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Addressing Sexual Harassment Complaints: Best Practices for Employers and Employees

Tanvi Arora
27 May 2023
5 min read
Addressing Sexual Harassment Complaints: Best Practices for Employers and Employees


Addressing sexual harassment complaints is a critical aspect of creating a safe and inclusive work environment. Both employers and employees play crucial roles in preventing and effectively handling such incidents. By adopting best practices, organizations can establish a framework that prioritizes the well-being of their employees and ensures prompt and fair resolution of complaints. In this article, we will discuss the best practices for employers and employees in addressing sexual harassment complaints, promoting a culture of respect and equality in the workplace.

For Employers

1. Establish a Strong Policy:

Employers should formulate a comprehensive sexual harassment policy that defines what constitutes sexual harassment, provides examples, and outlines the reporting procedure. The policy should be easily accessible and clearly communicated to all employees.

2. Conduct Regular Training:

Regular training sessions should be conducted to educate employees about their rights, responsibilities, and the consequences of sexual harassment. Training should emphasize the importance of creating a respectful and harassment-free workplace.

3. Create a Reporting Mechanism:

Establish an Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) with trained members who can impartially handle complaints. The committee should ensure confidentiality, protect the identity of complainants, and provide a safe space for reporting incidents.

4. Prompt and Thorough Investigation:

Complaints should be promptly and thoroughly investigated by the ICC, ensuring fair treatment for all parties involved. Maintaining confidentiality and respecting the principles of natural justice are crucial during the investigation process.

5. No Retaliation:

Employers must protect complainants from any form of retaliation. Create a culture where individuals feel safe to report incidents without fear of adverse consequences. Strict action should be taken against any individual found guilty of retaliation.

For Employees

1. Understand the Policy:

Familiarize yourself with the organization's sexual harassment policy, including the definition of sexual harassment, the reporting process, and available support mechanisms. Awareness empowers employees to take appropriate action when needed.

2. Report Promptly:

If you experience or witness sexual harassment, report it promptly to the designated authority. Follow the organization's reporting procedure and provide all relevant details, ensuring a comprehensive account of the incident.

3. Maintain Documentation:

Keep a record of incidents, including dates, times, locations, and any supporting evidence such as emails or messages. This documentation can strengthen your case during the investigation process.

4. Cooperate in Investigations:

Cooperate fully with the ICC during the investigation. Provide accurate and honest information, and be prepared to participate in any interviews or proceedings related to the complaint.

5. Seek Support:

If you have been a victim of sexual harassment, seek emotional support from trusted colleagues, friends, or professional counselors. Understand your rights and utilize available resources such as counseling services or legal assistance provided by the organization.


Addressing sexual harassment complaints requires a collective effort from both employers and employees. By implementing these best practices, employers can create a safe and respectful work environment, while employees can contribute to a culture of zero tolerance for sexual harassment. Through open communication, prompt reporting, and cooperation during investigations, organizations can ensure that complaints are addressed effectively, promoting a workplace where all individuals are treated with dignity and respect.

Lear more about POSH Act 2013 in Understanding the POSH Act 2013: A Comprehensive Guide to Sexual Harassment Prevention in India

Tanvi Arora

Tanvi is a Business Development Executive at Calibr. While primarily occupied with building our outbound sales funnel, she also enjoys writing about eLearning trends in the corporate world.