Why is a well-crafted employee handbook important?

On Behalf of | Jun 5, 2020 | Firm News |

If you don’t have one, you should take steps to create one.

That is the strong recommendation to business principals from virtually every commercial law commentator that addresses employee handbooks.

Most readers know immediately what those are, of course. Depending on the type and scope of a business enterprise, they can range from thin pamphlets underscoring workplace guidelines to tome-sized blueprints setting forth company rules and policies.

Either way, their bottom line should stress this: an emphasis on well-crafted provisions that clearly convey company positions concerning key labor matters.

Transparency is key. Ambiguity or silence on important business aspects is a catalyst for trouble. Above all, taking a proactive rather than a reactive after-the-fact stance is critical for dampening future labor-linked problems.

We note at DeCotiis, Fitzpatrick, Cole & Giblin that employment law “is a preventive, anticipatory specialty.” That is duly evidenced by the time and commitment many enterprise executives expend on crafting a quality employee handbook. That management tool can effectively set forth company policies on matters like the following:

  • No-tolerance position toward workplace discrimination, coupled with an express commitment to equal opportunities for all workers
  • Company benefits (e.g., vacation, leave and disability)
  • Pay policies that include mention of bonuses and overtime if relevant
  • Treatment of confidential information and linked discussion of employees’ interaction with company technologies
  • Zero acceptance of on-the-job harassment or any behaviors that can be construed as threats

A carefully drafted employee handbook is an invaluable company tool that can deflect or minimize workplace disputes and often help to resolve problems before they end up in court. A proven employment law legal team can work closely with business managers to create a quality product.