How to Create Company Policies

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Company policies speak volumes about your company.
Company policies speak volumes about your company. (Image: meeting room_2 image by Oleg Kulakov from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

Creating company policy is serious business. Policies dictate a company’s standards and establish its image to the public. They also outline to employees just how the company is to conduct business and define the code of conduct. In short, a company’s policies must establish direction and guide it successfully in order for that company to survive and excel. Follow some parameters to create effective company policies.

Establish the company’s mission, and write it down. Forget the business jargon and trying to write like a textbook. Write the mission in a short statement. Use simple, direct language to adequately convey the company's reason for entering into business.

Build your company policies around this central mission. Think logically through the widget production process. Name and list in order the various departments of the company involved with this production. Address employee behaviors, dress codes, and technology access. List appropriate behaviors during work hours, and be very clear about harassment, lewdness and bullying among co-workers. Create a dress code that is comfortable and appropriate, but not too casual or revealing. Stress dressing for safety also. Limit technology access to a select group, and limit that group's use to company-related business only. Keep track of who has access and when they use that access by assigning personal, non-sharing codes to limit abuse.

The company's mission is its central driving force.
The company's mission is its central driving force. (Image: Company image by Yuriy Rozanov from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

Match each department’s job role in the production process. Write the company policies that will govern each phase of the production. Make the policies to address the actual tasks involved, worker conduct on the job and worker responsibility to the company at large. Structure your policies to legally protect company interests. Make sure the policies do not unintentionally expose the workers to injury. Write only policies that conform to local production practices. Account for the proper disposal of any by-products or waste the company may incur. Confirm with company attorneys that both the worker and company are within guidelines, and both are adequately protected through company policies.

Tie the company policies into the employees, the product they produce and the overall company position and standing. Make the policies relevant and interlink them so there is cohesion that makes for a smoothly flowing operation and chain of command to direct that flow. Clarify employee confusion regarding governmental regulations and standards where applicable.

Eliminate the 'I did not know' excuses of employees.
Eliminate the 'I did not know' excuses of employees. (Image: confused image by leafy from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

Avoid conflicting standards between departments and authority competition. Do not write one set of policies for one department and another for a different department which give the appearance of unfairness or favoritism. While all jobs are not equal in every aspect, make company policies that value equally each department’s contribution.

Establish supervision and enforcement of these company policies. Write company policies that put in place a clearly defined chain of command. Name each authority holder and the extent of his or her authority. Explain clearly how this authority is to work and how each employee is to avail himself or herself of it should the need arise.

Chain of command will make for better implementation of company policies.
Chain of command will make for better implementation of company policies. (Image: authorization image by Pix by Marti from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

Monitor the policies you put in place. Be prepared to adjust, change and add new policies as the need arises over time. Keep them current with the company mission, technology and company/employee performance. Offer incentives to departments with the fewest violations.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do not create policy based on one or two employees' misbehavior. Deal with them directly and specifically.
  • Make sure your policies are fair for every employee. Avoid writing protections for certain minorities within the company.

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