Creating an employee manual is not something you can do once then forget about. Things can change. You need to revise your employee handbook regularly to ensure it is up to date. Otherwise, it could cause you problems rather than help you.
If your employee handbook has been unchanged for a while, knowing where to start your revisions can be difficult. Read more to learn where you can start.
Employee handbooks need to reflect current employment law
Here are a few things to look at when revising your employee handbook:
- Discrimination and harassment policies: Federal, state and local laws may change. They may expand worker protection against harassment and discrimination. One recent example is the CROWN Act of 2020. If your manual sets out how workers can wear their hair, this law will change what you can and cannot ask.
- Pay, vacation and sick leave: Check if laws governing overtime or tipping have changed. Make sure you are keeping up with any increases in the minimum wage.
- Company values: Ensure your handbook gives an accurate reflection of your company values. This manual is a chance to pass information to your employees.
- Remote working policies: Homeworking has become a necessity for many businesses during the last year. Make sure you have clear guidelines about this.
- Safety protocols: Having clear safety protocols helps your workers stay safe. These may have undergone significant recent changes to cope with the current situation. Check your workers’ compensation insurance information is up to date too.
It is best to have an attorney review your employee handbook. Employees could use the manual against you in court if you contradict what you put in it. You could also use it in a dispute to show that you had informed employees of certain things. Make sure it is accurate and in agreement with current employment laws.