DE­TEC­TIVE Pri­vate eye

THE LOW­DOWN

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - HT Education - - Front Page -

CLOCK­WORK The work hours could be ir­reg­u­lar and in­clude week­ends as well 6am: Start trail­ing quarry 9am: Ask col­league on phone to gather other de­tails of the quarry 1.30pm: Have lunch on the move fol­low­ing quarry till the s/he reaches home 9pm to mid­night: Go home and pre­pare a report. If the in­for­ma­tion is not enough then, plan for the next day

THE PAY­OFF Pri­vate in­ves­ti­ga­tors can earn be­tween R1,25,000 to R2,50,000 per an­num. Top salaries in cor­po­rate in­ves­ti­ga­tion, for those with de­tailed le­gal knowl­edge, can be R5 lakh to R10 lakh per an­num. (fig­ures are in­dica­tive only). With ex­pe­ri­ence, you could be­come a se­nior in­ves­ti­ga­tor or a team man­ager, or set up your agency De­tec­tives carry out un­der­cover in­ves­ti­ga­tions for their clients, in­clud­ing so­lic­i­tors, in­surance com­pa­nies, pri­vate com­pa­nies and in­di­vid­u­als. In­ves­ti­ga­tions in­clude fam­ily is­sues like di­vorce, adop­tion, busi­ness sup­port re­gard­ing in­ter­nal es­pi­onage or theft. The work may also in­clude sur­veil­lance, fraud in­ves­ti­ga­tion, trac­ing miss­ing per­sons, in­ves­ti­gat­ing com­mer­cial piracy, vet­ting per­son­nel etc. You would typ­i­cally work alone as a self-em­ployed in­ves­ti­ga­tor. You could find work as an em­ployee of an in­ves­ti­ga­tion agency or buy a fran­chise, which may com­bine the ad­van­tage of work­ing alone with the ben­e­fits and con­tacts as­so­ci­ated with be­ing part of a large or­gan­i­sa­tion. Al­ter­na­tively, you could set up your own agency. Your success will not only de­pend on your in­ves­tiga­tive skills, knowl­edge and ex­pe­ri­ence, but also on your abil­ity to mar­ket your ser­vices. What­ever the era, the pro­fes­sion re­tains its charm and the ones who yearn for an ad­ven­tur­ous life should join it with the aim of go­ing the whole hog for the truth SKILLS/TRAITS Good ver­bal and writ­ten com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills Ex­cel­lent ob­ser­va­tion skills Strong an­a­lyt­i­cal skills Self-con­fi­dence to present ev­i­dence in court Ba­sic com­puter skills Knowl­edge of the law Abil­ity to work in­de­pen­dently Pa­tience and per­se­ver­ance Em­pa­thy for clients who may be dis­tressed by your find­ings

GET­TING THERE You may not need any qual­i­fi­ca­tions to be­come a trainee in­ves­ti­ga­tor. A paid trainee­ship will be dif­fi­cult to come by if you do not have rel­e­vant skills and knowl­edge. You can set up your de­tec­tive agency, but at­tract­ing clients and pro­vid­ing good ser­vice re­quires ap­pro­pri­ate skills. It is use­ful to have a good ed­u­ca­tion plus some ex­pe­ri­ence in field work (such as mar­ket­ing/sales etc). You could con­tact lo­cal pri­vate in­ves­ti­ga­tors to find out about op­por­tu­ni­ties shad­ow­ing pro­fes­sion­als. A list of po­ten­tial em­ploy­ers can be found on the web­sites of the As­so­ci­a­tion of Pri­vate De­tec­tives and

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