Things to Consider When Creating an Employee Handbook
Companies spend tons of money and time communicating to clients and potential leads, but sometimes businesses forget the importance of speaking to their employees. A crucial communication tool for a business is its documented stance on company rules, culture, and structure.
Given to everyone who works for your company, there’s a lot to consider when creating an employee handbook.
Company branding efforts go beyond marketing campaigns. Your employees are an extension of your brand.
Including your mission statement and corporate culture information helps your employees align themselves with your business and its values. Of course, you don’t expect staff members to wear branded swag but employees should know how to represent your business.
Similarly, include your simplified business mission in a single page toward the front of the handbook. Having your business mission and brand known by your employees will allow it to be transferred to your clients and customers.
Cover the Basics
An employee handbook is a reference tool for your workers. Be sure to include the basic information such as payment calendar, benefits summary, and work schedule.
Other helpful information includes, but is not limited to:
- Holidays when the office is closed
- What to do in inclement weather
- Taking time off
- Human resource contacts
- Employee recognition initiatives
- Parking directions
Consider what you wish you had known on your first day on-the-job and find a way to include it in the employee handbook.
Include the Tough Stuff
No one wants to talk about sexual harassment in the workplace or nondisclosure agreements but these are important matters to discuss with new employees. All legal areas and employment policies should be included in the employee handbook.
It’s not fun to bring up these sensitive areas, but better to get it out of the way at the beginning of a person’s tenure with your business rather than having to remind them of it down the road when a negative incident has already taken place. Also, including this information better protects your company from liabilities in the future.
Make it Accessible
When creating an employee handbook, you want to make it engaging and easy to read. Skip the jargon, include informative graphics, and keep it short and sweet. Include a table of contents and page numbers to make your employee handbook easy to reference back to at a later date.
Keep a physical copy of your handbook in the office, but also upload it to your cloud account (like box.com). This allows company members to reference it whenever, at their convenience.