Don’t Forget the Employee Handbook!
As a business owner, getting to the point where you can hire employees is exciting! You won’t have to do everything yourself and can delegate tasks to individuals with specific areas of expertise. Once you get to this point, you must make sure protocols are in place that aligns with your goals, objectives, and labor laws. That’s where the employee handbook comes in.
What is an employee handbook, and why do I need one?
The employee handbook is a guide for prospective and current employees that helps set the standard and culture of the organization. Employees need clarity and direction, and the handbook provides important information they can always refer to. Having your policies in writing also helps protect your business if any issues should arise.
What information should be in the handbook?
Each organization is different, but there are some standard sections that every business should have.
This section should have the general details of the office, the organizational chart, vision and mission, and contact information for key personnel. It should also have employment clauses, and statements that speak to your business structure like conflict-of-interest, at-will employment, ethics and conduct, whistleblower policy, sexual harassment policy, disability accommodations, confidentiality agreement, and a statement acknowledging they received and understand the policies.
Every employee should be familiar with this section, as it outlines the general work hours and attendance expectations of all employees. It should also outline the safety protocols, the drugs and smoking policies, and other policies that directly affect employees. Dress code and work breaks fall in this area.
All your safety protocols should be outlined here. Any evacuation policies in case of fire or inclement weather, the staff contact list by the manager, all IT protocols and password policies, and anything to do with how technology is used.
Any benefits dealing with the company should be outlined in this section. A benefits overview, including the types of health insurance coverages that are available. If there is an employee assistance program (EAP), it should be covered, along with how employees can access this program. Any tuition credits or educational assistance, retirement savings plans, or flexible spending accounts fall under this category. If there are any commuting benefits, this should be there as well. Contact information for the Human Resources department should also be included.
Many companies have paid time off (PTO). The vacation, sick leave, FMLA, military leave, bereavement, holidays, and jury duty should be outlined here. Any medical leave, personal leave, leaves of absences, and other leave protocols should be here.
This is a general overview of the information that should be included in the employee handbook, at a minimum. Any special information you need to cover should be an integral part of the handbook. It is a working document and should be reviewed and updated regularly.
Assistance with your employee handbook is just one of the perks we offer with our payroll services programs. Contact us today to request a payroll services quote.