Creating an Employee Handbook
One of the greatest sources of confusion and conflict in an office comes from not having clearly written policies and procedures. That's why every practice should have a detailed, well-written employee handbook.
A well-written employee handbook is important because it:
- Communicates basic information about employment.
- Assists in new employee orientation.
- Clarifies what you expect from staff and how you compensate them.
- Helps you enforce employment laws, ensure uniform application of policies, and defend your management decisions.
Creating Your Handbook
There are a variety of online resources to help you create an employee handbook. However, it’s also important to have an attorney review your handbook because these documents can be used in court and could create a liability for you and your practice.
Here are a few things to know when creating your employee handbook.
- You may choose to either create a hard copy of your employee handbook or possibly use your website if you have a secure section for employees.
- Include a statement saying you reserve the right to change, add or delete policies at any time.
- Make sure you update your original office copy (it's best to keep old pages, as well).
- Make sure each employee receives a copy and accepts its provisions. Each person should acknowledge receipt of the handbook in writing and sign off on all new pages. These forms with the employee's signature should be added to his/her personnel file for future reference.
- Ideally, have your attorney review your employee handbook because courts have upheld these manuals as the employer's contractual agreement with employees.