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Engineering Ethics, Essay Example

Pages: 2

Words: 540

Essay

Problem

  1. Is it ethical for Engineer to insist, as a condition for employment that Rookie sign the non-compete agreement?
  2. Does the non-compete agreement imply that Rookie will work for Engineer forever or can he start his own firm someday?

Answer

It is ethical for Engineer to insist on the non-compete agreement because without such agreement Rookie can open a firm close to that of Engineer and use information obtained from Engineer to pose unfair competition.

Assumptions

Rookie will learn new information on the practice of engineering while employed by Engineer.

Rookie has an option of accepting or rejecting the contract.

The condition in the agreement is meant to be binding.

Rookie will pose undue competition if he opens a firm close to that of engineer.

Advantages of the condition

  1. The condition will protect Engineer from a competing and similar firm run by Rookie.
  2. The condition will also reduce the chances of Rookie stealing clients from Engineers firm in case Rookie opens his own firm.

Disadvantages

The non-compete condition is a disadvantage to Rookie since he cannot open an engineering firm similar to that of Engineer in the same county for at least y a year.

Analysis

The non-compete condition in the agreement is meant to protect Engineer from undue competition that will result if Rookie having being employed in the past decides to open a similar firm close to that of Engineer. The non-compete condition is reasonable as it provides a time limit of one year and covers only the immediate location of Engineers’ firm. The condition is drawn in the best interest of Engineer and may pose a challenge in the advancement of Rookies career. It is for this reason that the condition disadvantages Rookies inspirations of opening a firm. Nevertheless, the condition is realistic and as such may not pose a serious disadvantage to Rookies career. The incorporation of the non-compete agreement in the contract is not restricted by the engineering code of ethics, and it is left to the parties to enter into agreements that are fair.

Other sources

The National Society of Professional Engineers code of ethics does not have an explicit provision in regard to issues of non-compete conditions. However, the fundamental canons of the code require engineers to act for each employer as a faithful agent or trustee. This implies that, during such employment, the engineer has access to information that can give unfair competition to his employee and as such the necessity of the non-compete agreement. The code also requires engineers to be to be fair and equitable in their engagements. Similarly, the American society of Civil Engineers does provide for this situation explicitly, and like National Society of Professional Engineers code, it requires engineers to uphold integrity, dignity and honor. However, this code also has a fundamental canon that supports the development of careers of engineers who are employed. This canon requires engineers to provide opportunities of development for individuals under their supervision.

Conclusion

The non-compete condition in the agreement is ethical as it does not contradict the engineers code of conduct. Additionally, Rookie is not under any obligation to enter into the agreement with Engineer and can opt to reject the agreement.

Works Cited

American society of Civil Engineers. Code of ethics. American society of Civil Engineers.

National Society of Professional Engineers. Code of ethics for engineers. National Society of Professional Engineers.

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