At the core of every company is its policy manual. This document serves as an operational blueprint, outlining how aspects of the business should be managed as well as other details, including acceptable employee behavior, performance expectations and safety standards.
Since your policies guide how the company runs, allowing them to become out of date can be problematic. For example, not having standards regarding the use of technology, including everything from the internet on business assets to personal smartphones of communication, can leave you vulnerable.
If you haven’t updated your company policy recently, here are some tips to make the process manageable.
Define Areas of Responsibility
While upper management needs to sign off on all policy changes, they may not be the ideal team to assess what is currently in place and recommend changes. Often, it’s wise to delegate these tasks to specific department heads who have the knowledge base required to review and alter particular policies effectively.
For instance, you may want an IT manager to assess computer and smartphone use to determine recommendations and the wording of any changes.
It’s also important to identify a member of your legal team to review any proposed changes. This ensures that everything meets legislative and regulatory standards, regardless of their area of effect.
Create a Review Schedule
Having a policy review schedule creates a framework for keeping everything up to date. Typically, reviewing your policies annually is a smart move as this allows you to make adjustments based on new laws or technological changes that occurred over the past year.
In some areas, quarterly reviews may be necessary. You’ll need to determine which policies tend to be impacted by new legislation and assign a review schedule that gives you the ability to remain current.
Examine Policies Thoroughly
It’s essential to be thorough when reviewing your policies. Read every sentence and see if they are applicable or if critical information is missing.
This is especially true of safety or any policies that provide step-by-step instruction on how to perform a task. You want to articulate every required step of the process, ensuring that nothing is overlooked and there is no question about how to proceed.
Release Updates Properly
When you update a policy, you need to do more than just replace the existing text and continue on with your day. First, you want to make sure that all past copies are maintained, giving you a reference should the need arise.
Second, you want to number and categorize updates for easy reference and create a tracking system to log the changes.
Finally, you want to disperse the information in a way that ensures all relevant parties are informed and obtain a signature from affected individuals to acknowledge receipt of the updated information. If the policies apply to all employees, you may want to also post details of the policy changes in shared areas, such as break rooms, as well as provide paper and electronic copies.
Ready for more information?
By using the tips above, you can successfully keep your policies up to date at all times. If you would like to know more, the professionals at PrideStaff can help you devise a plan. Contact us to discuss your needs today and see how our workplace expertise can benefit you.