For those of you who are unaware of the situation, in the past week Northlands has just fired all of their parking cashiers after two recent audits proved that roughly 1 million was unaccounted for. Throughout the summer, there were two audits using car counts and in-booth cameras. From this, it was estimated that for every five dollars made, one dollar was being pocketed. Annually, Northlands usually makes about six million on parking, so the estimated loss could be anywhere between $700 000 and $1.2 million. It was also noted that about half the parking cashiers were not following procedures. So why instead of investigating the missing million did Northlands instead decide to fire all of the employees that “could” have been involved? To save themselves the four months worth of investigation which would ultimately cost the company approximately $400,000. Tim Reid, the CEO of Northlands Park, said that the decision was made in the best interests of the company. It was more healing to let everyone go rather than point out the guilty parties. Reid stated “This may not seem like the most fair decision, but it was the most financially viable for the company.”(as said to Global News). Mayor Don Iveson (who also sits on the Northlands board) agrees that there is no fault in Northlands’ actions.
A pressing question hangs over the entirety of this unfortunate situation, how did this happen in the first place? How did the accounting department allow a million dollars to simply vanish? There must have been evidence that something was amiss. Northlands has stated that if they find any compelling evidence they will turn it over to the police for an investigation. As for now, there have been no criminal charges filed.
Some of the employees that have been fired have obtained legal counsel. There is a case for wrongful dismissal since there is currently no evidence towards which employees are guilty. Even Reid has admitted that “there were some exceptional members of the team…not everybody was at fault”. If the employees can prove that they were innocent, they can thus prove that they were wrongfully dismissed. The employees that have been wrongfully dismissed are worried about defamation of character. It will be harder for them to get new jobs after their involvement in this scandal. Many of these former employees have stated that they are concerned for their reputation.
If Northlands does get sued for these wrongful dismissal cases, they will have to do the aforementioned investigation, pay lawyer’s fees and if they are found guilty, pay out settlements. Reid is confident however that Northlands can successfully defend themselves against any possible lawsuit. In the end, this entire scandal may end up costing Northlands more than if they did the investigation in the first place. The question now is how will this scandal affect Northlands’ rebranding next year?
The CMC is having a bake sale on Friday October 30. Our annual networking conference will be Saturday, February 6 at the Derrick. This is a great opportunity to network with business professionals within your emphasis. The conference is especially recommended for third and fourth year students, but ALL management students are welcome. Lastly, if you want a say in what we get for apparel, be sure to take the survey. To get updates on what the CMC is doing keep checking our facebook, twitter, linkedin or our web page. If you want to get involved or have any questions, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.If you have any pressing concerns, the management student representative, Kira Pelletier, has office hours from 8:15-9:15 on Tuesdays and Thursdays.