When To Update Your Employee Handbook and How
Employee handbooks are not just a long list of ingrained rules employees have to follow. Instead, they are a beneficial and necessary part of operating a business that helps outline your expectations of employee behavior, instructs your employees on what they need to know in order to be successful, and, quite frankly, allows you to tell your employees why working at your company rocks. Moreover, they can be an employer’s saving grace when it comes to helping you operate compliantly and protect your organization from claims of discrimination and other forms of litigation.
As a pivotal resource that acquaints new employees to your organization, eliminates misperceptions about policies and procedures, and provides much of the information your managers need to lead their teams fittingly, it’s important your handbook is regularly reviewed and updated.
So, if you’re reading this and wondering when the last time your organization gave your employee handbook a once-over, it’s time to take it off the shelf, dust it off, and consider updating this indispensable business tool.
How Often Should You Update Your Handbook?
Ideally, it’s best practice to review your handbook at least once a year. But this isn’t the be-all, end-all rule. The fact is, you should actually update your handbook as often as needed. The truth is, laws constantly change on the local, state, and federal levels. Organizations need to make sure that their handbooks reflect the most recent laws and the most updated version of any existing laws. If your business is operating on outdated language, you could be putting your organization at risk.
Employers must stay abreast of state and local laws that can affect their business. If you have employees working in multiple states, or have recently moved into new states, some existing policies might not apply or may need to be added. So, it may be time to make sure your handbook covers you in each location in which you operate.
Lastly, some policies might need some revamping if your company headcount recently changed. Whether your business recently expanded or downsized, many laws are dependent on the number of employees working for you.
This Sounds Like A Lot Of Work… How Do I Make Sure I Cover Everything?
Handbooks are a lot of information, and it can be overwhelming for managers and employees to digest. Not to worry. This is exactly what Human Resources Professionals are trained to do. Not only can an HR consulting firm help you with the heavy lifting to make sure you have all the right policies and procedures in place, but they can help you roll it out to your team as well.
At EnformHR, our HR consultants can help ensure that your management team is trained on and familiar with your policies and articulate the policies and procedures to your employees in a simple, easy-to-understand way.
As an employer, you need to be sure that your employees acknowledge that they have received a copy of the handbook and understand all of the policies and procedures within. As such, whenever you make updates to your handbook, you should provide the new handbook to your employees, ensure they sign a new acknowledgment form, and save that in their personnel file.
At the end of the day, keeping up with an employee handbook can be a daunting and time-consuming task, but don’t let this overshadow the necessity of compliance and best practices for your organization.
EnformHR can help give you the flexibility, expertise, and service you need so that you can focus on what matters: running your business. Contact us today to find out how EnformHR can help your organization.