Ensuring that your employees have access to the information they need to do their job is easier said than done. How can you tell if staff have the right version of your health and safety policy or the latest version of your operating procedures? How do you know employees fully understand what the information security policy means for them on a daily basis? Yet beyond version control, policy distribution and ensuring employees understand what is required of them; how well your company actually manages policies can be overlooked in favour of seemingly more 'business-critical' activities.
A recent article stated that far from being 'nice-to-haves', how you manage company policies can have tangible consequences for your business in terms of employee turnover, staff retention and recruitment costs. How you manage company policies requires careful consideration, and can have a heavy impact on your company’s bottom line all the way from HR to Compliance.
Can your business afford to not be in control of its policies?
1) The cost of liability
Ensuring that employees have not only read but are actively aware of policies they need to comply with is a huge responsibility that increases with the number of employees. A 2012 report revealed that only 53% of staff were aware of their company’s policies. Businesses operating in regulated industries need to ensure their policy management procedures are within the guidelines set by the regulatory body, or be at risk of legal and financial penalties.
2) The cost of lost productivity
The day to day impact of poorly managed policies should not be overlooked. Time spent searching for policies or even guessing at what company policies contain decreases company productivity and overall performance.
It is essential that staff are able to find the policy document they need quickly and ensure they have the latest version. Once a policy is created, any changes thereafter need to be managed and communicated so employees know where they stand. No one wants to be the employee waiting two weeks for travel authorisation because Finance hasn’t got the policy information it needs.
3) The cost of recruitment
Attractive policies such as flexible working and annual leave policies can make a huge difference to staff turnover rates. A report by American Progress cited the average annual staff turnover rate at 20% for people voluntarily leaving their post. For each lost employee, the cost of recruiting a replacement was quantified as 20% of the leaving employees salary, with this figure rising considerably for more technical or education-specific roles. Based on a company losing 20 Sales Managers a year, a company’s annual recruitment cost could hit £170,000.
If you would like to find out more about how you can effectively manage policies and processes in a flexible way and minimise these costs, download our latest Policy Management whitepaper, 7 Key Factors for Successful Policy and Process Management: