Staff training crucial to minimise risk in the event of dawn raid

Comprehensive training for staff will help to minimise risk when a company is the subject of a dawn raid, according to speakers at a recent masterclass hosted by PwC.

Panelists agreed that staff at all levels of seniority must be involved in the procedure for responding to a dawn raid, from reception and security personnel to board members, senior executives and even interns. A comprehensive training programme will equip all members of the company to respond in the best possible manner in the event of a dawn raid – such a programme is also an opportunity for staff to articulate any doubts or concerns and learn exactly how to respond.
Attendees at the event – which was organised in conjunction with Iberian Lawyer – heard that key aspects to cover during training include making staff aware of their rights, defining the extent of the inspecting authority’s powers to access documentation, as well as explaining the drafting of plans, procedures and practicalities such as the provision of contact details to ensure lawyers quickly arrive on site. External lawyers play a key role in this process, working in close collaboration with compliance officers and in-house legal teams, both during training and in the course of an inspection. There are significant risks associated with not having a strong training strategy in place. Employees and executives who haven´t received specific guidance may use their own initiative to destroy evidence, hide paperwork or provide unnecessary explanations to inspectors. This puts the company at risk of incurring larger or additional penalties, and suffering serious reputational damage.