Policies & Procedures

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Sample - Grievance Policy & Procedure

Sample - Grievance Policy & Procedure

4 Jul 2003

This sample could be used a guide in developing your own.

Quick Facts

Policies and Young Workers

While it is not necessary to have separate policies for young workers, there are a few points of difference that may be worth considering when drafting policies for your business.
  • Young and inexperienced workers may not be familiar with general business practice and therefore may need especially clear detailed explanations
  • Younger workers in certain industries may be especially vulnerable to historical bad practices such as initiations and practical jokes that may leave the employer exposed to legal consequences.
  • Parental and community expectations of your 'duty of care' is higher with young workers. Extra care needs to be taken with matters such as grievances, counselling and discipline, anti bullying and harrassments of all types.

    A young worker unsure of their rights and who to turn to may attempt to tolerate a problem until it reaches a crisis point. Bullying and sexual harrasment are all too common examples.

Why do we need Policies & Procedures?

Verbal policies may become overlooked or watered down over time, or may become misinterpreted as they are passed from one person to another. It helps to have written policies and procedures as they give new and existing employees a framework to refer back to. They clarify requirements, both legal and otherwise, and can be very helpful when training a new employee. Policies and procedures assist in maintaining consistency in the way things are done within the organisation and specific job roles.

Policies & Procedures can be particularly helpful to the young worker as he or she may be embarrassed to admit they don't understand or have awareness of a particular issue. By having Policies & Procedures in place, you can easily provide them with the information and clarification without them having to approach an older co-worker.

What are Policies and Procedures?

You may be wondering what's the difference between a policy and a procedure. A Policy is a general statement of intent, a direction or mission. It tells what's to be done, and can often include why it's to be done. Policies are the framework in which your organisation operates.

A procedure is different in that it explains how it's to be done. Procedures are generally worded in broad steps. The exception may be if the task is ‘mission critical’, in which case you may want to write it out in fully explained details.

Allow Time to Familiarise

A young person, being a less experienced worker, may need more time to familiarise themselves with workplace rules and procedures. Make sure they are aware of how to access written Policies and Procedures so they have the opportunity to review and study critical points. Keep a workplace copy of the Policies and Procedures Manual on a shelf, readily accessible to all staff.

A way of checking understanding is to include a few well designed, written questions as part of your induction manual. This provides hard evidence that the employee has read through and understands the Policies and Procedures. Alternatively, as a minimum, have each employee sign a hard copy for your files to make sure they have read and understood.
As a standard practice, provide new employees with a copy of the Policies and Procedures manual on day one. This way they can have a look through it, ask any questions they're unsure about and may feel more comfortable with the general workplace practices.

Set a Standard

Put in place business standards for each task and document procedures on how this is to be consistently achieved. Highlight good practices so that this becomes the standard and train your young staff appropriately so that they can achieve this.
Use the knowledge of your existing staff in putting together the policies and procedures. It makes them feel more valued and if they're involved they are more likely to follow the requirements and help new staff do the same.

Keep it Simple

When writing policies, make sure they are concise and easy to understand. Use language that can be understood by all employees and keep it positive rather than negative.

It’s a good idea to also include pictures or diagrams where possible, to reinforce particular points and make it more interesting reading. This is also good standard practice as it assists those staff who may have limited reading abilities and/or those from non-English speaking backgrounds.

Relevant Information

Policies generally should include the following information:
  • Title
  • Date of Issue
  • Effective From:
  • Details of the position which will responsible for implementing the policy (as relevant)
  • Details on who, and their position, is authorising the policy
  • Statement of what is required
  • The procedure(s) associated with that policy - how it is to be done

Employee Enforced

Policies that you, the employer, have to enforce or police, are not as effective as those that are self administered and enforced. Where possible, encourage employees to be responsible for implementing self assessments and make this part of the standard practices.

Revise Policies

What is the point in going to the time and trouble of setting up policies and procedures if they aren't reviewed and updated. Ensure there is a system in place, and a person made responsible to co-ordinate, authorise, review and distribute Policies and Procedures.

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