All you need to know about HR Policy: Definition and challenges


88% of young employees believe it is essential to be in tune with the company culture

If there’s one strength in a company that shouldn’t be underestimated, it’s its human capital. In order to develop a high-performance HR policy capable of ensuring the proper development of the company’s activities and skills, it is essential to understand every aspect.

To find out everything you need to know about HR policy and how to develop it to your advantage, follow our guide!

What is an HR policy? Definition

An HR policy is a set of rules designed to organize the management of a company’s human resources. HR policy covers all areas related to human resources: work organization, recruitment, compensation, training, leave, dismissal, etc.


To be operational, a company’s human resources policy must ensure that working conditions are conducive to the development of its various employees and their internal progression, in order to contribute fully to the company’s performance.


But beware: HR policy should not be seen as a separate strategy: it must naturally be integrated as an essential component of performance. To reap the full benefits, in terms of both team well-being and overall development, this medium- and long-term HR strategy must be aligned with the company’s overall policy. It must be applied in line with the company’s values, culture and identity.


By guaranteeing the best possible operation of the business and effectively complementing the company’s HR strategy, the HR policy will facilitate the day-to-day work of managers and/or human resources officers.


What’s the difference between HR policy and HR strategy?


Often confused, HR strategy and HR policy are as different as they are complementary.


Reflecting the company’s ethical charter, the HR strategy aims to anticipate potential changes that the company may face. HR policy, on the other hand, is the concrete application of the objectives defined by HR strategy. The two are therefore inseparable if we are to put into practice what we have worked on and predefined upstream.


The HR strategy is truly long-term in nature, encompassing all the strategic orientations to be implemented to boost results and performance. In order to best anticipate the company’s specific hazards and problems, strategy takes into account a number of related strategic factors:


  • Business sector ;
  • The economic environment ;
  • Political and social movements;
  • The company’s needs in different contexts (employee professional development, career management, etc.).


Why define a human resources policy?

The HR policy ensures the proper administrative management of both staff and the company itself. Understanding the issues surrounding HR policy can make all the difference!


One of the most important features of an HR policy is its flexibility. HR policy can be adapted to the many issues facing a company, which are themselves likely to evolve over time. Between changes in conventions, legislation and socio-economic contexts, HR policy must always know how to refocus on the human factor to deal with these many changes.


To achieve this, the HR director or human resources manager needs to stay in touch with employees to ensure the company’s long-term viability, the retention of talent and forward-looking job management. The stakes are therefore colossal for HR professionals, who need to ensure that HR policy is perfectly aligned with corporate strategy, in order to best support current and future transitions.

How to implement an HR policy: our step-by-step guide to success

Deploying an HR policy

To implement an HR policy in line with the company’s culture and development objectives, it is drawn up in direct collaboration with the HR department, the Human Resources Director or the HR Manager. In order to achieve this, we need to focus on a number of key areas:


  • Administrative management: efficient, secure and ideally centralized. This includes managing payroll, complying with legal obligations and ensuring employee health and safety.
  • Implementing a recruitment policy: this not only concerns the process of recruiting new talent, but also the integration process. Of course, the measures taken must attract new employees, but they must also retain existing ones.
  • Deployment of an individual follow-up system for each employee: in addition to the introduction of individual annual interviews, this follow-up system makes it possible to assess the quality of the company’s policy. In this way, potential shortcomings can be identified and rectified as quickly as possible, by listening to employees’ needs and managers’ feedback. The employee’s quality of working life and professional development needs must be taken into account to ensure optimal career management.
  • Managing human relations: as far as human resources are concerned, it is also vital to ensure the quality of social dialogue and human relations within the company. By developing and promoting internal communication around events, it’s easier to familiarize employees with the corporate culture and its deployment.


Managing human resources as part of an HR policy involves a number of aspects that are important to develop in order to maximize returns.


Improve an existing HR policy

As part of a corporate project, HR policy and strategy play a key role. To improve human resources policy, training can be provided to the HR department to help it implement an effective and ambitious policy.


Thanks to its flexibility and adaptability, the continuous improvement of HR policy can follow the following lines:


  • Centralize human resources management;
  • Implement a simplified, harmonized compensation policy;
  • Steer digitalization training to ensure the successful completion of missions;
  • Take concrete measures to promote fairness and equality between women and men within the company;
  • Work on the professional integration of people with disabilities;
  • Raising employee awareness of fundamental issues such as anti-discrimination, sexism and the environment;
  • Developing well-being at work;
  • Facilitate internal mobility to enable career development and equal opportunities.


An HR policy for an effective HR strategy

Aligning a high-quality HR policy with your company’s culture has many benefits that should not be overlooked. From employee professional fulfillment to guaranteeing your values and managing your company’s organization, HR policy is your operational lever for successful business development!

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Philippe – HR Director at Boost’RH Groupe

For our expert, HR strategy and policies must enable the company to progress in a serene and motivating context, linking performance with social responsibility.

To do this, the HR Director will need to draw on the company’s 3 or 5-year development plan, in order to anticipate and prepare for major challenges (creation of subsidiaries, takeovers, mergers, changes in activity, creation of new services or products, relocation, conquest of new markets or countries, downsizing, concentration of service offerings, etc.).

This future plan will form the basis of an HR strategy that corresponds to the company’s needs, and which will be translated into one or more HR policies.

HR policy, as an expression of HR strategy, must respond to market constraints, legal requirements and the company’s long-term viability, as well as to the wishes and expectations of employees.

For example, we can mention an employment or recruitment policy to adjust the workforce and, above all, the skills required to meet the company’s future needs. But also a compensation policy to optimize employees’ purchasing power and control payroll costs.

As a result, we also need to define a skills development and internal promotion policy that encourages employee involvement and motivation.

All these tools, processes, rules and actions will be applied with the sole aim of ensuring the long-term future of the company and its jobs, and attracting, integrating, training and motivating the best employees.

It’s a subtle balance to strike between top management’s desire to develop the company and recognition of employees’ efforts.

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To sum up

En 3 Questions

  • What is an HR policy?

    An HR policy is the foundation of a company’s human resources management. This set of rules is designed to organize internal HR management. It covers a wide range of areas, including recruitment, work organization, remuneration and training.

  • Why is an HR policy important?

    With an HR policy, companies can focus on a number of key areas, such as :

    – Company organization ;

    – Employee fulfillment;

    – Supporting managers ;

    – A guarantee of well-being in the workplace and respect for corporate values;

    – And many more besides.

  • Is it possible to improve an existing HR policy?

    Yes, by adopting the right methods. Together with HR strategy, HR policy is essential for positive and effective action within the company. It is then possible to improve certain aspects of the existing policy:

    – Centralize HR management;

    – Train employees in digital technology to help them carry out their missions;

    – Focus on well-being at work;

    – Promoting the professional integration of people with disabilities;

    – Ensure the development of a simplified compensation policy;

    – Etc.