Workplace Investigations can become necessary in a wide variety of circumstances, including:
We work with businesses and organizations to provide quick and effective workplace investigations ensuring that complaints are appropriately resolved and that a safe and productive work environment is provided for employees. In less serious situations we also provide guidance for internally conducted investigations, or supervision of external HR investigators. Each situation is unique and will require a context-specific approach to the investigation. However, most workplace investigations involve the following steps:
The first step in a Workplace Investigation is to review any written complaints made along with any internal policies your organization has that are relevant to the situation. We also take initial steps with your organization to ensure the maximum confidentiality possible is maintained for all parties. At the conclusion of the initial review, we will advise you if we feel an investigation is warranted and if so, make recommendations about how to proceed. Separating individuals and implementing suspensions may be required at this stage.
We will meet complainant first, other witnesses identified, and then the respondent. Following the witness interviews, we may request additional documents not initially provided by the organization.
The investigator will prepare a report outlining the evidence gathered, the credibility of the witnesses, and a legal analysis of the issues present. We will make recommendations for how the complaint can be resolved including legal advice as to how any potential legal exposure can be best managed.
We will work with your organization to answer any remaining questions and help implement the resolution you decide best serves your needs.
The conclusion of a Workplace Investigation should be followed by steps to ensure appropriate action is taken to heal any damage caused by either a respondent or the investigation process itself. While discipline can help discourage misconduct, we also seek to ensure mediation, coaching and training are implemented to help restore your culture to one of trust and productivity.
We can also assist in working with complainant or respondent’s legal counsel, working with Boards directly to investigate senior management, and conducting team investigations in complex situations involving a large number of individuals.
Budgets for Workplace Investigations can vary substantially depending on the seriousness of the allegations, the number of witnesses to be interviewed, the location and availability of witnesses, and the number of documents and records to be reviewed.
All of our Workplace Investigation team have experience in conducting and overseeing investigations, providing legal advice in complex legal situations, and ensuring the best liability protection.