Group the means to obtain further information if required. Responsible Managers will be informed of reports received by the Whistleblower Service.
Whilst we would prefer that you disclose your identity in order to facilitate any investigation, you are not required to identify yourself to either Stopline or to the Flow Power Group. In the event you choose to remain anonymous to Flow Power Group, you will not be named in any report to Flow Power Group unless you have expressly consented to your identity being disclosed. The important thing to remember is that you are in control. That is, your choice will be respected.
In most instances, it will be the responsibility of a Responsible Manager to undertake any required investigation. However, there may be circumstances where the Whistleblower Service is engaged to conduct the investigation. Regardless of how the investigation is conducted, you will be able to receive updates through the Whistleblower Service, however there will be limitations on what can be disclosed to you.
In the event your report relates to a Responsible Manager, the Whistleblower Service will exclude that Responsible Manager from all communications when reporting the matter to Flow Power Group. All Responsible Managers have a strict duty of confidentiality.
If your report relates to all Responsible Managers, the Whistleblower Service will refer the report directly to Flow Power Group’s General Counsel, Jonathan Mitchell, who will act as the alternative Responsible Manager in that instance. The Whistleblower Service remains the independent intermediary at all times and will only communicate with our General Counsel as necessary.
Once a report has been received, a determination will be made as to whether there is sufficient information or grounds to undertake an investigation. Where it is determined that an investigation can or should be undertaken, the investigation will be conducted as soon as practicable and will be carried out confidentially, sensitively and thoroughly.
To help the investigation, you may be asked for further information or for clarification on your report. Other individuals may also need to be spoken to, however, your identity will not be disclosed to them or to anyone else unless you specifically provide consent for us to do so.
In order to preserve confidentiality for all parties, it is also imperative that you, as Whistleblower, maintain confidentiality.
The nature of the investigation is likely to vary depending on the nature of the concern raised but will generally involve:
Once all information has been received and properly considered:
If appropriate, and subject to any applicable confidentiality, privacy or legal constraints, you may be notified of the action taken. The information provided to you will likely to be limited to a high level outcome, examples of which are below:
If, after 60 days, you reasonably believe that no action has been taken on your report, we encourage you to contact the Responsible Manager, or independent third party, that you initially reported the matter to. If you feel uncomfortable doing so or don’t feel satisfied with their response, you may wish to contact an alternative Responsible Manager, the Whistleblower Service or, in the case of financial or tax matters, Flow Power Group’s auditors.
Flow Power Group will, to the fullest extent possible and in accordance with the law, protect your identity and keep the report made by you confidential. Your identity may be disclosed with your consent to:
It may be necessary to disclose information in the statement or report even if this may lead to your identification. This would only occur if it is reasonably necessary for the purposes of investigating the report, after all reasonable steps have been taken to reduce the risk of you being identified.
Although Flow Power Group may refer a whistleblowing matter to ASIC, APRA or the Federal Police without your consent, Flow Power Group will make all reasonable endeavours to notify you that it is making such referral within a timely manner. Flow Power Group may also, without your consent, disclose your identity to a legal practitioner in the course of seeking legal advice on the matter reported by you.
Despite our commitment to maintaining your confidentiality, sometimes people guess or surmise as to who has made a report. Additionally, sometimes the nature of the complaint makes it more obvious that the complaint has come from a particular team or individual. In the event this occurs, no confirmation will be made by the person investigating the report and the person(s) making the guess will be cautioned as to the need for confidentiality under this Policy, the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) and the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (Cth). The individual will also be reminded of defamation laws.
Flow Power Group is committed to ensuring that any person who reports Reportable Conduct, acts as a witness or participates in any way with respect to a report of Reportable Conduct is not subject to retaliation, victimisation, harassment, intimidation or any kind. To this end, provided you have a reasonable basis for making your report, we will not allow any detrimental treatment (including any of the following) to happen to a Whistleblower for the sole reason of the Whistleblower reporting Reportable Conduct:
Threats to cause detriment to the Whistleblower (whether express, implied, conditional or unconditional) are also prohibited. Under this policy, it is irrelevant whether or not the person threatened actually fears that the threat will be carried out.
In the event you feel you are experiencing reprisals, we encourage you to contact the relevant Responsible Manager, or Whistleblower Service or make a separate report under this policy.
Even though a Whistleblower may be implicated in the Reportable Conduct, that person must not be subjected to any actual or threatened detrimental action taken in reprisal for reporting that Reportable Conduct. However, reporting Reportable Conduct will not necessarily shield the Whistleblower from the consequences flowing from involvement in the Reportable Conduct itself. A person’s liability for their own conduct is not affected by their disclosure of that conduct under this Policy (though in some circumstances, an admission of complicity in the Reportable Conduct may be a mitigating factor when considering disciplinary or other action).
Flow Power Group takes its obligations to all parties seriously and will apply principles of procedural fairness and natural justice to the conduct of any investigation and findings arising under this Policy.
The possible outcomes are varied depending on the nature of the report and the resultant findings. However, possible outcomes could include, but not necessarily be limited to:
Employees who become aware of Reportable Conduct or who have reasonable grounds to suspect Reportable Conduct have a responsibility to make a report under this policy or under other applicable policies.
Flow Power Group will report annually (or more frequently on an ad hoc basis as required) to Flow Power Group’s Board on the number and type of whistleblower reports received, together with any investigation outcomes. The report will be made on a ‘no names’ basis so as to maintain the confidentiality of matters raised under this policy.
If you have questions about this policy, or would like any further information, please speak with your manager or Human Resources.