How small to medium businesses can benefit from policy documents

Small to medium business owners may not see paperwork as a priority early on but it could play a part to their survival later on. Sky Accountants explain why and give tips on how to create one.

How small to medium businesses can benefit from policy documents

It pays to always be prepared when it comes to business. It is important to have a game plan for all areas of your business, including choosing new suppliers, working with your staff and dealing with slow moving periods. Small to medium business owners may not see paperwork as a priority early on but it could play a part to their survival later on. When you have policy and procedure documents, or standard operating procedures (SOPs) you will be prepared in times of critical situations. Why are policy documents important and when will you need them? How can you start your own?

Policy documents can serve as a guide to ensure that your management team handles all situations with a certain level of care and attention. This is called bottom up management, the opposite to top down management.  Policy and procedure documents may prove to be helpful in your restaurant, club or café when you source or take on a new supplier, follow health and safety standards, call VIP members, welcome new staff with an induction process, clean equipment or your venue or even handle customer complaints, etc.

You and your suppliers, staff and customers may not always agree, that’s why you need policy documents and SOPs to remind people how they should behave accordingly. These procedure and policy documents should be read and understood before your employees start working and should be followed in times of emotional situations. They should be referred to in the employee’s position description and during the onboarding phase. They will help everyone be less emotional and for a continued focus on results and outcomes. Good business people and good leaders are non-emotional. Another name for this is emotional intelligence.

You want the documents to be concise and in a language that all parties can understand. It will also be helpful to discuss the documents to the group as it really important to get team alignment across all aspects of your business. You can start with policies that cover anti-discrimination, operating company equipment and technology, conflict of interest, disciplinary, drug and alcohol, issues, leaves, theft and fraud, and use of social media while at work, to name just a few.

At Sky Accountants we specialise in Clubs and Pubs and have hundreds of these policy documents and SOPs. So if you need a policy or help formulating one please reach out to us at .

We have even developed our own Hospitality-Hub Intranet for Clubs and Pubs to use and hold all their policies, procedures and SOP.

Some of the things you need to consider when creating policies are the ideal outcome you want from a specific situation, the things you want to avoid, rewards or punishments, the training or education required and the third parties necessary to implement the policy.

One of the secrets that successful small to medium business owners have is a policy document for every area of their business. It avoids doubt and arguments about the right processes within the team. However, it is not enough to just have policy documents. It is important that you put these into action to set rules and resolve conflicts.  It’s really important to make sure all the employees and team agree to the policies and get their commitment to them. You do this by holding regular training times and weekly meetings. Your employees are the biggest asset you have other than your patrons.

Consult the experts about the policies necessary for your small or medium business. Click here to speak to experts who specialise in the hospitality industry. We are big believers in the use of professional tools to manage your business. The right tools can streamline your processes so that the business is best placed to trade profitably and run without you – that is your goal.

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