Policy And Procedures Manuals

Written by Patricia Skinner
Bookmark and Share

An important part of the smooth running of any corporate or industrial process is having a firm policy to deal with procedure. Establishing policy, however, is not so easy and many companies actually pay specialists to do this for them. If you feel that paying someone to create a policy and procedure manual for your organization is going to cost you more time and money than you can spare right now, there are alternatives.

To begin with, let's consider the importance of policy and procedure. The standards upheld by any system have a direct bearing on the level of production and quality of the goods or services of any organization. Policy and procedure simply cannot be regarded too highly. It is the basis of any organization. One of the basic difficulties of establishing good policy and procedure, however, is that it's very difficult to get everyone concerned to agree on what it actually should be.

Arriving at Common Ground

Before you arrive at a solution, it's important to gather together your policy and procedure team and get them to identify issues that exist and possible solutions. Only then will you be in a position to successfully engineer a system to deal with your administrative problems. Once you have approvals in this area, and you have agreed on common terms and definitions regarding policies and procedures, then you can go ahead and look for a software package that meets your organizational needs.

The option to buy software that can be adapted to fit your needs and requirements is one that works very well for many companies. In fact, it can sometimes be even better than a professionally tailored solution. Why? Simply because you'll be getting the know-how and experience of years of study and practice in the field. Disagreements about what is and what isn't good policy or procedure can often be sidestepped by such solutions. The importance of this cannot be overestimated when aiming to raise a company's standards of operation from the ground up.

What Are the Issues?

When looking for a suitable program for your company's policy and procedures, there are a few issues you should look at carefully. For example, does the software you're considering give full flexibility to your administrator to decide who is in control of what? He should have complete discretion over who has access to any particular field of control. If you already have a policy and procedure manual and would like to incorporate all or part of it into your new system, does that new system allow for this? Also ascertain if it will be easy and straightforward to update your policy and procedure manual when this becomes necessary.

All these points must be addressed. It essential for successful administrative organization. Having someone who is ultimately responsible for each department or section of procedure will ensure that rules are followed and that hitches in the system can be pinpointed and eliminated. It will be far easier to set different review periods for different parts of your administration, for example. Not every department will have the same administrative needs. A system that is too large can make it difficult, if not impossible, to pinpoint problems.

Successful Policy and Procedure

For medium or large organizations, it is vital that policies and procedures be broken down into smaller departments. This will reduce the likelihood of failure of any part of the policy or procedure, and will allow for more exact organization to fit the job at hand. The right software package will make the administration of even the most complicated policy and procedure hierarchy easy and straightforward.

Nowadays, most organizations require that policies and procedures be easy to access for staff members. An intranet is the obvious solution, with a terminal in each department. Having your policies and procedures networked is the easiest way of giving each department access to its own section of your organization's policy and procedure manual.

Bookmark and Share