What Sort of Workplace Incidents Do Not Warrant a Formal Investigation?

Continuing our series of short videos on the subject of workplace investigations. It’s a subject that’s often misunderstood and even mishandled by leaders, managers and HR personnel. Today’s question...

What is an example of an incident that doesn't warrant a formal investigation?


An example of an incident that doesn't warrant a formal investigation would be something like a once-off remark or comment that could include swearing or belittling or hurtful may be sarcastic that somebody feels aggrieved about, that has upset them. But that has not happened on a repeated basis. And usually both parties are working reasonably well with each other.

So in that particular instance, somebody might speak to their manager about being upset by something that somebody else has done, the manager would then go and speak to the person, work out what did happen, what was said. Perhaps have a conversation with both of them separately about what's expected of them in the workplace, make a note of it to make sure that it's recorded that that conversation was had.

And then leave the parties to it to see if they can continue working well with each other, perhaps checking with them a couple of days or a week later, and check that everything's going okay. And then just monitor the situation.

We’ve compiled a resource of Frequently Asked Questions About Workplace Investigations for managers and human resource personnel. The resource includes a video and pdf transcript of Catherine Gillespie, Managing Director of Workplace Conflict Resolution, answering 29 commonly asked questions.
To access your copy of the video and transcript click here.

About the Author

Catherine Gillespie brings a wealth of skill to her clients. With particular expertise in teaching communication and workplace conflict resolution skills, Catherine has made a marked difference to the organisations she has worked with. She empowers teams and managers to adopt constructive styles that support harmony, productivity and progress in the workplace.