Depending on the level of the employee alleged to have committed the misconduct and the nature of the alleged infraction, the manager may personally conduct the investigation, or may be a resource to the supervisor designated to conduct the investigation.
Analyze the Data – After gathering and sorting through the testimony and documentation, you are ready to analyze the information and draw conclusions. Wait until the investigation is completed before making any findings or conclusions. Do the witnesses agree as to the time and place? Do they agree about what was said or done? Are the witnesses credible? Have there been past conflicts between the individual making the accusation and the alleged perpetrator? Between the witnesses and alleged perpetrator? In this stage, you will want to consult with Employee & Labor Relations to determine whether there is sufficient proof of guilt on the part of the alleged perpetrator to warrant further action. The burden of proof is “more likely than not” that the misbehavior occurred.
Determine What Action to Take – If you find sufficient proof that the alleged perpetrator is guilty of misconduct or sexual harassment, you will need to determine the appropriate level of corrective/disciplinary action. If you do not find sufficient proof, or find no proof, a warning or clearance letter may be appropriate depending on the circumstances. You will want to consult with Employee & Labor Relations and County Counsel to determine what action, if any, to take.
Conducting any investigation is difficult and time-consuming. Investigating allegations made by one employee against another, particularly an allegation of sexual harassment, is particularly sensitive. As always, if you have any questions or are concerned about how to proceed with such an investigation, please contact either the Employee & Labor Relations Division or the Equal Employment Opportunity Manager for assistance.