A policy is a predetermined course of action, which is established to provide a guide toward accepted business strategies and objectives. In other words, it is a direct link between an organisation’s ‘Vision’ and their day-to-day operations. Policies identify the key activities and provide
a general strategy to decision-makers on how to handle issues as they arise. This is accomplished by providing the reader with limits and a choice of alternatives that can be used to ‘guide’ their decision-making process as they attempt to overcome problems. From policy, procedure is to provide the reader with a clear and easily understood plan of action required to carry out or implement a policy. A well-written procedure will also help eliminate common misunderstandings by identifying responsibilities and establishing boundaries. Good procedures allow businesses to control events in advance and prevent all involved from making costly mistakes. You can think of a procedure as a road map where the trip details are highlighted to prevent a person from getting lost or ‘wandering’ off an acceptable path. Policies and procedures are required when there is a need for consistency in your day-to-day operational activities. Policies and procedures also provide clarity to the reader when dealing with accountability issues or activities that are of critical importance to the business, such as, health and safety, legal liabilities, regulatory requirements, or issues that have serious consequences.