How to start a workplace investigation
Once you have received an allegation or a formal letter of complaint from an employee, the question is then what do i do next? Here’s where we help you every step of the way.
STEP ONE – INITIAL BRIEFING
The process begins with a phone call to our friendly, expert team who will arrange a meeting with you and your legal counsel, where necessary, to discuss how best to handle the matter, whether investigation is necessary or whether the matter could be resolved through mediation.
In situations where a formal investigation is warranted, such as where sexual harassment allegations have been made or where there are claims of workplace bullying, we will discuss with you, how the matter is to be investigated, the scope and timelines for the investigation.
At this point, we may ask you to consider;
- whether the subject of the investigation should be stood down pending the outcome of the investigation,
- who will notify interviewees and how will this be carried out,
- whether there is a suitable
- space for conducting interviews on site or whether interview rooms need to be organised off-site.
- any other logistical issues
STEP TWO – DOCUMENT & FILE SETUP
- Email us with a letter of appointment outlining the matter to be investigated and detailing the Terms of Reference (ToR) for the investigation. We can provide you with a template to help you draft the ToR.
- Send us copies of any complaint material eg. Letters of complaint, any file notes taken in reference to verbal complaints or any evidence you have already collected.
- Send us copies of your relevant policies and procedures such as your Code of Conduct and grievance procedure.
- Sign and return our Service Agreement which sets out the standard of service you should expect to receive from us.
- Appoint a primary and, if possible, a secondary liaison officer. This is the person within your organisation who can help us arrange interviews and can obtain documents we request. This person is usually the HR Manager or a Senior HR Officer.
STEP THREE – INVESTIGATION COMMENCES
Once we have received all of the complaint material, we will formulate an investigation plan outlining how we will approach your matter in accordance with the ToR and then commence arranging interviews and collecting evidence where necessary.