Employers lack clarity on legislation compliance

Just
a fifth of employers are confident they are fully compliant with all regulatory
requirements, research finds.

A
survey, by corporate policy specialists PolicyMatter, identifies an alarming
lack of clarity among organisations when it comes to compliance with key
legislation and industry regulations.

Almost
70 per cent of the more than 100 organisations polled were unable to say for
certain whether employees had seen policies or not. 

Overall,
50 per cent of respondents stated that their firms made no effort to check that
employees had actually read corporate policies. 

Almost
half of the organisations surveyed reported that, while they did not currently
track policy deployment and acceptance, they would like to. 

Only
15 per cent of organisations claim to already record the signing of all
policies by employees.

PolicyMatter
legal expert, Nathan Millard, believes there are two main reasons why
organisations would be unsure about their compliance status.

“The
first problem is keeping abreast of the latest legal and regulatory
requirements – a lot of guidelines and corporate policies become ineffective as
case law changes and new legislation is introduced.

"Also,
organisations are still not taking adequate steps to ensure they can prove
employees are aware of their obligations and have ‘signed-up’ to abide by the
firm’s policies,” he said.

The
most popular policy deployment vehicle highlighted by 33 per cent of
respondents is the employee handbook.

Other
popular policy deployment methods include hard copies (31 per cent), intranet
(18 per cent) and e-mail (13 per cent). 

“Now
is the time for organisations to find a way of ensuring up-to-date policies are
read, understood and accepted by all employees – those firms that don’t can
expect the penalties for compliance breaches to be harsh,” said Millard.

Despite
the high number of organisations who admitted they were unsure of their
compliance status, only 18 per cent of respondents admitted to suffering a
compliance breach in the last 12 months.

By Ben Willmott

Comments are closed.