A whole host of problems with employees start because of one thing… poor communication. If you don’t have your company’s business goals, expectations, and rewards explained clearly, in writing, you are really just leaving them up to interpretation.
And this is where problems can arise.
Consider This Example
Mary has been working at your company for six months and is expecting to get a week of vacation time to spend with her kids during Spring Break. According to company policy, Mary would not be entitled to vacation time until after one year of employment. Mary is distraught because she has not made plans for the care of her children for that week. If she cannot make suitable arrangements in time, Mary is contemplating taking the week off anyway, regardless of getting paid. This would severely disrupt business operations in Mary’s department, not to mention put undue stress on Mary’s coworkers. Also, Mary’s productivity has taken a nosedive and there is extra tension around the office as other employees find out what is happening. Even if Mary does remedy her situation, she will not even come close to being the happy, productive, goal-oriented employee that every employer wants. This misunderstanding could have been easily prevented if Mary was properly informed in the first place.
Informing your employees of your company’s goals, expectations, and rewards is the best way to prevent a scenario like the one above. And one of the best ways to communicate this is with an employee manual.
An employee manual or employee handbook is a document, usually given to a new employee after they are hired, that details all the policies and procedures of your company. The employee manual helps your new employee get acquainted with their new workplace and attempts to answer any questions about the job or the company they may have.
Information to Include in your Employee Manual
- Company mission statement and history
- Orientation forms and information
- Work hours, breaks
- Job description and compensation, including benefits
- Medical and family leave information
- Code of conduct and disciplinary measures
- Policies regarding use of technology and company equipment
- Confidentiality agreement
- Employee acceptance signature form
In developing an employee manual, all of your expectations are clearly communicated to your employees, which will help to prevent misunderstandings in the future. Also, if you have your employee sign an acceptance form agreeing to the contents of the employee manual, they are much more likely to take the time to read it in the first place. All this effort will reduce, if not outright eliminate, many employee issues that can creep up your way in its absense. And if by chance any issues do arise, you now have something that can be used as a point of reference for sorting out a solution.
In some states it’s actually a legal requirement to have an employee manual. But, we just think it’s good common sense.
Employee Manual Templates
If you are looking for a customizable Employee Policy Manual guide and template pack, Socrates has one that retails for about $29.95. To check current pricing and for further details, please visit the site. Employee Policy Manual at Socrates.com.