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HR Documents are like the Sun!

If you think about it HR documents are just like the sun. Get your HR documents right and you’ll be basking comfortably, growing your business healthily and methodically and managing your people really well.

But get it wrong and you can be burned – and badly.

HR is not sexy. Nobody loves HR and in most small businesses nobody is interested in spending time getting things right. At best it’s a nod to compliance and typically, one the following situations tends to apply. Either HR is:

  • - simply forgotten about; or
  • - done on the hoof; or
  • - done by someone who doesn’t really know what they’re doing; or
  • - (even worse) done by someone who think they know what they’re doing but doesn’t.

Does your business HR falls into one of these categories?

If HR itself is not sexy, most people’s view is that HR documents are still less so. When was the last time you got really excited over terms and conditions of employment? I’m guessing – that would be never. (Mind you, you can be forgiven. You haven’t read ours……yet!). But if your HR documents aren’t right (or don’t exist) you’re really missing a business trick.

I’ve lost count of the number of business owners who say:

“HR doesn’t apply to me; I’ve only got one part time employee!”

It does actually. The simple fact is that if you use contractors, agency staff or have just one employee (part time or otherwise) you must have a range of HR documents cued up, ready to use and fit for purpose. These must be appropriate, up-to-date and robust.

By robust I mean they contain all the little tricks that manage the day-to-day wrinkles of working life. For example, making sure you have a framework for being able to deal with employees who raise grievances and go sick as soon as you start a disciplinary discussion, however mild.

Line up your HR documents

Setting up the right HR processes for recruitment, managing and exiting employees is essential. Part of that is having the right HR documents in place.

You need to provide your new employees with all the relevant information about your company, their new role and your expectations of them when they start.

Take recruitment. To ensure you employ really good quality people, you’ll need to create a job description and person specification for each role in your company. It’s not only helpful to define and describe your ideal job holder, you will be able to use it for multiple purposes (for example job adverts, selection testing and as the basis for the brief you give to any outsourced recruitment agencies).

Providing terms of employment to employees is a legal requirement. They are the cornerstone of your business standards and practices. They set out the rights and responsibilities for you and your team. They are unbelievably important – yet so often they are neglected or just imported wholesale from someone else’s business and topped and tailed.

Once you have started building your team you’ve got to be able measure performance. What are your workplace standards? What does success look like? Can you explain this precisely to your team? Can you measure what’s being delivered?

Don’t leave the success of your business to chance. Make sure your HR documents are HR heroes.