Code of Ethics


Statement On Quality Commitment

Introduction

HMW Computing is working towards becoming a certified member of the PCG QS quality scheme ("the Scheme"). Achieving this standard will mean not only that we have proved the effectiveness of our business processes to UKAS accredited ISO9001:2000 auditors, but also that we adhere strictly to the Scheme's Code of Ethics, thus we continually maintain the highest levels of integrity and business excellence.

We issue this voluntary statement as part of the compliance process under the Scheme and to assure you of our continued quality commitment.

Explanation of the Scheme

PCG QS is a scheme for consultancy businesses to achieve full ISO9001:2000 compliance, independently audited by the most widely recognised certification body in the world (BVQi). PCG QS includes a mandatory Code of Ethics ("Code of Ethics") for participating members.

  • Further details of the Scheme are available at: PCG QS

Our Policy

It is our intention and commitment to the Scheme that all personnel we supply to perform our work shall adhere to the Code of Ethics and the Scheme requirements at all times during the period of any contract we have with our clients. We strive to continually improve the quality, skill, and competency of the services we supply and it is our intention to provide our services in accordance with our contractual, statutory and regulatory requirements relevant to our business sector.

Quality Management System and Client Feedback

The Scheme requires us to maintain a quality management system designed to ensure that our clients' comments, both positive and negative, are recorded. Our records are subject to audit and affect our continued certification under the Scheme.

As we aim to provide our clients with our best service at all times it is important for us to gain feedback, and we invite all our clients, entirely without obligation, to let us know their comments.

We hope that no one ever has cause to believe that we may have failed our commitment, but the steps to take in respect of commitment failure are as set out below. It is a requirement of the Scheme that we enter any correspondence relating to commitment failure into our Quality Management System and generate an acknowledgement to the complainant.

Commitment Failure

Adherence to our commitments is a vital element of our participation in the Scheme. In the event that you believe that we have failed to meet the standards set out in this Quality Commitment then we ask that you as a first step raise the matter directly with our representative with whom you have been dealing. However, if you consider the matter to be sufficiently serious, or you consider our initial response to be unsatisfactory, then please set out your issue to us in correspondence (in email or letter form).

  • You may at any time copy correspondence to PCG QS administration by emailing the PCG

Our commitment is to endeavour to respond as soon as it is practicable to any issue that you raise with us in this way.

PCG STATEMENT AND PCG QS CODE OF ETHICS Part 1

The statement made by the PCG and this Code has been developed by the PCG to ensure that members of PCG QS conduct their business ethically and in accordance with sound business practice and in compliance with relevant laws.

Definitions

PCG
Means the trade organisation known as Professional Contractors Group Limited.
PCG Member
Means a person (including a company) that is a current member of the PCG.
ISO 9001:2000
Means the quality standard variant of ISO 9001 issued by the International Organisation for Standardisation comprising a Management System Certification that addresses the principles of customer satisfaction, continual improvement and the development of processes for good management
Scheme Member
Means a PCG Member that has achieved Certification and has entered into an undertaking with the PCG to comply with the requirements of ISO 9001:2000 and the values set out in that Code of Ethics in accordance with this Scheme
Certification
Means certification that a person has achieved the standard required by ISO 9001:2000
Code of Ethics
Means the codes of good and ethical practice set out in Part 2 of this Document
Scheme
Means the PCG QS scheme comprising the creation by the PCG of a set of quality standards relevant to quality assurance by the provider of first class contract services for use by Members and the agreement by a Scheme Member to adhere to the Code of Ethics
Roll
The Roll of Scheme Members kept by the PCG
Complainant
Any client (but excluding any associate of, or related party to, the client) of a Scheme Member that complains to the PCG of a breach of commitment by the relevant Scheme Member

PCG commitment

PCG itself has achieved Certification and shares the quality commitment assured by its Scheme Members. As part of that commitment the PCG works continually to develop and improve the quality commitment provided by Scheme Members to their clients. Towards this end the PCG is committed to

  • at all times administer the Scheme fairly and in good faith towards both Scheme Members and clients of Scheme Members
  • wherever it appears necessary to do so, develop the Code of Ethics to reflect new requirements and statements of law or good practice or other issues of quality assurance which may be applicable to the users of services provided by Scheme Members
  • not allow any person to be entered on the Roll unless such a person is
    • a PCG Member and
    • the PCG is satisfied that the PCG Member has achieved Certification which is current and valid
    • the PCG Member has entered into an undertaking to comply with the values set out in the Code of Ethics as required by the Scheme
    • the PCG Member is not currently excluded from the Scheme for any reason
    • take suitable steps to check that a Scheme Member has Certification at any time and that the Scheme requirements are complied with
    • record any breach of commitment in accordance with the provisions below.

To ensure that the value of quality commitment under the Scheme is at all times upheld, the PCG may, in the most serious cases of non conformity, exclude a PCG Member from the Scheme. In that event as part of the Scheme PCG shall remove the name of the PCG Member from the Roll, but there is no obligation upon the PCG to take that step or to notify any party other than the Scheme Member of exclusion.

Procedures relating to complaints

If a Complainant shall complain in writing to the PCG that a Member has acted in breach of its commitment the PCG shall, subject to the provisions below

  • acknowledge the complaint
  • enter a note of non conformity into the audit trail of the Scheme Member recording the circumstances of the commitment failure unless, following an investigation, the PCG considers the complaint to be invalid.

The PCG may as part of the quality assurance offered by the Scheme, undertake an investigation into the circumstances of a complaint in accordance with its internal current complaints procedures. However the PCG may decline to record or investigate a complaint which is trivial or, in the opinion of the PCG, invalid. The PCG may also decline to record or investigate a complaint unless the Complainant has already raised its complaint formally and in writing with the relevant Scheme Member direct, and either

  • the Scheme Member has not responded to the complaint within the relevant time, or,
  • the response provided by the Scheme Member does not properly address the complaint and the issues raised by it to the reasonable satisfaction of the Complainant.

Please note that

  • the PCG has no power to impose fines or require a Scheme Member to make any compensatory payment to a Complainant
  • information provided to the PCG by a Scheme Member is voluntary and confidential and the PCG is not obliged to provide such information to the Complainant
  • information in any event provided by a Complainant or a Scheme Member may only be disclosed to the other party with the prior consent of the party giving the information
  • matters provided for in any contractual arrangement between a Scheme Member and a Client will override any conflicting code

In the event of any legal dispute between the Complainant and a Member the interests of either party may be affected if the Member is required to respond to a complaint. For example in Court or Tribunal proceedings the parties are usually obliged to disclose documents and make statements relevant to the subject matter of the proceedings. Accordingly, in order to avoid any potential prejudice to either the Complainant or Scheme Member, PCG may decline to undertake or continue any investigation in any of the following circumstances

  • during any period of legal proceedings between the Scheme Member and the Complainant
  • if the PCG reasonably forms the view that an investigation may affect or be relevant to any proceedings threatened, but not commenced at the time of the complaint

Please note that improper use by a Scheme Member of a threat to take proceedings against a complainant in order to avoid investigation by the PCG is a breach of the Code of Ethics.

PCG STATEMENT AND PCG QS CODE OF ETHICS - Part 2

Title

Rule

Commitment and values by Scheme Member

General

1

Act professionally and in good faith and to the highest standards properly required for the work objectives. Wherever possible react positively to client needs and respond to client feedback.

Client Education

2

Where it is in the interest of a client to have information relevant to the work or the client’s use of the work results, to enable the client to take the full benefit of the work, provide the client with the information. If it is appropriate for training to be provided to the client to enable the client to obtain full advantage of the work, advise the client of the advantage of training and either offer to provide any necessary training under agreed contractual arrangements or advise the client of any service provider that may be able to provide the training if appropriate.

Competence

3

Prior to accepting any work, make suitable enquiries to ensure familiarity with the requirements and scope of the work and that it is sufficiently competent to perform such work to a proper standard.

Confidentiality

4

Safeguard and respect any provided confidential information or documents of a client save to the extent permitted by the client, allowed under any contractual arrangements, or required by law.

Conflict of Interest

5

Not do anything that may be in conflict with the best interests of a client save to the extent permitted under any contractual arrangements. Where a potential conflict arises, first advise the client of the potential conflict and give the client an opportunity to end any contract or agree alternate arrangements. At all times before and during the provision of any services advise the client in good faith and not undertake work which it may be inappropriate to perform without first having advised the client of available options.

Contract

6

Wherever work is to be of a substantive nature, before starting such work enter into a written contract with the client reflecting the terms agreed.

Co-operation

7

Co-operate with any reasonable enquiry or investigation by a client into work undertaken as part of the services, but not so that the Scheme Member shall incur cost without reasonable compensation. Co-operate with any investigation accepted and undertaken by the PCG as part of the Scheme.

Discrimination

8

At all times act without discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, ethnic origin, and sexual orientation.

Employment

9

Take responsibility for the employment issues of its consultants and sub contractors performing the work for a client and not make any claim against a client for employment rights of any kind unless such a claim is genuine, the claim is made in good faith, and the relevant written contractual arrangements reflect a contract of employment.

Familiarity

10

Ensure familiarity with any applicable requirements of the business sector relevant to the work to be performed for a client.

Hardware

11

Take good care of hardware provided by a client and only use it as authorised and not for any other purpose. Ensure that its own equipment used in connection with any services is not incompatible with client systems and does not and is not capable of interfering with the operations of any client system. Advise the client where there may be incompatibility and propose one or more reasonable solutions to the client to overcome any perceived conflict, including use of alternative equipment.

Health & Safety

12

Act to prevent avoidable danger to health or safety, and report to the client any matter that the Scheme Member believes may affect the health and safety of any person.

Illegality

13

Not undertake any work that is, or which a professional person in the same position may consider to be illegal or perform any work that to the knowledge of the Scheme Member, may be used by a client to violate the law.

Inability to fulfil

14

If, once work has commenced, the Scheme Member has insufficient skill or resources or for any reason may not be able to complete any part of the work required for a client, advise the client of the difficulty and work with the client to resolve the problem in good faith, where necessary assisting the client to locate additional resources.

Independent Opinions

15

Only represent as independent those opinions that are free of self-interest. If an opinion is affected by self-interest, to disclose the self-interest.

Industry Standards

16

Ensure that services are provided in line with relevant industry standards.

Integrity

17

In all of their professional activities, act with honesty, integrity and courtesy applicable to the provider of first class professional services.

IPR

18

Cooperate with a client to ensure that there is no ambiguity as to ownership of IPR, and not claim entitlement to, or make use of IPR, that does not belong to the Scheme Member arising from work undertaken by the Scheme Member for the client except to any extent allowed by any contractual arrangements between the parties.

Misrepresentation

19

Not knowingly make any false statement to a client or any person working for or with a client. In particular,

 

19.1

 

not make any representation to a client or potential client that is not full and accurate or induce a client to engage the Scheme Member to provide services on the basis of incorrect information,

 

19.2

ensure, so far as is reasonably practical, that any historical information relating to work undertaken by the Scheme Member or any consultant or sub contractor on its behalf is correct in all material respects.

Negotiations

20

Ensure that any negotiations leading to a contract are conducted openly and in good faith. Use appropriate endeavours to ensure there is a good and clear understanding of requirements, objectives and obligations.

Obligations

21

Comply with its contractual obligations.

Openness

22

Keep the client informed of any matters relating to the conduct of and progress of work even if the information is detrimental to the Member.

Programs and software

23

At all times use reasonable endeavours to maintain the integrity of client programs or software used in connection with any services. Ensure that its own programs or software used in connection with any services is not incompatible with the clients systems and does not and is not capable of interfering with the operations of any client system. Advise the client where there may be incompatibility and propose one or more reasonable solutions to the client to overcome any perceived conflict, including use of alternative programs or software.

Relevant Legislation

24

Ensure its own compliance with legislation and regulations relevant to the nature of the work to be performed.

Software Piracy

25

Never knowingly install or use software that has not been properly licensed for use, and advise a client where it is apparent that a client system comprises of software that is unauthorised. Never knowingly install or use software that has not been properly licensed for use, and advise a client where it is apparent that a client system comprises of software that is unauthorised.

Use of consultants and sub contractors

26

Ensure that its consultants and sub contractors performing the work for a client are suitable and competent to perform the work, and in particular:

 

26.1

are familiar with the Code of Ethics and has agreed to act in accordance with the principles of the Code of Ethics

 

26.2

through training or other methods retain necessary skills.

 

26.3

through training or other methods maintain sufficient knowledge of contemporary technology and developments relevant to the work requirements.

Work-around

27

Keep the client properly informed of obstacles that the Scheme Member becomes aware, or should reasonably be aware, may interfere with the objectives of the services provided or to be provided, and wherever appropriate, within the scope of any work undertaken, suggest any suitable work-around solutions.