As a business, managing employees is an important – if not the critical factor to become successful. These oral and written policies are generally up to you – as the employer – to define and enforce them. Your employee handbook is central to your business’ HR management and compliance strategy. That is, if it is legally compliant.
In the State of Texas, employers have the right to set policies and change them based upon need. A well-written employee handbook serves a critical role. It communicates your unique culture, expectations and assists with onboarding your new employees.
Your handbook contains important policies, that if followed, will help you defend yourselves against unemployment claims and other forms of post-termination problems, such as EEOC claims and employment-related lawsuits.
According to the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), your handbook should address every aspect of the employee relationship. TWC divides them into these areas:
- Employer expectations – Attendance, leave, job requirements, or drug policy
- Employee expectations – Compensation, benefits, grievance procedures, equal employment opportunity, sexual harassment, and right to privacy
- Administrative issues – Changes to the handbook, representations, and disclaimers
Additionally, it would clearly outline the protocols for requesting time off, taking breaks, clocking hours, working overtime, and others. It becomes a resource for referring to when questioning how to handle human resource issues, often the infrequent ones or those not even covered yet.
Once you have assembled your employee handbook based upon all of your previous policies and procedures, talked with employees and managers, and drafted a preliminary document. Have your draft reviewed by a human resource professional. This could help you to avoid higher attorney fees when you have it finalized by an employment law attorney.
If you are ready (or not) for your current employee handbook to be reviewed by professionals, contact us today.