Outside Employment Policy

Author: Jessica Sussman

When to Use

A significant percentage of today's workforce is employed by more than one organization at a time Employees generally seek outside employment to supplement their income. Employees who seek outside work pose a number of risks to an employer, including not having the energy to perform at their full capacity, which could lead to workplace hazards and decreased productivity. Outside employment may also limit an employee's ability to work overtime, increase the risk that confidential information will be leaked, and pose potential conflicts of interest.

While employers may seek to prohibit employees from holding other jobs, that is not the most effective way to address potential issues as this may cause employee retention problems and lead to poor employee relations. Therefore, it may be wise to adopt a policy regarding outside employment that discourages such conduct or at the very least restricts it based on business-related criteria.

Generally, outside employment policies should focus on preventing direct conflicts of interest with an employer's business and providing employees with guidance on how to avoid conflicts of interest in seeking outside employment. Further, employers should advise employees to keep outside employment separate from their primary job responsibilities to the employer. Perhaps the most important component of an outside employment policy is establishing an approval process for employees who seek outside employment. A well-crafted outside employment policy will achieve this goal and permit an employer to retain a quality workforce.

Below is a model policy that can be further tailored to fit the employer's specific needs