Successful employee handbook is what helps reduce your business heartache. Problems within a business can occur because there is a lack of clarity on some subjects. Mainly, the issues which arise are around the expectations of the business. The employees and the owner may not have the same set of ethics either, or there could just be a communication barrier. If you are having any heartache due to employee relations and do not have an employee handbook for your business, it's a good idea to get one put into place and quickly.
What is an employee handbook?
They are a guide to your business. It is a way in which you can clearly establish the overall business mission and goals. Within your business’s employee handbook, you will define what makes your business great and then relate the various areas of your businesses operations to the employee to ensure that everything runs smoothly. Handbooks should lie out the procedures of your day-to-day and long-term procedures needed. You should also have a statement of ethics so that there are no issues between employee to employee or employee to management personnel.
Apart from establishing the guide to your business, the handbook acts as a structure to the overall success of your business. In turn this can help alleviate stress and heartache in your business. First, your policies and values are given to the potential employee. They give a clear and direct approach to behaviour which will and not be accepted . Second, the business’s handbook also tells the employee of the culture of your business. By this, it means the overall feel and function of the business. Every personality is distinct. Therefore, you must account for there being potential candidates for a job whose work environment needs differ.
Why are they useful?
There are several benefits from writing your Successful employee handbook. However, there are three areas which are key. These are education, establishment, and explanations.
Education is for the employee. This part of the manual shows the person the policies, the values, the expectations, the attendance policies, scheduling, and such. It is critical that employees know what is expected of them. But, you cannot just give them a quick lecture and expect the information to stick. Employees need to have a means of double-checking. An employee handbook is a good way in which you can ensure compliance across the board. Word of mouth could become distorted or misinterpreted. Only through having a written manual can you your intentions are clarified.
This highlights the behavioural and non-negotiable areas of the business. While there are some areas which can be negotiated (such as pay) there are others which are not. Behaviours which are common to businesses, such as a non-harassment section, should be placed within the establishment section of the handbook.
These ensure you are following all laws mandated. They should be just as the name states, explanations of all the laws and other mandates. These laws should be quoted. If there are any areas which may seem unclear, the employee handbook is helpful as it provides the clarity needed for then to maintain the laws and mandates. You could put a copy of these laws, procedures, and stipulations in the handbook.
Now that you know what an employee handbook is and why it is needed for a business. The next step is creating one. But where do you start? Here are a few tips to get you on your way.
Tips for creating your handbook
Creating your successful employee handbook does not have to be a daunting task. There are a few tips which can be followed which will help you in making the best guide for your business.
- Work slowly on your handbook – avoid rushing writing it as you get lots of issues by doing this. Take the time to know your overall business goals and how you intend to meet them.
- Look for loopholes – A loophole in your employee handbook is an area where you need to define or expound upon information. If you have found a loophole eventually an employee will as well. By plugging the holes, you create clarity and consistency throughout your business.
- Make a code of ethics, an established hierarchy, and procedural guide – All businesses need to have a code of conduct, an established hierarchy, and a procedural guide. Ethics ensures that you have the right people working for your business. Hierarchy is necessary to keep problems from escalating, and procedures show how you will handle those issues.
Overall, you will need to write clearly, avoid ambiguous statements, and have everything defined about your business’s operations so that there is no room for doubt.
If you have questions after listening to this podcast, don't hesitate to reach out! We're here for you every step of the way. Running a business can be overwhelming. Writing your Successful employee handbook is a necessity.
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