Calgary & Strathmore Employment Lawyers Creating Workplace Policies & Procedures

In today’s complex employment law landscape, a well-structured set of workplace policies and procedures is essential for any business. An employer‘s policies and procedures function as the operational backbone of their company and are essential for clearly outlining expectations, reducing workplace conflict, and ensuring ongoing compliance with employment laws.

The innovative employment lawyers at Getz Collins and Associates create custom-tailored policies and procedures that act as a framework to protect Alberta employers’ business enterprises and foster productive workplaces. We help employers of all sizes, from established businesses to start-ups, develop a strong understanding of policy and procedure development and how it safeguards their operations.

Workplace Policies vs. Workplace Procedures

Workplace policies are broad, guiding principles outlining an employer’s stance on various workplace and employment-related matters. They can be essential for setting the tone for a workplace’s culture and defining expectations about employee conduct, workplace safety, compensation, and benefits.

Workplace procedures, on the other hand, are detailed instructions on how to implement the workplace policies in place. They provide employees with step-by-step guidelines for completing tasks, handling certain situations, and resolving workplace conflicts.

The Critical Roles of Workplace Policies & Procedures

Robust workplace policies and procedures offer a variety of benefits and protections for employers, including those set out below.

Compliance With Employment Laws & Regulations

Well-crafted policies and procedures help employers ensure they are adhering to all applicable employment laws. These laws often address vital workplace issues, including discrimination, harassment, wages and working hours, and health and safety requirements. Having comprehensive and proactive policies in place can demonstrate an employer’s good faith efforts to comply with employment laws in the event of a future dispute.

Consistency & Fairness in Employee Management

Clear policies and procedures foster a sense of fairness and predictability in how an employer will treat its employees. Detailed guidelines help employees understand what is expected of them in certain situations and how decisions are made, reducing the risk of favouritism or unfair treatment. This helps promote a sense of professionalism and enhances overall morale, productivity, and employee retention.

Dispute Resolution

When workplace conflicts or disputes arise, well-defined policies and procedures provide a neutral reference point for both management and employees. Having a clear framework for dispute resolution reduces confusion and can de-escalate disagreements. Comprehensive policies can also help employers defend themselves against costly litigation against employees or other parties.

Essential Workplace Policies for Alberta Employers

While the specific policies required vary by each business and industry, some common policies that benefit most employers are set out below. These policies may be stand-alone or incorporated into the employment contract.

  • Code of Conduct: Outlines acceptable and unacceptable employee behaviour and promotes professionalism and respect in a healthy work environment.
  • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and Anti-Discrimination Policies: Emphasize the employer’s prohibition against discrimination based on protected characteristics like race, gender, age, religion, disability, etc. (as set out in the Alberta Human Rights Act).
  • Anti-Harassment Policy: Defines harassment, establishes reporting procedures, and ensures a safe and harassment-free workplace.
  • Compensation and Benefits Policy: Clarifies pay arrangements, pension contributions, overtime, bonuses, and benefits eligibility.
  • Attendance and Leave Policy: Covers employees’ abilities to take time off (such as sick or vacation leaves, leaves of absence, etc. as set out under the Employment Standards Code), attendance requirements, and working hours.
  • Health and Safety Rules: Set out compliance with occupational health and safety (OHS) legislation (including the Occupational Health and Safety Act, OHS Regulation, and OHS Code).
  • Technology & Electronics Usage Policy: Sets guidelines for computer, internet, email, and social media use.
  • Performance Management Policy: Outlines performance expectations, Performance Improvement Plans, review processes, and progressive disciplinary procedures.

Developing & Maintaining Effective Workplace Policies & Procedures

The employment lawyers at Getz Collins and Associates provide comprehensive assistance to Alberta employers in developing and implementing their workplace policies and procedures. We can support employers in a variety of ways, including:

  • Developing policies, procedures, and employee handbooks that align with current employment laws and best practices;
  • Helping employers obtain employee and manager feedback to ensure policies during the development process to ensure policies are practical and understandable;
  • Facilitating thorough staff training;
  • Reviewing and updating policies as required to ensure they remain legally compliant and effective.

Getz Collins and Associates: Creating Comprehensive Workplace Policies & Procedures for Employers Across Alberta

Retaining the knowledgeable employment lawyers at Getz Collins and Associates to develop, review, and implement workplace policies and procedures helps Alberta employers avoid expensive mistakes and reduce liability. Our firm helps business owners and employers support healthy work environments and retain a productive, successful workforce.

As a touchstone of Alberta’s legal community, Getz Collins and Associates has established lasting relationships with corporations, institutions, and businesses across the province. With convenient locations in Calgary and Strathmore, the firm maintains an unyielding commitment to providing top-tier client-centred services to employers throughout the surrounding communities, including Airdrie, Cochrane, Okotoks, Drumheller, Chestermere, and Hussar. Call us at 587-391-5600 or reach out online to schedule a consultation.