The Future of Conducting Workplace Investigations

The Future of Conducting Workplace Investigations

The process of conducting workplace investigations has evolved over time, but traditionally they are managed internally by an organization’s HR department or designated team members who conduct interviews with relevant parties, gather and review evidence and documentation, and make determinations. This internal management of related processes and procedures is costly to all involved, often wasting valuable time and resources, while also unintentionally harboring biased decision-making in the investigation outcome. 

As unresolved incidents and inadequate investigations can be costly to organizations, there is an increased demand for more comprehensive solutions to the workplace investigation process that incorporate all elements of misconduct management, saving time and resources, while also ensuring proper disciplinary action. 

Limitations of Internal Investigation Processes

Conducting workplace investigations internally rather than utilizing a third-party solution can limit the effectiveness of the investigation as a whole, while also posing a number of risks and consequences. Due to their existing affiliation with the organization, internal investigators may be perceived as biased, or they may face a conflict of interest if they have personal relationships with those involved. Such relationships may skew the results of conducted investigations, with the investigator putting their personal feelings or their allegiance to the organization above impartiality and fairness. 

Additionally, if someone who is not technically an HR professional is designated to conduct a workplace investigation, they may lack the specialized expertise or necessary resources, such as the time, personnel, or technology, to handle sensitive or complex issues appropriately. Moreover, an organization’s general culture may influence an investigation, intentionally or otherwise. Those involved in the investigation may fear retaliation if they do not feel their confidentiality is protected or if they distrust the organization’s commitment to addressing misconduct. By partnering with a third-party misconduct management solution, organizations can not only improve misconduct management, but also mitigate risks, save time and resources, while improving the workplace environment. 

Emergence of Full-Service Misconduct Management Solutions

In recent years, it has become apparent that more comprehensive solutions are needed to effectively address workplace issues of misconduct and foster positive working environments, with more than one in five employed people worldwide having experienced one or more forms of violence or harassment at work. Full-service misconduct management solutions, such as Work Shield, provide support to organizations with reporting, investigating, resolving, and, ultimately, mitigating risks of various forms of harassment and misconduct in the workplace. 

With workplace harassment often going unreported, Work Shield offers employees a secure and confidential reporting option via the 24/7 call center or the mobile-friendly Work Shield Portal. The platform maintains confidentiality and all aspects of the process including documentation and photos, and notifying involved parties throughout the investigation in a timely manner. In addition, a Work Shield investigator leads the impartial investigation, promoting a lack of bias and mitigating retaliation. 

Integrating Legal and Compliance Best Practices

Working with third-party full-service solutions also promotes compliance with regulatory requirements while also aligning with organizational policies and best practices. Work Shield is a SOC2 and SOX-compliant platform to ensure confidentiality and privacy of employee data, as well as financial transparency and accountability of organizations, respectively. 

Those conducting workplace investigations should do so with impartiality, fairness, and professionalism to safeguard credibility and trustworthiness, qualities that third-party investigators provide. Work Shield communicates transparently with organizations throughout each investigation by supplying updates, status reports, and recommendations to facilitate informed decision-making. In addition to providing a detailed and compliant workplace investigation report to the employer, Work Shield also tracks incidents and provides data analytics to diminish future risk and identify trends

Work Shield realizes that every organization is different, with its own unique policies and initiatives. Working with a third-party solution empowers organizations to implement robust, updated policies that still align with its organizational values and culture. 

Workplace Investigations and Full-Service Solutions with Work Shield

The future of conducting workplace investigations is simple: full-service solutions from unbiased third parties. Work Shield is the only full-service solution that effectively collaborates with organizations in overseeing the reporting, investigation, and resolution of workplace misconduct, harassment, and discrimination incidents. 

Work Shield is a consistent, comprehensive, and prompt misconduct management solution with data-backed ROI that helps lower incident rates, the risk of substantial legal and settlement fees, and overall incident-related costs. Its 24/7 reporting process further streamlines the process, offering multi-channel and anonymous reporting solutions. 

Learn more about Work Shield’s misconduct solution here. 


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