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Workplace Investigations: be prepared

When investigating complaints of discrimination, harassment and bullying in the workplace it is imperative that investigators are well equipped with the tools for the job.

Template documents, literature and online resources, such as iHR Australia's fact sheets and videos, are useful to provide advice and guidance to investigators, but should be utilised in conjunction with comprehensive training.

A book can provide great insights into theory and the experience of others but the most effective learning tool is practice. Investigative interviewing techniques can be difficult to master, especially when dealing with emotional and sensitive interviewees, an opportunity to practice questioning and receive feedback and advice in a "safe" environment is invaluable.

For this reason, iHR Australia uses Workplace Reality Theatre to allow participants in our Workplace Investigation Officer training an opportunity to witness an interview taking place, and to play the role of the investigator. Working with professional actors and an experienced facilitator, training participants can explore the interviewing aspect in more depth and have a go at asking the questions themselves. With an expert Senior Investigator on hand to answer questions and provide insights from their wealth of experience, participants can gain a deeper, more practical knowledge of the investigative process.

The workbook provided to learners contains samples and template documents and thoroughly covers all aspects of the investigation process, including planning, conducting and reporting.

Furthermore, participants are invited to discuss their own experiences and ask the questions only an expert can answer. Our Senior Investigators are happy to discuss specific issues after the session or answer further queries should participants have any unanswered questions once they leave the training venue.

iHR Australia believes effective training is essential to ensure internal workplace investigators conduct thorough and fair investigations.

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