To run an effective and responsible organization, it’s essential to keep up with rules and regulations. Every industry is held to a specific standard, and there are rules that all companies need to abide by. But maintaining high standards requires clear communication and a strong enforcement of those rules. If your employee handbook isn’t working, your staff members may struggle to try to keep up with what’s expected. What happens when your employee handbook doesn’t work, and how can you ensure clarity in the workplace?
Indicators of a Handbook Issue
First, your employee handbook should be reviewed annually. Workplace ordinances are always changing, and it’s important to keep your information up to date. Next, your handbook may have issues if you find multiple employees violating rules. If there is any confusion regarding your company rules, it will come out in the behavior of your workers. Another indicator of handbook problems is conflict during the onboarding process. If new hires have concerns about training or company policy, it could mean a larger problem with your existing regulations. To pinpoint problems with your handbook and improve work efficiency, check out these points to evaluate:
- Jury Duty: Time off to serve jury duty is an obligation you must accommodate, but do some research on what employers need to cover.
- Family Leave: Each state has specific regulations regarding federal family leave policies – consult your HR department or local bylaws to find out more.
- Short-Term Disability: Depending on where you are, you may or may not be required cover this. Check your state’s website to find out what information to provide and stay apprised of any relevant legislation.
- Finalizing Vacation Payout and Last Paychecks: Each organization needs to establish how to execute the details of an employee leaving the company. Consult colleagues to find out how best to pay out vacation time and send out final paychecks after a departure.
- At-Will Employment: This rule deals with the relationship between the employer and the employee. In almost every state, either party can terminate this relationship at-will, unless otherwise specified.
- Protection of Rights: Consult the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to define exactly what accommodations or protections your employees are entitled to. Stay educated in regards to discrimination and how to protect your staff. A comfortable work environment is not just beneficial; it’s required.
- Health and Safety: One of the most important regulations to follow is the rules set out by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Compliance with these safety standards is vital for a manager looking to run a tight ship. Professionals in the industrial or construction realms should pay particular attention to these requirements.
- Consult an expert – HR, legal or otherwise depending on the rule.
- Regularly review local & federal government policies to keep your handbook updated.
- Be explicit with all rules – leave no room for confusion or loopholes.
- Communicate with your workers to ensure policies are clear and reasonable.