Establishing norms and consistent processes through defined policies and procedures (P&P) can help organizations continue operations during unexpected events or challenges—and provide guidance and expectations for employees to execute their responsibilities.
Without clear and documented P&P, organizations could face significant disruption during turnover or trouble holding employees accountable. Drafting and maintaining strong P&P is, unfortunately, a time-intensive process that organizations often struggle to manage concurrently with existing responsibilities—and leaders may lack requisite skillsets to do so.
Reviewing and assessing your current organizational practices can help determine the state of existing P&P—as well as provide valuable resources for staff and support to update or develop new P&P as your needs evolve. This way, you can focus on the things that matter most to your organization: fulfilling your mission and supporting stakeholders.
Key Focus Areas
Enhance your P&P standing in these key areas:
- Inventory. Perform a full inventory of all existing P&P and identify the current coverage of those P&P.
- Gap Analysis. Identify gaps in current coverage through an entity-wide assessment of existing P&P. Uncover operational areas or accounting and finance functions not supported by current P&P, those that are outdated and don’t reflect current practices, components not addressed or lacking internal controls, strategic-practice recommendations, and process improvement opportunities.
- Implementation Plan. Develop a plan to address P&P gaps identified based on the significance, associated risk, and priorities of the organization. Establish a timeline for development and implementation to systematically achieve complete, current P&P.
- Development. For each P&P area, assess current processes to identify what works well, what areas don’t work, and where the system is prone to errors. Identify opportunities for improvement, strengthened internal controls, and new or changed processes. Develop or update existing P&P to reflect current practices and incorporate improvements.
Comprehensive P&P Assessments
Successful P&P development requires establishing foundations and support for various interrelated components to facilitate clear communications across the organization.
P&P reviews can help define and connect the following key areas:
- Statutory requirements. Define top policies set by management or governance bodies related to legislative, regulatory, and legal compliance areas.
- Policies. Direct decision-making and operations across your organization—with rules and requirements that define specific requirements for compliance with statutory regulations and governance and management expectations.
- Procedures. Establish operational steps that define roles and responsibilities of personnel, including the who, what, where, when, and why—and aid in carrying out policies.
- Supporting documents. Provide administrative support for staff to carryout detailed procedures in a systematic, consistent manner with well-documented guidelines, fillable forms, templates, and other resource materials.
How the Process Works
To develop comprehensive P&P, our team utilizes four systematic steps:
- Project Kick-off and Management. Define and prioritize policy areas to serve as a work-plan guide throughout the project.
- Current-State Assessment. Gather information and evaluate current processes through employee interviews, documentation review, and more to identify strengths and weaknesses and potential exposures. Develop recommendations to elevate consistency, efficiency, and effectiveness; promote compliance with identified laws and regulations; and implement strategic practices.
- P&P Development. Draft new comprehensive P&P that reflect current practices and incorporate recommendations that the organization elects to implement.
- Implementation. Assist in the development of forms, tools, and templates to support approved P&P. Establish training to support a successful implementation.
Expansive P&P Expertise