Document management just isn't sexy!
Updated: Jan 26, 2021
When planning this blog I knew the title was going to be a challenge so I couldn't resist being blunt. Nevertheless, the following article will help reassure busy managers about one of the most important aspects of people management and explains how the Portal shares the burden of managing HR documents, in particular, Staff records, Employment Contracts and Policies & Procedures.
Staff records Your staff records for example, must be managed in compliance with GDPR and there is quite a bit to think about. Where you store these records, who can access them and how staff manage interactions with personal data. Eledecks makes it very straightforward by providing not only the compliant online storage system itself but also the controls you need to comply with GDPR such as quarantining data during an investigation into an employee request for data removal. There are lots of compliance requirements like this that are often overlooked by other HR systems and without realising it you may be in breach of the GDPR rules. So when you look for a document and record management system it pays to ask these questions before you commit... Ask yourself: Does your Staff Records and Document Management system
Let you store records in a place which is SSL encrypted?
Is it limited to being accessed only by those with the correct permissions?
Offer editing rights and version controls?
Include automated notifications to relevant users when document updates are released?
Segregate sensitive information for special attention such as sickness absence records?
Give staff and managers an online channel for SAR applications as recommended by the GDPR regulator?
Give you the training materials you need to train staff to the standard required by GDPR Accountability Principle before they handle Personal Data? …the list goes on.
If you use the Portal to manage your HR admin you won’t have to think about these things because we do it for you and the reason you can trust us to build-in solutions like this is that our design team not only liaise with our professional partners in all walks of compliance consultancy; but our team also includes employment lawyers and small business managers not just HR technologists. So, we think about these solutions differently to most other software teams. Employment Contracts Staff contracts or (employment contracts, contracts of employment, statements of terms of employment) whatever you like to call them, are a legal requirement and have a big impact on staff morale as discussed in this recent article about the deadline for issuing employment contracts. Getting your contracts drafted by experts is obviously important but it can be a pain to organise. This is one of the reasons we were founded back in 2004. We know that document management is one of the most irritating red tape jobs that employers have to manage and since then our expert partners have drafted thousands of compliant contracts for portal clients. I’m sure there will be a YouTube video on DIY contract drafting somewhere, but the problem with contracts is you don’t know if they are any good until they are tested by a dispute. It’s false economy to rely on hand me down versions or cheap alternatives. I always remember a probate solicitor telling telling me he was thrilled when DIY wills appeared on the shelves of W.H. Smith and I asked him why as it seemed odd at first. But he explained that probate lawyers like him enjoy far more work arising from poorly drafted wills than they ever do from the good ones! A point well made I thought. Our network of partners includes experienced teams of employment lawyers in all tiers of the top legal 500 and if you haven't already got advisors in place, we can introduce you to the ideal team. They take the strain of red tape which ensures you have fully compliant contracts ready to issue to staff and the great news is you can issue your documents direct to employees from your portal account. Your managers will be notified when their documents are ready to issue and your documents will be tracked right through to e-signature by your staff and then stored on the employee’s file as part of your digital records system. Most of our partners offer a regular contracts updating service which ensures your documents are compliant with legal changes and always ready to issue to new starters or refresh existing copies. With the Portal the process of managing employment contracts becomes a push button exercise for employers that can save a lot of heartache in the long run. Employment Policies Your employees will have lots of questions about the way your business operates and how they are treated in various situations so you need to be ready with a robust and consistent set of answers. This is easily achieved by the time honoured Employment Policies and Procedures document often called the Staff Handbook. When you issue a comprehensive staff handbook covering all your Employment Policies and Procedures it is a huge step forward towards streamlining your staff management because it has all the answers. Again our partners can draft this important document for you. It is based on a legally watertight template and in conversation with you the contents are tailored to the needs and working practices of your business so you have a document which managers and staff can rely on to run the business smoothly every day. Our partners have produced thousands of these documents over the years and they have always had a positive impact on the client’s business. Guides, Forms and Letters It is important to have a set of Toolkits to complement your Employment Contracts and the Employment Policies issued to staff. These Toolkits are for your managers and should be capable of guiding them through the procedures in general circumstances and should provide managers with the forms and letters required. Businesses subscribing to the Portal can choose from a range of 35 Toolkits on subjects ranging from recruitment administration to disciplinary and grievances, absence management and beyond to leavers and redundancy management. Pretty much everything related to compliant HR administration is covered. Of course, sometimes toolkit information will fall short of the circumstances and your teams will need expert advice from legal professionals. In that case, login to your portal account and contact your lawyer direct from your desktop or reach out to them from our mobile app. If you have subscribed to a monthly service support package your professional advisor's contact details can be found on your mobile app along with details of the service package you have subscribed to. Keeping track of staff documents Finally, if you are issuing your staff with contracts and policies or sending a letter to an employee you are going to need to keep track of the process so that you can prove you sent the document and this is where our Document Manager comes in (fondly nicknamed “Wesley.”) This clever system stores, issues, tracks and audits the process of sending important documents to staff members. Wesley is also a first class version control system so it’s easy to keep track of your latest document versions. Whether you want to deliver the document to the employee’s email address or you give them access to the Employee Dashboard where they can sign for documents online, you will have peace of mind knowing it is all managed under one roof plus you can export an audit report at a moment’s notice. No more searching through filing cabinets and email folders or wondering whether staff have got their post. Let them sign for it online and receive a push notification to mobile in real time. It’s easy and recommended good practice. Why not have a chat with the support team to find out more. You can reach them on the Live Chat when logged in to your Portal account.