8 HR Policies That Should Be Less Complicated (And How To Change Them)


What is one process you have changed or will be changing to make a workplace process or policy less complicated?

To help HR professionals uncomplicate some of their policies, we asked HR experts and business leaders this question for their best insights. From automating onboarding processes to using workflow management software, there are several strategies that may help you adjust complicated HR policies and processes for years to come. 

Here are eight HR policies that should be less complicated: 

  • Clarify Time Off Policy
  • Embrace Telecommute Policies
  • Collaborative Problem Solving
  • Streamline Interview Process
  • Automate Onboarding Process
  • Reduce Amount of Paper Forms
  • Simplify Approval Processes
  • Use Workflow Management Software

Clarify time off policies 

Time off is one of those policies that can be super complicated or quite easy. Starting a new role brings about all sorts of questions--when is it available, how to submit for time off, and who approves the request can make this policy very confusing. One way to make it less complicated is by having simple guidelines or even an unlimited policy. The only complicated part of having an unlimited vacation policy for our team is making sure the team is actually taking time off to recharge. 

Jenn Christie, Markitors

Embrace telecommute policies

More and more companies are seeing the benefits of implementing flextime policies for their employees that work in real life. We often assist small business leaders in the development of their employee handbooks and associated procedures. It has been refreshing to have discussions with leaders over the last year to explore how they can truly make the workplace more flexible for employees. The pandemic has forced us all to evaluate how we balance work and life. As a result, employers must be prepared to update their workplace scheduling, flextime, and telecommuting policies to meet their employees where they are, with what they need. When you do make these changes, including a new and improved flextime policy, it is one way to create workplaces that employees really love.

Niki Ramirez, HRAnswers.org

Collaborative problem solving  

Since we went remote during the pandemic, we have implemented a collaborative problem-solving model which has helped us reach conflict resolutions efficiently and quickly. With an all-hands-on-deck approach to problem-solving, we are able to take in everyone's perspective and build on the next idea to formulate a solution that suits the needs of everyone.

Nik Sharma, Sharma Brands

Streamline interview process 

How many rounds of interviews is too many? While there is no defined number, our company advises our clients to limit the process to no more than three interviews. It is important that hiring managers select the candidate that is the best fit for a vacant role. However, not everyone's input needs to be involved in this decision. The job market is very hot at the moment. If the process is too drawn out, top candidates may accept another offer, or even remove themselves from consideration if they get frustrated from a lengthy process. It is essential that only key stakeholders are involved in the interview process in order to move quickly and effectively to fill a vacant position.

Rachel Cohen, Red Clover

Automate onboarding processes 

Automating the onboarding process is one thing I aimed to make less complicated for both the new staff and the HR department of my previous organization. Automation makes the onboarding process less burdensome on the parties involved, as well as making the process more effective and impactful on the new hire.

Joe Flanagan, VelvetJobs

Reduce amount of paper forms

Human Resources is loaded with forms, but there is a scale to what is really required. Some things are required by laws, but most fall into the lesser categories of policy, practice, or habit. Instead of defaulting to the most draconian option, I make forms fight for their life. When you ask the right questions, you’ll see the truth of things. With this practice, I helped one company see their 15-page, 47-item quarterly performance checklist they considered a must-do "law" for the habit it was. We then transformed it into a one-page coaching guide with results tied to clear pay-for-performance actions.

Tim Toterhi, Plotline Leadership

Simplify Approval Processes 

One process we have recently changed is our approval process. Our approval process used to be a multi-step process that was very time-consuming. Now we have a one-step approval process for all queries that go directly through the manager of the business segment. This has really improved our response times and drastically impacted the time spent on approvals

Lauren Picasso, Cure Hydration

Use workflow management software 

Nowadays there are so many useful software tools designed to automate tedious tasks and eliminate bottlenecks and at an affordable cost no matter your company size. For my small transcription business, I've been using secure file management services to manage projects and share files with remote team members. However, this manual approach eats up a lot of time and can result in administrative errors, such as incorrectly named project files. I’m in the process of setting up workflow management software designed especially for my industry. Not only will the tool automate secure file transfer, but it also integrates with quality control, invoicing, and payroll processes.

Chloe Brittain, Opal Transcription Services


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