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Does your HR department fall short?

As a business owner, you may be fortunate to have years of carefree interactions with your employees. This may be the result of a diligent hiring process, seeking employees from a trustworthy pool or just luck. If an issue arises, you may be able to deal with it privately or have your HR representative handle it with minimal disruption.

However, this may not always be the case. At any time, an employee conflict may arise that your current policies don't address, and that conflict can quickly overtake the smooth operations of your company. Like many business owners, you may be more focused on the running of the company and satisfying your clients than establishing policies and guidelines for your workers. Until you address those issues, you may be living on the edge of disaster.

Benchmarks of a solid HR plan

Whether you manage your own HR concerns or have a manager running that department, you certainly want to ensure you are aware of the most current laws and regulations. One reason why HR matters drop by the wayside is that managers are unable or uninterested in keeping up with those laws. Failing to comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations or misclassifying employees at the expense of their paychecks are just two ways in which you place your business in jeopardy.

To avoid potential lawsuits, fines and stress, your HR department can take some important steps, including:

  • Keeping the employee handbook thorough and up to date, including policies for nondiscrimination, benefits and termination
  • Establishing and enforcing a code of conduct
  • Documenting violations of performance or conduct requirements
  • Maintaining complete and detailed employee files
  • Carefully considering promotions and new hires based on accurate job descriptions

The value of a training plan cannot be overlooked, and employees who are well trained are worth the effort, time and money you invest in the process. In some industries, training is the difference between a job completed without incident and a preventable accident. Additionally, employees with consistent and ongoing training often feel invested in their jobs and can be more productive.

Where do I even begin?

Although no business owner likes to think about it, many are now beginning to consider disaster plans and policies for workplace violence. Preparing for these ahead of time may limit damage and reduce the number of injuries.

Because these items barely touch on the many important factors of a complete HR program, you may have many questions about how to ensure your California business is not making mistakes that may cost you dearly. For assistance in evaluating your HR policies, you may wish to seek legal advice.

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