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Communication and understanding are imperative for the smooth operation of your business and the cooperation between your employees. English may be the prevalent language used for the operation of international offices, ensuring at a great extent that there will be no obstacles in communication, but sometimes this might not be enough. The translation of your internal HR documents has many benefits for the employees as well as the company. Let’s explore them!
Inclusion is the key
Most would think that keeping your company documentation in English, would make it accessible for anyone, since everyone can communicate in that language. However, for specific types of files, like policy documents, the only way to guarantee that they are fully comprehended by everyone is by having them available in the native languages of the employees. For that reason, translating your internal HR documents is a procedure that is necessary for your business, helpful for the workforce and ensures that the work environment is optimal, without any possible conflicts that may occur. To assist you in this process, here are the six types of HR documentation that you should consider translating in your employees’ native languages.
1. Employee handbook
When hiring new employees, it is crucial to make sure that they become accustomed to the work environment. Apart from their colleagues that may guide them and help them adapt, having the internal documents in a language they understand can be very helpful. One of these documents is the onboarding handbook, handed to the employees on their first day. This handbook contains your company’s values and processes in a nutshell. The operating procedures and regulations need to be understood by all employees from day one and the most secure way to achieve this is by translating them.
2. Code of conduct
Equally important to the employee handbook is the company’s code of conduct. Informing your new team members about all the rules and regulations that exist in the company is crucial to get them started on the right foot. And furthermore, translating the code of conduct in the employees’ native languages will help avoid any future conflicts, since it lets the employees know what is permitted and what is not, what is considered to be appropriate behavior and what is not acceptable.
3. Training documents
Besides the regulations in the workplace, starting a job in a new company usually entails quite a bit of learning and training. And there is no better way to provide a helping hand to your newly hired staff than to give them the opportunity to learn and improve themselves in their mother tongue. By doing this, they will feel more confident to use any newly acquired skills or follow a procedure, since they will have mastered every single detail of it. That will also improve the employees’ adapting capability and efficiency at a great extent.
4. Contracts and terms and conditions
Documents such as contracts or terms and conditions are usually written in a complex legal jargon. If you also add the language barrier for your international employees, you can easily understand that misinterpretation is not so difficult to occur. These documents should be as clear as possible, without any ambiguous points, to avoid any negative consequences. Translation can help a great deal to achieve this. Also, besides the linguistic part of translating legal documents, you should also make sure that these documents are properly adapted to each country’s legislation, to avoid any possible deviations that would lead to misunderstandings. Prevention is better than cure, as it is said.
5. Health and safety documents
Employee safety should be the number one priority for every company. So making sure that all team members are familiar with health regulations and safety protocols is of utmost importance. Translating your health and safety documents is the first step to keep your multilingual workforce safe and to reduce any possible accidents in the workplace. In addition to that, as in the case of legal files, the health-related documents should also be adapted to each country’s regulations.
6. Newsletters and internal communications
With the rise in remote working, the employees of a company could be located literally all around the world, and keeping them up-to-date with company news and information can be quite challenging. This can be tackled by translating documents such as the newsletter or the company’s corporate communications. This will reduce the distance between the employees, no matter where they work from and will give them a sense of belonging.
Translating your internal documents in the languages your employees speak can help your business and your employees come together and grow. Although it may sound like an additional step that could be omitted, it shouldn’t. It will help your employees better adapt to the workplace, become more efficient and confident since there will be hardly any obstacles in communication.
If you want to translate your company’s internal HR documents to reach your international employees, contact our friendly team today!