Will your employment investigation stand up to external scrutiny?


When a complaint is made in the workplace about the conduct or behavior of an employee or a group of employees, an employer has an obligation to take the matter seriously, and to deal with it promptly and sensitively.

Often an employer will need to conduct an investigation to ensure their response to a complaint is based on all the relevant facts. This can be challenging when an employer’s intention is to identify the truth of a disputed matter in often complex circumstances.

Before jumping into an investigation, it is important to decide if it is appropriate to use internal resources or engage an external investigator. Start by asking the following questions:

  • How serious are the allegations?
  • Could this claim end in litigation?
  • What are the capabilities and experience of the employees available to conduct an investigation?
  • How might the internal investigator perform as a witness in the event of litigation?
  • Could the internal investigator be perceived as biased?

An experienced external investigator has no vested interest in a particular outcome and can provide an investigation that is procedurally fair, logical, consistent and sufficiently detailed.

At Paul Diver Associates, our investigators have experience dealing with complaints from operational to senior executive and board level, across a diverse range of industries and subject matters.  Our team members have investigated matters relating to bullying, harassment, misconduct and health and safety.

We provide a comprehensive report for all our investigations, which includes findings as to whether, on the balance of probabilities, the complaint has been upheld.

“Paul Diver Associates are independent investigators, providing both parties with the assurance that the process will be free from any bias, ensuring employees are treated fairly and employers are provided with accurate findings.”

Investigation Process:
  1. Complaint received or misconduct alleged
  2. Check employment agreements and policies
  3. Invoke suspension if appropriate
  4. Gather relevant information
  5. Conduct investigation interviews
  6. Provide opportunity to comment on information gathered
  7. Consider the facts and draft findings
  8. Provide draft findings for review and comment
  9. Confirm findings
  10. Commence disciplinary process if appropriate

Call us if you would like some professional help with a difficult situation or to discuss your investigation needs.