Once upon a time, there was a very disgruntled employee. She was upset with her employer who accused her of violating company policy. But when she asked about the policy, the employer could not give a concrete and real statement, instead, the employer said, “I have told you about it before, don’t you remember?” which made the disgruntled employee angrier.
From such case as above, we can learn that verbal communication has limited power as proof, resulting in employees’ unawareness of company rules. When you do not have written rules or unable to write company policy clearly, this could leave you open to enforcement and even legal problems in the future.
Thus, to avoid more undesirable problems, a written company policy is a must-have. Company policy in written forms can help employees understand and keep in mind better about what you expect from them. It also ensures employees to behave in certain manners that won’t be harmful to your business.
If you are new to writing company policy, you can include and start with the following fundamental policy aspects.
Your policy should contain basic yet important aspect that is mandated by law in almost every country: equal opportunity. When writing the statement, you should consider and follow through EEOC guideline to completely cover every equality aspect in the workplace. This policy aims to provide harmony and clear out workplace environment from conflicts that might arise among internal team and/or from an external factor.
See also: EEO Requirement: Who Needs It & Know-How Guideline
In general, the policy will prohibit any act of discrimination including age, race, colour, nationality, disability, religious, etc. The policy should also cover the right to be paid equal and treat equally, as well as stated clause about sexual harassment in the workplace.
Health and safety policy is important to ensure employees wellbeing. Especially for hard labour company, this policy should be – definitely – written in a clear clause. A written clause in this matter will demonstrate the company’s commitment to taking care of your employees.
Generally, health and safety policy covers general coverage for when there is an accident or work-related illness. There should also be stated statement on prevention action and management about workplace health and safety.
Employees and employer will be mutually benefited from having this policy. Employees are happy to know what kind of benefits the company can offer. On the other hand, as an employer, you can show that your company can give a better work-life balance than competitors.
Usually, different types of leave should be stated clearly such as sick leave, paid time off, annual leave, maternity leave, parental leave, etc. As best as possible, offer leave policy that can differentiate you from your competitors. You should also clearly write rules about the policy leave. For example, paid time off leave can be taken under “certain situation” and can only be taken for 4 times annually.
Albeit no company wants to deal with serious problems, workplace-related issues are predestined. It will be much easier for employers to deal with the issues when there is a stated clause. Having this policy will also help you create a more harmonious environment to work.
The disciplinary policy, commonly, includes prohibited action in company and how employers will address such fraud if happens. This policy, once again, should ensure fairness and appropriateness. The treatment should be written concisely and clearly.
Code of conduct is a set of rules, norms, and responsibility employees must practice. Thus, it is more than important to write this policy. Typically, every company will have this policy written in an employment contract to let employees know what is expected from them. Having this written policy will also protect the business bottom line from unexpected trickery or fraudulence.
Read also: Bad to Good: How to Develop a Company Policy