Are your policies and procedures in writing? If not, they should be. Yet, two of the most common reasons that businesses forgo writing policies and procedures are because people don’t think they need them or they don’t know where to start. Without a doubt, your business needs a policies and procedures manual. This manual acts as a guide to ensure that your employees understand how certain actions are performed. It helps ensure that clients are treated in a uniform manner. It can also be used as a training tool. Because a written policies and procedures manual is so important, we’ve put together 6 tips to help you.
Set Aside Time to Work on Your Policies and Procedures Manual
It’s natural for business owners to place the majority of their focus on the needs of their clients and implementing strategies to grow their businesses. However, it’s also important that business owners focus on the administrative side. Make sure that you set aside time to work on your policies and procedures manual. These manuals often don’t happen overnight. While you don’t have to devote large chunks of time each day, it helps if you set aside even 20 or 30 minutes every day to make progress. Need help with your policies and procedures? Clients ARM has you covered! We can help free up your time by remotely managing several administrative areas of your business. We can also write your policies and procedures for you.
Create a List of Priorities
You won’t be able to write every single policy and procedure in one day. So, make sure that you create a prioritized list of policies and procedures. Start with the most important ones. Remember that certain policies (such as anti-discrimination in the workplace) will also rely on federal and state law. The good news about that is it should make it easier for you to find pre-written policies based on current federal and state laws. You can start with those.
Research Best Practices for Each Area of Your Business
One of the reasons you create a policies and procedures manual is to explain how you do things. While you may have some great steps that give you great results in some areas, you’re not expected to know everything about each area of your business. One way that you can fill the gap is to research best practices for each area of your business. Best practices can ensure that you’re staying current with industry standards.
Write Your Draft
You can start writing your draft by using a template or you can start from scratch. However you want to start, the key is to get an initial draft finished. You don’t have to be a professional writer. You just need to explain your procedures step by step and ensure that your policies are written in words that everyone can understand.
If you already have employees, it’s important that you get feedback during the writing process and when they review the manual. In fact, employees can even help you write the manual. If you believe that the actions they take to perform their daily tasks are the way things should be done, ask them to write it down step by step so that it may be placed into the manual. When the draft is done, ask your employees for their opinion.
If you don’t currently have employees, be open to feedback in the future. The policies and procedures you have written now may not work as well in the future. The only way to know for sure is to put them in action.
Policies and Procedures Aren’t Static
Remember that you can change your policies and procedures if something isn’t working well. You can change them if you add or remove a service or position. Your policies and procedures manual is a vital document and you should ensure that it is kept up to date.
Get Help Writing Your Policies and Procedures Manual
Do you need help writing your policies and procedures manual? If so, Clients ARM is here to help. With more than 30 years of administrative management experience, we can help put your policies and procedures in writing. To learn more about this or any of our other services, schedule your free consultation.