Policies and procedures are worth the paper they are written on. Creating an up to date suite of policies and procedures sets the foundation stones for the way an organisation operates, can determine behaviours, provides great tools for staff training. Relevant compliance obligations need to be addressed where applicable and both policies and procedures regularly reviewed and updated as necessary. A suite of policies and procedures is a reference point for management and staff, it can be soft copy, hard copy or both (provided it is accessible). Not all procedures have to be accessible to every level of staff but relevant documents should be.
A recent claim for unfair dismissal was upheld in the employee’s favour (a truck driver who was allegedly under the influence of alcohol) because the employer hadn’t followed the correct procedure. The comment below is from the presiding Fair Work Commissioner
“Procedural fairness requires that the employee be advised of the likely consequences of their conduct so that they may take action to defend themselves. This is not something to set aside without good reason.”
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