Sandy Seay, CEO, Seay Management Consultants
Your employee handbook is your fundamental employment document because it describes how you will handle work issues that arise with your employees. To meet that goal, it should be comprehensive and detailed. Some of the policies you need to include are listed below and will help to ensure that you are up to date and in compliance with employment regulations enforced by state and federal agencies. Be sure you are implementing HR best practices in terms of policies, procedures, manuals and documents to hire and retain good employees and motivate them to superior performance. We consider these 24 items key HR flash points and should be included in your handbook.
EEO policy – this should include the protected category of “genetic information.” Some states have additional protected categories. Check your state regulations to make sure you have them all covered.
Dress Code – address extreme hair color, potentially offensive tattoos, scents and aromas that bother other employees and body piercings in places that could be distracting. Be sure to include a provision for accommodating employee dress code based on the religious beliefs of an employee or candidate.
Cell Phone Use Policy – talking or texting at work, even if set on vibrate, taking pictures and safety issues involved while driving on employer business.
Social Relationships at Work – a supervisor dating an employee is trouble waiting to happen.
Email/Internet Use at Work – employees should be trained on how to compose emails and what Internet sites should be avoided. Inform them that the email system is the property of the employer and that all emails are subject to being retrieved.
COVID – while we hope never to have a COVID event again, it is a good idea to have a policy covering the employer’s response to pandemic situations.
Working Remotely – More and more employees are working remotely so a remote work policy should be included in your employee handbook that covers working time, accidents at home and accountability. Read more.