When is the last time you reviewed or updated your employee
handbook? Do you even have an employee handbook? Have you ever?
Although thinking about an employee handbook may get lost on what
surely is a long list of employment-related (and other) concerns,
you should consider moving it up on your list.
In the ever-evolving and increasingly complex legal environment,
sometimes the most basic measures and simplest solutions are
overlooked or forgotten. Employers often use a lot of time, effort
and resources to train employees and supervisors, agonize over
difficult leave and retaliation issues, and even audit pay
practices and workflow systems—all of which are important to
be sure—but they forget to step back and consider whether
they have the right policies in place on which to build an
effective human resources strategy. And even more important, they
forget to review their policies periodically to ensure what they
have in place either is required by law or able to handle employee
issues effectively to combat potential legal liabilities.
Many employers make the mistake of believing they do not need an
employee handbook or set of personnel policies because their
businesses are small or "family-oriented." They worry that adopting
a formal handbook or set of policies unduly will curtail their
ability to deal personally with employees or their flexibility in
operating their businesses. Others simply don't think their
operations are of a size or complexity that requires a...
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