Importance of Cross-Training Employees

It’s Tuesday and your payroll clerk needs to enter payroll to make sure all employees are paid by Friday.  The dreaded phone call comes.  Your payroll clerk can’t come in because her father has had a heart attack and is in ICU.  It will be several days before she can come in because it is pretty serious and she needs to help her mother.  Do you have someone to pick up where she left off?

Although the chances are pretty slim that something like that can happen, happen it does.  My former employer called me because the lady that does all the month-end paperwork and tax quarterlies couldn’t come in for the next month because of an illness.  There are two other people in the office, but they were never trained on how to do her job.  The policies handbook is 10 years out of date and did not explain the process.  Fortunately I was able to help out and they got their taxes filed on time. 

This is a great example on how important it is to cross-train important areas of the office.  Not all areas of a business need cross-training, because there are some things you can put off.  Ask yourself this question, what functions of the business will come to a halt if the person doing it can no longer do it?  Identify the most important aspects of your business and start training from there.

One Response

    you don’t think about something like this until it happens. It’s very important to have a backup person for something as important as payroll.

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