Guidance on Whistleblowing


Statement of Ethical Principles
The decisions and actions of non-destructive testing (NDT) and condition monitoring (CM) personnel have a profound impact on the world we live in and society at large. Making a clear and public commitment to operating with integrity and honesty is essential to create a greater level of trust and confidence, and a positive perception of the NDT, CM and all other materials and quality testing disciplines.

What Is Whistleblowing and What Are BINDT Members’ Obligations?
Whistleblowing’ is defined by the UK Whistleblowing Commission as ‘the raising of a concern, either within the workplace or externally, about a danger, risk, malpractice or wrongdoing which affects others’. The Engineering Council’s Policy Statement on the subject adopts a similar definition, although for engineers and engineering technicians, whose professional lives revolve around the management of risk, it substitutes ‘inadequate quantification and management of risk’ for ‘risk’ alone.

Engineers and technicians should understand their professional obligations with respect to whistleblowing and know where to go to for support when they have a concern that they believe should be raised. The profession is committed to meeting its public benefit obligations to society. Developing a culture where individuals feel supported in raising a concern and speaking up in the public interest is part of meeting this commitment.

In whistleblowing situations, an important principle is that individuals should first explore their employer’s policies and procedures for raising concerns. BINDT is able to advise its members on any aspect of ‘whistleblowing’ and to provide further advice on this matter. [The Engineering Council’s Guidance Note on this subject can be downloaded using the link referenced below].

All British Institute of Non-Destructive Testing (BINDT) members, across all grades of membership, undertake to advance the objects of the Institute and to be governed by the Bye-Laws and the Code of Conduct. Any failure to do so can be dealt with by expulsion from Institute membership, removal of PCN Certification and consequent loss of Engineering Registration, if applicable.

Code of Conduct
The Engineering Council and the Royal Academy of Engineering have jointly created a Statement of Ethical Principles for all engineering professionals. BINDT has adopted these principles and has also included values that are specific to BINDT.

Engineering professionals work to enhance the wellbeing of society. In doing so, they are required to maintain and promote high ethical standards and challenge unethical behaviour.

Members of BINDT, both individuals and companies, in recognition of the importance of the engineering profession in affecting the quality of life, should accept personal obligations to act with integrity in the public interest and maintain and improve their competence.

Code of Ethics for PCN Certificate Holders
Individuals certificated within the PCN Scheme must recognise that personal integrity and professional competence are the fundamental principles on which their testing activities are founded. Accordingly, it is a condition of PCN certification that certificate holders shall abide by the PCN Code of Ethics (PCN document CP27).

All certificate holders agree to comply with this Code of Ethics at the point of application for examination, recertification and renewal.

There is a process for whistleblowing via PCN document CP21 for complaints and appeals, which are handled with extreme discretion.

NDT Apprenticeships End-Point Assessment Complaints and Appeals Procedure
If an employer or apprentice or other connected organisation or person wishes to complain about the end-point assessment process or about a person employed directly or indirectly by the independent end-point assessment organisation, or appeal against any decision or outcome made by the end-point assessment organisation they should refer to the NDT Apprenticeships – End-Point Assessment Complaints and Appeals Procedure document AA270.

Document Downloads
BINDT Bye-Law 1; BINDT Bye-Law 2; BINDT Bye-Law 3; BINDT Bye-Law 4
BINDT Members Code of Conduct
Membership Department Complaints and Disciplinary Procedures PP05
Code of Ethics for PCN Certificate Holders CP27
PCN Complaints and Appeals CP21
NDT Apprenticeships – End-Point Assessment Complaints and Appeals Procedure AA270

Useful Links
Engineering Council

Royal Academy of Engineering