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Any business that has employees needs a way to communicate company policies, procedures, and rules to their employees. They need to be laid out clearly and applied consistently to all. Having an employee handbook makes that a lot easier, but only if you include essential elements.

Company Policies

Company policies inform people how things work at your company. They are a framework that allows someone to be successful. Some policies, such as anti discrimination, anti harassment, anti retaliation, pay, leave, benefits, and safety and security policies (along with others) may need to be included for legal reasons. Have a way to collect a written acknowledgment of these types of policies from your employees to keep for your records. Before you publish your handbook with legal policies, double-check the laws to ensure you comply with them. Not complying opens your company up to lawsuits, regardless of what your employees have signed.

Expectations for Employees

Employees must understand what is expected of them to perform to their employer’s satisfaction and to feel good about the work they do. Include employee expectations in your handbook to help them understand your expectations. That may include things like the ideal company culture and how employees can contribute to it, behavioral expectations (including the dress code, if that’s relevant), attendance policies, and more. This is your opportunity to set the standard for your company. Once set, enforce it at all levels within your company. It’s the best way to ensure all employees take the expectations laid out in your employee handbook seriously.

What Employees Can Expect from You

On the flip side, employees should know what they can expect from you. You might include information like standard operating hours, rules about employees being onsite outside of those hours, disciplinary policies, employee review processes, and pay raise and promotion processes. Including that information in your employee handbook helps you manage expectations, allowing you to reduce the occurrence of unmet expectations. That helps boost job satisfaction, improving your employee retention rates.

If you want your employee handbook to be effective, it needs to have the right content. Once you have a quality handbook written, make it easily accessible for employees and be consistent with how you implement it. That will make it possible for your handbook to be as effective as possible.

Putting together an effective employee handbook is just one of the things Quality Payroll can help your business with. Learn more about why businesses choose Quality Payroll here.

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