Workplace Investigations in California: Your Action Plan for Probing Complaints, Interviewing Witnesses, Reaching Reasoned Conclusions, and Taking Effective, Legal Action

In your HR role, you are legally required to thoroughly investigate complaints of unlawful conduct that cross your desk, even when a complaint seems to lack merit. You need to do it in a timely manner, but if you act too quickly, you run the risk of cutting key corners. The secret to conducting a successful inquiry lies in preparing your approach to an investigation before a complaint ever hits your desk—because as you well know, in HR it’s never a question of if, but when.

This pre-conference workshop will bring you up to speed on how to conduct efficient, effective, legally compliant workplace investigations here in California.

You’ll learn:

  • What to do first when an employee comes to you with a complaint or allegation
  • How to handle those common requests for “complete confidentiality” and “I don’t want you to do anything about this, but…”
  • What you should and shouldn’t do before the investigation is concluded
  • How to separate a complainant and the alleged wrongdoer without inviting retaliation claims (from either side)
  • Interviewing tips to help you get to the truth
  • Strategies for resolving those “he said, she said” situations
  • When you should consider engaging an outside investigator
  • How to successfully bring “closure” once you complete an investigation, and mitigate legal risks under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and other California or federal laws


Learn more about the California Employment Law Update.