A Trustworthy Investigation Firm
While there is licensing mechanism for investigators in most of the developed countries such as USA and Europe, Hong Kong hasn’t established such regulations, resulting in the uneven service quality in the industry. There are also news coverage on private detectives convicted of infringement of others’ privacies or even exaggeration of their capabilities and authorities which is a violation against the Trade Descriptions Ordinance. In the light of the difficulty for the general public to pick a trustworthy professional firm for investigation services, I am listing out a few characteristics you will find in a reputable commercial investigation agency.
1. Listen to the Problem, Find the Crux
Many clients are too stressed and panic when they first approached the consulting agency. They do not know how to explain the background of their cases, what information should be provided to the agency, and the possible means to solve the problems. A reliable consulting agency will first gather the case details from the clients or their lawyers, then set the investigation objectives and devise a thorough action plan. In the investigation process, the agency will maintain timely communications with client so that they could get hold of the progress and findings of the investigation.
it is of utmost importance that the client is choosing an investigation agency not base on its publicity but its actual performance. Client can seek recommendation from other professionals such as lawyers and insurance companies, and pay attention to the agency’s history, their expertise and clients’ profiles, etc.
2. Combine Knowledge and Skills
Commercial investigation is a scrupulous process. Investigators must possess sufficient knowledge such as the relevant statutory provisions for respective cases, modes of business operations, accounting procedures, forensics and investigation equipment etc. When executing the action plan, investigators need to make use of different skillets such as analytical skills, observation skills, language ability and management skills etc. to ensure a smooth operation. A trustworthy consulting agency will be able to combine their knowledge and skills in investigations.
3. Work Closely with a Professional Team
While conducting an investigation, it’s hard to find an all-rounder to handle every single job. Therefore it’s inevitable to work as a team, and the team must be experienced and demonstrate good teamwork. A good team enables the exchange of expertise among the teammates for a more comprehensive and effective approach towards the case, which cannot be achieved by hiring temporary staff only when the agency needs the extra manpower.
4. Value the Importance of Law and Integrity
The reason of not employing temporary staffs is to maintain a clear Chain of Evidence, ensuring that our investigation findings are authentic and can be used in court cases. Investigators are often required to swear an affirmation to verify the findings in our reports. Besides, a reputable investigation agency will never break the law and invade others’ privacy for a case. Investigators would know clearly the boundaries of their authorities, and maintain their integrity while collecting and presenting their findings objectively.
5. Focus not on Gimmick but Capability
In a highly competitive business environment, it is not surprising that some investigation agencies will try to attract potential clients by creating gimmicks. However, as investigation requires high confidentiality and accuracy, it is of utmost importance that the client is choosing an investigation agency not base on its publicity but its actual performance. Client can seek recommendation from other professionals such as lawyers and insurance companies, and pay attention to the agency’s history, their expertise and clients’ profiles, etc. The consequence of getting help from a notorious agency can be severe. Not only the materials obtained cannot be used in legal actions, but the Client may even need to bare legal responsibilities by authorizing illegal actions to obtain intelligence.