A yellow “Policies & Procedures” binder placed atop a pile of notebooks and paper

7 Common Company Policies You Need to Get In Writing

5 min read | Apr 22, 2024
 Marta Gongos- Ad Culture By Marta Gongos

Every organization must create company policies and procedures. These guidelines are formal expectations that teach employees what they can and can’t do at work, ensuring their day-to-day operations reflect the company’s values. 

Clear expectations make it easier for employees to hold their end of the employee-employer agreement. It creates a mature company culture and positive work environment, boosting job satisfaction and retention—factors crucial to your company’s reputation. 

This appeals to job seekers as well. Learn more below about the importance of workplace policies.

Setting Business and Employee Policies 

Writing company policies is a standard operation for organizations. It divides the responsibilities of employers and employees, defines employee rights, and protects business interests. 

These official conduct regulations achieve the following:

  • Allow employees to make informed decisions
  • Establish trust between employers and employees 
  • Fosters community harmony
  • Creates a safe and fair environment for employees

Business policies are also legal compliance measures to ensure companies adhere to federal laws involving equal employment opportunity, underage employment, and tax legislation, for example. It keeps businesses in check if they follow proper hiring practices and practice workplace ethics.

An employee signs a code of conduct policy

Image source: Canva

7 Workplace Policies to Establish 

Business policies differ depending on company size and business nature, but below are the most common ones every organization should have written in the employee handbook.

   1. Employee Code of Conduct Policy 

This company policy states how employees are expected to behave during work hours. It’s a clear set of rules listing proper and unacceptable behaviours to prevent misunderstandings and employee misconduct in the future. Topics like dress code, internet usage, and expected workplace behaviours fall under this category. 

Additionally, here’s where businesses detail the disciplinary actions taken in the event of violations.

→ Read more: The HR and Company Culture Trend to Do in Case of Violation

   2. Compensation and Benefits Policy 

This company policy explains how employees are fairly compensated for their work. It should clearly define compensation and benefits so employees know what to expect and how to proceed should they have any issues.

Employers can elaborate on the following compensation strategies in this policy by covering: 

  • Salaries
  • Overtime pay
  • Employee health care
  • Raises
  • Bonuses
  • Paid time off
  • Employee perks
  • Retirement package

3. Attendance, Vacation, and Time Off Company Policy 

Employers should set a company policy communicating the general rules of an employee’s work schedule. This should indicate how many working days and hours an individual must complete weekly. 

This company policy should also fully describe how employees schedule time off, and rules for absences or late arrival to ensure operational efficiency. The consequences and disciplinary actions when these rules are violated must be clear. 

A calendar with a single date marked with a “Day Off” sticky note

Image Source: Canva

   4. Workplace Health, Safety, and Security Policy 

Employees have the right to work in a healthy, safe, and secure environment. If your employees get harmed in the workplace, it can lead to huge costs and branding damage. 

A workplace safety policy is necessary as part of business policies. These can include topics about sick leave, actions to take during emergencies, and handling unsafe materials in the office. 

If you want a healthy company policy covering various aspects, follow the guidelines set by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS).

→ Read more: Common Recruitment Challenges and How to Overcome Them

   5. Equal Opportunities Policy 

Workplaces free from discrimination should treat all employees fairly. This abides by Canadian federal laws promoting employment equity for women, Indigenous peoples, individuals with disabilities, and members of visible minorities. 

Having this company policy shows that your company advocates for workplace inclusion, diversity, and impartial behaviour. It should include disciplinary actions taken in cases of discrimination or bias to avoid disputes in the office. 

→ Read more: How to Write an Equal Opportunity Employer Statement

   6. Substance Abuse Policy 

Workplace policies should be clear about the prohibition of drug use during work hours, regardless of whether the situation is in the office or remote. Employers must be careful in handling this policy to avoid disability discrimination while providing genuine support to employees with drug dependence. 

Most importantly, in this policy, organizations must explain the procedure following a suspected drug case. This can include testing, interviews, and written complaints for records purposes. 

   7. Privacy Policies

Employers should be transparent with employees’ privacy rights, ensuring personal information is kept secure and private. This can include bank details, home addresses, and contact information. 

Respecting employees’ privacy fosters trust in the workplace and allows individuals to feel comfortable while working. It also protects employees from blackmail (though an uncommon practice) and other issues that may arise in office.

An employee holding a pencil over a privacy policy form and a coffee cup in reach

Image Source: Canva

Implement Company Policies For a Just Workplace 

Company policies protect employers and employees. However, they also create a professional, transparent work environment where trust can grow. This fosters a desirable workplace that retains and attracts new workers. 

By partnering with Toronto’s most reliable recruitment agency, Ad Culture can help set your business up for success when implementing company policies and procedures that protect the organization and its employees.

Call us at (416)-827-2944 or send us a message to learn more about how we can help you!

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