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A code of conduct can give your employees clear guidelines on what

you expect of them, and help to maintain productivity, avoid


grievances and give a good impression to customers and suppliers.
Follow our steps to create and implement a workplace code of
conduct.
1. Be clear about what you want to achieve with a code. Perhaps staff
morale is low, you've had a problem with disputes between colleagues
or inappropriate behaviour at a workplace event. A code of conduct
should eliminate "grey areas" around acceptable behaviour, as well as
giving you a point of reference should problems in future.
2. Decide what to include in the code. Broadly, it should promote your
business's values by giving guidance to staff on how you expect them
to behave in the workplace, and how they should conduct themselves
with customers, suppliers and even members of the public.
3. Be specific where necessary. For example, state that staff must arrive
by a certain time each day, answer the phone in a certain way, wear
appropriate clothing or only use the internet during their lunch hour.
4. Ensure it fits with your firm's true values. If you try to make drastic
changes to your business' culture it may be hard to enforce. Consider
what is most important to productivity and staff morale. For example,
is it essential that employees dress formally or work 9 to 5?
5. Try to accommodate staff requests when putting together your code. If
you engage employees, they are more likely to comply. Hold a meeting
to discuss your ideas and encourage feedback.
6. Be flexible where necessary and take into account individual
circumstances. For example, if your code says you won't tolerate
lateness, you risk putting staff with caring responsibilities at a
disadvantage. Instead, spell out acceptable reasons for being late.
7. Make your code of conduct a formal policy ? ensure you add it to staff
contracts or handbooks. In order to make any contractual changes,
you must consult with employees and ask them to sign their
agreement.
8. Communicate your code of conduct by sending round an email or
pinning a copy on the wall as a visible reminder.
9. Implement your code of conduct by ensuring that you and other senior
staff set a good example, and by making staff aware that breaches of
the code will be followed up.
10.Deal with breaches promptly. Some behaviour may also be a breach of
employment law - for example, an employee harassing a colleague or
making discriminatory jokes. These may force you to take serious
action, but for less serious offences a quiet word is likely to be
sufficient. Refer to the Acas code of practice on discipline and
grievance procedures for guidance.