Accounting Ethics Questions Essay

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.....ethical for an employer to use social media information as a factor when considering whether to hire an employee? What about monitoring social networking activities of employees while on the job? Use ethical reasoning in answering these questions.

The wide-ranging use of social media in the workplace gives rise to serious moral and ethical concerns. Kantian ethics lays emphasis on the form of an action in ascertaining its morality. Kant insists on the Categorical Imperative. Kant implies that this ethical principle is the superlative and outright and proper test to morality, whereas imperative implies that from time to time one must command oneself to be moral and undertake the right thing, even and particularly when one's self-centeredness may be infringed by acting ethically (Mintz, 2015). As an overall moral rule, for an employer to impose into an employee's private life on social media devoid of consent or in a clandestine or intimidating way would be immoral under Kantian ethics. Employing social media while determining whether to hire or employ an applicant, when social media content is not pertinent to the employee's capacity to do the job, would be discourteous, patronizing, and biased to job applicants and employees, yet again, irrespective of permission. The risk of such actions is that personal information obtained from perspective or mistakenly might cause employers to evaluate applicants falsely, devoid of their awareness or short of offering a chance for explanation (Mintz, 2015).

On the other hand, with respect to monitoring social networking activities of employees while on the job, it can be argued that lawful and impartial employer social media policies and practices attain more good consequences than bad, which would make this aspect to be moral with regard to Utilitarianism. In addition, whilst on the job, the employees are expected to be working, and therefore cannot be deemed to be infringing on the employee's liberty, confidentiality, and dignity and thus is not immoral (Mintz, 2015).

2. Michael just graduated with a degree in Accounting from State University. He worked hard in school but could only achieve a 2.95 GPA because he worked 40 hours a week to pay his own way through college. Unfortunately, Michael was unable to get a job because the recruiters all had a 3.0 GPA cut-off point. Michael stayed with his college job for another year but is anxious to start his public accounting career. One day he reads about a job opening with a local CPA firm. The entry-level position pays little but it's a way for Michael to get his foot in the door. However, he knows there will be candidates for the position with a higher GPA than his so he is thinking about using his overall GPA, which was 3.25 including two years of community college studies, rather than his major GPA and the GPA at State, even though the advertisement asks for these two GPAs. Michael asks for your opinion before sending in the resume. What would you say to Michael and why?

First and foremost, I would point out to Michael that professionals in the accounting profession are expected to maintain high ethical standards at all times and comply with utmost integrity in all undertakings.
Considering this, I would not advise him to use his overall GPA of 3.25 that is inclusive of his two years of community college studies. To begin with, there is a possibility that Michael would still fail to get the entry-level position with the overall GPA of 3.25. However, in the event that he does succeed in the screening process for the position, the CPA firm would routinely ask for official documents that substantiate such grades. As a result, the firm would discover that Michael was deceitful. In this perspective, as a candidate, he would be charged of dishonesty and duplicity. This implies that he might not get any chance of working with the firm in the future, or possibly, even other CPA firms (Mintz, 2016).

On the other hand, I would advise him to be truthful and attach the two documents required. This will be imperative because if Michael makes the application with the 2.95 GPA, then he can have the chance to give his reasons as to why he stands out as a suitable candidate for the entry-level position. In his curriculum vitae and cover letter, Michael can have the prospect to point out his impressive work ethic and proficiencies attained whilst working his way through school. For instance, some of these proficiencies might encompass prioritizing responsibilities, time management, organization and time management. These competencies might stack up against the other candidates without any kind of experience. Additionally, in his curriculum vitae, Michael can include the three attainments, the major GPA, State GPA, and cumulative GPA. This way, when he passes the screening process, he is capable of providing any documents required (Mintz, 2016).

3. The 2011 National Business Ethics Survey defines "active social networkers" as people who spend more than 30% of the workday participating on social networking sites. According to the results of the survey, active social networkers air company linen in public. Sixty percent would comment on their personal sites about their company if it was in the news, 53% say they share information about work projects once a week or more, and more than a third say they often comment, on their personal sites, about managers, coworkers, and even clients. What are the dangers of such behavior for the employee and employer?

There are dangers for both employees and employers with respect to active social networkers sharing information about their company. For the employers, the danger is that workplace secrets are not safe any longer and therefore they have to make the supposition that any aspects that take place within the work setting, be it new products, new policies or new issues, could become public at any given moment. On the other hand, for employees, the danger is that they are extraordinarily susceptible to ethics risks. Therefore, they are bound….....

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Blatch, M. L. (2015). AICPA's revised confidentiality rule and Sec. 7216. Journal of Accountancy. Retrieved from:

Mintz, S. (2015). Is it Ethical for Employers to use Social Media in Hiring and Employment Decisions? Ethics Sage. Retrieved from:

Mintz, S. (2016). Ethical obligations and decision-making in accounting: text and cases. Mcgraw-Hill Higher Education.

Ethics Resource Center. (2013). National Business Ethics Survey of Social Networkers: New Risks and Opportunities at Work. Retrieved from:

Mande, V., & Son, M. (2012). Do financial restatements lead to auditor changes? Auditing: A Journal of Practice & Theory, 32(2), 119-145.

Sun, W., & Sun, J. (2002). Analysis on Factors Influencing Managers' Earnings Management Intentions (pp. 477-482). working paper.

SEC. (2015). SEC Charges BNY Mellon With FCPA Violations. Retrieved from:

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