HR managers need to understand how to properly wield NDA agreements in the workplace, but few of them seem to know where to start when it comes to understanding the essentials of NDAs. Luckily, a plethora of resources exists to help out baffled managers, and the essentials behind NDA agreements aren’t too hard to grasp. By following these key tips, you’ll be well on your way towards mastering the usage of NDAs in the workplace, and will be effectively leveraging NDAs to secure your company’s financial future before you know it.
Understanding the purpose of an NDA
Non-disclosure agreements sometimes give employers and employees alike sufficient reason to pause; should I be signing a document that restricts my ability to share information, a crucial aspect of success in today’s market? Many employees and HR managers alike ask themselves this question when seeing an NDA for the first time, and for good reason, but the fact of the matter is that NDAs are an essential part of the modern economy and crucial for how businesses across the globe operate today.
To understand and thus use NDAs effectively, managers should understand that the fundamental point behind these agreements is to protect the company in question; whether it’s intellectual property pertaining to a particular good or service or a document relating to anything else within the workspace, NDAs are vital for securing a company’s competitive edge, and will remain invaluable to the market for some time. This alone should prove to be sufficient reason to motivate HR managers across the country to get moving briefing themselves on the basics of managing confidentiality in HR, an aspect of the job likely to grow more important in the immediate future.
To get started using these agreements effectively once you’ve mastered the basics of confidentiality in the workplace, you should begin by reviewing an example template. These example templates, which are made public by the UK government for the explicit purpose of educating professionals and the broader public alike, are relatively straightforward and will help you visualize the important aspects of an NDA as you go forward learning how to master them.
Only after you’ve imagined the basic parts of an NDA in your head and learned the vital importance behind them – that is, how crucial they are to preventing contract breaches and the leaking of damaging information to the broader public – can you start effectively leveraging NDAs to stand out in your field and achieve success in the market.
The right and wrong time to use NDAs
To use NDAs effectively, you’ll need to understand precisely when not to use them as well as when it’s appropriate to do so. For instance, NDAs have a long history of being used to protect facilitators of sexual assault in the workplace, and have been drawing criticisms in mainstream headlines recently precisely because of that and other facts. This doesn’t mean you should abandon the idea of NDA agreements because they’re sometimes used by nefarious actors to cover up their crimes, of course; rather, HR managers in particular should understand that NDAs can be used as tools of oppression in the workplace, and that the company’s interest cannot come at the expense of the company’s vital human employees.
As a manager, never forget your ethical responsibility to act in the best interest of the law and morality as well as in the interest of a company; if you feel higher ups are pressuring you to form an NDA system that could constrain employee’s abilities to report abuse, for instance, you have a moral and legal imperative to say something. NDAs are complex legal documents, and implementing them into your business shouldn’t be something that’s done likely; rather, you should appreciate the intense legal magnitude of an NDA, and institute them only when necessary to preserve their effectiveness and prevent abuse.
When the appropriate time for using an NDA does rear its head about, you’ll want to be up to date on that legal jargon that makes these documents so intensely binding. Figuring out what key clauses you need to ensure are in each of your NDAs, for instance, is vitally important to using them effectively, as a failure to do so could result in your relying on an NDA that’s all bark but no bite. The only thing worse than a lack of NDAs to secure your company is a poorly written one that fails to insulate you from legal fallout while displaying your own negligence in writing it.
By following the above tips, you’ll be well on your way towards mastering the effective usage of NDAs in the modern marketplace while using a durable power of attorney. These agreements are complex, but they’re not impossible to grasp, and managers everywhere who brief themselves on the essentials behind NDAs will remain effective and influential in their workspaces for years to come.
I'm a creative and passionate HR Director with 15 plus years proven experience up to board level in international and world-class organisations.
I have had the privilege of working on a wide range of projects that have enabled me to apply my leadership and technical skills and I have proven expertise in managing change, business integration and outsourcing, including TUPE/ARD. I am currently looking for my next intellectual and professional challenge.