Company email policy template


Introduction


At [company name], we value open communication and the free exchange of ideas. We also believe that communication should be respectful and professional. In order to maintain a positive working environment, we have established this email policy.

This policy applies to all [company name] employees, contractors, and other individuals who use our email system.

By using our email system, you agree to abide by this policy. If you violate this policy, we may take disciplinary action against you, up to and including termination of your employment or contract.

We reserve the right to change this policy at any time, with or without notice.

What to Include in Your Policy

If you are looking to create a company email policy, there are a few things you will want to include. This policy should outline what is appropriate to send and receive through company email, as well as how to use company email for personal use. You will also want to include consequences for not following the policy. Let’s take a look at a few things you will want to include in your policy.

Defining Email Use


It’s important to include a section in your email policy that defines improper and proper use of company email. This will help employees understand what is expected of them and avoid any confusion.

Some examples of improper use of company email include sending or forwarding inappropriate content, using offensive language, sharing confidential information, sending excessive personal emails, and engaging in illegal activity. Employees should also avoid using company email for any activity that could jeopardize the security of the network, such as downloading files from unknown sources or clicking on links from unknown senders.

Examples of proper use of company email include sending professional communications, responding to customer inquiries, checking work schedules and updates, and sharing work-related documents. Employees should also be encouraged to use company email to stay up-to-date on company news and announcements.

Prohibited Uses of Email


Using email for the following activities is prohibited and may result in disciplinary action.
-Sending or forwarding discriminatory, harassing, or threatening messages
-Sending or forwarding obscene or pornographic messages
-Sending or forwarding messages that may reasonably be considered to be spam

  • requesting or sending personal information about co-workers, subordinates, or students
    -sending messages that contain viruses or other harmful code
    Additionally, using email to engage in activity that is illegal under state or federal law is prohibited and may result in criminal charges.
    Acceptable Use of Email

    The use of email is a necessary part of modern business communication, but it can also be abused. To minimize the potential for abuse, it is important to have a clear policy in place that defines what is and is not acceptable use of company email.

At a minimum, your policy should address the following:

-Unauthorized access: Employees should not attempt to access email accounts that do not belong to them. This includes trying to guess passwords or using unauthorized methods to circumvent security measures.

-Inappropriate content: Email should not be used to send offensive or inappropriate content. This includes hate speech, pornography, threatening or harassing messages, and anything else that could be considered offensive.

-Spam: Email should not be used to send unsolicited messages, especially commercial messages. This includes mass mailings and forwarding chain letters.

-Attachments: Employees should be cautious when opening email attachments, as they can sometimes contain malware or viruses. Additionally, attachments should not be unnecessarily large; employees should avoid sending files that are too big for recipients to download easily.

-Confidential information: Email should not be used to send confidential or sensitive information unless it is adequately protected with encryption or other security measures.

Email Security


When drafting your company email policy, be sure to include provisions for email security. In light of the recent increase in cyber attacks, it is more important than ever to make sure your company’s email system is secure. Here are a few things you should consider when drafting your policy:

-Require employees to use strong passwords for their email accounts and regularly update them.
-Prohibit the sharing of passwords with anyone else.
-Restrict access to business email accounts to authorized employees only.
-Use two-factor authentication for all business email accounts.
-Encrypt all sensitive information that is sent via email.
-Regularly scan all incoming and outgoing emails for malware and viruses.

By taking these precautions, you can help ensure that your company’s email system is secure and protected from cyber attacks.

Email Monitoring


While companies have the right to monitor employee email, they must take care to do so in a way that complies with state and federal law. The law protects email communications in several ways, including:

The Stored Communications Act (SCA)
The SCA is a federal law that governs access to stored electronic communications, including email. The SCA generally requires law enforcement to obtain a warrant before they can access stored email. However, there are some exceptions to this rule, such as when an employee has given consent or when the email is less than 180 days old.

The Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA)
The ECPA is a federal law that prohibits unauthorized access to electronic communications. This law applies to both stored and transitory communications, such as email. The ECPA prohibits companies from accessing employee email without consent or a valid business reason.

State laws
Some states have enacted their own laws governing employee email privacy. For example, California’s Invasion of Privacy Act prohibits companies from accessing employee email without consent or a business justification. Similarly, Illinois’s Right to Privacy in the Workplace Act requires employers to give employees notice if their email will be monitored.

Best Practices for Monitoring Employee Email
Companies should develop a written policy that explains how and why employee email will be monitored. The policy should also explain what type of monitoring will be conducted (e.g., content- versus metadata-level). In addition, the policy should explain what type of information will be considered confidential and subject to greater protection under the law (e.g., medical information, trade secrets). Finally, the policy should explain what type of information will not be considered confidential and will be subject to less protection under the law (e.g., work product).

The policy should require employees to consent to monitoring prior to commencing work with the company. Consent can be obtained through an electronic signature process or by having the employee sign a physical copy of the policy.

The policy should require employees to use only company-provided email accounts for work-related communications. Personal email accounts should not be used for work purposes.

The policy should make clear that emails sent and received on company-provided accounts are considered company property and are subject to monitoring at any time

Creating Your Policy

Every company should have an email policy in place to set expectations for employee behavior and minimize legal risks. An email policy spells out what is and is not acceptable use of company email and helps to prevent employees from accidentally or deliberately violating the law. If you don’t have an email policy, now is the time to create one. Here’s how.

Write the Policy


Now that you have all the information you need, it’s time to start writing your policy. It’s important to remember that your social media policy should be living document that is updated as your company’s social media presence evolves.

Here are a few tips for writing an effective social media policy:

-Keep it short and sweet. No one wants to read a 10-page document, so make sure your policy is concise and to the point.

-Use plain language. Avoid using jargon or overly complicated language. Remember, you want your employees to actually read and understand the policy.

-Make it accessible. Post your social media policy in a place where employees can easily find it, such as on your company intranet or employee handbook. You may also want to send out an email blast with a link to the policy when it’s first implemented.

-Get feedback. After you’ve drafted your initial policy, send it out for employees to review and provide feedback. This will help ensure that everyone is on the same page and that there are no holes in the policy.

Distribute the Policy

After you have written your social media policy, it is important to distribute it to all employees. The best way to do this is to send it via email and have all employees sign and return a copy. You should also post the policy on your company intranet or employee portal. If you have remote employees, you can send them the policy electronically or mail them a paper copy. Make sure you keep a record of who has received and signed the policy.

Get Employees to Acknowledge the Policy


The first step to creating your policy is to get employees to acknowledge the policy exists. You can do this by sending them an email or putting up a notice in the break room. Make sure employees understand that they are expected to read and comply with the policy. You can also include a brief summary of the policy and what it covers.

Acknowledge receipt of the policy by having employees sign and date a copy of the policy, or have them initial and date a section of the policy that they have read and understand. Include a place for employees to sign and date the acknowledgement form, or attach it to the policy itself.

Some companies choose to have employees sign a separate acknowledgement form that states they have received, read, and understand the company’s policies. Others opt to include an acknowledgement statement as part of the policy itself. If you decide to go this route, make sure the acknowledgement statement is prominently displayed so that employees will be sure to see it.

Once you have received acknowledgements from all employees, keep them on file in case you need to refer back to them at any point.

Enforcing Your Policy

Violations of the Policy

If you find that someone has violated your social media policy, there are a few things you can do. First, talk to the person who violated the policy. They may not have realized that what they were doing was against the rules. If the person whoviolated the policy is a repeat offender or their violation was particularly serious, you may want to take disciplinary action. This could include anything from a formal written warning to termination of employment.

Disciplinary Action for Violations


If an employee violates company policy, they may face disciplinary action. Disciplinary action is a process that helps to correct an employee’s behavior and ensure that they understand and comply with company rules. In some cases, it may also be used as a way to prevent future offenses from occurring.

There are many different types of disciplinary action that an employer can take, and the most appropriate type will often depend on the severity of the offense and the employee’s past history. Some common types of disciplinary action include verbal warnings, written warnings, probationary periods, demotions, and suspensions. In some cases, termination may also be an option.

When deciding what type of disciplinary action to take, employers should always consult with their human resources department or legal counsel to ensure that they are taking appropriate action and following all applicable laws.

Reviewing and Updating Your Policy

An email policy is a set of rules that employees must follow when using company email. The policy should be reviewed and updated on a regular basis, as email usage can change over time. A company email policy template can help you create and update your policy.

Periodic Review


It’s important to periodically review your email policy to make sure it’s still relevant and effective. Here are some questions to consider:

-Has our company’s structure changed? (e.g., new divisions, remote workers)
-Are there new compliance requirements we need to be aware of?
-Have there been any changes in the way our employees use email?
-Do we need to clarify any existing rules?

  • have any best practices emerged that we could incorporate into our policy?

If you decide that revision is necessary, work with your legal counsel and key stakeholders to make the appropriate changes. Then roll out the updated policy to your employees and provide training as needed.

Updating the Policy


Hello everyone,

As you know, we regularly review our policies to make sure they are up-to-date and meet the needs of our company and employees. We are currently in the process of reviewing and updating our email policy. We appreciate your feedback and suggestions.

Please take a few minutes to read through the updated policy and let us know if you have any questions or suggestions.

Thank you,


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