Six Essential Policies Every Small Business Should Have

by | Feb 21, 2023 | Business Strategy, Human Resources, Legal, Resources, Small Business | 0 comments

Six Essential Policies Every Small Business Should Have

In business, every company needs to have a basic set of policies that support its overall goals and objectives. These business policies define how your employees should behave in the workplace. They also cover what employees can expect from you as their employer.

Here are a few essential business policies that could help ensure workplace wellness and protect your company against financial loss and liability.

1. Equal opportunity policy

“Many countries mandate that you must be an equal opportunity employer by law. For example, in the United States, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission enforces a wide range of federal laws that prohibit workplace discrimination.

An equal opportunity policy (EOP) prevents companies from discriminating against job applicants or employees if they are a member of a protected class (e.g, race, gender, age, religion, familial status, color). The EOP is essential for any anti-harassment, workplace violence, non-discrimination or diversity policies your company may consider developing.”

Source: Indeed

2. Disciplinary policy

“Occasionally you’ll have the need to terminate an employee. When that occasion arises, you’ll have a much more straightforward experience if that employee has been cautioned about the process. If your expectations for performance have been outlined in the employee’s initial job description, you can show a history of problems by detailing those issues in regular evaluations and write-ups.”

Source: Inc

3. At-will employment policy

“Employment status generally falls into two categories: “contractual” and “at-will.” If no contract exists, a worker’s status is likely at will. This means the employment relationship can be terminated at any time, by either the employee or the employer, for any reason or no reason at all. (The only limitation to this is termination for an illegal reason, such as discrimination.) Having a written policy that reinforces your right to discharge at will can help your defense in a wrongful termination case.”

Source: SCORE

4. Workplace health and safety policy

“Provisions for occupational safety are a necessity for everyone who owns or runs a business. It’s imperative that your employees work within a healthy and safe workplace. Accidents and unsafe conditions can land you in court. If you also count the damage to reputation and loss of faith from employees, complacency when it comes to safety may be the biggest mistake you’ll ever make. A written policy shows that you take the matter seriously. This is about more than a few fire extinguishers. A workplace safety policy will help you to think systematically.”

Source: Workable Technology Limited

5. Ethics & conduct policy

“Customers demand more than quality and credit. Your customers also demand ethical dealings, privacy, and security. The people your company deals with expect fair treatment with no Conflicts of Interest. This means you need to establish clear Ethical Conduct at all times. You need an Ethics Policy.”

Source: Bizmanualz

6. Leave of absence policy

“Another key policy is the company’s time off and paid time off policy, which should include: how much sick time is provided, how to request time off, who must approve the time, and how much notice is required to make time off requests. The policy should always articulate the most common and expected questions employees will have for employers, such as:

  • Can sick and vacation be split up or taken in specific increments?
  • How does paid time off accrue?
  • When can accrued time start being utilized?

Without fail, the question will arise as to what happens to paid time off not utilized at the end of the year, or upon termination. Employers should clearly communicate if time rolls over or if it is paid out upon termination, and upon what conditions. Employers should also check that their policy accounts for all federal, state, and/or local laws or regulations applicable to their business and related to time off and sick leave. Leave policies are key to establishing rules of engagement and expectations, but also an opportunity to show how much the company values its employees.”

Source: Trellis Legal

Need a Loan to Fund Employment and Workforce Solutions?

If you need a loan to help support your company’s workforce rules, consider First Union Lending.

With 9 loans to choose from, First Union is sure to have a way to help you implement new business policies. Loans can get approved as soon as the same day. Also, applying for a loan with First Union won’t affect your credit.

To talk to a lending specialist, call 863-825-5626 or click here. Our experts will help you find the right loan for your situation.

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Only U.S.-Based Businesses are Eligible