Code of Ethics & Pledge
The Institute of Management Consultants Ltd (IMC) in Australia has adopted the following Code of Ethics, on 26th November 2008, as proof of the commitment of IMC Members to:
- Develop realistic and practical solutions to client problems
- Act in the clients best interests at all times,
- Render impartial, factually-based, independent advice,
- Accept only those client engagements they are qualified to perform,
- Behave with integrity and professionalism at all times,
- Agree with the client in advance on the basis for their professional fees,
- Safeguard confidential information
As the professional association and certifying body for management consultants in Australia, the Institute of Management Consultants (IMC) requires adherence to this Code of Ethics as a condition of membership and a prerequisite to certification. All members have pledged in writing to abide by the Institute's Code of Ethics and their voluntary adherence to the Code signifies the self-discipline of the profession.
The Code sets out the principles of the ethical practice of management consulting. The purpose of this Code is to ensure IMC members maintain their professionalism and adhere to high ethical standards while providing services to clients; and also in their dealings with their colleagues and the public.
The individual judgement of member consultants is required to apply these principles and members may be liable to disciplinary action under the IMC rules if their conduct is found to:
- Be in violation of the Code, or
- Bring discredit to the profession or to the IMC.
The Disciplinary Committee of the Institute will investigate any such complaint and, amongst other options, may sanction or expel the member if a breach is confirmed.
IMC Australia Code of Ethics
- It is the objective of each member, as a professional management consultant, to assist his or her clients to add value to the clients enterprise; whether that enterprise takes the form of a business, a not-for-profit organisation or any element of government.
- A member will serve their clients with integrity, competence, objectivity, independence and professionalism.
- A member will only accept assignments that the member is competent to perform; and, on a client project, will only assign staff or engage colleagues with knowledge and expertise relevant to the client project.
- Before accepting any engagement a member will establish with the client realistic expectations of the objectives, scope, expected benefits, work plan and fee structure of the assignment.
- A member will agree in advance with the client on the basis for fees and expenses.
- A member will charge fees that are reasonable; commensurate with the services delivered, the value created and the risk or responsibility accepted.
- A member recognises that the clients enterprise has many stakeholders whose interests are sometimes divergent, and will seek to balance and reconcile these different interests in their guidance to the client.
- A members advice to the client will be delivered with independence and courage; always focussing on the long-term best interests of the enterprise as a whole, even when this guidance may lead to actions such as restructuring or retrenchments that may be painful in the short-term.
- A member will continually invest in professional development to keep abreast of evolving knowledge within their profession and in areas of technical expertise.
- A member will treat all confidential client information appropriately; will take reasonable steps to prevent access to confidential information by unauthorised people and will not take advantage of proprietary or privileged information, for use by the member or others, without the client's permission.
- A member will avoid conflicts of interest, or the appearance of such, and will disclose to the client immediately any circumstances or interests that they believe may influence their judgment or objectivity.
- A member will offer to withdraw from a consulting assignment when they believe their objectivity or integrity may be impaired.
- A member will represent the profession with integrity and professionalism in their relations with clients, colleagues and the general public.
- A member will respect the rights of consulting colleagues and consulting firms and will not use their proprietary information or methodologies without permission.
- A member will report to appropriate authorities within or external to the client organisation any occurrences of malfeasance, dangerous behaviour or illegal activities discovered during the course of an assignment.
- A member will not accept commissions, remuneration, or other benefits from a third party in connection with any recommendations to a client without that client's prior knowledge and consent, and will disclose in advance any financial interests in goods or services that form part of such recommendations.
- A member will refrain from inviting an employee of an active or inactive client to consider alternative employment without prior discussion with the client. A member will not advertise their services in a deceptive manner nor misrepresent or denigrate individual consulting practitioners, consulting firms, or the consulting profession.
- A member will promote adherence to the Code of Ethics by all other consultants working on their behalf.
- A client, a member of the public or a member of the Institute may report any perceived violation of the Code of Ethics to the Institute of Management Consultants. In the event of such complaint a Disciplinary Committee will be convened to investigate and recommend appropriate actions, including but not limited to: mediation, arbitration or sanction against the member concerned.
Approved by IMC (Australia) Federal Council on 26th November 2008.
The IMC Consultant's Pledge
As a management consultant my professional objective is to assist my clients to add value to their enterprise, whether that enterprise takes the form of a business, a not-for-profit organisation or any element of government.
I pledge to uphold and promote the IMC Code of Ethics in all my consulting activities.
I will serve my clients with integrity, competence, objectivity, independence and professionalism.
I will only accept assignments that I am competent to perform and, on a client project, will only assign staff or engage colleagues who have knowledge and expertise appropriate to that clients needs.
I will establish with my clients realistic expectations of the benefits and results of my services. Together we will define the scope and process of the assignment and the basis of remuneration.
I pledge that considerations of personal benefit will never over-ride my focus on the interests of the client or their stakeholders.
I promise to uphold both the letter and the spirit of laws, regulations and contracts governing my own conduct, that of my client and of the societies in which we both operate. My personal behaviour will exemplify the values I publicly espouse in making this pledge.
I will be equally vigilant in ensuring the professional behaviour of other consultants within my practice or the wider IMC membership and will bring to attention any violation of this shared professional code.
I will not permit considerations of race, gender, nationality, religion, politics, sexual orientation or social status to influence my professional behaviour or advice. I will be respectful of those whose wellbeing may be contingent on my decisions or advice. I will diligently apply objective judgement to all consulting assignments, based on the best information available to me. I will conduct independent research and analysis where possible, and will consult with colleagues and others who can help inform my judgement.
I will continually invest in professional development to keep abreast of evolving knowledge within my profession and in my areas of technical expertise.
I recognise that my status and privileges as a professional stem from the respect and trust that the profession as a whole enjoys; and I accept my responsibility to employ, protect and develop the above standards to enhance that respect and trust.
I do so solemnly pledge.