All employee handbooks look the same, right? While part of that may be true, depending on what state laws you must abide by, many companies have decided to customize them to speak to the culture and voice of their company and here’s why.
The Employee Handbook should…
- Introduce employees to your culture, mission and values. Employee handbooks should begin with a story, introducing employees to the history of your company. Many times this is followed by the company’s vision or mission statement. It can also be an opportunity to give new hires an idea of what your culture is like.
- Set expectations for employees. There are far less surprises for employees when your handbook is up to date. They will be able to access information around PTO and holidays, pay schedules and tax withholdings, and dress code.
- Ensure compliance with federal and state laws. It’s not only important to follow state and federal laws, but it’s crucial to show your employees that you know about them, and how your company intends to abide by them.
- Highlight the Employer – Employee relationship. An employee handbook should set expectations around what employees can expect from their employer and vice versa.
- Be a resource for employees. You can never give your employees enough resources and this is a great one to arm them with. Many of their common questions can be answered here, and if well written, it will become a tool that all employees will choose to turn to.
There is an overall assumption that employee handbooks provide definitive direction to employees and management alike, however no employee handbook can anticipate every situation that may arise or the circumstances around any given situation. So, while a handbook does communicate specific information and policies, they should be written in such a way to allow for company discretion.
For assistance with handbooks or other human resources
contact Lisa Wilke, PHR, SHRM-CP, HR Practice Leader at Fine Point Consulting. Lisa.Wilke@finepointconsulting.net