Unlike a 9-to-5 job, the hours and duties of a private investigator can vary from one day to the next, and weekend and holiday work isn’t uncommon. A typical day might be spent meeting with clients and conducting surveillance, but the next day could be completely different. If you tire easily of doing the same thing all the time, the private investigator lifestyle is anything but predictable.
Private investigation comes in a variety of forms, and not all work is related to criminal activity. Some insurance companies hire private investigators solely for the purpose of looking into suspected cases of fraud, saving them thousands of pounds in deceitful pay-outs. Other private investigators focus on the breakdown of relationships, catching cheating partners, and providing clients with proof of adultery.
The first thing a private investigator commonly deals with in their day-to-day duties is the client brief, which is usually provided to the surveillance manager, who then passes the information on to the rest of the team. This document is crucial to the outcome of the investigation, as it contains specifics of the case and the client’s objectives. Only once the brief has been received can the private investigators begin doing their job.
Many private investigators prefer to operate alone, but in the real world, it’s not uncommon for teams of 2 or 3 to work on a case together. Depending on the circumstances of the case, the team may travel by car, motorbike, and in some cases on foot, in order to observe and obtain key evidence related to their case.
As one of the most commonly used tactics in the industry, surveillance plays an important role in a private investigator’s daily routine. Having the ability to blend in to their surroundings so that the subject of the investigation doesn’t get suspicious is something every good private investigator should know how to do.
Conducting surveillance might sound exciting, but it usually involves sitting in a parked car for hours on end. You can’t take a quick nap or read a book to keep the boredom at bay either; one lapse in concentration could cost the entire case.