How to Write Policies and Procedures, Part 4: Project Milestones

Check, please!

How many online employee handbooks have you created? Chances are the answer is zero, zip, zilch, or nada. We, on the other hand, have become quite familiar with the steps it takes to launch your new or updated company policies. As a result, we created a checklist to keep a project like this organized and on track. This project management is baked right in to Blissbook, but since not everyone gets to experience the joy of this in-app functionality, we thought we’d share it with you here as well.

Listed below are the common milestones you will achieve from the day you decide you want to redo your policies/handbook through your launch and follow-ups. Want these milestones to-go?

Click here to download the project milestones checklist or just go ham and download the entire How to Write Policies workbook.

Project Foundations
Much like getting a building permit, these are the nitty-gritty details to knock out before you can start the project for real.

  • Obtain leadership approval to undertake the project
  • Get vendor & contract approval from IT & Legal as needed
  • Complete all necessary paperwork (e.g. W9s, vendor setup, initial payments, etc.)
  • Ask your software vendor (if you’re using one) if there are any vendor-specific tasks

Content Creation, Editing, Review, and Approval
This is the most variable (and likely lengthiest) part of your project. The length of time these tasks take depends on many factors, such as your team’s motivation, current workload, and the extent of your changes.

  • Create new or edited content
  • Request feedback from your HR team and make changes
  • Request a review by legal counsel and make changes
  • Request feedback from leadership and make changes
  • Repeat previous bullets as necessary…
  • Content approved!

Distribution Prep
It’s likely time to involve your IT department at this stage. These tasks can take 2 days or 2 months, depending on how you’re distributing your policies and the proficiency/workload of your IT department. Pro-tip: Do these tasks concurrently with the above content tasks, as they’re mutually exclusive.

  • The audience for your new policies has been determined, and you’ve completed the necessary tasks to ensure the audience can easily and securely access the policies after launch
  • If you’re using software like Blissbook, you’ll likely need to:
    • Upload or sync your employee list
    • Set up Single Sign-On if you have it
    • Set up custom domains if you want to use them
  • Check and make sure your launch email will be delivered successfully (i.e. won’t be caught by spam) and, if using software, adjust any necessary settings

Content & Design Implementation
You might involve your marketing team at this point, although that varies greatly by project. If you’re using a software vendor like Blissbook, ask them for help!

  • Send content & branding guidelines to vendor or 3rd party, if you’re using one
  • Review resulting design with marketing team
  • Circulate final design within HR for feedback
  • Send final design to leadership for feedback
  • Repeat previous three bullets as necessary…
  • Your policies are designed and ready to launch!

Launch
It’s the big day! Pick a day and time when your audience will pay attention.

  • Launch handbook to your audience
  • First signature reminder is sent (e.g. a week before it’s due)
  • Second signature reminder is sent (e.g. on the due date)
  • Third signature reminder is sent (e.g. a couple days after the due date)

Don’t forget to download the checklist. Want to take it a step further and see what this looks like within Blissbook? Check it out in the Blissbook help center.


Next up in our five-part series, we’ll discuss distribution methods: print, electronic document/PDF, or EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK & POLICY MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE. Yeah, we’re biased.

Drew Dotson

Drew Dotson

Drew enjoys eating cheese, cuddling with dogs, doing puzzles, and watching sports. She is passionate about raising awareness (and funds) for cystic fibrosis.

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  1. […] in our five-part series is project milestones, which will enable you to establish task owners and deadlines before you begin. It’s getting very […]

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