Q:

How do you format an investigative report?

A:

Quick Answer

To format an investigative report, write it as an outline-style report that is in first person. Create a cover page to keep the contents as private as possible. Include basic information before the report section, such as the names of the sender and recipient and a subject or topic line. Next, add a bullet section on the complainant, including the allegation, the starting and ending date of the investigation and the sources or evidence used in the report.

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Full Answer

Create another bullet list or narrative paragraph that presents the facts found during the investigation. Describe the steps taken in the appropriate order, using dates and times when applicable. Reference evidence when needed, but add all evidence in an appendix of exhibits at the end of the report, including witness statements, photographs, video emails, documents and scanned files. Try to avoid going into detail with evidence in the fact section to maintain the flow of the report.

The last section of the report is at least one narrative paragraph that sums up the investigation. Give a recommendation for actions to take, if needed. Add a statement about the violations with an explanation of what validated an investigation. If you make a recommendation, make it a call to action, listing steps to take that correlate with the type of allegation made, noting any supportive evidence or code of conduct policies in place. If the report is more than a few pages long, insert a table of contents and number the pages.

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