Risk Management is an important function for any organization. Risk Management programs typically are in place for organizational finances and accounting practices, such as the annual financial audit.
However, imagine the benefit of having programs that cover all aspects of your business that involve risks, including safety, security and compliance with industry, local, state and federal government regulations. A company should ensure that all areas of its practices are in compliance. This is of particular importance with Human Resources policies, processes and practices.
The best way to ensure that a company’s HR practices are in compliance is via completion of an HR Assessment.
Before you can start an assessment, you must ask: “What can go wrong?” “How do we respond when things do go wrong?” “Who within the company has the knowledge, skills and abilities to solve any challenges or liabilities that may arise?”
Here are 10 areas and the critical questions to begin the Assessment Process that will help lead your organization on the path towards compliance, a satisfied and engaged workforce, and ultimately, your company’s success:
- Compliance – Is there someone in my company knowledgeable in the area of HR Compliance? Do we have the correct policies and processes in place to remain in compliance with the rules and regulations set forth by the state/states we operate in, the IRS, the Department of Labor, the EEOC and the National Labor Relations Board?
- Workforce Planning – Does my organization have the right people in place with the skills needed to compete in today’s workforce? Do we have the tools required to attract, retain and develop those employees into the company?
- Leadership Development – Is there a contingency plan in place for operations continuity if leadership leaves unexpectedly? Do we have a pipeline of trained employees who can fill critical roles? Do we have training programs in place to develop our employees in both technical and soft skill areas? Do we have the correct support and training in place to develop future leaders for the organization?
- Company Culture - Does my company have a code of conduct set in place that will help to uphold the organization’s Mission, Vision and Values? How do company ethics (or lack thereof) affect the ability to recruit top talent or retain current employees? What are the main drivers of turnover?
- Hiring/Onboarding – Do our job applications meet the American with Disability Act (ADA) standards? Are our managers trained on how to review resumes and conduct interviews? Would additional testing and evaluation of applicants be useful? Do we have consistent polices, processes and practices in place for reference checking, background and drug testing to ensure we are hiring the right candidate for our organization?
- Record Keeping and Retention – Does my organization keep thorough records of employee personnel files and do we follow the record retention guidelines as outlined by the Federal government? Does my record filing process ensure privacy of confidential and protected information?
- Compensation – Does my company have a fair and equitable compensation program? Do we have the tools to ensure that salaries and benefit packages remain competitive in the market? Do our wages and employee statuses meet the guidelines as outlined by federal Wage and Hour laws?
- Communication – Do we have a consistent and engaging communication program to educate employees and managers on performance expectations? Do employees know what is expected of them on a daily basis? Do we have a performance management system in place? Do we have a handbook in place that meets legal requirements and can hold up in court if challenged? Do we have clearly written job descriptions for all positions?
- Benefits – Is my company in compliance with federal mandated benefits that must be offered under the guidelines of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), COBRA Continuation Coverage, and Workers ’ Compensation Insurance, The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and other leave benefits?
- Safety/Security – Does my company have established Safety and Health Programs? Are we in compliance with OSHA Record Keeping requirements? Do we post the required Employee Notices? Does the organization have the right tools in place to ensure the protection of company trade secrets? How do we protect intellectual and systems data? Do we have accurate policies in place to ensure company confidentiality and non-disclosure?
Further Reading: Our 3 Most Important HR Articles from 2016
If any of these top 10 areas raise questions or doubts about the adequacy and depth of your company’s HR Resources risk management practices and you are interested in knowing more about an HR consultation, we welcome you to join us for our Webinar on Thursday, February 9th at 2pm: The HR Assessment: Limiting Employment Liabilities. We will help answer these questions and more!