Every business should have a readily available set of rules and regulations regarding company policy. To help with yours, we created this list of seven important things to keep in mind when you are creating a policy manual for your small or large business.
1.Find An Existing Manual. And revise it so suit your needs. It would help to find a manual from a business that offers the same kinds of services that you do, but this is not absolutely necessary. Simply find a manual that you think you will be able to work with and start from there. There may be manuals available for purchase online that contain some basics that you can work from. Take a look around.
2.Include Unwritten Policies. Depending on how long you have been in business, you may already have standards in place that are not written down or codified yet. You can’t go into the future imagining that these rules will stay in place, so here is your opportunity to get them down in written form.
3.Get Legal Advice. It is absolutely essential that you have an attorney that specializes in workplace law take a look at your policy book. There are many reasons for this of course. You will want to make sure that your policies are legal, and that your bases are covered. You also want to make sure that everything that is required by law to be in your manual is there, and that you have a clearly stated policy regarding such events aw terminations and non-adherence.
4.Organize it Well. Give your policy book a structure that everyone can understand with well-defined chapters, sections and headers. Make it easy for you employees to find that it is that they are looking for by including an index. If you have staff that travels a lot, it is a great idea to have a copy of the manual online where they can refer to is whenever they may need to.
5.Hire a Writer or Editor.And make sure that you instruct him or her to keep the book upbeat and readable as much as possible throughout. These are people that are paid to make things clear and concise. If your company is a large one, there is the chance that many people in many different departments have contributed to the policy manual, and a good writer or editor can take all these different styles and make them flow seamlessly into a coherent whole. There are a lot of different resources for finding writers on the web. One great place to start is cragslist.org. There are also sites such a e-lance where writers and editors will bid for your particular job. There is a fee to post for some certain kinds of jobs, but it isn’t much.
6.Choose The Right Binding Style. You will want to make sure that you can keep your manual up to date, and make amendments and other changes as necessary. Three ring binding is a natural choice for this, but is not the most durable of methods. Take a look around online or visit your local print shop and have a chat about what style will best suit your needs.
7.Update Annually. Or whenever there is a major change to company policy. Make sure everyone’s manual, as well as the online version, reflect the changes.