how-to-investigate-workplace-misconduct-its-about-more-than-harassment

How to Investigate Workplace Misconduct: It's about more than Harassment

Live Webinar | CEU Approved

  • 120 minutes

What do you do if you need to search the employee's desk, computer, smartphone or locker? Other questions that need to be answered are when do you include legal counsel? What evidence do you need to gather? This webinar will focus on these issues by discussing best practices to ensure you are conducting a fair and impartial investigation that will support a positive work environment, protect employees and the organization, and decrease the risk of liability.

When we think of workplace investigations, the most common thought is that of investigating harassment complaints. However, there are so many other forms of workplace misconduct that require investigations such as theft, safety or OSHA issues, retaliation, vandalism, working off the clock, substance abuse, social media violations, and violations of various company policies, as examples. Usually, this responsibility is left to HR, sometimes to management, and there may be a need to determine if an outside investigator, such as law enforcement or an IT professional, is the best person to investigate.

Conducting an investigation is both a science and an art. There is the scientific/technical aspect ensuring the I's are dotted and the T's are crossed to minimize liability. And there is the 'art' of investigating in establishing rapport with those you interview, creating a safe environment in which to interview and recognizing that interviewees are usually stressed during the interview process.

Join this session by expert speaker Dr. Susan Strauss, where she will addresses laws that HR is responsible for upholding. When the laws are not followed, it increases the liability for the organization and interferes with a fair and equitable work environment for employees.

Session Highlights:

  • To identify what constitutes a complaint

  • To determine if an investigation is necessary

  • To discuss the steps of an investigation

  • To explore the intricacies of interviewing the accuser, accused and witnesses

  • To demonstrate good documentation

  • To differentiate between formal and informal investigative procedures

  • To determine credibility

  • To discuss tips on whether someone is lying

  • To reach a conclusion following an investigation

  • To follow up with appropriate action based on the outcome of the investigation

  • To write a formal report outlining the investigation

Why you should attend:

As an employer, you have a duty to investigate. Do employees have an obligation to cooperate with the investigative process-but what if you have a recalcitrant complainant, wrong-doer or witness? Documentation and writing a final report are critical aspects of an investigation process which begins as soon as an employee makes a complaint-do you know how to document? Do you know the critical elements of a final report to minimize liability? One of the first questions you, as an HR professional, need to consider is whether the complaint requires a full-blown formal investigation or if a less formal resolution is appropriate because the complaint is a minor policy violation.

Financial - Costs related to absenteeism, turnover, liability based on civil rights laws, costs related to investigations.

Who Should Attend:

  • VP of HR

  • All HR Directors, Managers, and Generalists

  • Supervisors

  • Managers

  • Director of Risk Management

*You may ask your Question directly to our expert during the Q&A session.
** You can buy On-Demand and view it as per your convenience.

Susan  Strauss

Susan Strauss

Dr. Susan Strauss is a national and international speaker, trainer and consultant. She has worked as a psychiatric nurse and her undergraduate degree is in psychology and human services. Her specialty areas include discrimination, harassment, and bullying; management/leadership development, and organization development. She is a registered nurse and has functioned as a psychiatric nurse. She works as an expert witness for discrimination lawsuits. Susan also trains and consults with business, education, healthcare, law, and government organizations from both the public and private sector.

Dr. Strauss has authored over 30 book chapters, books, and articles in professional journals. She has been featured on 20/20, CBS Evening News, and other television and radio programs as well as interviewed for newspaper and journal articles such as the Times of London, Lawyers Weekly, and Harvard Education Newsletter.

Susan has presented at international conferences in Botswana, Egypt, Thailand, Israel, Bali, Beirut and the U.S. She has consulted with professionals from other countries such as England, Australia, Canada, Beirut and St. Maartin, Israel, Bali, and Middle East. She has her doctorate in organizational leadership, is a registered nurse with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and human services, a master’s degree in community health, and professional certificate in training and development.


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Edupliance is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM. This program is valid for 2 PDCs for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit www.shrmcertification.org.


This webinar has been approved for 2 HR (General) re-certification credit hours toward California, GPHR, HRBP, HRMP, PHR, and SPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. The use of this seal is not an endorsement by the HR Certification Institute of the quality of the activity. It means that this activity has met the HR Certification Institute’s criteria to be pre-approved for re-certification credit.

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