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Employee Investigation checklist


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Employee Investigation checklist This Employee Investigation checklist is a document for managers, guiding them through some procedures on preventing & following-up any employee misconducts, as such incidents can quickly demoralize the other employees they supervise, and therefore should be handled appropriately. With a help of this checklist you will learn some solutions on how to deal with misconducts consistently, fairly, and quickly. 

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Employee Investigation Procedures:

  • Background for Investigations on misconducts should be established in all companies through special organizational procedures regulating effective controls and operations to enable detecting and handling some possible instances of employee misconduct that cannot be ignored because they are really critical for the overall efficiency. Basically such procedures:
    • Allow a consistent, fair, and quick investigation on employee misconducts;
    • Guarantee your managerial competence and authority among employees;
    • Secure company from different scandals and damages (both tangible and intangible);
    • Maintain stably high morale of employees;
    • Help to stop and prevent any current or future misconducts;
  • As far as employee misconduct usually requires HR (and sometimes Internal Security Dept.) to follow up with an investigation, all types of misconducts should be properly formalized and described, for example there could be such a wide types of misconducts:
    • Employee behaves critically disruptive and strongly disturbs co-workers (infringer carries out inappropriate antics, provokes scandals or even fights, says offensive things, carries out sexual harassments, etc);
    • Employee refuses to follow normal directions of his/her supervisors without any valid reason (infringer violates working discipline and subordination);
    • Employee arbitrarily damages or endangers employer’s property;
    • Employee arbitrarily violates corporate requirements, such as dress-code, work schedule, etc;
    • Employee dares to violate rules and requirements of on-the-job safety, so that the employee himself/herself or his/her co-workers get(s) jeopardized or harmed;
    • Employee causes deliberated damages to organization tangibly or intangibly (steals corporate money, property, admits deliberate mismanagement and misuse, slandering, etc);
  • While some of these misconducts are absolutely obvious to be noticed by managers or reported by witnesses, other problems can get uncovered just owing to some indirect manifestations to be followed-up by an audit or inspection arranged to discover underlying misconducts;
  • Some sources that can deliver grounds for initiating an Employee Investigation:
    • Internal complaints (written or oral);
    • Formal and informal reports;
    • Hotline calls;
    • Supervisor’s observation;
    • Anonymous letters/messages;
    • Exit or ongoing employee surveys;
    • Indirect information;
  • Corporate services (HR, Internal Security, internal auditors, Board of Directors, etc) need to keep control over certain key indicators which may denote presence of some employee misconducts. There should be strict procedures on different areas and levels that allow controlling employees and preventing misconducts without any violating of human rights, common sense and local employment laws:

For example: it is a normal and fully legal practice to mount video cameras in the company’s salesrooms or warehouses (this helps to conduct Investigations on stealing), but it is unethical and usually illegal to establish video control over the cloakrooms.

  • If some employee gets under suspicion, the company’s representatives should recognize and observe rights:
    • First of all they need to identify & ascertain the fact of misconduct via completing a number of obligatory procedures to analyze the incident and clarify what had happened exactly;
    • Nobody can be accused or fired until there is a solid argumentation (remember presumption of innocence), as well as nobody can be resigned from doing his/her job until there are sufficient manifestations of dangerous/serious misconducts;
    • When certain investigation is initiated the subjected employee should be provided with special letter that informs him/her about details of why and what is being investigated (however, these details may remain vague yet), instructions on how to behave and how he/she can assist on investigation;
    • Investigation should consider statements provided by both parties, for example the employee being under investigation could be asked for providing an explanatory letter which states his/her vision of the incident;
    • All information obtained during the investigation is confidential;
  • Investigators (empowered supervisor or committee) should carefully search for evidences and systematize all discovered facts, these could be performed both through learning documents & videotapes, and asking all concerned co-workers the questions to restore the reasons and body of the incident (special forms can be elaborated for different kinds of accidents and offered to incident’s participants to be filled);
  • As soon as a critical array of information is collected, approved and systematized, it can be summarized in a special report (with other materials attached) to be submitted to the company’s management for further consideration (standardized Report templates can be used);
  • This Report and attached materials should be analyzed by the company’s managers to define the true and generate their verdict, so that termination can be performed according to a special procedure, there could ...

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