Employee handbooks serve as an important player in a company’s success. They disclose the company standards and set expectations for employees to maintain and inform departing employees of all the professional benefits they are entitled to immediately after their departure.
This guide will teach you how to make an employee handbook and how your small business can benefit from one. It’s not complicated at all —just research and write!
What Is An Employee Handbook?
First off, let’s talk about an employee handbook and why it’s so important. An employee handbook is an organizational document that guides employees to perform their jobs or deal with situations that may arise at work. A handbook also outlines company policies and practices, including compensation, vacation schedules, dress codes, conduct standards, etc.
As mentioned earlier, an employee handbook acts as a guide or standard for those who work in your organization. It helps employees understand the expectations and rules of the workplace —from the way they interact with others to dealing with difficult customers or clients.
How To Make An Employee Handbook
An employee handbook could be quite simple if you take some time to put together a few key guidelines. You don’t want to make a book more than eight pages long; however —you’re better off making a smaller but comprehensive handbook.
What Should Be Included In An Employee Handbook?
- Employee rights and responsibilities (including privacy, health care, social security, leave policy, etc.)
- Company philosophy
- Job requirements
- Dress code
- Code of ethics
When creating an employee handbook, keep these points in mind:
- Be clear about the employee handbook; for example, a manual of company policies and procedures would be different from a list of employee expectations.
- Include only pertinent information in the handbook. Don’t use an employee handbook as a place to brag about your company’s history, highlight successes, nor should you go into detail about past missteps.
This isn’t supposed to be a personal journal. Instead, stick to the facts:
- Avoid using jargon when describing policies and practices (for example, instead of “company policy,” use “policy” or “practice”).
- If applicable, include a list of contact details for human resources and management. As previously stated, an employee handbook is most effective when used effectively.
The Purpose Of Employee Handbook
To start creating your employee handbook, think about its purpose first. What do you hope to accomplish by putting this information together? For an individual, developing a personalized employee handbook allows them to follow specific rules or protocols while working for your small business.
However, if you plan to distribute the handbook to other employees within your company, then your objective might change slightly. Perhaps you wish to provide them with a guide to learn company standards and ensure compliance during their tenure. Your employee handbook serves as the foundation of your company culture in both cases.
Tips On Writing Your Employee Handbook
If you’ve decided to create an employee handbook, then chances are you have many questions. For instance, when creating a human resource handbook, ask yourself how much time, energy, and money you’d like to invest in making your handbook great. The reality is, an employee handbook can be written and rewritten many times over before perfecting it. If you feel you need to devote a significant amount of time and effort to your handbook, then maybe you shouldn’t bother.
On the other hand, you might just think you’ll never complete it. Then again, there’s always the possibility that someone else will finish it for you! Here are some tips to help you along the process:
1) Identify what needs to be included in the handbook. Some companies outline certain policies and practices and expect all employees to know about them. Others prefer to include more detailed information, so employees know everything from dress codes to employment contracts. Regardless of your approach, identify exactly what policies and practices need to be covered.
2) Define the style. Although this may seem like the least important step, you want to ensure everyone understands what type of language is being used throughout. You don’t want to confuse your employees with words that aren’t familiar. Stick to professional, plain English where possible.
3) Ensure accurate content. To avoid wasting precious space, focus on listing relevant information rather than adding unneeded material. For example, it doesn’t matter if the handbook lists your office address, phone number, email address, or any other extra details. Keep it simple, concise, and useful.
4) Add pictures. Often forgotten until it’s too late, photos can add a sense of professionalism to your handbook. They also give prospective employers the feeling that you’re serious about providing quality services.
5) Choose the right cover design. It could take a long time to draft an amazing handbook, but you still need something attractive, so your staff keeps it handy at work and shows off when meeting new coworkers. Invest in a professional-looking cover, and you won’t regret it.
There you have it —an informative blog post that answers the question “what is an employee handbook?” By now, you should find it easy creating an employee handbook. The handbook is vital for a positive corporate culture. Make sure you set realistic goals for its completion and stick to them.