How to Keep Employees Out of Your Office

Do you constantly have employees in your office asking questions related to systems or processes? This act of explaining over and over again can be quite tiring and to be honest it takes up too much of your time. What I’ve found is that most people really would prefer to not have to ask you all the time how to do something, but unfortunately they just don’t know what to do!

Throughout my career, it has become evident that people need guides, how to’s, instruction manuals- whatever you want to call them! If you are not already in the habit of creating a guide whenever a new process and/or system change happens you need to be… People need something tangible that they can refer back to so that they don’t have to bother you! As we continue to move into a more ‘self-service’ world, it is imperative that you give employees the tools that they need to successful.

In my career I’ve created guides for new system roll outs, performance management processes, accessing pay-stubs and benefits information, entering data changes such as promotions, updating personal information, and everything in between. If you are wondering how I have been able to produce such guides, its simple Microsoft Word. Oh and Snipping Tool! Snipping Tool is your best friend! To make your guides pop be sure to use call outs via text boxes, arrows, shapes, and the various image formatting tools.

Above is screenshot of a portion of a guide I have created. Notice the text box call out, arrows, rectangular shapes to highlight sections/links I want the employee to click on. I’ve also used a complementary color for key words and shapes that stands out just enough to set it apart from the rest of the image/text. I’ve made use of the space on the page by overlapping two images and I’ve given them a nice border to help them really POP! This guide alone has kept my phone line clear and my office empty. Once I’m done I always save the document as a PDF as well. If you distribute the guide electronically it is always best to give them the PDF version as the Word version could be manipulated and could cause more confusion for the employee.

Employees only know what they know. If you do not give them the tools they need you will have to deal with the constant traffic. Changes to systems and processes are going to happen and it is your job as an HR Professional to provide training and ease the pain of change management and there is not other way to do that than to create guide. It’s worked for me and I know it will work for you!


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