Why have policy documents?
HR policy documents can provide the organisation with flexibility and protection. They also provide guidance for employees about important matters relating to their employment. Clear policies and procedures make up your 'rule book'. Therefore if 'rules' are broken, action can be taken. They also help to ensure employees act and conduct themselves to the standards required. For example, a policy on dress code will help ensure employees dress appropriately for the workplace (and if they do not, you can take action to correct this).
For a further explanation about rules, please visit our page HR & Football. Detailed below is a brief explanation about each of the templates policy documents available from the HR Policy Templates page.
Essentials and Legal Requirements
Disciplinary & Capability Procedure
There is a legal requirement to have a written disciplinary procedure. The procedure explains what will happen in a situation where disciplinary action may need to be considered. This will be in situations where there has been a breach of the rules (misconduct) or where there is poor performance (capability). A similar procedure may also be followed in cases of absence (short and long term absence).
There is a legal requirement to have a written grievance procedure. The procedure explains how an employee can raise a concern about their employment and how this will then be handled.
Equal Opportunities (and Harassment and Bullying)
While there is not a legal requirement to have an equal opportunities policy, there is a legal requirement not to discriminate against workers on prescribed grounds. A policy will confirm that you will not unlawfully discriminate and acts as a 'statutory' defence in any situation where one of your employees may discriminate (i.e. you can confirm that you do not condone such behaviour and that they are in breach of your policy).
It is also recommended that basic training is provided to all employees (and managers) on discrimination / equal opportunities to ensure they are clear about what behaviour is acceptable in order to minimise the risk of discrimination and to act as a further defence. Please speak to our consultants for further details.
There is also a related policy on Harassment and Bullying. This may not always involve discrimination, but makes clear that such conduct will not be tolerated.
Standards (and general rules / codes of conduct)
This document has a number of example statements relating to general standards and codes of conduct. It covers dress code, use of phones and mobile phones, facilities, company property etc etc. It can be amended to reflect your rules and standards.
Please see the section on Holidays for further guidance. This policy sets out general rules around holiday and holiday booking.
Absence Notification, Certification & Payment
Please see the section on Absence for further guidance. This policy sets out general rules around absence.
Computer and Internet and Social Networking
This policy sets out rules around the use of company computer systems including the Internet and emails. The Social Networking policy sets out rules around what can be discussed on social networking regarding the company and/or employees.
Bribery and Corruption
This policy sets out your policy on bribery and corruption and makes a clear statement that this is not acceptable. This then provides a defence for the company (so they are not held liable for the employee's actions) should an employee be found to be involved in bribery or corruption.
Employees are protected by law if they 'whistleblow' on the Company, i.e. if they report serious wrongdoing (e.g. criminal activity, fraud or accounting irregularities, corruptions etc). This policy sets out how the Company would deal with any allegations made and requests that such concerns are first raised internally.
This policy explains what workers should do in the event of bad weather affecting them in terms of getting to work. It confirms what efforts employees should make and what payments will be made if they cannot attend.
Social & Corporate Events
This policy sets out how employees should conduct themselves when attending a works event or representing the company at a corporate event. It confirms that they are still required to act in line with the Company's general standards of conduct including the equal opportunities policy.
This policy can be used by employees who wish to apply for flexible working. It is available to ALL employees who have the qualifying period of employment. It is a very useful policy as it sets out how an employee should apply and on what grounds the Company may decline a request.
For all other family friendly policies (listed below), please see the Family Friendly section (which includes step by step guidance).
Antenatal and Adoption Appointments
Shared Parental Leave