Employment - Why have employee handbooks

Wednesday 11 January 2012

Employment - Why have employee handbooks

10 reasons Why the Employee Handbook is important for your organisation

Today, almost all employers have some employment policies and procedures for their employees to follow. Some employers consider it better to issue these policies and procedures in writing to the employees, while some fear that written statements increase the chances of employment claims.

Here are 10 reasons why the employee handbook is necessary for your organisation.

1. Important for the business

Employee handbooks can easily set the nature of your organisation. They place all employees on a single platform related to the workplace rules and regulations and set forth the legal commitments for the employers as well.

2. Keystone to better employment practices

An employee handbook can enhance the relationship between the employer and employee. It secures against harassment claims, discrimination and wrongful termination. A well-drafted and legally analysed employee handbook can become the keystone to better employment practices regardless of the size of the organisation.

3. Integrity and fairness

The employee handbook can give a sense of integrity and fairness among employees on behalf of the organisation. This will lead to greater production and loyalty.

4. Exposure limiting policies

Clear policies and procedures are a great defence against various claims brought forward by employees. If such policies are posted on the bulletin board or communicated to the management to inform the employees, the organisation will never know which employees actual read them or know them.

5. Consistency in policies

If there are no formal policies and procedures issued, then the past and present activities become the framework of policies. The organisation can face dangers of lawsuits and claims because many of the informal practiced policies lack consistency and can be discriminatory. An employee handbook is clear on these grounds for every employee.

6. Course of action for all

With well established policies, the organisation should imply that managers and supervisors also take the same course of action. Unclear polices often go unheard and unnoticed by senior managers and supervisors which becomes a matter of conflict with other employees. A clear policy framework will define the course of action for all employees on a single route.

7. Accusations of harassment

The most widespread and costly incidents in organisations today are the accusations of harassment which includes racial, sexual and ethnic harassment. Communication is the solution to minimise such claims. A clear message in the employer handbook will send the message to all the employers that harassment is illegal.

8. Open door policy

Organisations that have an open mode of communication often face less chances of law suit from an employee. The open door policy is the best strategy to imply in the employee handbook so employees confidently discuss their matters with the HR department or the management.

9. Equal employment opportunity

Nearly all the employers are required by the state and federal law to promote the organisation on an equal employment opportunity basis. A well written EEO policy statement in the employment hand book will put the employers at ease. An organisation that practices EEO is more likely to progress rapidly than the ones that do not.

10. Non-legal outlook

With a non-legal outlook, an employee handbook can be very useful to new employee in the organisation. The new employee can easily assess much from the welcome statement and the brief synopsis of the organisation history and mission. This printed introduction of your organisation can make the employee comfortable in your organisation.

For a free E-Book “Recruit Right” and a 10 step HR resources checklist email us HRSupport@signaturestaff.com.au.  

Vlasta Eriksson is the managing director of Signature Staff.