6 Must-Have Policies for Every Company

6 Must-Have Policies for Every Company

When an organisation has clear company policies, both employees and employers benefit. Outlining your company's employees' rights and expectations aids in the establishment of workplace behavioural and performance standards, as well as providing employees with an overall framework for success at your company. Company policies also help to protect your company and contribute to a safer and more enjoyable work environment for everyone.
You may be required by law to follow certain company policies, but you may also choose to develop your own. The following tips and best practises will help you decide which policies to include in your employee handbook.

What exactly are company policies?
Company policies are guidelines that help employers deal with the health, safety, and accountability of their employees, as well as their interactions with customers or clients. Company policies can also serve as a guideline for federal or state regulatory requirements, legal issues, and other situations that can have serious ramifications for employees.

Here is a list of company policies to think about:
    Code of Ethics
    Policy on Equality
    Policy on Workplace
    Health and Safety Policy
    Policy on Social Media and the Internet
    Data Protection Policy
    Working Hours, Absences, and HolidaysPolicy

What are the Importance of Company Policies?
Company policies define exactly what you expect from your employees. These could be based on accomplishments, values, or behaviour. Furthermore, policies for a company can serve as a warning to employees by outlining the consequences of not following the rules.

Company policies are also important for a variety of other reasons, including:
1.    Establishing Expectations
2.    Holding management responsible
3.    Ensuring that the law is followed
4.    Protect yourself from legal action.
5.    Assisting in the fair treatment of employees

Considered Company Policies

 1) Code of Conduct
Because it defines the fundamental standards of business behaviour, a code of conduct serves as the foundation for many policies. This document's critical components include corporate values, corporate property protection, dealing with corruption and conflicts of interest, and employees' personal and professional responsibility. Furthermore, a code of conduct should state explicitly how employees should act if they witness a violation of the applicable rules, as well as the consequences of misconduct.

2) Equality Policy
An equality policy lays the groundwork for workplace protection against discrimination and harassment, as well as for promoting diversity. The primary goal must be to ensure that the employer makes no decisions that discriminate against employees or applicants based on race, ethnic origin, gender, religion, age, disability, or sexual orientation. Implementing an appropriate policy demonstrates the company's clear commitment and raises awareness throughout the entire workforce.

3) Workplace Health and Safety Policy
It is in the best interests of every company to avoid workplace accidents and promote employee health. This policy should spell out the company's responsibilities and duties in terms of workplace safety. Any procedures and instructions for work that involves specific risks, as well as how to behave in an emergency, should be included in the policy.

4) Social Media and Internet Use Policy
The line between professional and personal use of the internet and social media is becoming increasingly blurred. All the more reason for every company to have an employee education policy in place. This policy should specify what employees are and are not permitted to share online, as well as which rules apply to the use of the company's own IT infrastructure. The policy should strive to strike a balance between the employee's personal rights and the employer's interests.

5) Data Protection Policy
Since the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect, data protection has been a hot topic in every company. Employee and customer personal data are both subject to legal requirements. To reduce the risk of a data protection violation, every company should implement a data protection policy. It should specify how the company uses personal information and what safeguards are in place to protect it.

6) Working Hours, Absences, and Holidays Policy
To avoid potential disputes, businesses should clarify any potential ambiguities regarding working hours, absences, and holidays. This policy, for example, should specify the minimum and maximum weekly working hours, as well as the rules for taking breaks, how working hours can be scheduled, and what should be recorded. The applicable labour law should also govern overtime and holiday entitlements.

Companies should always implement policies that are based on a risk assessment that is specific to their industry. Furthermore, if and when changes occur within the company or in the legislative environment, companies should review whether a new policy is required on a regular basis. Policies must be carefully introduced and communicated within the company.
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