Internal workplace investigations are on the rise due to increased regulatory obligations and expectations.
Maintaining a strong corporate culture of compliance with both the law and company policy largely relies on the proactive and efficient assessment of risk. Boards and senior executives also need to be kept informed of any misconduct concerns that could result in significant reputational harm and exposure.
A proactive approach to investigations
When it comes to corporate culture, the benefits of getting it right are many—enhanced reputation, greater retention and recruitment of value-driven staff, increased shareholder value and alignment with community expectations. When an issue arises, however, it is increasingly common for the responsibility to be laid on the culture of the organisation. A careful and proactive approach when investigating any potential misconduct is needed to achieve the best outcome.
How we can help
Clients often seek our support to:
- conduct workplace investigations;
- conduct culture reviews;
- create whistleblowing and investigation policies, procedures, processes and templates; and
- conduct investigations training.
We use trained investigators who are legally qualified or have extensive investigations experience with a holistic skillset, including empathy, attention to detail, common sense and clear drafting. Any findings made are based on evidence, adopting the civil standard of proof.
Through market-leading technology and review capability we support clients in various types of complaints and whistleblower reports relating to:
- Employee workplace behaviour (including bullying, discrimination, harassment and sexual harassment)
- Conflicts of interest (including supplier relationships, outside business interests and personal relationships)
- Bribery or fraud matters (including expense breaches—expense accounts and credit cards)
- Other potential breaches of company codes of conduct and policies
- Human rights, including modern slavery.
If it becomes apparent that the issue is material, of regulatory significance or likely to lead to legal proceedings, we can seamlessly provide assistance without the need to brief in a new set of advisers, avoiding delays and costs.
We have a proven track record of experience conducting hundreds of investigations to date, including:
- Sexual harassment allegations, including egregious conduct, where the only relevant evidence available has been the reporter's and respondent’s versions of events
- Investigations involving contractors and third parties
- Large investigations involving up to 10 respondents and over 20 allegations, ranging from discrimination to falsifying documents and multiple anonymous reporters
- Investigations conducted in parallel with the police
- Subtle and complex allegations of bullying involving multiple reporters
- Allegations of modern slavery
- Allegations made against senior executives.