When handled badly or weakly, workplace complaints are a lose-lose situation. They drain management time, potentially for months on end, and cause stress and disruption for all levels of staff involved. When faced with difficult or sensitive problems, organisations can instinctively look to hide problems away and find patch-up solutions to contain such situations. Although this may seem like a ‘free’ option, this approach can drain management time and attention, while posing a great threat to organisational reputation and the everyday working environment.
A properly conducted workplace investigation can, therefore, save such management time, stress and disruption. By employing someone specifically trained who has the time to allocate specifically to the process, internal stress and disruption are also minimised.
An investigation has the purpose of establishing fact. In many cases, it is crucial to establish whether an alleged behaviour actually happened, such that the correct disciplinary procedures can be put in place, and further actions can be taken to prevent such events happening again.
Carrying out a thorough investigation also reduces the liability of the company as a result of such damaging behaviours. It also ensures that employees feel that their concerns are taking seriously, also acting as a deterrent mechanism for further damaging behaviours.