Workplace Investigations for Claims of Sexual Assault and MisconductSeptember 1, 2023
Workplace Investigation That Helps Employers Create Safe Workplaces
Workplace investigations are necessary when addressing claims of sexual assault, harassment, or misconduct in the workplace. Even the best internal HR investigations are naturally flawed, and the complexities of a sexual assault investigation in the workplace should always be handled by a third-party private investigation company such as AFIMAC. Failing to properly investigate and address claims of assault or misconduct can lead to long-lasting consequences, including challenges in recruitment, loss of business, and costly litigation that could put your business at risk.
When a sexual assault in the workplace does occur, it can be incredibly unpleasant to address. Depending on the nature of the incident itself, employers will need to collaborate with not just an HR investigation company but also law enforcement. Should your staff not be held responsible for their actions, as an employer, you are ultimately creating a work culture that creates risk for all staff members. When employers are investigated for failing to address complaints of sexual assault, they could face extensive liability issues, reputational damages, and significant monetary penalties.
Workplace Investigations and Complications with International HR Investigations
Employers have a moral and legal obligation to provide a safe workplace for all staff, which also means addressing complaints and allegations of sexual harassment or misconduct quickly and efficiently. Workplace investigations on these kinds of matters can illicit unpleasant reactions from staff and put the individual impacted by the incident and coworkers into an uncomfortable and dangerous work environment.
The delicate nature of such investigations is almost always best addressed by private investigators who can gather information quickly and help your organization come to a resolution without further incident. When employers attempt to address allegations of serious crimes such as sexual assault or misconduct, your own HR investigation can be compromised for a number of reasons. Human resource staff are not capable of conducting a fair and unbiased investigation. The facts that your own internal HR team collects come with inherent bias, as they have worked alongside your staff.
Workplace Investigations, Evidence Gathering, and Privacy Laws
Evidence and fact-gathering conducted internally are often incomplete and come with inconsistencies, with results that are influenced due to the personal relationships your HR team has with staff. When an HR employee is tasked with questioning a senior leader or manager, the interview subject may be tempted to influence the HR manager to skip important questions or adjust the final results themselves. Additionally, a personal friendship between the HR manager and the individual will not result in a fair and unbiased interview and will likely compromise the entire investigation.
Further, evidence-gathering and privacy laws complicate the results of an investigation and should always be handled by a qualified third party. AFIMAC can navigate the hurdles of privacy laws on your behalf and ensure that emails, phone messages, and surveillance footage included in an investigation do not violate your staff’s privacy. If an employer oversteps the boundaries related to personal privacy, not only will the investigation be compromised, but the company itself could face several legal challenges for how it handles the private data of staff.
Workplace Investigation Solutions from AFIMAC
The depths of an AFIMAC workplace investigation are extensive, capable of gathering evidence and helping employers make informed decisions about their staff when allegations of sexual misconduct or assault arise. The private investigators of AFIMAC have never met any of your staff and are capable of conducting interviews that extract key information without any bias whatsoever. Many of our investigators specialize in evidence gathering and interviewing that can help employers decide for themselves what has occurred in their workplace.
The interview tactics used by AFIMAC investigators get to the bottom of complaints, reveal important details, and can be used to support an employer’s decision to terminate an employee. When conducted properly by a private investigation team, such information can withstand wrongful termination challenges while proving that an employer took the required steps to address the issue without delay. With such information, an employer can take necessary measures, terminate specific employees, and pass along the results of their own investigation to law enforcement.
Contact AFIMAC directly today to learn more about the extensive workplace investigation services available to employers across North America. Our investigators can be dispatched quickly to conduct a workplace investigation, helping your business address these issues and refocus on more important things. Work alongside AFIMAC to ensure your staff is safe and protected each day they enter the job site and create a culture that has zero tolerance for sexual harassment, misconduct, and assault.