Workplace dating investigations
As a human resources professional, it is probably the phone call or office visit you dread the most.
When an employee calls to allege serious misconduct by a co-worker, workplace investigations certainly follow.
It is also important to tell interview subjects that any attempt to influence the outcome of the investigation by retaliating against anyone who participates, providing false information or failing to be forthcoming can result in punitive action up to and including termination. Dimoff, CPP, president of SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc., is a speaker, trainer and author and a leading authority in high-risk workplace and human resource security and crime issues. in Sociology, with an emphasis in criminology, from Dennison University.
He is a Certified Protection Professional; a certified legal expert in corporate security procedures and training; a member of the Ohio and International Narcotic Associations; the Ohio and National Societies for Human Resource Managers; and the American Society for Industrial Security.
And for most employee-related events, the workplace investigation process would not be complete without an investigation interview.
For workplace investigations, interviews are crucial to a fair outcome.
As a general rule of thumb, Jessica Walberg of Ford & Harrison, LLP recommends interviewing the complainant, harasser, witnesses and then finally the complainant again in Solving the Mystery Behind Conducting a “Flawless” Workplace Investigation – An HR Attorney’s Perspective.
Done correctly, they can uncover essential information and corroborate a co-worker’s account of wrongdoing.
Performed poorly, they can lead to serious consequences for a company, including substantial damage, back pay awards or even full reinstatement of an employee.
In general, it is not appropriate, or advisable, to provide a witness with specifics regarding the allegation.
Let the employee know that you will be asking questions related to an incident in the workplace, but may not be able to provide complete details to ensure confidentiality for all involved.