Survey results also showed that although there had been an increase in companies implementing codes of conduct, anti-bribery or anti-corruption policies and whistleblowing hotlines, the moves were not seen by employees as effective. Almost 40 percent of respondents in Singapore felt that a code of conduct had little impact on how people actually behaved.
"Companies have to go beyond having the right code of conduct and policies to having a more proactive compliance monitoring program and integrity systems," said Khoo.
Despite its squeaky clean reputation and a robust anti-corruption atmosphere, Khoo added that Singapore should not be complacent on unethical behaviour "as it could be predisposed to unethical conduct that is happening elsewhere. "
Khoo suggested that companies employ forensic data analytics to monitor data within the organization to gain better insight into whether employees were engaged in unethical behavior.
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On the upside, 70 per cent of Singaporean respondents to the survey said that they believed companies with a strong reputation for ethical behavior had a commercial advantage. And 80 percent said they would not be keen to work for a company that was involved in or had an association with bribery and corruption .
According to Singapore's Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau, corruption is at its lowest in three decades, based on the number of cases the bureau is investigating. Singapore and New Zealand are the only two Asia Pacific countries among the top ten cleanest countries in Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index.