Uber Case Analysis
In the industry of ride sharing, Uber is the leader for the past few years. The phrases utilised by Uber-like ‘Just take an Uber’ as well as ‘Uber everywhere’ became popular just like the phrase ‘Google it’ gained the popularity. Therefore, Uber succeeded in making themselves as the household name. With the growth of the organisation, there have been numerous ethical issues as well as dilemmas that are being confronted by Uber. The rise in controversy on February 2017 sparks the national boycott where phrases like #DeleteUber were raised. It has affected the brand image of the organisation. Therefore, the Multi-National Company has to work hard for improving the brand name as well as tackling the ethical issues.
Uber is already facing high number of ethical issues, but the latest and the biggest ethical issue that was confronted by the organisation is the sexual harassment that is being claimed by the ex-worker of the organisation. The ex-engineer of Uber, Susan Fowler, complained that her supervisor had harassed her sexually. Susan reported this matter to her HR, but the HR, as the supervisor, was talented and asset for the organisation ignored the complaint. Therefore, Susan’s complaint was not being taken seriously. However, Susan Fowler left the organisation, and she released her complaint through the blog. Uber confronted the ethical dilemma with the claim of the sexual harassment issue. Moreover, the organisation failed to take any initial action when the employee raised the complaint at first and now they will be facing higher ethical issues, with the issue being displayed in front of the people. Therefore, the organisation has to take the right steps on a prompt basis.
The claim of the sexual harassment rose from corporate side of the organisation as there are concerns raised on the safety of the female employees within the organisation. As it is entirely the cultural issue, therefore, while looking at the significant stakeholders, it will be significant to look at the sexual harassment claims for the corporate employees as well as the passengers while evaluating the ethical dilemma. The significant stakeholders for this case scenario are the employees, passengers, executives of the organisation, investors and government. The executives of the organisation will help in deciding the strategies for dealing with ethical dilemma.
Considering the ethical standards, Uber failed to take any disciplinary actions against it. The organisation is having pride of their work culture. The organisation promotes taking the shortcuts as well as backstabbing. The website of the organisation mentioned about respecting the clients, but it has not mentioned about the value as well as ethics within the corporate office for the employees. Thus, there exist little or zero ethical standards for the organisational employees. The organisation also finds loopholes when they are paying their drivers. They only maintain loyalty with the executives as well as investors. Thus there are no ethical standards within the organisational structures for solving this ethical dilemma.
Uber can use various ethical options as well as alternatives for solving this case. They need to provide priority to their employee’s safety as well as security. Therefore, Uber requires in changing the entire work culture. The change in the work culture will be having positive effect on the organisational stakeholders. Both employees, as well as clients, will feel safe and secured with the organisation and therefore, they will stay within the organisation Uber. Government will also allow the organisation to operate in their cities without any interference. Uber should spend more time on developing the ethical business. The other ethical alternative they can implement in future is investigating the claim of the case when the individual will visit the department of HR. It can prevent the entire ethical dilemma.
For an organisation, both of its stakeholders and shareholders are important factors because both of them are acting as supportive business environment that further help the organisation to survive in the market. Stakeholders are the respective body of the organisation that helps an organisation to survive in the targeted market. Zhong et al. (2017) stated that the stakeholders are responsible to guide an organisation about how to perform in the market. The statement has deduced that stakeholders are of three kinds such as internal, external and connected stakeholders. The internal stakeholders are exists in the internal environment of an organisation. As per the case study, Susan was internal stakeholder of Uber. For Uber, the external stakeholders would be shareholders, bankers, and government. Customers would be the connected stakeholders. The major difference between stakeholders and shareholders are that shareholders have the power to invest their part of money in the organisation and stakeholders can only provide relevant information to the organisation. The discussion has even revealed that for an organisation, both stakeholders and shareholders are important to maintain the workplace for further development.
Stakeholders conflicts might arise in an organisation based over the situation of the case, as discussed in the given case study, one of the higher authority of Uber sexually assaulted Susan. Hence, in this case, the stakeholder conflict states the internal chaos of the organisation. Wang et al. (2015) defined that; any internal issue in an organisation might directly influence the mental perception of other stakeholders and shareholders in the market. The statement has deduced that due to this internal conflict the government of the UK has banned the services of Uber in entire London. This has made huge loss for Uber in the UK. Stakeholders are the important resource of any of organisation, and hence the organisation should take the responsibility to control stakeholder’s conflicts in the business environment. It has also been deduced that for an organisation its stakeholders play an important role to generate relevant information for future development. Thus, the management of Uber needs to control stakeholder conflicts. For the future perspective, the organisation needsto maintain the stakeholder conflicts.
Governance is the legal concerns that have been defined by the organisation in their annual reports based over which that organisation is performing its roles and responsibilities. Veldman and Willmott (2016) stated that corporate governance is the legal framework of an organisation that has been defined what else would be performed by an organisation in the targeted market. The statement has deduced that as per the legal frameworks of the UK, every organisation have to define its corporate governance including employee safety at workplace. As per the case scenario, the organisation Uber has also defined its corporate governance to the UK legislative body including their MOA and AOA. However, the organisation has defined its ethical activities in their corporate governance, but the case of Susan has exposed the loopholes or the negative side of the corporate governance of the organisation. The case has justified that for an organisation it is so much important that it should maintain the value of its corporate governance at the workplace so that it could invite any of third party for intervention.
The corporate social responsibility has been defined as the social activities performed by an organisation in the targeted market. The chosen organisation Uber has also maintained its CSR activities at the workplace. Schrempf-Stirling et al. (2016) stated that for an organisation the most important factor is what the organisation is paying to its environment in return of what it is receiving from that society. The statement has deduced that for an organisation the most important task is to take care of the external environment of the organisation. Hopkins (2016) argued that internal stakeholders of the organisation due contradict CSR activities in most of the situations to increase in the miscellaneous cost. The statement has deduced that for an organisation, the CSR activities are not favourable as it enforces the organisation to do unplanned tasks that increase the cost of the organisation. As per the stated case, the organisation Uber needed to kept their eyes over their CSR activities in its external environment so that the organisation could be able to get positive concern from its targeted customers.
Conclusion and Recommendation
From the above discussion, it has been deduced that the chosen organisation has breached its ethical concern at the workplace. One of the employees of Uber has been exploited by the higher authority of Uber that has imposed a heavy loss over organisation. The UK government has banned Uber services in the UK after this incident. As per the above discussion, it has been deduced that employees are the assets of an organisation and hence it is the responsibility of the management to take care of their each employees in all manner. The organisation Uber needs to reframe their organisational culture also requires keeping above-discussed factors in their mind while treating any of the employees at the workplace of Uber. As per the ethical concern, the organisation has to access the needs of every employee and also has to control any internal conflicts at the workplace. The case or the incident what has been happened, as mentioned in the above case study should not be repeated in the future. The organisation Uber needs to maitain the ethical standard at the workplace so that these kinds of incidents should not take place agin in the nature.
- Hopkins, M., 2016. The planetary bargain: corporate social responsibility comes of age. Berlin: Springer.
- Schrempf-Stirling, J., Palazzo, G. and Phillips, R.A., 2016. Historic corporate social responsibility. Academy of Management Review, 41(4), pp.700-719.
- Veldman, J. and Willmott, H., 2016. The cultural grammar of governance: The UK Code of Corporate Governance, reflexivity, and the limits of ‘soft’regulation. human relations, 69(3), pp.581-603.
- Wang, X., Yang, H., Shi, M., Zhou, D. and Zhang, Z., 2015. Managing stakeholders' conflicts for water reallocation from agriculture to industry in the Heihe River Basin in Northwest China. Science of the Total Environment, 505, pp.823-832.
- Zhong, N., Wang, S. and Yang, R., 2017. Does Corporate Governance Enhance Common Interests of Shareholders and Primary Stakeholders?. Journal of business ethics, 141(2), pp.411-431.