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A blog providing trustworthy Human Resources advice to business owners, managers and employees plus the occasional LOL true story from the workplace.
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Are You Taking Sexual Harassment Claims Seriously?
The Harvey Weinstein scandal has once again shone a light on the very serious issue of sexual harassment in the workplace. Though we’ve come a long way in recent years in terms of creating legislation to protect individuals against inappropriate behavior and gender related discrimination, it’s crystal clear that there’s still a great deal of work to be done.
As a business owner, you have a responsibility. To meet your legal obligations and your duty of care as an employer, you need to make sure that you’ve got provisions in place to deal with sexual harassment claims. In practical terms, what exactly does this look like? There are several things that you need to consider to ensure that you’re fulfilling your obligations. Let’s take a look at the questions that you need to be asking…
Are you merely being reactive?
Dealing with sexual harassment shouldn’t just be about handling issues once they arise. It’s about being proactive, and taking extra steps to create a positive working environment. Are your staff trained in what’s acceptable and what isn’t? And are your line managers and employees in a position whereby they feel comfortable in challenging unacceptable behavior from the offset? Your approach should be about creating a positive culture, rather than just firefighting.
Are you handling complaints swiftly and sensitively?
If a member of staff came into your office right now with a complaint of sexual harassment against another employee, what exactly would you do? You need to be certain that you’d be able to act quickly and professionally. Remember that a thorough investigation should be carried out, and you should never jump to assumptions about what may or may not have happened.
Do you have a policy in place, and is it being implemented?
The value of having a robust policy covering harassment in the workplace is often overlooked until it’s needed. Having a clear set of procedures that outline how a complaint should be made and how it will be dealt with is essential. A clear policy has many benefits for you as a leader, as well as for your employees. However, you need to remember that this isn’t about ticking boxes. Your policy is only going to work for your business if it’s clearly communicated and implemented by your management team. This also underpins a wider organizational culture that refuses to tolerate bullying or harassment.
The headlines in the news at the moment may be dire, and indeed deeply distressing. Sexual harassment is very clearly still rampant in many industries and workplaces. The conversation though does present an opportunity to talk about these serious issues, and consider how positive change can be made. How can your business play a role in stamping out unacceptable behavior? Contact us today to discuss your HR needs…read more
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The Truth About ‘I Don’t Have Time For HR’
If there’s one thing that we hear time and time again from business owners, it’s that they just don’t have enough hours in the day to take care of their HR processes and procedures. There are a million and one things on their list to take care of, and it can be all too easy to leave the ‘people stuff’ until another day.
We run a business too, and we get it. You have to wear all of the hats, and it’s pretty rare to have absolutely everything under control at any given moment. But ‘I don’t have time’ just isn’t going to cut it when it comes to your people management practices. Here’s why…
Avoidable problems can take up way more time than you think
Let’s say, for example, that you don’t keep accurate written records of disciplinary meetings that you have with an employee. You hope that the issue will resolve itself, and that you won’t need to refer back to your notes in the future. But then another problem arises, and you suddenly find yourself in a sticky situation that could have easily been avoided.
We don’t like to think of HR as merely firefighting, but the reality of the matter is that a little time invested now could prevent your business from costly and time consuming scenarios.
Time invested in streamlining your procedures can free up hours each week
Right now, you probably have a ton of time drainers in your business that are making HR far more complicated than it needs to be. If you needed to find the phone number of a member of staff, for example, how long would that take you? What if they asked you how much annual leave they still have available this year? Or if an employee asked you for a copy of a particular policy, would that involve scouring through a mountain of paperwork?
Taking a little time to make your processes more efficient and getting things in good order could save you hours on a weekly basis, even if you don’t currently realize where you’re throwing minutes down the drain.
Using the services of a professional could create a huge return on investment
Okay, so maybe you really are strapped for time, and it’s just not realistic for you to take care of everything when you’ve only got 24 hours in your day. You might think that you can’t afford any extra help, but it might be the case that you can’t afford to NOT get some assistance.
Working with an HR consultant could help you to ensure that your people practices are helping you to meet your strategic goals, that you’re keeping your business on the right side of the law, and that you can put the majority of your time into the activities that bring about the best ROI.
To find out more about how we could help your business, arrange your no-obligation consultation today.…read more
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