Research perspectives

Whistleblowing policies lack trained investigators

A majority of employers have whistleblowing policies, but lack formal training for those handling whistleblowing claims, a study by compliance services provider Safecall has found.

In a survey of HR managers and directors in 222 organisations, 42 per cent of employees responsible for managing whistleblowing complaints are either self-taught, learned through experience, or have no experience at all. Even where companies provide dedicated internal whistleblowing services, only 58 per cent of investigators have been formally trained.

Although 57 per cent of HR professionals surveyed believed their employees were actively encouraged to report wrongdoing, only 43 per cent said their employees “generally feel safe” to do so. 74 per cent of HR professionals could also not be certain that whistleblowers were confident in raising concerns.

The study also found that one in five (20 per cent) organisations have whistleblowing processes that their employees would find to be “highly untrustworthy”.