The Employee Handbook is not just a book giving information on the company that the employees bring home with them and never look at it ever again. This book contains vital information about the company and its policies that the employees can refer to from time to time and this information can work to their benefit. This document contains all the information pertaining to the company policies, rules, expectations and agendas that the employees can take note of and understand how the company will work around their lifestyle and career choices.
First and foremost, employee handbooks make a great introductory tool to welcome new employees to the company and get them acquainted with the company’s culture and policies. The handbook sets the tone for what is expected of the employees and helps employees stay out of trouble. That includes many questions that a new employee may have like what are the working hours, what is appropriate to wear to work, how many lunch breaks and other breaks can you take or how many paid leaves do you have.
Secondly, if an employee has a family member to take care of or plans to start a family, the employee handbook carries information on the leave policies that the employee can refer to and plan their daily routine or leaves around it. On a larger scale, if employees wish to plan their life and make arrangements for life savings, they can always refer to the employee handbook and check what kind of benefits they are eligible for and budget their expenses accordingly.
In this day and age of the social media and excessive gadget use, the employees should know what their boundaries are when it comes to electronic gadgets and social media usage within and outside of the company premises. It is important that the company incorporates these guidelines in the handbook and the employees understand them to stay out of trouble.
Lastly, if ever any employee has to go through any form of discrimination or harassment at work, he/she can refer to the handbook and understand how the company policies can help him/her in the situation. If there is any conduct or behavioral issues that the employees encounter they can always refer to the handbook for clarity on discipline in these cases and whom to contact for help.
The employee handbook is for the employees and their benefit and there is a reason why it is called ‘employee’ handbook. Employees must not let the handbook sit at the bottom of the pile but should take full advantage of the handbook to use it to their benefit.