Private Investigation Agencies: A Benefit for the Public and Investigators
Ease; it is one of the main principles guiding customer service, a necessary component of any successful business venture. Despite advances in technology, marketing, and resources, there is still one factor affecting any service that will ultimately dictate who receives customers and who will be forced to go out of business. That factor is customers—specifically, pleasing the customers. The first official private investigation agency, created in the early 1800s, was founded with the intention of familiarized the general population with a fairly new (thus, fairly un-trusted) service suddenly available to the private sector. In the beginning, investigation agencies were concerned with one thing: ensuring that the business of finding a private investigator was easy enough that investigators could rely on the patronage of customers for their livelihood. While the profession of private investigation does entail certain thoughts of civic duty and duty to assist and help the general public, it is still ultimately a means for individuals to make a living. So, while investigation agencies were initially created with the public in mind, it wasn’t (and still isn’t) only the public that benefits from them. The practices of agencies benefit the public AND the private investigators that they employ.
Why do agencies claim that they make the process of working with a private investigator easier? Private investigation agencies around the world have made it possible to streamline the process of hiring a private detective—and, as a bonus; they have made it possible to achieve maximum confidentiality and security. Investigative agencies go through the necessary trouble of screening, interviewing, and investigating the potential investigators themselves. A single private investigator that is self-employed can get away with forging paperwork, lying, and lack of licensure without a client ever being the wiser. A private investigator employed by an agency, on the other hand, is required to uphold any and all oaths taken to receive licensure (or face the penalty of having it revoked), and is not able to forge information because of the system of checks and balances created by a multi-person business. Almost always, agencies employ multiple private investigators that are assigned cases based on their specialty (Ex: surveillance, missing persons, child custody etc.). With more labor and skill resources on hand, agencies are capable of assigning multiple investigators to a single case, which ensures that the cases they receive will be handled with the utmost care and skill. In the end, agencies are able to promise a greater degree of trust, as well as greater results.
Agencies benefit the people who go to them for help, but they benefit the people that are employed by them as well. When fledgling or otherwise inexperienced investigators attempt to make a career working by themselves, the chances of failure are high. Agencies provide new investigators with an opportunity to work side by side with experienced professionals, gaining job experience while making money at the same time. Even employment at a lesser-known private investigation agency can ensure a private investigator a greater ability to inspire trust in clients because of the professional stigma associated with all business associations. Agencies also have the added bonus of multiple branches. A private investigator in the employ of an agency often suddenly finds a substantial burden of work lifted from his shoulders. Potential clients often speak to employees designated for public relations. Payment is taken care of by employees working with the agency’s paperwork. Much of the labor required by interviewing clients, marketing services, dealing with payment, and many other smaller, less significant but highly necessary jobs are taken care of by other employees of the agency, leaving only work directly related to investigation for the private investigator to do. And, of course, agencies will always lure investigators with the beguiling chance to earn a steady salary or hourly pay.