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The three types of workplace investigators
As a senior detective and police manager, I spent a disproportionate amount of time dealing with staff grievances, public complaints and misconduct enquiries. To be honest, I found this a frustrating distraction from the very thing I signed up to do, which was to provide high quality policing services to the tax paying public. It was also perhaps a sad indictment of a deeper cultural issue within the organisation. The collateral damage of all of this? Countless thousands of pounds spent on management time, legal fees and – perhaps the most costly – the damage to workplace relationships between colleagues and demotivated staff. Of course, the police service is not alone in seeking ways to tackle this issue, organisations the world over have the same concerns. On many occasions, I recall reflecting after adjudicating on a grievance or misconduct case, the waste of valuable resources as the result of a wholly inadequate investigation. Or simply how did the situation ever get so far? Regretfully, some cases will inevitably end up in court rooms or tribunals, but all too many cases need not; if a quality early resolution had taken place, or a thorough and transparent investigation had been conducted, the court room procedures could have been avoided.