Standardizing the Language of Corporate Internal Investigative Reports: Linguistic Perspectives on Professional Writing Practices

  • Glen Michael Alessi
Part of the Communicating in Professions and Organizations book series (PSPOD)


Multinational corporations conduct internal investigations when unresolved questions regarding employee behaviour require attention. The company’s internal investigator identifies the employees involved, then compiles and documents testimonies, descriptions and contextual information that may eventually confirm or disprove allegations. The purpose of the investigation is to allow the company authorities to take decisions about which action to take and policies to form regarding that particular incidence. The problems investigated mostly concern matters of company security — involving employee behaviour in breach of company policy. Accusations can range from: employee misconduct, fraud, harassment, code violations, alleged threats and physical injury, to bribery, blackmail or general issues of non-compliance that can result in employee dismissal. When an internal complaint or suspected rule violation by an employee is detected and reported, a regional company investigator, typically known as the Business Practices Officer (BPO), interviews the parties involved, and sends findings in an investigative report to the offices of the company’s Head of International Security (HIS). This office, along with the offices of International Legal Compliance and Corporate Security, make a final decision on what actions to take or policies to create. The report, normally undergoes final editing by the company at this stage, and is filed for internal reference.


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© Glen Michael Alessi 2016

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  • Glen Michael Alessi

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