The ongoing challenges of HR policy management at small to medium organizations (SMBs) are constantly changing and evolving, leaving HR managers overwhelmed and frustrated. Strict government regulations and an increase in employee legal disputes complicates policy development and automating the process of distributing and receiving employee acknowledgement.
Once a policy is developed and approved, what is the best way for organizations to communicate it and distribute it? Where and how can employees access it, especially if the policy is urgent and the employee is not in the office? Furthermore, how can HR managers receive confirmation that employees read, understood, and acknowledged the policy?
Some organizations use email to send out policies, but an email can't always respond to HR managers confirming that employees received the email, opened it and read it. At many companies and in many jurisdictions, emailing a policy and expecting employees to read it and acknowledge it is not enough.
In addition to email notifications, HR departments need a central place for employees to access the policy. They also need digital confirmation on file that employees acknowledged and read the policy. Paper confirmation is not enough anymore because of the risks with losing or misplacing the policy.
Here at SP Marketplace, our more than 700 customers have expressed their challenges with HR policy management. As a result, we developed SP HR, a full-featured HR management solution on SharePoint and Office 365 that automates the policy management process, transforming manual processes into digital ones.
Painful Policy Management Processes at SMBs
SMBs that employee limited HR staff find it difficult to keep up with and stay organized with stringent government regulations that are constantly evolving and updating. What is especially challenging is determining where and how to securely place policies for review by employees.
For many SMBs currently, policy management is a manual process. All of the signed employment contracts, company policies, tax forms, and other personal employee information is kept in a (hopefully locked) filing cabinet or on a file server along with hundreds of other documents.
The only way to make sure that all staff have read and acknowledged the latest company policies is to manually go through employee files and see if it is there.
What if your organization is audited? How quickly can your HR department demonstrate that all employees are kept informed of the latest mandatory changes within the company? Or, what if your SMB is involved with an employee legal dispute? Can you quickly locate the necessary policy acknowledgement or paperwork?
Like many business challenges, it comes down to defining a process, communicating it, and implementing it in a consistent manner. The policy management process includes:
Going from Painful to Painless Automated Policy Management
With most SMBs using painful manual processes for HR policy management, what is the solution to go to a painless process?
With SharePoint and Office 365, HR managers have a way to organize and track all policies from development to acknowledgement.
SP HR on SharePoint facilitates this with document libraries where HR managers can develop and publish different policies. HR managers can begin the policy development process, including the ability to see when an employee accesses the policy, or checks in, and when the employee checks out.
Not only that but HR managers can configure and manage policy groups for their staff. For example, if there is a policy that only the sales department needs access to, the HR manager can create a group that allows access to just the sales team.
Example of a List of Policy Groups
Once a policy is developed, alerts can be configured with a link that is automatically sent to different groups and employees letting them know they need to review the policy and acknowledge it.
With electronic acknowledgement, an HR manager can track which employees have acknowledged the policy and which have not. For those employees who still need to acknowledge the policies, a reminder can automatically be sent out to the employee.
Policies that Require Acknowledgement
Employees can access and review these policies in the MyHR employee portal as well as the intranet document center, making policy management painless for both HR and employees.
All of these feature allow HR managers to very easily manage information on a single platform and access the policy and acknowledgement for individual staff at a moment’s notice, if required.