Have you ever walked into someone’s house and you notice a picture on the wall might be crooked. Chances are that the owner of the house doesn’t even know it. Why, because we tend to get used to how things are. Things just begin to blend in and we don’t realize that something may not be right.
When it comes to our HR practices, sometimes we need help seeing that picture might not be straight! Chances are you probably are not breaking some major law or violating serious ethical standards, but there could be things that could be done better, more effectively or there might even be a few things that are a little borderline on whether you are compliant.
What are some of the things you might want to look at? HR compliance issues such as COBRA, I-9 administration, HR files, records retention and compliance with employment regulations. You should review your handbook, several areas have changed and if it has not been updated in the last 3 or 4 years, it is probably out of date. Organizations should also look at supervisor training, employment processes, performance management, pay practices, disciplinary policies and how you onboard new employees.
All organizations should periodically step back and take an objective look at their HR practices. You can get different checklists in books or organizations like the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) have audits you can use. If you subscribe to web sites like HR360 or Think HR they often have resources for you. Periodically it is a good idea to bring in a third party to help you with the audit. The cost is usually very low and what you learn could save you money in the end. Getting an outside opinion can help you identify that picture on the wall that may not be straight.
However, you decide to do it, schedule some time to give your organization a check up to see how you are doing. If you do it, you will probably come up with a list of gaps you need to fill. Depending on how big the list is, that can really be frustrating. Pick out one or two items you feel strongly about. Put together a priority list for the other items. I don’t know how things are at your house, but if it is like mine, you (or your spouse) has a list of items that need to be addressed. The problem is we get overwhelmed and never seem to make much progress. It takes a plan and a little discipline, but if you knock off one or two at a time, you can look back and see the progress!