Putting the pieces together
What is a 'reasonable' investigation?
If your Disciplinary Investigation falls short of the mark, you will be in hot water in the Employment Tribunal.
If it is not reasonable, it will not be credible and reliable. It will be open to attack - which can seriously undermine your prospects of success. It can strike down your Tribunal case.
More than this, it will disappoint and demotivate your employees and make matters worse, rather than helping people to build bridges, mend fences and move on.
With a legal background and 'coach approach' I'm well placed to assist you and have undertaken a number of investigations - including into misconduct and bullying and harassment.
As Investigating Officer I will attend Disciplinary Hearings and Employment Tribunal hearings where required.
Common mistakes include:
- The Wrong Person - if the Investigating Officer is too close to the case, appears to be involved, then their conclusions will be unacceptable. The appearance of neutrality can be as important as neutrality itself
- Lack of Expertise - the Investigating Officer must be good with details and evidence-gathering, with probing and challenging questions as well as the courage to ask them
- Poor People Skills - it is essential that the Investigating Officer can quickly establish rapport, put witnesses at ease and build trust yet without compromising on the need to ask the difficult questions and get to the root of the issue
- Poor Reporting - the Investigating Officer must write a clear, understandable and thorough report of a fair and balanced investigation so that the conclusions reached as supported by the evidence