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HR Investigations 

HR investigations can be hugely time-consuming and can impact organisations significantly from a resourcing perspective (in terms of employee morale and the wider implications that they carry). However, they are a critical process within companies and address various issues such as:

  • Workplace misconduct
  • Harassment
  • Discrimination
  • Breaches of company policies.

 

Conducting thorough HR investigations – though often a lengthy and time-consuming process – is essential to maintaining organisational integrity, employee trust, and legal compliance. These investigations delve into sensitive and complex matters, requiring careful handling to ensure procedural correctness and fairness.

Organisations may, on occasion, enlist external HR investigators to conduct impartial and objective investigations. External investigators bring expertise, independence, and neutrality to the process, ensuring fairness and credibility. Outsourcing investigations to external professionals can also alleviate potential conflicts of interest and enhance the perception of transparency and impartiality.

Eclipse HR can offer you advice and support on a variety of HR and workplace issues, as well as offer mediation and legal updates supported by our legal team at Whitehead Monckton. We specialise in Start-Up, SME and Educational sectors.

 

Employee Rights During HR Investigation 

Employees have rights during HR investigations to ensure fairness and transparency. These rights may include:

  • Being informed of the allegations against them
  • Having the opportunity to provide their side of the story
  • Being accompanied by a representative during interviews

Additionally, employees should receive updates on the investigation’s progress and be informed of any outcomes or decisions affecting them.

 

Can HR Investigate Without You Knowing?

In some cases, HR may need to conduct investigations discreetly to protect the integrity of the process and prevent interference. However, employees typically have the right to be informed if they are the subject of an investigation, as transparency is essential for maintaining trust and accountability within the organisation.

With that being said, HR may withhold specific details or information to preserve confidentiality and prevent potential harm to parties involved.

 

How Does HR Investigate a Complaint?

HR investigates complaints by following established procedures tailored to the nature of the allegation. This may involve gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, reviewing documentation, and analysing relevant data. The investigation aims to uncover facts impartially and determine the validity of the complaint. Throughout the process, HR professionals are required to adhere to ethical standards, legal requirements, and company policies to ensure a fair and thorough investigation.

 

Does HR Have to Investigate a Complaint?

HR is typically obligated to investigate complaints promptly and thoroughly to address workplace issues effectively. Failing to investigate complaints can expose the organisation to legal risks, damage its reputation, and undermine employee trust. By conducting investigations, HR demonstrates a commitment to upholding fairness, accountability, and a positive work environment.

 

HR Investigation Questions 

During investigations, HR asks probing questions to gather relevant information and assess the credibility of statements. These questions may vary depending on the nature of the complaint but generally aim to uncover details about the incident, such as:

  • Timeline
  • Witnesses
  • Any mitigating factors.

HR also considers the perspectives of all parties involved to form a comprehensive understanding of the situation.

 

Conducting Investigations with Eclipse HR

For comprehensive HR support and guidance, trust Eclipse HR. Backed by the legal expertise of Whitehead Monckton, we offer tailored solutions for Start-Up, SME, and Educational sectors. Contact our team today, to ensure fairness, transparency, and compliance in your HR processes.

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