Compliance Check 2020

March 2019

Date: March 14, 2019

Welcome to the third issue in our series, Compliance Check 2020, a monthly publication that will help you perform a self-assessment of your company’s compliance with federal, state and local employment laws and regulations.

In this edition, we help you assess your company’s workplace investigation practices and provide best practices to improve them. Do not leave your defense of discrimination, harassment and other employment claims to luck. Instead, ask yourself these questions and review your investigation policies, procedures and forms now.

  • Do you have a strategy for online complaints?
  • Do you require that all complaints be promptly reported to HR?
  • Do you know how to choose an investigator?
  • Are all your investigators properly trained?
  • Have you set expectations for timeliness?
  • What if you have an uncooperative complainant?
  • Do you know how to take appropriate interview notes?
  • What should you include in the final investigation report?
  • How do you document findings?
  • Should you seek a privileged review of draft findings?
  • How much do words matter?
  • How seriously should you take lying or interfering with an investigation?
  • When should you take remedial measures?
Additional Resources

Our experienced employment attorneys provide guidance on these and other strategies for conducting effective workplace investigations. We advise employers on investigations as they arise, and we partner with clients to provide proactive advice and training to HR professionals and in-house counsel. In addition, we offer model forms and training on a flat-fee basis, such as:

  • Investigator training. This two-hour training session is ideal for human resources, compliance personnel or in-house counsel. It provides a look at best practices for conducting internal investigations. It’s particularly suited for new investigators or to establish standard practices and expectations across a team of investigators.
  • Model investigation report form. This model form helps ensure your investigators all capture the investigation’s key components in a standardized format.
  • Witness instructions. A list of typical instructions that investigators can provide to witnesses during a workplace investigation interview.

As always, we welcome your questions, feedback or suggestions. Please contact:

Heather M. Muzumdar, Author and Co-Editor

Megan S. Glowacki, Co-Editor

Nancy M. Barnes, Practice Group Leader