Being a CIPD member shows that you are serious about your career in the people profession and that you uphold the standards of professionalism that the CIPD expects. These standards are captured in our Code of Conduct and Ethics. 

But sometimes mistakes are made and standards can slip. When this happens, we have a duty to act, not only to uphold standards but also to help any members who are struggling.

Anyone can raise an alleged breach of the Code. Investigations and hearings are supported by a pool of experienced volunteers – members and non-members – trained by the Code team. On the very rare occasion that a serious breach of the Code has occurred, sanctions may be applied. These often require elements of reflection and personal development and in very serious cases a Conduct Hearing is required.

If a conduct panel finds that a member has breached the Code, the CIPD considers whether to publish details of the case, the member and the sanction applied. The CIPD does not publish the outcome where an alleged breach of the Code has not been found or the allegation has not been taken forward.

We can only investigate cases that are a breach of the CIPD Code of Conduct and Ethics. Complaint enquiries often relate to employment or recruitment disputes and are resolved outside of the CIPD. Others are beyond the scope of the Code and more relevant for Acas or separate dispute resolution. 

During our last financial year, from 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2023, we received 119* complaint enquiries. Of these, 20 cases were eligible for investigation (at the close of our year, 5 investigations were concluded and 15 were ongoing ). None of the cases were escalated to a full conduct hearing. 

*This is the total number of enquiries about any HR professional, a small percentage may not be CIPD members although they may claim to be CIPD members on social media or company websites. These cases are referred to our legal department for cease-and-desist letters to be issued for misrepresentation.  

Read a summary of the cases we've investigated

Code of Conduct and Ethics cases
PDF document 132.4 KB

Blacklisting in the construction industry

The CIPD unequivocally condemns blacklisting.

The CIPD have concluded investigations into potential breaches of the Code of Professional Conduct related to blacklisting regarding 18 members. Investigation and conduct proceedings and outcomes are confidential. We cannot therefore respond to enquiries regarding specific individuals but can confirm that of the 18 investigations, 12 were referred to a conduct hearing and a total of six cases were found in breach of the code. A range of sanctions were applied to the members found in breach of the code, from reprimands to expulsion of membership.

Read the press releaseCIPD responds to blacklisting settlement.

How to Submit Alleged Breaches of the CIPD Code

Our Code of Conduct and Ethics sets standards for CIPD members as individual professionals. You can submit an allegation if you think a member has breached the code.

Certificates of Good Standing

What to expect if you make a request for a Certificate of Good Standing.

Code of Conduct and Ethics volunteers

A pool of trained volunteer panel members support the CIPD in considering alleged breaches of our Code of Conduct and Ethics volunteers.