Characteristics of Sound Personnel Policy

While developing sound personnel policies, management should pay attention to the following:

1) Related to objectives: Policies must be capable of relating objectives to functions, physical factors and company personnel.
2) Easy to understand: Policies should be stated in definite, positive ,clear and understandable language .
3) Precise: Policies should be sufficiently comprehensive and prescribe limits and yardsticks for future action,
4) Stable as well as flexible: Personnel policies should be stable enough to assure people that there will not be drastic overnight changes. They should be flexible enough to keep the organization in tune with the times.
5) Based on facts: Personnel policies should not be built on the basis of facts and sound judgment and not on personal feelings or opportunities or decisions.
6) Appropriate number: There should be as many personnel policies as necessary to cover conditions that can be anticipated, but not so many that they become confusing or meaningless.
7) Just, fair and equitable: Personnel policies should be just, fair and equitable to internal as well as external groups. For example, a policy of recruitment from within my limit opportunities to bright candidates form outside and a policy of recruitment from outside only would limit promotional avenues to promising internal candidates. To ensure justice, it is necessary to pursue both the policies scrupulously and to apply them carefully.
8) Reasonable: Personnel policies must be reasonable and capable of being accomplished. To gain acceptance and commitment from employees, they should be conditioned by the suggestions and reactions of those who will be affected by the policy.
9) Review: Periodic review of personnel policies is essential to keep in tune with the changing times and to avoid organizational complacency or managerial stagnation. For instance if the current thinking is in favor of workers’ participation in management , the personnel policy should be suitably adjusted to accommodate the latest fad, accepted by many in the organization.

Personnel policies to be sound should also have broad coverage in addition to satisfying the above conditions. Hence, it would be appropriate to discuss the coverage of personnel policies here.

Coverage of Personnel Policies:

The coverage of personnel policies has been classified on the basis of functions of HRM by Michael Armstrong and is outlined as:

Social responsibility>>>

1) Equity: Treating employees fairly and justly by adopting an even handed approach.
2) Consideration: Considering individual circumstances when decisions affect the employee’s prospects, seniority or self respect.
3) Quality of work life: increase the interest in the job and organization by reducing monotony increasing variety of responsibility avoiding stress and strain

Employment policies: Provision of equal employment opportunities involves –selecting the candidates based on job requirements and encouraging them to put in their 100%.

Promotion policies: Promotion policies should reconcile the demands of employees for growth and the organization’s demands for fresh and much more promising talent. Promotion policy should be fair and just to all.

Development policies: Policies should cover the kind of employees to be trained, the span of training programs, techniques, rewarding and awarding system, qualifications and experience of the trainer, encouraging the employees for self advancement, etc. These policies also cover areas like career planning and development, performance appraisal, organizational change and organizational development.

Relations policies: Relations policies cover different aspects of human relations like: policies regarding motivation, morale, communication, leadership styles, grievance procedure, disciplinary procedure, employee counseling etc. These policies also cover the areas of industrial relations like union recognition, union representation, collective bargaining, prevention and settlement of industrial disputes and participative management. In order to be effective they must be written on the basis of authentic information available from different sources.

Source: HR Management

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  • kshantaram

    Personnel/HR policies should consistently reflect the values system of the organisation as a common thread among all such policies setting the cultural tone of the organisation while matching with the best contemporary domestic and global hr policies able to attract and retain talent and engage employees positively without sounding rigid, beurocratic in implementation/execution or indignifying the employees in any unintended manner causing heart burns and low productivity leading to high cost of non-compliance or low morale – while effectively covering all aspects of the hr functions contemporary employee needs from the cradle to the grave humanising human existence at the work place respecting the embedded feelings and expectations of employees in it’s finer aspects tapping the inner enthusiasm and motivation of people at large making the work place a living community of people with understood norms and exhibited behaviours directed by policy formulations evolved through a continuous participative approach at all levels – hr policy for the people, by the people, of the people.

    hope these sentiments add value to the comprehensive note well presented here.

    humble regards,


  • Reena

    please read point 5 as – Based on facts:- Personnel policies should be built on the basis of facts………….. or opportunistic decisions.