Induction Policy

Organisations should review use and status of contractors

Do you need an induction policy or not? In this post, we look at the pros and cons of having a policy and some induction essentials.

What is induction and should everyone do it?

Induction is a process used to welcome and onboard a new person to your worksite.  Your worksite may be a physical place or remote online environment.

The inductee may be a new employee, member of governance, contractor, student, intern or volunteer. As a rule of thumb, everyone should be inducted to a new working environment.

What should Induction cover? 

Induction introduces a person to the culture, relationships, and processes of an organisation. It helps set the tone for their ongoing participation. It’s important therefore to get it right in terms of how you do it and what you cover.

Things to think about and prepare when inducting include:

  • role expectations and responsibilities
  • relevant health and safety matters
  • the welcome process (respectful and responsive to the cultural background of the new appointee (eg mihi whakatau))
  • arrangements to address the new appointee’s support needs (eg reasonable accommodation for disability)
  • access to key organisational documents and systems
  • communication channels
  • a tour of the worksite which, for a physical site, includes evacuation points and emergency exits
  • relationships and people the new appointee is likely to interact with.

For temporary and contract roles, induction will be different. It will cover essentials like relevant health and safety matters but may be more task-focused.

Should you have an Induction Policy?

It is necessary to properly induct people to a worksite. But you can do what’s required without necessarily having a specific Induction policy.

Benefits  of an Induction Policy

In Are you missing out? Is good policy what you need? we talked about the benefits of having good policies.  The benefits of an Induction policy include:

  • That the status of “policy” helps signal that Induction is important, a “must-do” rather than “nice-to-have”
  • The policy can guide what should be covered, when it should be covered and who is responsible for it
  • That policy will help promote consistency in how induction is undertaken across the organisation.

But it’s not always best….to have everything in policy:

  • Less is often more when it comes to policies. Too many can become unworkable and discourage people from using them.
  • Induction should be responsive to an individual skill level and job role. Policies can sometimes impede responsiveness if an organisation has a top-heavy sign-off and approval process for when changes to a process in a policy are made.

Policy isn’t the only way to provide guidance about induction. At the Policy Place, we often use Checklists and diagrams as quick guides for our members on processes. There are other options too including:

  • Practice Notices
  • Team meetings
  • Email
  • Charts
  • Videos
  • Email communications
  • Workplace News
  • Training (paper and online modules)
  • Coaching
  • Mentoring

Consider preferences for an Induction Policy

People have different preferences for how they like to be guided and informed.  Consider these preferences when deciding if you need an Induction policy for your workplace.

If your staff are kanohi-ki-te-kanohi (face-to-face) type of people and you’re in a relatively small workplace, your best strategy may be to minimise policy content and prescribe procedures like Induction in a more “hands-on” way. A Checklist coupled with a formal acknowledgment and sign-off from the responsible manager and inductee that induction was completed might just do the trick.

Proof that induction is done and dusted is important whatever strategy you choose for induction.

On the other hand, if you’re a big workplace with a number of managers and staff who are responsible for induction, a policy may well be your best strategy. It will help build consistency into your process and as an organisational policy, is more likely to be taken seriously.

At The Policy Place, we cover the following in our Induction Policy:

  • The reason/purpose of the policy
  • Who’s Responsible
  • Key Requirements
  • Compliance
  • Date when policy should be reviewed.

Helpful links

For our online Policy Place users, we incorporate Helpful links. These are links that our clients can access for related online information.  From our Induction policy page, for example, our client can access our online Recruitment and Selection policy and Health and Safety Responsibilities policy page.

We often include relevant external links for legislation and resources like:

Check these resources out if you’re needing more help with your Induction Policy or process. Better still, if you don’t want to any more worry about writing, reviewing and updating policies, get in touch with us now. We offer online and bespoke policies and want to lighten your workload.

Contact the Policy Place 0224066554

Your policy and procedure essentials for mobile devices at work

With so many people working from home these days, mobile devices for work are the norm.  So have you got mobile devices covered in your policies and procedures?

The challenge for your policy and procedure in this area is to enable your organisation to reap the benefits of mobile devices while reducing the risks.


Benefits of mobile device use for work purposes include:

  • flexibility for staff – they can work anywhere, anytime
  • improved capacity to deliver more responsive services with support, learning – you name it – able to be delivered to clients/customers in diverse locations
  • efficiency and quality gains with staff enabled to access and comply with organisational policies and procedures and other systems when and where they need to.


But there are sizeable risks with mobile device use at work. These include data risks, risks of inappropriate use, confusion about liability when things go wrong and that mobile devices bring work home.

Policy and procedure tips

To reap the benefits and address the risks of mobile devices in the workplace, here are some areas to address in your policy and procedure.

Resourcing & liability

An organisation may issue staff with mobile devices or allow staff to work on their personal devices.

Your policy and procedure might address either or both situations. It’s a good idea to outline ownership responsibilities and liability in situations of theft, damage, and loss, who pays for usage (eg calls, data), and where, when, and how remote devices will be checked, inspected, returned, repaired, and updated.

Acceptable use

What are the rules of engagement – the “acceptable” and “unacceptable” uses of the device.

This needs to be clearly outlined in your policies and procedures even when staff use their own devices for work purposes.

At a minimum, compliance with the law (eg the Harmful Digital Communications Act 2015), your organisational values and other policies and procedures should be required.

Interaction with organisational systems

Ideally, staff will be enabled to access organisational systems through their mobile device. But sometimes this isn’t possible.

In either situation, it’s important that your policies and procedures outline authorisation and log-in processes and when and what may or may not be stored locally (eg personal information.)

Security and confidentiality

A safety gain with mobile technology is that help is only a phone-call away wherever you are. So your policies and procedures should require staff to take and use their mobile phone for safety purposes while out with clients or travelling.

Organisational data also needs to be protected. Some basics for your policy and procedure are:

  • not using public wifi
  • not sharing passwords
  • not leaving the device unattended in a public area
  • securing the device/organisational data from tamariki and others playing on them.

Work/life balance

A significant risk with mobile device use is that erodes work/life balance.

Because a mobile device can be used anywhere, at any time it can be harder to resist the pull of work while at home. It’s a good idea therefore for your organisational policy and procedure to clarify when staff are not expected to be “on tap” and accessible by remote technology to management, colleagues and clients.

No more worries

Keeping your policies and procedures up-to-date with changing regulations, technologies and practices can be challenging. We know from our clients and our own experience as operational managers how stressful it can be, especially when part of a busy workload.

Give us a ring if you want a hand or if you want your policies and procedures to be accessible remotely.

We can help with an online policy and procedure service that includes a regular review and updating service and with tailored reviews and updates.

CALL US NOW – we WELCOME your call! 

9 policy and procedure areas to cover off for COVID- 19

Good policies and procedures can help you steer the course  – keep you on track with your compliance and guard against panicked decision making in a time of emergency.

Are all policies and procedures equally important in a time of emergency?

Not all. Here’s what we prioritise.


Policies and procedures addressing compliance with regulations and standards.  These are the “must dos”.  They can help you decide what and how you might pare back to save money and if need be, make changes to how you operate.

Pandemic policy/plan

An obvious policy.

As indicated by the recent resurgence of COVID-19 in Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland, the plan needs to be robust enough to support flexible and quick responses to changing Alert levels.  If your plan is based on a linear trajectory, it should be updated accordingly.

While you’re at it, check that your plan is consistent with the legislated requirements for contact tracing, restrictions on movements and physical distancing.

Staff at risk of infection 

The situation of staff in this circumstance can be part of a pandemic or leave policy or because of its high-interest value, as a separate policy.  The status of and responses to staff in the following circumstances should be clarified:

  • staff exposed to infection through an event or personal contact (ie where increased risk)
  • staff concerned about risk (but no indications of exposure)
  • staff who may be especially vulnerable to infection because of a pre-existing condition, age etc
  • staff are quarantined/required to self-isolate (may differentiate cases where it was forseeable/not forseeable)
  • staff returning from international travel
  • community lock-down.

Leave policy

Employees’ minimum leave entitlements are addressed in legislation. Organisations will have their own policy and procedure where leave is above the minimum and to outline how leave should be applied for etc.

Leave entitlements are especially important for staff when jobs start looking uncertain. It will also be pressing for staff at risk of infection, staff who become sick and those caring for dependents.

Your leave policy should address the application process for annual leave, sick leave, dependent/caregiver leave (may be added to or part of sick leave) and access to other leave – eg paid special leave; unpaid leave.

Flexible working policy

This policy should cover the relevant legal requirements eg that arrangements are requested and responded to, when formality might be waived and reasons why a request might be declined. It should cover options such as staff working on flexible schedules and in remote locations; recording variations to employment terms, clocking in and out, shared calendars and monitoring and review of arrangements.

Working from home policy

Working from home is a form of remote working. It could be part of your flexible working policy. However, its become a dominant way of working while in the pandemic so we think it warrants specific attention as a policy.

Your policy should cover expectations for how and when work is to be achieved, connection with the mothership (ie workplace and other colleagues), workplace hui; shared calendar and time recording; health and safety; roles and responsibilities.  See here for help.

IT, privacy & communications policy

Most organisations will have policies about what’s acceptable/unacceptable use of email, online systems, software and social media.  If staff are moving to remote working, it’s important that these policies cover roles and responsibilities, (eg for hardware, authorisations, arranging staff logins), safeguards for the transfer,  use and recording of organisational and personal information and log in/access to online organisational resources including client management system and policies and procedures.

Diversity and inclusion

This may seem a surprising “must have” for Covid 19. It reflects the law (eg Human Rights Act; health and disability and social sector accreditation standards.)

We’ve included it here to counter the risks of xenophobia and exclusion. There have been instances of racist attacks related to Covid-19 and more recently, animosity towards returning citizens and residents.  Yes, we’re concerned about health and safety. But this can not be at the expense of equality.

We all benefit from inclusive and welcoming work cultures where staff and others who may be infectious are supported and disinformation about the virus is rejected.


If you’re a funded social or health service you’re required to have a delegations policy. At least, you should be able to evidence clear parameters around management versus governance functions and powers.

With Covid 19, it may be a good idea to think more extensively about delegations. For business continuity purposes, delegations should be in place and enable sufficient cover for when usual decision-makers are absent or become ill.

Ways you can address these areas

For those who’ve got it all covered, make sure your staff are aware of the policies. Enable their  24/7 access to your policies, procedures and other systems if they start to work remotely.

If you haven’t got them covered, it’s not too late. You can:

  • amend your related policies to cover off the key areas
  • develop and incorporate new procedures into existing policies
  • contact us for help so it’s one less worry and there’s less stress.

For those into DIY, check out some of our other posts and these resources for help with drafting your policies:

Your single source of truth for remote working

There’s a revolution coming. It’s called remote work and it looks set to become the new norm for work. 

During the pandemic lockdown many of us have been forced into remote working. We may have been kicking and screaming about it at the start, but predictions are that many of us will stick with it even after the pandemic is over.

But are you ready for it? To really get the most out of remote work, you have to do the groundwork.

Your handbook comes first

Sid Sijbrandij, the CEO and co-founder of GitLab, an all-remote company with over a 1,000 employees across the world, advocates strongly that the organisational handbook is vital to success in working remotely.

Their handbook is the company’s single-source of truth – the bible of the organisation. It includes the company’s mission and values, policies, processes, training and communication tools. It provides staff with 24/7 access to guidance and information they need to do their work whether as managers or employees.  A change must be made to the handbook before any change can be made in the organisation.

It may seem counter-intuitive, shocking even, to managers who are all about action.

But it’s not hard to figure out “the why.” With remote working, you can no longer rely on daily in-person contact with staff to answer questions, check-in on progress, induct new staff and volunteers, provide supervision, monitor and support safety and wellbeing.

You have to have your policies and processes sorted, people tuned in and able to access the organisational mission and values. Otherwise, you leave your staff prevented rather than empowered to do their work and the organisation at risk of chaos.

Start early, prioritise it

The message is clear – the earlier the better to get your handbook/ policies and procedures up and running as your agency’s Single Source of Truth.

The Policy Place can help you bring all your documents together in one online source that’s accessible to staff any time anywhere. It should include all your “must-dos,” address your compliance needs and include user-friendly guidance about processes (eg onboarding new staff, information management, supervision, feedback and complaints) and your communication tools.

It doesn’t have to be perfect

Remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect. Your policies and procedures/ handbook should be living and iterative documents. They will change as and when required eg when a regulatory requirement changes; when your team want to substitute a more efficient process for an existing one.

Through scheduled monthly reviews, the Policy Place keeps your policies and procedures updated. We also review and update if things change meantime as occurred with the pandemic. The job is never-ending and nor should it be, when it comes to your organisational bible.


Contact us NOW