So What HR Documents Do I Need in my Business?

This is a great question, which we have been asked a few times, so we thought we would prepare what we think are the most important HR documents you will need in your business.  we revisited a previously published blog “Top HR Documents”.

The bottom line is, owners still feel overwhelmed about what to put in place or even when they have decided to set up a Human Resource department, the question still remains: where do I start with my documents.

Therefore, QBH Solutions thought it makes sense to assist in helping to prioritise your efforts. Below you find our top 5 list of key HR documents listed in priority sequence:

1) Contract of Employment

This Contract serves as the main terms and conditions of employment and should document the key details of the employment relationship. As a minimum you will want to include the following;

  • Job Title or Role
  • Start Date
  • Salary
  • Hours of Work
  • Probationary Period.

Why it’s important: The contract is a great place to outline certain expected attitudes and performance, referring to disciplinary and grievance policies. You might also provide details on other company rules such as acceptable use of Company IT and sickness / holiday management.

2) Job Description

A job description is a key tool that details the main duties and responsibilities for the person fulfilling that role; it is a written statement of duties, responsibilities and other success factors associated with each unique position.

Why it’s important: It helps employer and employee to understand the expectations of the position by providing clarity for employment contracts, probationary periods, and ongoing performance management.

Take a look at one of our other blogs on Job Descriptions

3) HR Policies / Procedures / Employee Handbook

These documents are excellent tools for setting boundaries and describing how you will manage certain issues and processes within your business. There is a lot you can cover but as a minimum have a think about the following:

  • Grievance, how to raise and how you will resolve
  • Disciplinary, your rules on gross misconduct and how the process will be managed
  • Family Friendly, your commitment to supporting parental leave
  • Absence Management, the requirements around annual leave, sickness and other absences.

Why it’s important: By signing policies, procedure or the handbook, an employee agrees to abide by the established guidelines, which will help preventing the standard answer “but no one told me I couldn’t, and it will clarify the expectations for both the company and the employee.

4) Induction

A formal induction is a brilliant way of introducing your new member of staff to the rest of the team, your site, and your business. Induction can be anything from a short briefing on their first day through to more detailed inductions, over several days or weeks, covering all procedures, policies, departments, dos and don’ts of the business.

There is no right or wrong way, but the induction must be recorded on the employee’s file, meet the needs of your business and, as a minimum, cover any specific health & safety issues.

Why it’s important: An induction is beneficial for both, the employer, and the employee as it helps both to start off on the right foot, as well as reducing the time it takes for the new team member to settle into their new roles. Furthermore, an induction will ensure that employees integrate well into and across the business and help new hires feel welcome and remove their anxieties and confusion.

5) Job Chat

Job Chats, variously known as Supervisions or 121s, could be your most effective and easiest way of formally communicating with your staff. Held at an appropriate frequency, a job chat complements good management and supervision skills and is probably the best method of supporting your employees and ensuring they are doing what you think they should be doing and to monitor performance on any specific projects or tasks that have been set. Have a loose agenda, take notes and agree any actions formally.

Why it’s important: The open communication will highlight issues before they become more serious, and they can help you to “head them off at the pass” saving you time, energy and resources in the long run. The process will also allow you to identify any changes to the role that may need to be incorporated or updated within the job description.

These are only our top HR Documents; there are others, such as Performance Management, Hiring Processes, Involuntary Terminations, Employee Data & Reporting, and we are happy to talk to you about any documents you require or have further questions on.

Our team can be reached via email at or on 0330 229 0885