Workplace Investigations

If your organisation has employees, workplace complaints are bound to arise, such as those concerning workplace bullying, discrimination, sexual harassment, non-disclosure and mismanagement of conflicts of interest and/or other forms of workplace misconduct.

While it is not uncommon for employers to rely upon one of their team members, for example a member of their human resources team or a senior executive, to investigate these types of complaints, there are important reasons why an employer should consider engaging us, as an external, experienced specialist, to conduct the investigation:

  1. the allegations raised in the complaint are voluminous, complex, and/or sensitive in nature and require an experienced workplace investigator to ensure they have been investigated in a mature, comprehensive, procedurally fair, legally defensible, and timely manner;
  2. there is a need to ensure that the parties have confidence in the investigation process, and trust that the employer is taking the allegations seriously by engaging a skilled investigator;
  3. the allegations concern a senior employee in the organisation, and there is a need to appropriately manage an actual, perceived, and/or potential conflict of interest;
  4. the workplace investigation will be time-consuming and may even be a psychologically taxing process for an internal team member, which could affect the investigating team member’s health, safety, and wellbeing;
  5. there is a need to create a clear distinction between the investigation process and the employer’s decision-making process – this is particularly important where employers are concerned that the investigation process and findings will be critical to resisting legal claims, for example a claim alleging that an employer is vicariously liable for an employee’s misconduct;
  6. there is a need for a comprehensive, clear, logical, and legally defensible written investigation report that sets out the investigator’s analysis of the relevant evidence (including witness accounts and documentary evidence), findings of fact, and where necessary, findings in respect of breaches of workplace policies, and recommendations.

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Why us?

Our team has over a decade of specialist workplace investigations experience and has conducted hundreds of workplace investigations for employers of all sizes in a range of sectors.

Not only will we complete your workplace investigation in a timely, cost-effective, and legally defensible manner, we will lend our expertise to ensure that you feel supported throughout the investigation process and confident when receiving our written investigation findings.


What can you expect from us?

Terms of reference

We will never commence an investigation until we have a deep understanding of the relevant issues that led you to us and what you specifically require from us. We adopt this approach to ensure we can deliver our investigation services to you in a timely, cost-effective, and fit-for-purpose manner.

Investigation plan

Once we have a full understanding of your needs, we will review any necessary materials (for example, written employee complaints, workplace records, and any relevant workplace policies) to develop an investigation plan that sets out the key steps in the investigation process. We will seek your approval of the investigation plan before commencing the investigation process.

Gathering, reviewing, and analysing evidence

Through our extensive investigations experience, we are highly skilled in identifying and gathering relevant evidence as part of an investigation – this includes evidence in the form of documentary material and witness accounts.

We pride ourselves on our ability to conduct mature, focused, thorough, and legally defensible witness interviews – in our experience this is a key skill that many inexperienced investigators lack, which can lead to unreliable investigation findings.

When conducting an investigation, we are cognisant of the importance of ensuring that a respondent is afforded procedural fairness, which requires them to be made aware of the allegations against them and the substance of the evidence that is adverse to their interests, along with providing them the opportunity to respond to those matters.

As part of gathering, reviewing, and analysing relevant evidence in the investigation, we ensure that we have taken all practicable steps to test the veracity of the evidence before us.

Writing the investigation report

Following the above steps, we will prepare a report for you that sets out:

  • the agreed terms of reference
  • our summary of the investigation findings
  • an explanation of how we approached the investigation process including details of the material we considered and the interviews we conducted
  • our detailed analysis of the evidence and our findings in respect of each allegation
  • where requested, our findings as to whether any substantiated conduct is in breach of workplace policies, and/or our recommendations for the employer based on our findings.

Our written investigation reports are recognised for being comprehensive, clear, cogent, and reliable.

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