Businesses today know that attracting and retaining top talent are essential to a business’s livelihood — which is why employee engagement has become increasingly important.
How do you know employees are engaged in their work? You should feel a buzz in the workplace, as employees bring energy to their jobs and feel personally involved in the company’s wins and setbacks. Not only are engaged employees motivated, but they’re also focused and engrossed in their work tasks, which leads them to take ownership of their jobs. In doing so, they become dedicated to their roles and your company.
Building employee engagement (and retention) starts from their first day at the office, when you introduce them to your company’s culture through sharing the company’s policies and procedures. A company’s policies give employees an immediate sense of what the company stands for — its values, business ethics and personality. In turn, sound policies reassure employees, giving them the confidence and security to work to their full potential.
By involving employees in the policy creation, review and renewal process, you give your employees a stake in the company’s growth and direction — you show them that their opinions matter, allow them to help drive who the company wants to be and encourage participation — and thus increase employee engagement.
How can you easily include your employees in the policy management process?
- Involve employees in the policy creation process. Because they’re on the front lines, they often know the challenges and specific steps of processes better than anyone else. Empower them to contribute suggestions and feedback, and apply their personal experiences of what works and what doesn’t. In doing so and by not relying solely on your busy managers, you’ll have more effective and applicable policies that were written and approved more efficiently.
- When policies are up for renewal or need updating, again ask your employees for their comments and feedback. When they have a hand in creating, reviewing or renewing policies, they’re more likely to use them and ensure the policies are necessary and useful in the first place.
- Make policies easily accessible to all employees. All companies have a policy management system, but how often do employees access it? Set up your employees for success by making the information they need easily accessible. Ensure policies are organized logically (by type, not policy number or date) so they’re easy to find, on a system that is searchable and simple to access.
- Keep policies short and simple. The last thing your employees want to do (or have time for) is scroll through pages and pages of a policy looking for a specific answer to their question. By making the policy concise, easy to read and understandable, employees are more likely to look up and reference policies more frequently. When they can quickly find and understand a policy, they’re more likely to follow established guidelines and less likely to make wrong decisions.
- Distribute new and updated policies in a timely, efficient manner. Don’t let your employees feel like they’re constantly left in the dark, don’t know what’s happening, always the last to know or forced to get information “through the grapevine.” Sharing new policies and updates to all appropriate employees at once in a timely manner ensures there are no misunderstandings and that employees are always working from the most relevant information. It also demonstrates the company’s commitment to solidarity, effective policy management and compliance.
- Test employees’ understanding of policies. Testing that employees have read, understood and acknowledged company policies doesn’t just help ensure compliance. It also gives you a general idea of how much employees know and care about your company, as well as how entrenched they are in your company culture. In addition, testing or asking employees to acknowledge that they understand a policy gives them the perfect opportunity to ask questions or provide feedback when they’re unclear about something — leading them to make smarter, more informed decisions down the road.
While it may seem like asking more employees to get involved in the policy management process would initially slow or bottleneck the system, their participation doesn’t necessarily make the process any less efficient. By automating your policy management system with ConvergePoint’s Policy Management Software, you streamline your company’s current system, while encouraging employee engagement and giving employees greater access to company policies.
Policy Management Software enables you to create automated workflows, ensuring designated employees are cued to create, review and approve policies. Policies are kept in one central document repository so employees can easily access and quickly find information they’re looking for. The software also automates distribution and employee acknowledgment of policies, ensuring employees receive email notification when a new policy is ready to be reviewed and are tested to ensure they’ve read and understood the policy.
Next step: See how to not just engage employees, but hold them accountable to company policies.