5 Key Reasons Why Documentation Is Important in HR

5 Key Reasons Why Documentation Is Important in HR

HR documentation is key to your organization’s success.

It helps you make sure that everyone — supervisors, HR team, and employees — is organized and on the same page. But the benefits of good documentation don’t stop there.

HR documentation can also optimize employee performance, help you make better decisions, and accelerate growth — especially when it comes to hourly workers.

In this article, we’re going to cover:

  • What HR documentation is
  • Why it’s important for hourly and part-time employees
  • The best HR documentation practice

Grab a hot beverage and let’s dive in.

Why Is Documentation Important in Human Resources: 5 Core Reasons

What Is HR Documentation?

HR documentation includes various types of employee documentation and data that HR departments collect from workers.

Your HR documentation can include:

  • Onboarding: such as collecting forms and direct deposit information
  • Performance: to optimize productivity levels and recognize top talent
  • Engagement: to track attendance and keep your team accountable
  • Legal: to ensure that you’re staying compliant with the law and reduce risk of litigation

The challenge with HR documentation is that it often comes with endless paperwork and repetitive tasks that feel manual, cumbersome, and, frankly, boring.

5 Reasons Why HR Documentation Will Help Your Organization Grow

1. It Allows You to Make Data-Driven Decisions

Supervisors often have to make tough decisions about the hourly workforce.

Documenting performance gives supervisors the ability to make decisions using real data, not emotion or confrontation.

For example, instead of having a general sense of “Steven often misses work,” documenting performance gives you precise hours and reasons why Steven wasn’t where he was supposed to be.

This way, the supervisors have the clarity they need to reward top performers and take fair disciplinary action when needed.

2. It Helps Improve Productivity

HR documentation can help you make your operations more efficient because it allows you to identify trends over a period of time and make performance improvements.

Tracking employee performance reduces the probability of repeated mistakes and helps you see if any areas in your standard operating procedures need improvement.

Do you notice that multiple workers are running into the same problem over and over again?

Documenting and analyzing productivity trends can help you get to the bottom of the wider issue and create a performance improvement plan instead of wasting time trying to come up with surface-level solutions.

3. It Protects Your Organization Against Litigation

Most states have employment record requirements that your organization needs to comply with to stay in good standing with the law. Some types of documentation you may be required to keep on file include medical forms and documents confirming employment eligibility.

Documenting work hours, performance, and engagement also protects your organization against litigation and prevents legal issues from arising.

4. It Sets Clear Expectations

Organized documentation makes standard operations and expectations obvious and clear for your hourly workers and teams.

With standardized documentation in place, there is no gray area between what’s acceptable and what’s not acceptable, which makes enforcing company policies significantly easier.

Creating a fair and unbiased system that applies to all of your workers also reduces the possibility of conflict and builds a culture of transparency where the same rules apply to everyone.

Setting consistent expectations is especially important when you have hourly employees.

They often switch work locations and don’t have set working hours, which makes it harder to make them a part of a cohesive system.

5. It Grows Engagement

Hourly workers often report feeling neglected and not as important as salaried employees.

As a result, their engagement and productivity levels suffer, and over 58% of part-time workers report wanting to leave their positions because of a lack of recognition.

In the Age of Great Resignation, this is bad news. With many frontline roles short-staffed, companies should make their best efforts to retain part-time employees and improve turnover rates.

Consistent HR documentation can help you connect with hourly workers and make them feel that their work matters and is recognized.

This will lead to a more engaged team, higher productivity levels, and a better turnover rate.

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