Running a business can be complex – with new situations and challenges cropping up every day. However, having procedures already in place allows everyone on the team to better navigate today’s ever-changing terrain. This is true for all types and sizes of organizations – both large and small. Knowing how to write an employee handbook for a small business is an important part of running your operation.
This guide walks you through some of the essentials that should go into a small business employee handbook so that you can begin implementing rules and procedures within your company.
There is no universal employee handbook template that applies to every situation; however, below are some elements that frequently appear:
The introduction normally summarizes the company’s goals and values. It’s often presented as a “mission statement” that explains why the business exists and what it hopes to achieve.
In this section, lay out how team members are expected to help the company achieve the objectives that are outlined in the mission statement. This list might include:
This section often builds on (or includes) the previous one, with clearly defined rules governing:
The goal of establishing HR policies is to communicate that the rules apply to everyone on the team.
The employee benefits section is typically what most team members will want to read first. In it, you should include detailed policies about:
The legal section is one of the most important sections, since it helps to protect your business from potential lawsuits stemming from discrimination, wrongful termination, sexual harassment, or any other disputes that might arise from team members or customers.
To better help prepare you for difficult HR situations, be sure to clearly outline your company’s approach to:
It’s also common to include relevant guidelines for your industry from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Once you have the basic draft, the next step involves proofing and editing your employee handbook before sending it for a legal review. This step is critical as each state’s laws are different and legal requirements can vary significantly depending on your situation.
When you get the green light from your attorneys, it’s then time to:
Also, keep in mind that you’ll need to share the employee handbook with all new recruits moving forward. Be prepared to periodically revisit your handbook as your business evolves.
For example, many companies likely had to update their employee manuals during the pandemic due to the unprecedented events taking place in society.
The above is a general starting point for how to create an employee handbook. You may need to adjust this template based on your industry or niche.
A service employee handbook might need sections about customer etiquette, call-center wait times, and how to properly address clients when sending emails.
Creating an employee handbook is an essential part of business. Just as you might use customer relationship management software to grow sales, there now exist tools that can help facilitate many aspects of employee management. For example, Clover’s POS solutions can help with everything from scheduling to payroll to performance management (in addition to securely accepting payments online, in-store, or at the curb).
To learn more about how our POS technology can help you more effectively manage your employees, schedule a free demo with our sales team today.
This information is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial, or tax advice. Readers should contact their attorneys, financial advisors, or tax professionals to obtain advice with respect to any particular matter.
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