Life happens quickly and when it does, your employees aren’t always thinking about updating their files. While that’s understandable, having up-to-date information on how to reach employees will help keep things running as smooth as possible in the case of emergencies and for business continuity. And because your employees aren’t necessarily thinking about keeping their personnel records managed, it’s all the more reason employers need to be diligent.
What should be in a personnel file?
While personnel files should not contain any unnecessary records (such as medical records or other personal information that is not essential information about an individual’s employment) there are a few things you should be sure you have.
- Current phone number
- Current address
- Current next of kin contact information
- Job description and application
- Offer of employment
- Performance evaluations
- Information about employee benefits
- Any contracts
This information will help you keep track of and get in touch with employees in case of an emergency or the need to rebuild your business after a disaster.
Getting your employees to share
When changes occur, your employees might not think to update your HR department if they don’t understand how important these records are for the organization. Furthermore, they might not want to keep you updated if they don’t understand how the information is going to be used.
It’s important that your employees understand that the information provided is in case of emergencies only. If they think their boss is going to be calling them on the weekend, they may be hesitant to keep their contact information current.
Check in with your employees regularly to make sure they understand the importance of up-to-data personnel files and to remind them to make updates as necessary.
Your up-to-date personnel files will be real assets for your organization if a disaster strikes, but only if your records have been properly backed up and are accessible. As with all vital records, be sure to protect them and protect your business.