Top Mistakes with Company Handbooks

Poorly written, outdated or inconsistent handbooks can hurt your company. Some companies include language that can destroy rights to fire employees at will. The HR Specialist notes several mistakes include the following:


1. Include lots of detail with specific policies. Make sure that you separate policies from procedure manuals. There is a huge difference!


2. Get rid of the term "probationary period". This term can erase the at-will status by implying that, once the period is over, the employee can stay indefinitely.


3. Not being consistent. Every company document should be consistent to what the company handbook says.


4. Acknowledgement form. Have employees sign an acknowledgement form that they have received and acknowledge that they read and will abide by every policy.


5. Not adapting the handbook. If you have employees in a different state, make sure you are keeping up with every new state law.


6. Failing to update. Because of several changes in laws and company policies, the handbook should be updated no later than every 3 years OR if there have been several changes within a short period of time.


7. Setting unrealistic policies. If you know your supervisors or managers won't enforce it or don't believe in the company culture, reassess what you put in your handbook.



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