Internal Investigation Note-taking and Reports (CO240)
In recent years, internal investigation notes, documentation, summaries and reports have come under heightened scrutiny by outside agencies, lawyers in discrimination cases, and the courts.
Even if one conducts a thorough investigation, Human Resources and EEO professionals must ensure that all documentation is well written. This workshop builds on the skills learned in Cornell's complaint handling workshops* and focuses exclusively on the written product of an effective investigation.
- Methods for taking notes during investigatory interviews
- Developing documentation relating to the investigation
- Tips for note-taking, documentation and writing effective investigation summaries or reports
- A template for writing a report
- Addressing comparators
- Addressing credibility
- Writing the analysis in reports
- Using the EEO and employment laws and guidelines effectively
- Analyzing witness statements and evidence
- Writing sound conclusions
- Writing a fair, thorough, and neutral report
- Working effectively with counsel on writing reports
- Avoiding an advocacy language when preparing notes and reports
- Ethical issues
- Attorney-client privilege
Who Will Benefit
EEO, HR and other professionals responsible for conducting, documenting and preparing reports for internal investigations
Participants must first take Employee Internal Investigations: Part I and/or have relevant experience in EEO and Employment Law.
See more workshops on Employee Relations, Internal Investigations and Employment Law Workshops.
See more workshops on Equal Employment Opportunity.
Susan Brecher, Esq., Director of Employee Relations and Investigations at Cornell ILR’s Human Capital Develop and Executive Education programs, offers insight into how best to communicate the scope of confidentiality and the impact you can make on the employee.
Instructors for Nov 7-8, 2019
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Susan W. Brecher
Susan W. Brecher, Esq. is on the faculty as Director of Employee Relations, Employment Law and Diversity and Inclusion at the Scheinman Institute, Cornell University, ILR. She is also an attorney who specializes in the field of employment practices, internal investigations and dispute resolution.
At Cornell, she is currently managing professional development learning services in Employment Law, Employee Relations, Investigations and Diversity and Inclusion programs. She develops, delivers and implements Cornell classroom, customized, online and blended learning programs. These programs include the areas of HR/EEO Law, Legal Issues for Managers, Preventing Workplace Harassment and Hostile Work Environments, Achieving a Respectful and Ethical Workplace, Internal Investigations and Employee Relations. In addition, Ms. Brecher has authored and teaches eLearning courses for eCornell and other organizations.
Ms. Brecher is responsible for creating unique programs on Employee Relations, Internal Investigations and Problem Solving/Coaching/Facilitating Conflict Resolution. The Problem Solving Conflict Resolution program is designed to assist HR professionals, managers and employees in developing skills and tools for resolving conflicts before they escalate into grievances or disputes. Ms. Brecher has partnered with over 150 private, public and non-profit organizations to develop and present customized training programs.
During her tenure at Cornell, Ms. Brecher served as a Director of Statewide Management Programs as well as oversight of all aspects of the EEO, Labor Relations, Human Resources Management Development and Online Learning programs. Ms. Brecher has partnered with over 100 private, public and non-profit organizations to develop and present customized training programs.
In addition, Ms. Brecher advises, consults, coaches, facilitates and handles all aspects of employment law and dispute resolution issues including providing legal advice, executive coaching, one-on-one coaching for appropriate workplace behavior, effective management and resolving workplace disputes; internal investigations, facilitation and neutral fact-finding for private, public and non-profit organizations.
Ms. Brecher co-authored a column on training for the periodical HR Advisor Legal & Practical Guidance. She has also published some of her materials including, “The Complaint Handler’s Model” contained in the resource book, SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN THE WORKPLACE (Wiley & Sons, 1994).
Before coming to Cornell ILR, Ms. Brecher served as in-house employment Counsel at the American Broadcasting Companies and the National Broadcasting Company and was associated with the law firms Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom and Epstein, Becker and Green. Ms. Brecher has a B.A. summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from Union College and a J.D. from Case Western Reserve University, where she was on the Law Review.
Tracey I. Levy
Instructors for Apr 2-3, 2020
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Gayle F. Wasserman, Esq. is a management-side employment attorney and human resources consultant with over 18 years of experience. Since establishing her own private practice, Wasserman Law, in 2004, Gayle has regularly counseled clients throughout the New York tri-state area on a variety of employment and workplace matters, focusing on investigations, trainings, and outsourced HR advice. Gayle currently teaches at Cornell University's ILR Outreach Division where she conducts professional development programs for HR professionals, managers and others with employee relations responsibilities. There, she delivers and implements onsite and offsite programs in the areas of HR/EEO Law, Preventing Workplace Harassment, Internal Investigations and Employee Relations.
In private practice, Gayle utilizes her employment law experience to advise on the creation and implementation of employee handbooks and workplace policies and procedures. She also creates and conducts a variety of workplace law, liability avoidance and employment practices training seminars, covering issues such as respectful and appropriate workplace conduct, harassment, discrimination and #metoo concerns, communication issues, and sensitivity matters. Gayle frequently conducts workplace investigations into allegations of employee misconduct and concerns raised by employees. Moreover, she counsels employers on day-to-day workplace issues and all aspects of the employment relationship, including Equal Employment Opportunity compliance, leaves of absence, accommodation issues, wage and hour laws, hiring and firing practices, employee discipline, and performance reviews and documentation. In addition to regularly supporting her clients’ internal counsel and HR staff, and serving as an outsourced HR function to smaller businesses, Gayle has also served as a full time secondee to businesses needing employee relations support.
Gayle began her career as an associate in New York in the Labor and Employment Department of Proskauer Rose LLP, one of the nation’s leading labor and employment law firms, and subsequently practiced with Kauff McClain & McGuire LLP, a prominent boutique law firm in New York focused on the practice of labor and employment law. At those firms, Gayle defended clients in numerous employment-related cases in state and federal courts and before federal and state agencies, and represented and counseled employers in all facets of employment law. Gayle also served as an adjunct professor at Hunter College in N.Y., where she taught undergraduate Business Law.
Gayle earned her law degree from New York University School of Law in 1999, where she received the annual award for excellence in the study of labor relations. While at NYU, Gayle was an editor and advocate on the Moot Court Board and was elected to the Order of the Barristers. She received her undergraduate degree with honors in Organizational Studies from the University of Michigan.
She is a member of the New York City Bar Association and Society of Human Resource Management.