Because legal systems and business environments differ widely, each company needs to develop and implement its own unique, documented HR policies, so as to help regulate internal procedures and decision-making, with regard to staff.
Why HR policies and procedures are necessary
1) Employees need to understand a company’s HR policies, so as not to fall foul of rules and regulations, and to realise the repercussions of certain actions and misdemeanours in the workplace.
2) Failure to implement consistent HR policies opens companies up to possible litigation (grievances and lawsuits) from employees, resulting in unnecessary costs and time-wastage, possible increased turnover of key personnel, and demotivated staff.
3) Employees need to know that they are being treated fairly and equitably, according to a standard set of corporate terms and conditions (which they have agreed to abide by as a condition of employment), should disputes arise.
4) African countries comprise multiple ethnic and linguistic groups, with diverse (and sometimes even opposing) cultures and creeds, and organisations need to take special cognisance of this fact when formulating HR policies and procedures in order to avoid – or resolve -potential conflict situations.
5) Every country has its own unique set of labour laws and regulated employment practices, which, especially in the case of employee discipline or dismissal, must be adhered to. By establishing a system of HR policies and procedures, companies are able to meet the requisite legal provisions, and are better placed to manage risks.
Formulating HR policies & procedures
- HR policies should meet the individual country’s requirements for racial and gender diversity, ethics, and training programmes, and fall in line with its labour laws.
- Policies should be open and transparent when detailing corporate culture, expectations, obligations and behavioural standards to employees.
- A company’s HR policies should be an expression of its total organisational mission and vision statement, thereby assisting in realising corporate goals, and creating an environment of harmony and co-operation that creates a competitive business edge.