People & Human Resources

Should I make my absent minded employee pay for the stuff they lose?

Aunty B /

Hi Aunty B,

I have a good, but absent minded employee. He lost his company phone, so I gave him an old one lying around the office. Now he’s lost a $30 stylus from his tablet. Is it within my rights to ask him to pay for the replacement?

Kind regards,




Dear John,

Are you really emailing me about a $30 stylus? Given the time you spent thinking about this email and then sending it to me you’ve wasted that much money easily.

I think you have your answer in the fact he’s a good employee. This means you are best not to worry about the $30 stylus and just replace it. Company phones are a bit more expensive, so it might be worth while putting in place a policy that says if one phone is lost or stolen the company will replace it, but once it gets to two phones, the employee has to use their own.

Be Smart,

Aunty B

What are you waiting for? Email your questions, problems and issues to [email protected] right now./p>

Aunty B

I’m SmartCompany’s resident Agony Aunt. Have a problem to solve? Just ask. @IamAuntyB #AuntyB

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