Trusted HR Expertise Delivering High-Quality Workplace Investigations to Businesses in London and Across Ontario

When it comes to running a thriving and successful company, it’s essential that business owners and decision-makers do all they can to cultivate a safe, respectful, and inclusive workplace dynamic. Unfortunately, in today’s intricate and modern workplaces, conflicts and disputes can arise.

Whether navigating interpersonal clashes or allegations of misconduct such as bullying, harassment, sexual harassment, respect in the workplace issues, negative workplace interactions can jeopardize your company’s productivity, damage morale, and possibly result in legal consequences if left unaddressed.

At Ford Keast LLP, we have the knowledge, training, and experience to ensure that workplace investigations are handled carefully and appropriately. As a certified workplace investigator, our Senior HR Consultant is unbiased and works within a structured process designed to uncover the facts, helping to resolve disputes and uphold fairness.

What is a Workplace Investigation?

Organizations conduct workplace investigations to gather evidence related to alleged violations of company policies, codes of conduct, or legal requirements. An investigation may uncover harassment, sexual harassment, discrimination, misconduct, theft, fraud, or violations of safety protocols.

There are a number of issues that could trigger an investigation, including:

  • Employee complaints: Accusations of harassment, discrimination, or misconduct
  • Management concerns: Suspicions of inappropriate behaviour by supervisors
  • Legal requirements: Compliance obligations under the Ontario Health & Safety Act (OHSA), industry regulations, or contractual requirements
  • Risk management: Proactive measures to address potential problems before they have a chance to escalate

Ontario Health & Safety Act Compliance

It is essential for employers to provide careful and fair investigations of alleged violations of company policies and codes of conduct. As per the OHSA, employers are legally obligated to complete investigations that are “appropriate in the circumstances”. Investigations that are not completed or completed poorly leave employers vulnerable to the Ministry of Labour forcing a company to use an external investigator to complete an investigation at the employer’s expense. Employers can also potentially face financial penalties.

Why Work with an External Workplace Investigator

When an organization faces allegations that require investigation, it is essential that it respond appropriately to the complaints. Companies that don’t take employee allegations seriously run the risk of damaging their reputations and becoming known for not listening to or following up on their employees’ concerns while also leaving them open to possible legal repercussions. Conversely, a properly completed investigation can be used as a defence, showing that the employer took all necessary steps to address the issue.

While some companies prefer to handle complaints internally, there are several areas in which working with a professional can save time and money while addressing potentially sensitive matters and ensuring the organization has done all it can to resolve complaints.

How We Can Help

Utilizing the expertise of an HR professional is crucial to determining the facts behind allegations. At Ford Keast LLP, we ask the right questions. It is important to gather as much information as possible from the complainant, the respondent, and any witnesses who may be interviewed.

As a professional with an extensive HR background, our Senior HR Consultant has been proactively trained to ask questions. Whether during normal HR interactions (recruitment, performance management, etc.) or those more complex investigation-focused queries.

Objectivity is an essential component of a workplace investigation that could be sensitive and emotional for those involved. Being trained in investigation procedures, and having handled many investigations, it is our practice to be impartial while at the same time having great empathy for everyone involved. It is always the goal of a Ford Keast investigation to help the individuals involved speak openly.

We provide:

  • Timely turnaround: Investigations are time-consuming, and under the OHSA, the investigator is required to complete an investigation within a reasonable time frame. We are efficient, meeting these obligations in a timely manner. 
  • Confidentiality: The confidentiality of the people involved in an investigation is held to a high standard, and the results of investigations are shared only with those who need to know. This helps maintain the integrity of the process and provides further protection to the employer.
  • Accurate reporting: When an investigation is complete, a comprehensive report is provided to the designated management team. This report documents the scope and results of the investigation.
  • Proactive solutions: Investigations can show employers things that may be missing from their policies and processes, which will assist in avoiding situations that require investigations in the future, saving money and enhancing employees’ experiences.

When an employer responds appropriately to a complaint, it shows the organization’s commitment to the OHSA requirements and to the team. Consistent integral behaviour and caring for employees is a cornerstone of the employee experience and ensures that people are treated fairly and equitably.

Workplace Investigations We Specialize In

  • Discrimination/unfair treatment based on Human Rights
  • Harassment/including but not limited to sexual harassment
  • Theft
  • Fraud
  • Workplace Violence
  • Misconduct
  • Respect
  • Safety Violations
  • Retaliations
  • Bullying

HR Professional Versus an Employment Lawyer

There are times, after analyzing the requirements of the situation at a high level, that we recommend employers contact a lawyer straight away because Lawyers have a high level of expertise in their area.

However, there are a number of reasons to choose to work with an HR professional, especially one who is also a certified workplace investigator, including: 

  • We are trained to deal with sensitive issues.
  • We are less expensive than a lawyer and, therefore, more cost-effective for the organization.
  • We understand the nuances of workplace culture issues and focus on maintaining or improving workplace harmony whenever possible.
  • When an employer requests recommendations, we are more broadly based due to our HR knowledge. For example, we provide preventative recommendations and updated policies and suss out systemic problems within the workplace in a different manner than a legal advisor would.

For Experienced Workplace Investigations and Knowledgeable HR Consulting, Contact Ford Keast LLP in London

At Ford Keast LLP, our expert HR Consultant offers businesses a full range of Human Resource services to meet the unique needs of businesses in London and across Ontario. To learn more about how we can help you and your organization, contact us online or by telephone at 519-679-9330.

News & Events

Office Location

624 Maitland Street
London, Ontario N6B 2Z9
View Office Hours
T (519) 679-9330
F (519) 679-3204

    RSM Canada Alliance provides its members with access to resources of RSM Canada Operations ULC, RSM Canada LLP and certain of their affiliates (“RSM Canada”). RSM Canada Alliance member firms are separate and independent businesses and legal entities that are responsible for their own acts and omissions, and each are separate and independent from RSM Canada. RSM Canada LLP is the Canadian member firm of RSM International, a global network of independent audit, tax, and consulting firms. Members of RSM Canada Alliance have access to RSM International resources through RSM Canada but are not member firms of RSM International. Visit for more information regarding RSM Canada and RSM International. The RSM trademark is used under license by RSM Canada. RSM Canada Alliance products and services are proprietary to RSM Canada.