9 things you need to include in a disciplinary policy

You can’t expect your employees to meet your expectations if they aren’t aware what they are. A key step in setting your business up for success is to have aclearly document disciplinary policy that’s shared with all staff. A disciplinary policy can be delivered in a variety of formats, however it should cover some key principles and comply with the Fair Work Act, anti-discrimination and work health and safety legislation. Here’s what needs to be addressed in a comprehensive disciplinary policy:

  • That informal action should be considered first before any formal action is taken, unless in the case of gross misconduct.
  • Disciplinary procedures can be implemented at any stage if the behaviour or conduct warrants it.
  • The policy should comply with anti-discrimination and work, health and safety legislation.
  • Once formal action is decided upon, the employee will be informed of the issue and an investigation undertaken before a disciplinary hearing is held.
  • Before any disciplinary hearing, the employee will be provided with written copies of evidence or witness statements relating to the issue.
  • All employees must be given the right to be accompanied by a trade union representative or colleague in any formal interviews or meetings.
  • Time periods must be set to ensure any disciplinary procedures are dealt with quickly and efficiently. These set time periods can be flexible and extended after consultation with an HR representative.
  • The employee has the right to appeal any disciplinary action.
  • All information relating to the disciplinary issue will be kept confidential.

Other considerations 

  • How would you make the rules fair and clear – in plain English for all employees; and
  • How would you integrate disciplinary policies for different areas, for example, health and safety and general workplace, into one concise policy?

What happens if you need to take disciplinary action?
At Randstad, we understand the people issues managers and HR professionals face every day, which is why we’ve created The Human Resource Guide, an always-evolving online HR resource that delivers the answers to your day-to-day concerns, including deciding on disciplinary actions. It’s like having your own personal HR advisor by your side, 24/7.

Learn more about the best-practice approach to employee performance and people management with The Randstad Human Resource Guide.

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