Meetings are an important part of business. However, are you making your meetings as productive as possible?
Meetings can be a huge waste of time. If you have to travel they are even more of a time waster. However there are many good things about meetings too.
Networking with others, building relationships, reviewing things closely and in confidence are all good things about meetings. Don’t get me wrong. Meeting up in person makes a huge difference and adds a lot of qualities you cannot necessarily get from using online meeting platforms.
Technology Saving Tons of Time and Reducing Carbon Footprint
The ability to use Zoom and MS Teams has really changed the amount of time required to coordinate with others regarding meetings. You really do save a lot of time using these types of platforms.
The other massive bonus is you are saving the planet by not having to commute to meetings. This reduces your carbon footprint and this is a huge benefit to the planet. Travel time does take a lot of time and effort.
It doesn’t matter though if you are holding online meetings or meetings in person. Recording meetings using a meeting minutes template is something you really need to do. There are several risks if you don’t bother to record your meeting discussions and likely will create headaches for you down the track.
Record Meetings Using a Meeting Minutes Template
If you are constantly having meetings, are you taking the time to record these meetings?
If you are constantly having meetings, you should record your conversations using a free meeting minutes template. Save a ton of time and download this meeting minutes template that includes a free bonus!
5 Reasons Why You Should Document Meetings
1. Can you afford to forget what was said?
If you are busy, chances are you can easily forget what has been said in any meeting. Things are likely to go in one ear and out the other!
Recording your conversations makes a huge difference to getting things completed accurately. So, take the time to record your meeting conversations with Meeting Minutes.
2. Just more Professional
Recording your meetings or documenting the conversations is just way more professional that forgetting about it. If you aren’t recording your meetings and you forget something, how does that look to your clients, colleagues or whoever you are having the meeting with?
3. Future Reference for Records
A few weeks down the track you might need to go back and review what was said. having meeting minutes allows you to do this easily and just makes perfect sense.
4. Keep Others Accountable
It is easy to delegate something to others but if they don’t get the task completed, what was the point? Having a written record helps them remember what was required and helps to keep them accountable. OK, you cannot force accountability, however it is likely the most important thing is just to remind people and then the accountability naturally flows.
5. You Could Need it for Litigation
If you run into problems down the track you might need written conversations for litigation purposes. Having a written record makes a big difference and allows you to provide more proof of any conversations.
So there are 5 simple reasons Meeting Minutes are a great idea.
Operations Manuals can be complex documents. However, if you only have a small business then why make it harder than it needs to be?
Operations Manuals can take a long time to develop. They include every aspect of your organization. This is a massive undertaking. If you are searching for an Operations Manual Template that suits your business, then it could be a very difficult thing to achieve.
If you are looking for a free operations manual template then this is going to be even more difficult. Businesses can be complex and not a lot of businesses are the same.
However, we take a look at the free options available online in this article below. If you are on the look out for a free operations manual template, then read on below.
What is an Operations Manual?
Wikipedia determines the operations manual as the following.
“The operations manual is the documentation by which an organization provides guidance for members and employees to perform their functions correctly and reasonably efficiently. It documents the approved standard procedures for performing operations safely to produce goods and provide services.”
If you operate a small or medium business, having an operations manual is going to make a huge difference to the performance of your organization. These types of documents explain a lot of detail for your team to follow. They are also a document that is constantly updated.
Let’s take a look at a Google search for Free Operations Manual Template.
Wait a Second
If you drill down into the detail, an operations manual or business operations could mean several different things. For example, does it mean just the operations part of the business such as the factory floor or does it mean the whole organization?
Well it really depends on who is writing the content, article or whatever they are trying to communicate. For example, check out Shopify’s explanation of an Operations Manual. They think it is everything collectively in the business that keeps it running and making money.
However, if you do a Google search using the Google Ads keyword tool, a few related ideas pop up. See the image below. Click to enlarge.
So an Operations Manual could be known as several different types of documents with the same purpose.
Training Manual, Reference Materials, Technical Manual, Supply Chain Manual, Maintenance Manual, Development Manual and Management Manual.
What about Marketing Manual, Policy Manual, Procedure Manual, SOP Manual, Operational Policy Manual and the list goes on and on.
What Does Your Business Look Like?
There is no set way to do this stuff. It depends on your business. The best way would be to keep it simple. So many things have become over complicated The best thing you can probably do is keep it as simple as you can within the realms of what you produce or deliver.
Overall, probably the best term for all of these documents is an Operations Manual and everything else come beneath this. Seems to make sense right?
The important thing is that this type of manual is a document that helps you operate your business. It can become really detailed. It can become really extensive and they usually take a long time to develop.
However, you can purchase ready made templates to speed up the process of creating your operations manual quickly, efficiently and cost effectively so you can get on with the task of operating your business.
Operations Manual for Small Business
If you are a small business, we believe an Operations Manual should be relatively simple. However, there probably needs to be several sections to include in your Operations Manual.
This should include at the minimum a number of sections such as the following.
Vision and Values
Human Resources Manual
Operations Process Manual
Emergency Procedure Manual
Including all of these sections in your Operations Manual will ensure you grasp each area of your business and set it off heading in the right direction.
Heading in the right direction
When newcomers enter your business, they will fall under any one of the operations manual areas, and you can get them to develop their own areas as your business grows.
So let’s take a look at each of these sections in detail.
Business Introduction, Vision and Values
We believe you need an introduction to your business that sets the direction and meaning behind why you are in business in the first place. Your business needs to mean something. If it doesn’t, your team might feel as though they have no direction and are simply floating along and reacting to whatever comes their way.
This Business Introduction, Vision and Values section outlines the ‘Vision and Values’ of your business, sets direction for your team and allows you to think of the big picture.
The Administration section includes everything to do with operating the administration side of the business. This includes things like general tasks such as answering the phone and providing stationary and facilities for staff to use on a daily basis.
This particular part of the Organization is important because it helps the business to operate smoothly.
The Finance Manual includes everything to do with finance such as approving monies to be spent, purchasing transactions, team credit cards and invoicing and debt collection.
This particular aspect of a business is crucial to ensure cash-flow and ensure the business has suitable funds to keep operating.
Human Resources Manual
The human resources section of a business can be complex and demanding. This part of the business deals with team contracts, entitlements, team member concerns and behavior.
There are plenty of standards that need to be met in this area of the business and are often dictated by law. Often one of the harder parts of a business this area often needs a specialist.
Operations Process Manual
Operations are the core of your business and the product or service you provide. Documenting your process is one of the most important things you can do for your organisation. It has far-reaching effects into all areas of your business.
Your operations process manual should detail how everything is done within your business. From quality control to cleaning the factory floor or cleaning the office, it doesn’t really matter, everything should be documented.
As you can imagine this is a huge undertaking. However don’t expect it to be done quickly just expect it to be done thoroughly. Every time you document a process or procedure you save a significant amount of time the next time somebody needs to complete that task.
This is particularly important when new team members start in your organisation. However it doesn’t apply just to new team members it applies to existing staff that have been there for a while as well. Having processes and procedures documented ensures a good quality outcome for your product or service.
Even existing team members that have been in your business for a long time need to be reminded on how to do things correctly. If your business is complex then these tools are necessary reminders to get things done to the standard you expect.
Can you expect to be delivering a high quality standard if you don’t have any rules or documentation to follow? It simply won’t happen because people will apply their own personal standards to their jobs. Everybody is different and everybody’s standards are different and so this is where operations processes and procedures come into play.
All of your operations and processes should have quality control checklists. This ensures that the quality leaving your business is of the highest standard. Everybody misses things particularly when there is a lot of details to be captured and therefore checklist are an awesome tool to ensure that quality is met.
Emergency Procedure Manual
An emergency manual is a definite inclusion for your Operations Manual. This type of document explains in detail what should be done should there be an emergency that impacts your business.
It includes actions and procedures to take in the event on an emergency.
Free Operations Manual Template
If you’re looking for a free operations manual template it could be quite difficult to try and find one that suits your business specifically. If you do a quick search on Google you will find plenty of templates it our examples of operations manual from other companies. These aren’t really free operations manual templates because all they are are examples from other organisations.
If you’re really looking for a good Operations Manual then you probably need to consider purchasing one from the many options available online.
As these documents are complex there are probably not very many good available free options.
What is Your Experience with Business Operations?
You will be able to save a significant amount of time by using an Operations Manual Master Template. Leave a comment below.
Operations manuals are complex documents that include a lot of information across all areas of a business. The fastest way to create an operations manual is to use master templates. Obviously creating an operations manual is going to take a huge amount of time and effort.
If you want to save a lot of time and effort than the best thing you can do to use a master template. A master template may not have every specific thing in there you’ll need but he will have a lot of content that is generic to a lot of businesses. Chances are you’ll save a ton of time using a generic operations procedure manual template.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is an Operations Manual?
An operations manual is a document that outlines all of the procedures, rules, guidelines, vision, and values of an organisation. It is a tool that is used by all staff members to perform their role in the business.
Should I buy an Operations Manual Template?
Purchasing a template is going to save you a significant amount of time and effort getting your operations manual together. These documents take a lot of time to create.
Does my business really need an Operations Manual?
The operations manual is the foundation for the business and should be a critical component of any business.
What should be in an Operations Manual?
An Operations Manual should have a large amount of data in it including information regarding all aspects of your business including team engagement leadership and all processes.
If you need an Employee Contract or Employment Contract you can either make one yourself, (time intensive) get a lawyer to create one for you (big bucks!) or buy a template online (probably your best option for cost effectiveness and time).
Whatever you choose, using an Employee Contract Template is going to save a colossal amount of time. Employing your staff with the right documents is critical if you want to ensure you limit your liability.
It is important that you are aware of what is in the contract and implement it each time you engage a new employee. Employing staff can be a challenge (so can working with the Boss!).
If you employ a staff member that ends up creating issues for your business, you want to know where you stand when it comes to terminating them.
Terminating a team member’s employment is not the nicest experience for anyone. However, turning a blind eye to poor behavior or dangerous or illegal behavior could jeopardize your whole business. It will also have significant impact on the rest of your team.
That is the last thing you need!
Obviously – you need to abide by all the rules and regulations of the State or Territory that your business resides in. However, just getting most of the content together shouldn’t be the world’s hardest task. Also it shouldn’t cost you an ‘arm and a leg’ in lawyers fees.
Communication is Key
A contract will ensure both parties know the rules. YAY! Communication makes a big difference. Be surprised how many businesses just ‘wing it’ and hope for the best.
However, if you are building a strong, reputable business and are around for the long haul, then doing it properly makes perfect sense.
It is important that you make sure your employees read the contract thoroughly. Before they start work with you is best so they know all the rules and what is expected of them.
Don’t just give it to them and walk away. Meet with them and go through each point so it is clear.
A good quality contract should be easy to read but still go into sufficient detail.
Of course, you cannot foresee all of the issues, however you certainly can make sure you cover as much as possible.
Implementing the correct employee contract is certainly going to make a difference in your business. It will ensure that you have clear communication channels between your staff and your management team or yourself if you are the business owner.
Easy Ways to Create an Employee Contract
A contract of employment is something that you should provide to your newly hired employees prior to them commencing work with you. It is imperative that you provide this document to them to ensure a smooth-sailing relationship between the two of you.
If you want the creation of this contract to be made even easier, then an template is something that you should consider using. You can either purchase a template online or contact your lawyer so he will draw up the documents for you.
But if you want to do it yourself, then rest assured that there are several ways for you to accomplish this.
You just have to consider a lot of important things to make the contract extremely effective.
Follow This List
The first thing that you need to do when creating a contract for employment is to provide some space to identify the parties involved in the contract. The space should be enough to fill the full names of both parties.
Next you should include the name of the company, telephone numbers, addresses and any other essential information.
Following on, the next thing that you need to do is to choose the specific law and location that will govern the contract. This is needed to ensure that there is indeed a governing law that will be used whenever there are legal issues that need to be resolved.
It may also depend on the type of position – are they professional – white collar or blue collar staff members?
The last thing that you need to do when creating an employee contract is to ensure that parts of the contract are understandable. This will allow both of you to work together without getting confused along the process.
Why Must you Use a Contract to Employ Staff?
If you are an owner of a company and you are employing a number of employees, then you are aware of the fact that carefully choosing people to be part of your team can be very beneficial to you.
If you employ people who are unreliable, then there is a risk your business will fail . That can be pretty obvious, but sometimes business owner’s emotions get in the way of rationale decisions.
Because of this, it is important for you to carefully interview people so you will be able to determine if they are qualified for the offered position/s. Once they are hired, provide them a contract of employment which states their duties and responsibilities to your company.
What Else is Required?
The contract should also state what your staff can expect from you during the period of their employment. To make the process of creating employment contracts easier, use an employee contract template. This will save you from spending too much time creating contracts each time new people are hired.
An employment contract is indeed a useful tool when it comes to ensuring that all your employees work productively. A contract clearly states the responsibilities of employees, they will know exactly what they need to do for the company to flourish.
The contract will also serve as a bond between you and your employees.
It allows both parties to build a stronger and smoother
What is in an Employee Contract?
A contract of employment serves as an agreement between your business and your employees. It highlights to you both your expectations from the moment they start working in the office.
To make the job of creating a contract easier, use a template. Then you only need to make minor changes. These would be filling in the name, address, salary information and any other details applicable to the job position. All the other stuff will be standard for each employee – YAY!
Typically, an employment contract usually contains information like the names of both parties. Also essential details of the organization and number of hours that an employee needs to follow each day. Then, their salary expectation, the probation period and the process of termination.
It also contains the start date of the employee and specific
information about the entitlement of leave such as sick leave, holiday leave
and maternity or paternity leave.
Job titles and duties of employees and certain disciplinary
procedures in the office are also stated in the contract. The employer may also
add other details in the contract based on specific advice from their lawyer.
Considering the many details that should be included in an employment contract using a template is a significant advantage.
Employee Contracts for Beginners
If you are just a beginner in the field of employing staff know that providing an employment contract is recommended. It is considered to be an effective approach when it comes to improving your relationship with them.
What has a monkey got to do with it? Nothing really – just wanted to see if you are still reading down this far or if you have fallen asleep.
Expectations will be much clearer once the contract is created and understood by both of you. This is invaluable when there are disagreements.
If you want to obtain assurance that contracts can be easily created whenever new people are employed in your company use a template.
However, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind when looking for a template
When looking for the best employee contract template, it is important for you to use a contract that can can be understood. Since both parties stated in the contract will work with each other, you have to make sure that both of you easily comprehend the terms within the employment.
The template should also have spaces for certain details that clearly state what your employees can expect from you and what you can expect from them in return.
When you consider these things, then you will be on your way towards easily creating the contract that both you and your employee need.
A stronger relationship is expected to be built from a contract that clearly states what needs to be stated. This cannot be understated!
Employment Contract Templates Save Time
Getting the right employment contracts in your business makes a difference. It will make a difference to the performance of your team. Then ultimately the performance of your business.
Engage staff using a detailed employment contract as this then makes it fair when any disagreements arise.
There may be laws in your country that would override your employment agreements. It makes sense to check this out. Combine the relevant laws for your state in the agreements you create for your staff. You may need assistance from a lawyer for this.
Treat your team well and treat them fair and they should work well for you.
However, you need to also keep them honest. If they are taking you for a ride then communicate to them how their behavior is not welcomed.
Quick and Efficient
An employment contract template allows you to generate these agreements quickly and efficiently without fuss. This allows you to save significant time and money. It also allows you to get on with the job of running your business and not spending half your time trying to get information together that someone has already done before.
There is no point in reinventing the wheel!
If you are looking to engage staff then ensure you use an employee contract template. It will allow you to cover all the basics so that you can have some peace of mind should things go bad between your team member and yourself.
Why you Need to use an Employee Contract Template
An employment contract is a legal document. This document contains the agreement between an employer and an employee with regards to what both of them can expect from each other within the period of employment.
If you are an owner of a company, then an employment contract is something that makes you and your business more transparent.
An Employment Contract:
Builds trust between you and your employees;
Communicates clearly and accurately;
Is more professional;
Builds your business;
Sets high standards;
Saves time and stress;
Prevents future disputes.
saves tons of time;
reminds you of the important aspects that you may have forgotten;
speeds up your daily processes;
A newly hired employee should expect to receive a contract from the moment they are hired.
If you are an employer, then an employee contract template ensures that you complete the process of hiring employees in the fastest possible time.
You never know how many employees will start to work in your company, so prepare for the future. To help the employer and the employee maintain a smooth sailing relationship an employee contract is required.
If you are looking for an effective template, then you have three choices.
You can get a lawyer and allow him to create the template, purchase a template online or do the job yourself. Once you are able to set up a contract template, you will be on your way towards providing your new employee the contract of employment the fastest time possible.