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Investigation Skills Training

Thursday, 20 November 2014 @ 9:30 am - 4:00 pm




Today’s businesses operate in a complex environment of markets, regulations and performance pressures. Equally those businesses need to lead an increasingly diverse workforce with a broad range of motivations and styles. Conflict is inevitable.

Grievances are often at the root of workplace conflicts or disciplinary actions and as a result employment legislation is putting pressure on employers to deliver employment decisions that are more and more impartial and objective.

Effective investigation can often be the key to resolving grievances fairly: particularly where there is a need to find the facts.

However getting to the bottom of such events is way down the manager’s list of priorities or experience. Often, the organisation or individual lacks confidence to conduct such a procedure or there is a reluctance to be involved in a process that may become part of legal proceedings. Undertaking a proper grievance investigation involves adhering to a rigorous process. But since such investigations are not criminal investigations any conclusions can only draw on the evidence and facts and provide a conclusion that, while being admissible in court, will be based on the “balance of probability”.

The  Investigation Skills seminar is designed to provide attendees with an understanding, process, framework, and tool set to enable managers to undertake an investigation, working with a proven methodology.


Eight key things you will learn on this course:

  1. When an investigation is appropriate or not e.g. grievance, bullying, discrimination etc
  2. The requirements of a good investigation
  3. Understand the key role of the investigator
  4. Learn an investigation process model
  5. Appreciate the importance of confidentiality and impartiality
  6. Identify key skills utilised in an investigation and how they are applied
  7. Recognise potential ‘derailers’ and how to address
  8. How to complete a final report and what happens after



This course is for you if you are:

Interested in learning more about a positive approach to resolving disputes in the workplace. These include managers, HR professionals, trade union officials, lawyers, business advisors, consultants, senior managers, business owners and dispute resolution professionals.




 9:30 Registration and Coffee  
 10:00  Welcome, Introductions and Objectives for the day
 10:30  Setting the scene

  • Legislative backdrop
  • How and when grievance investigation fits in
  • What can an investigation achieve?
 10:45  The Investigator

  • Role and responsibilities
  • Selection
  • Competencies
 11:15  An investigation framework and plan

  • Principles
  • Process and who to involve
  • Preparation
 11:45  Morning Coffee      Book-Now-Button-Grey-with-Black-Border
 12:00  Undertaking an Investigation

  • Methodologies
  • Tools and techniques
  • Gathering information
  • Pitfalls
  • Handling difficult situations
 13:15  Lunch and Discussion
 14:00  Practise session and case study
 15:15  Preparing the Report and Recommendations
15:45 Summary and follow up plans
16:00 Close


This course may be taught by one of the following:

Barry Simmonds

Barry Simmonds

Barry qualified as an accountant before graduating in business studies and pursuing a career in human resources. After six years in the telecommunications industry with STC (ITT), he moved to Schlumberger Ltd, the oil field exploration and energy management multinational, spending ten years in senior, international HR and Operational appointments. Following spells with Control Data and GE, he served as Executive Vice President, Human Resources, of the Corange/Boerhinger Mannheim healthcare groups. In 1996 he became MD of the executive search company Simmonds International and in recent years has also specialized in mediation and grievance investigations. Barry has lived in Holland, France and Japan. He specialises in the high technology, healthcare, general manufacturing, retail and financial services sectors.

Bev Solinger

Bev Solinger

Bev was born in the United States and has lived and worked in Europe since 1990. A graduate of Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, with a BA and MBA, Bev initially worked in student personnel before moving into HR management with GE in 1980. After a number of assignments in power systems, aerospace and industrial automation, Bev joined the international team covering Europe, Middle East and Africa before transitioning to financial services. She has extensive acquisition and integration experience and is skilled in facilitation, change acceleration and coaching techniques. Additionally, she is an accredited employment and commercial mediator

Paul Harrison

Paul Harrison

Paul gained a BSc in Economics from Bristol University and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. He started his career in production management with Christian Salvesen and then moved into HR. After three years in HR positions at Ferranti he joined GE for seven years, where he became the head of UK HR. After two years as HR Director at Unisys he joined Sun Microsystems as UK HR Director. In his 20 years at Sun, as well as the UK, he lived in California, Japan, Hong Kong and Australia. After several years as HR director for Europe and Asia, he became VP of HR Operations worldwide and was responsible for setting up HR shared services globally and managing an HR outsourcing contract spanning 50 countries. In 2010 Paul completed a masters degree in executive coaching at Ashridge Business School and obtained the National Certificate in Employment Mediation. Paul is now an independent specialist in international HR, executive coaching and dispute resolution.



People like you have attended this event: this is what they said:

  • “Very informative, enjoyed the course” – HR Assistant, Hugo Boss UK
  • “Good interactive group, food for thought” – HR Manager, Clyde & Co
  • “Really interesting and informative” – HR Advisor, Woking Borough Council
  • “Training was excellent, very detailed” – HRBP, South Wales Police
  • “Lovely venue, nice group, informal discussion style training, very enjoyable” – Learning & Development Team Manager, Liverpool Direct Ltd
  • “Really great training session, was good to see the theory that underpins the D&G process and policy” – HR Administrator, TJ Morris Ltd
  • “Really useful, practical training” – HRBP, Mercer


Additional Information

Training FAQ

What food and refreshments are provided?

Generally coffee and light refreshments are available on arrival and at tea and coffee breaks throughout the day.  The times of these are made clear in the event programme.

Lunch is served on full day events.  We arrange a buffet with a selection of options to accommodate different dietary requirements, but if you have specific needs please feel free add this on the ‘additional information’ section of the online booking for or to email us.  Contact us here.

I have a discount code – how do I claim it?

If you have been sent a discount or special offer ‘coupon code’ this can be entered in the shopping cart while booking and your discount will be applied to your purchase.

I have a ‘ticket’ email but it does not say the right delegate names?

Don’t worry.  You don’t need the ‘ticket’, it’s just produced by the booking software to confirm the order.  

If you added delegate details on the booking form when you completed your order or told us by phone or email the names of the attendees, these people will be registered and do not need to bring the ‘ticket’.


How do I pay? Can I have an invoice? Can I pay with a credit card?

Payment can be made by credit card when you book, or you can specify cheque, bank transfer or invoice etc. once you complete the registration form.

An invoice or receipt is automatically sent once booking is completed online.

For cheque and BACS payments, our account details can be downloaded here.

Credit card details can be taken by telephone, please call our account department on +44 (0)20 7231 5100. We do not store any credit card details used for payment.

Online credit card payments are transacted via Paypal – you do not need a Paypal account to use this facility.

How do I book an event?

You can book online
Simply scroll down the page to the “Tickets” section. Select the number of places you wish to book and then click “Add to Cart”. You will then be taken to the shopping cart where you can confirm your purchase details, enter any discount or special offer coupon codes you may have, and arrange payment.

You can book by telephone
Simply call us on 020 7231 5100.

Event Date Changes

Changes are sometimes needed due to circumstances beyond our control such as trainers being ill, poor weather and so on.  In the very rare circumstances that we need to change the date for an event we will automatically offer you a place on the next available event date.  If this is not suitable for you we will refund your booking fee.

We cannot accept liability for travel and accommodation costs and strongly advise you not to book cheap ‘non-refundable / no change’ tickets and to check your insurance covers travel and accommodation in these circumstances.

Can you recommend a hotel near the venue?

Yes! Some of our events are actually held at hotels, but not all of them, so we have put together a page to help you find a suitable hotel near all of our main venues.

Can we run this event in-house?

Yes we can run the event in house for you.

There is some information on our in house option here and we suggest you contact us to discuss the options.


Can I cancel my booking or transfer to another event?

Please see our full terms and conditions here .

  • Cancellations can be made up to one month before the event. Cancellations must be confirmed in writing and will be subject to a cancellation charge of £100 + VAT.
  • Cancellations at less than one month from the event date are be subject to full payment.
  • Substitutions may be made at any date and are subject to a £100 + VAT administration fee.
  • Non-payment or non-attendance does not constitute a cancellation.
  • If you want to change to another course date, or different event, we will do our best to accommodate your request, but we reserve the right to refuse changes. Any changes are subject to a £100 + VAT administration fee.


Book here


Thursday, 20 November 2014
9:30 am - 4:00 pm
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CCT Venues Barbican
Aldersgate House, 135-137 Aldersgate Street
London, EC1A 4JA United Kingdom
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020 7776 4798
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Symposium Events
020 7231 5100