Minister Breen launches new HR and employment guide for SMEs

Human Resources and Employment: Policies and Procedures, an extensive new guide by Chartered Accountants Ireland, was officially launched today in Dublin by the Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Mr Pat Breen TD.

Co-authored by Catherine Corcoran, Partner and Head of RSM Ireland’s Management Consulting division and Joanne Healy, BL, Group Employee Relations Manager for the Bank of Ireland Group, the new guide provides a ‘one-stop’ and comprehensive resource for SMEs in complying with employment law and following best practice in managing human resources. In doing so, Human Resources and Employment: Policies and Procedures outlines the lifecycle of the employment relationship: Recruitment and Selection; Terms and Conditions of Employment; the Employee Experience; Education Training; Development and Performance; Dignity at Work and Protected Disclosures; Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures; and Termination of Employment.

Catherine Corcoran has over three decades of experience in senior management and HR roles and is a specialist in corporate governance. Joanne Healy is an accredited mediator and employment law barrister and, at the time of writing the book, was a manager in RSM’s Forensic and Investigations Unit.

To mark the launch of the guide, Chartered Accountants Ireland and RSM are co-hosting a special seminar, “Delivering an authentic employment experience and maximising performance”, with a panel discussion featuring the authors and John Farrelly, Chief Executive Officer, The Mental Health Commission and Stuart Preston, Head of Leadership and Organisation Development, Opes Business Partners was held.

Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Mr Pat Breen said: “I’m really pleased to formally launch Human Resources and Employment: Policies and Procedures which offers an excellent support for small and medium-sized businesses. This manual captures the important developments in human resources and employment law in Ireland and internationally and enables employers to prepare for and adapt to the changing workplace.”

Michael Diviney, Executive Head of Thought Leadership at Chartered Accountants Ireland, said: “This new cutting-edge manual is an extremely useful resource on human resources for our members and for all small and medium-sized businesses. In a resurgent economy, with near to full employment and organisational performance more than ever reliant on our people, delivering an authentic employment experience is a true differentiator.”

Co-author Catherine Corcoran said: “This guide is effectively a suite of downloadable best practice template HR policies and procedures built from years of first-hand experience, which will support employers in delivering a first-class authentic employment experience.”

Corcoran is quick to add: “Policies themselves are lifeless documents, which need to be brought to life by meaningful, real-time conversation – ‘a policies behind people in front’ approach facilitates employers to deliver employee experience while maximising performance.”

Co-author Joanne Healy BL added: “Human resource policy provides an essential baseline for both employers and employees. This guide outlines the ‘moments that matter’ in the employment experience and offers guidance on how to successfully navigate these situations and establish a positive, authentic workplace environment in which employees can thrive.”