Business-in-a-Box's Employee Handbook Template

Employee Handbook Template

Understanding an Employee Handbook

Our Employee Handbook Template will help you prepare a professional staff manual.

What Is an Employee Handbook?

An Employee handbook is a document that clarifies all the crucial policies and procedures of your business or company. In a sense, this document defines in detail the culture of your organization. Also known as a staff manual, an employee handbook compiles all the essential practices that you have adopted within the business. You are required to provide all the necessary information about your company, in one place. It might seem overwhelming to prepare a comprehensive document that can describe the working conditions of your organization. However, with our employee handbook templates, you can draft a well-formulated guide for your new employees, communicating everything they need to know about their workplace.

The Policy Manual of the Company

An employee handbook comprises all the essential policies that you are following in the company. This is the first document you will provide to your employee who has just joined the company. It serves as a roadmap that provides guidance and direction to the employees about how they should conduct themselves at the workplace. In many organizations, it has become common to send an employee handbook and the appointment letter or email, therefore allowing the employee to familiarise themselves with the company’s rules and policies during the onboarding process itself.

Purpose of an Employee Handbook

How will you introduce your business to those who know nothing about it? An employee handbook is kind of an introduction to your enterprise. It includes all the answers to the questions that a new employee might ask about your business. Through the staff manual, you are providing a rundown to the employee about who you are as an employer and how work is accomplished within your company.

The purpose of employee handbook templates is to provide clarity regarding expectations, whether it is the employee’s expectations from the business or the organization’s expectations from the employee. Hence, by reading the employee handbook, an employee should be able to get a clear idea about what he/she can and cannot expect from you, and the criteria that he/she should firmly deliver on.

What Values Are Central to Your Business?

A well-drafted, immaculately written employee handbook communicates the core values of your business. It provides an in-depth look into the principles that are foundational to your organization. Documenting your values in the employee handbook will allow you to share your vision, mission, and objectives with your team. It will help them understand your perspective and what is important for you. An employee handbook effectively conveys the values that you will never compromise on, helping the employees prepare themselves for your enterprise’s work ethic and culture.

Employee Handbook Template: An Overview

Employee handbooks are designed to include all the necessary information pertaining to the nature of the employment and the conditions under which employees would be working in your company. It is an all-encompassing HR document that is extremely important for any organization, regardless of its size and magnitude of operations.

From both a legal and non-legal perspective, it is essential that you carefully draft the Employee Handbook, covering all the details, so that nothing is left out. This is exactly what our employee handbook template helps you to do. The template allows you to present all the information regarding employee benefits, employee work relations, salary/payroll, timekeeping, company policies, workplace conditions, and other details.

The employee handbook template enables you to articulate and outline all your company’s policies and regulations, allowing you to defend the company against claims of wrongful termination, discrimination, and harassment claims.

What to include in the Employee Handbook?

There are a lot of different factors that you should consider while drafting an employee handbook. As the document serves as an outline of thecompany’s policies and regulations, you need to familiarise yourself with the laws of the state you are operating in. Depending on the location of your business and type of enterprise, there may be specific laws applicable that you should be aware of.

For instance, if you are a manufacturing business, your approach to employee handbooks would be different from a retail business. Similarly, in congruence with the laws and regulations of your specific industry, the policies that you would adopt will also decide how your employee handbook will shape-up.

There are two aspects of an employee handbook template; one describes the policies that are mandated by law and therefore are to be included. And another pertains to the practices that are adopted by the company for its day-to-day affairs.

The following are some of the policies that are required by law to be included in an employee handbook:

  • Policies Pertaining to Workmen Compensation:
    This is specifically for industries or organizations that come under the view of workmen’s compensation laws. Often, they are mandated to inform the employees about the workmen’s compensation policies in writing. For this purpose, the employee handbook acts as the written explanation of worker's compensation policies.
  • Policies Pertaining to Other Relevant Laws:
    Other laws require the business to include certain specifics in the employee handbook, such as accommodation of disabilities, military leave, accommodation of breastfeeding, and others.

Once all the mandatory policies are duly included, they can specify your company’s internal policies and procedures into the employee handbook.

The following are some of the broad points you should cover under different sections of the employee manual.

  • History of The Company:
    A brief introduction should be included about the company's history so that the employees can get an idea about you and other that are at the organization’s helm. It will also help them understand the culture of the enterprise.
  • Paid Leave Policy:
    Under this section, you will have to layout the vacation policy of the company. This will include details regarding earned vacation time and how employees are expected to manage and schedule their leave. The section must contain information regarding the holidays that are observed within the company and whether employees can expect compensation if they choose to work on a holiday. Also include the company's policies regarding other kinds of leaves, such as sick leave, family medical leave, and military spousal leave.
  • Conduct and Behaviour of Employees at The Workplace:
    This is another very crucial section of the employee handbook. Here, you will have to include detailed instructions for the employees that you expect them to follow at the workplace. It is critical to include details of the attendance policy, meal breaks, rest periods. There are some other general behavioural expectations that the company has for employee conduct. This may include dress code, bans on smoking on-premise, usage of company resources, and the way employees are expected to address conflict resolution.
  • Increment and Promotions:
    This section would include details regarding the channel of payment, designated work hours, overtime policy, and pay-grade structure. It should make the following information clear to the employees:
  1. Their position in the company
  2. The amount that they will be paid
  3. Mode of payment (direct deposit or others)
  4. Pay periods (Monthly or other) in a year
  5. Bonuses (if any)
  • Employee Benefits Template:
    This section will provide an overall outlook to the employees about the benefits you are offering to them. It can include benefits such as health care, dental, vision, life insurance, etc. The section clearly specifies the employees who would be entitled to these benefits. Mention the eligibility criteria, along with details of where and how employees can sign-up to obtain these benefits.
Employee Handbook Template Sample
1. Employee Contract

The very first section is supposed to convey basic information about the nature of employment. Our employee handbook template starts by assisting you in professionally and systematically explaining the terms of the contract and job classification. This section will help the employees understand their role in the organization.

Contents of this section include:

  • Types of employee contracts: Defining the role and working duration of full-time and part-time employees, along with interns, apprentices, and other employees.
  • A statement declaring the adoption of equal opportunity policy: Apart from legal compulsion, this statement is also vital in promoting workplace meritocracy.
  • Hiring and recruitment: The general steps you follow during the process of hiring.
  • Guidelines for attendance: Detailing the company policy on attendance as discussed earlier.
  • The company’s general policy framework: Includes health and safety guidelines and explains the workplace conditions.
2. Company Policy

Our employee handbook template will help you draft your workplace policies.

Contents of this section include:

  • Data protection and privacy: Basic regulations regarding information protection.
  • Workplace harassment and violence: Iterates the commitment to eliminate harassment and violence at the workplace.
  • Health and safety at the workplace: Health and safety guidelines to be adhered to by employees, along with details about the company's efforts in ensuring the health and safety of its employees.
3. Code of Conduct

All employee handbooks need to cover the framework for the code of conduct or behaviour expected from employees. This section should include the ethics incorporated by your business or company.

Contents of this section include:

  • Dress code: Instructions regarding workplace clothing and attire.
  • Usage of company devices and tech-resources: Details regarding the manner of internet usage and company cell phones.
  • Employee interaction and fraternization: This includes specific instructions regarding the interaction between employees at the workplace, aimed at avoidance of gossip or unprofessional behaviour.
  • Workplace visitation: Instructions regarding workplace visitation by employees’ friends or relatives, ensuring responsible behaviour on the part of employees.
4. Template For Compensation and Promotion

This section of the employee handbook template addresses the payment or reward structure for the employees.

Contents of this section include:

  • Salary or compensation package: Details regarding pay and other rewards and monetary benefits.
  • Performance review: This is an objective assessment of employee's performance and details regarding the basis of promotion and other rewards or incentives.
  • Training and development: The retention strategy of the company, along with training opportunities and educational benefits, if any.
5. Template for Work Hours and Time-off

This section of the employee handbook template is the most important. It should provide a clear direction to employees regarding how they should go about managing their personal and professional lives and efficiently divide time to obtain a work-life balance.

Contents of this section include:

  • Working hours and paid-time-off: Details of the number of working days, working hours, and paid time off.
  • Holidays observed by the company: Details of national holidays or festival time-off, if any.
  • Sick leave: The number of leaves that can be provided, whether or not additional leave can be granted. More points can be added for other kinds of leave.
6. Employment Termination

Here, you will be able to clarify the terms and conditions under which the employee's contract would get terminated. You can also address repercussions if an employee decides to resign before the completion of the duration of his/her contract.

Contents of this section include:

  • Resignation: Details of notice period and process of resigning.
  • Employment Termination: This includes applicable regulations and the company's process of contract termination.

This was a detailed rundown on the contents of employee handbook templates that we offer to simplify and accelerate your process of drafting an effective employee manual. Make sure to sign up on Business-in-a-Box and check out the full template preview or browse through our 2,000+ business and legal templates, to pick the one that suits you the most.

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