Every day, we have conversations with people and then think nothing more about the words that were exchanged. In many cases, this is just fine, especially in our personal lives. But when it comes to important conversations in the workplace, it is vital that these conversations be documented and properly recorded in some sort of HR file. Why? Here are a few simple reasons.
Whether it’s a warning regarding productivity or a warning about an employee’s behavior, it is important that any reprimand given be recorded in that employee’s HR file. Even if you believe a simple, verbal warning will correct the problem, it must be noted that the warning was given in order to be able to prove that proper HR procedures have been followed.
This becomes especially important if an employee is terminated. If any questions arise regarding the motivation behind or the legality of the termination, those documented conversations become important evidence that shows an ongoing problem with the employee. This can save your company high costs that would be incurred if you couldn’t prove the termination to be lawful.
Occasionally, employees’ personalities and work habits will clash with one another, or a certain circumstance can create disruptive friction in the workplace. When this happens, it becomes important for an HR staff member to mediate the conflict and attempt to find a resolution. During this conversation, the HR representative should take detailed notes of the employees’ complaints and the outcome of the conversation. Copies of this conversation should be kept in both employees’ files.
This can be an important piece of documentation should the same conflict arise between the employees, and you’ll be able to readdress the issue more quickly, rather than having to rehash everything that has happened between them thus far.