Employee Handbook

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An employee handbook is an important tool to communicate to your employees. It is also required by law, so understanding the laws of your state is vital before writing one. After determining how you will approach this employee handbook, you will need to decide which policies you must include. If you’re unsure which policies are required by law in your state, check with an employment attorney or with human resources organizations. Many state labor departments also offer information on their official websites.

Policies You May Need to Include

The first policy you may need to mention is the Equal Employment and non-discrimination policies. The U.S. Department of Labor requires that all businesses post information stating that their business follows all equal employment opportunity law and non-discrimination laws when hiring and promoting employees.

Family medical leave policies are also required. The United States’ Family Medical Leave Act requires that all employees of a certain size must offer their employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a 12-month period when giving birth or caring for a child, to care for an immediate family member with serious health issues or if they themselves have a serious health condition. Many states have their own specific policies regarding unpaid family leave too.

Many states require that employees are informed of worker’s compensation policies in writing. Other policies may include:

• Compensation,
• Work schedules,
• Safety and security,
• Software and computer use,
• Employee benefits,
• Conduct,
• Military leave,
• Breastfeeding accommodating,
• Disabilities,
• Crime victims leave
• Jury duty

Other Things to Include

It’s important to mention that the handbook is not a contract and doesn’t promise continued employment. It should be made clear that this book is the ultimate word in terms of company policies and trumps all previous documents. It’s important to note that the policies in the handbooks are subject to change. To protect the business, it’s important to verify that employees are aware that your company abides by the laws listed in the handbook. Create an acknowledgement page that employees must sign and return.