3 people talking at a conference room table.
If there is anything more frustrating for an employee other than not knowing what the clear directives are from the company they work for, we can’t think of one. It is said that employees don’t leave companies, they leave managers. The assumptive culprit may not necessarily be their supervisor’s personality after all.   When we were kids outside playing a game in the neighborhood (Remember when that happened?) the immediate questions around the circle, following the decision on what to play, was centered around the rules. Everyone had to know what the rules were and most of all how they would know when they won and what was fair. Fair was important to a kid. You couldn’t play if you didn't want to play fair. If you didn’t play fair, there were plenty of immediate shouts in your direction to let you know that you’d crossed the line with your playmates.  

Are Your Company Policies Clear?

  Nothing has changed when it comes to company policies. The same mentality we had as kids still rings true today, it just displays itself in different ways (Okay, maybe not so different). First of all, the policies need to be as specific as possible. You can’t follow rules you don’t know exist and you especially can’t follow rules you don’t understand. You can’t play a game well when you don’t know how to it is played so why would you expect your employees to do anything different?   If you asked any employee at your company to recite what company policies exist with regards to vacations, could they tell you? Could they also explain to you why the policies are the way they are? If they can’t, you have a problem.   If employees don’t know what the rules are, it creates tension in the working environment regardless of your intentions. If your employees feel as though it is an “us versus them” management style, they will find an that office feels friendlier sooner or later. These situations can be avoided when the company policies around what it expected of them are clear and verbalized to them. Make sure your employees know what is expected and why and they will be happier in general.  

Are Your Company Policies Written?

  Where are your company policies? Your employees should either have a copy of all company policies to refer to whenever necessary or at least be able to point someone in the direction of a copy or a posted list somewhere in your office. Have you written your policies down for your employees? Taking the time to write them down and allow your employees to have access to them goes a long way in creating a positive working environment where everyone feels kept in the loop. If you have not created an employee handbook, now is a good time to start. Large companies have written policies for everything including dress code, vacation time, expenses and sick leave. They ask their employees to read their handbook and sign a form stating that they’ve read the policies and they understand them. This also creates a positive environment for employees to ask questions regarding policies so they have a good handle on why they are in place. Having an employee handbook keeps things in check and communication in place.  

Have Your Company Policies Been Reviewed Yearly?

  Some of your policies will never change, like you can never expense things that are not specifically purchased for the company or for company business. That goes without saying. As companies grow, change, and expand into other markets, there is a need to review what is in place and see if it still makes sense for it to stay the way it is.   One main reason you would review your company policies is changing Federal and State labor laws. Things change over the years. In 2015 and 2016 a lot of things changed and you may not be aware that they have. If you don’t know then likely neither do your employees, but when they do find out and they certainly will, they’ll be going to the company policies to see if they reflect the changes they have recently read about.   Many employees have taken it upon themselves to go review company policies now that insurance requirements have changed, minimum wages have gone up in many states, and overtime regulations have been overhauled. Make sure you are one step ahead of your employees when it comes to labor laws. Failing to keep yourself apprised can mean a lot of trouble in the long run. Don’t be caught uninformed.   If one or more of your company policies conflict with the laws in place, you are required by law to comply: no ifs ands or buts about it. If you are having trouble maintaining all that you need with HR compliance and best practices, now may be a good time to talk to a PEO broker like PEO Spectrum to see if a PEO might be right for your company. It costs nothing to decide if a PEO might work for you, but it certainly costs a lot to realize you needed help when trouble hits. Don’t make your employees cry out “No fair!” Get your company policies aligned with your employee needs and get help with HR compliance and management if you need it.

If you’d like to find out more about how PEOs can help you provide great benefits and payroll management at less than you are paying now, contact us today for a free consultation.

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