Although it may sound complicated and laborious, creating an employee handbook is a wise investment of your time and can save your organisation from plenty of potential headaches in the future. Having company policies noted in one handbook is one of the most useful documents a company can create. Furthermore, employee handbooks are not only useful for large companies, with an article in Forbes suggesting that “even before you hire your first employee, you should establish your company's policies and procedures in writing to help protect yourself, your business and your employee.1"
Most importantly, according to Janette Lucas, an employment lawyer at Squire Patton Boggs, “The staff handbook manages expectations on both sides, it works from the employer and the employees’ perspective.2” By standardising various policies such as grievance or disciplinary procedures, social media policies or bullying and harassment policies, you will help to prevent confusion, complaints or disillusions that may arise from a misinterpretation of a policy that has not been clearly articulated.
A handbook is also an essential tool for a new starter and can be invaluable for your induction process. The handbook can define the company’s culture, vision and values, clearly enabling the employee to gain an understanding of your company culture. It is highly recommended that once an employee has had time to read and digest the information contained within your handbook that you get them to sign to confirm they have read and understood the information contained within. A copy of this should be placed in their personnel file, providing valuable evidence should you encounter a problem later on in their employment.
To maintain its added value, an employee handbook should not gather dust. It’s a key document for your business which should have regular reviews and updates, such as employment legislation changes, new company information or contact details.
For further information on employee handbooks and any other HR enquiries, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call +44 (0) 7702 864227 or visit our website www.accentuatehr.co.uk for more HR information and advice.