EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK AND POLICY CONSIDERATIONS
INITIAL THOUGHTS FOR EMPLOYERS:
- Reasons to adopt: fairness, provide all notices (FMLA, WC, non-discrimination, etc), makes expectations clear, due process, avoids lawsuits, paying unemployment and paying for unused leave;
- Different employee types: e.g. manufacturing, skilled vs. certificated, staff vs. administration
- Simpler the better: use of simple language is important.
- Be prepared to enforce the policies;
- Tone of the handbook: e.g. why regular attendance is good vs. why absenteeism is bad.
LEGAL POLICIES TO INCLUDE:
- At-will employment statement;
- Family medical leave policy (paid or unpaid, concurrence);
- Equal employment and non-discrimination policy;
- Worker's compensation policy;
- Anti-discrimination policies: general non-discrimination statement, accommodation of employees with disabilities; policies on breast-feeding and employee on employee harassment/discrimination.
EXAMPLES OF INDUSTRY-SPECIFIC POLICIES:
- Bans on smoking, substance abuse;
- Internet or e-mail policy;
- Dress code policy;
- Student privacy;
- Personnel records privacy;
- Confidential records policy.
- History: May include company history and goals;
- No contract: The handbook does not change the nature of at-will employment;
- Handbook is supreme: The handbook supersedes unwritten or written policy;
- Changes: The policies in the handbook may change at discretion of employer;
- Paid time-off: information on holidays, sick leave, family medical leave, and other types of leave (jury
- duty, military family, assault leave, etc);
- Employee behavior expectations: Be general about expectations of employee conduct;
- Attendance policy: Warnings, termination, include any meal and rest periods provided;
- Pay and promotions: Define pay periods, overtime policy, work hours, eligibility for bonuses or stock options;
- Performance evaluation process, if any;
- Benefits: Provide a general overview of benefits - health care, dental, vision, life insurance, etc., but no specific policies or companies. Include FT/PT eligibility and enrollment periods;
- Employee acknowledgement: include an acknowledgment and understanding page that the employee signs and returns to be kept in file.
Contact us to help draft your policies at 614.368.5100
Central Ohio, Columbus, Ohio, Franklin County, Ohio and Statewide Representation for Breach of Employment Contract, Termination Hearings, Disciplinary Proceedings, School Law, Teacher Termination, Principal Termination, School Administrator Disciplinary Proceedings, Ohio Department of Education-Office of Professional Conduct-Licensure Investigations and Hearings, Representation for Workplace Investigations, Unemployment Compensation Hearings, State Personnel Board of Review Hearings, Civil Service Employee Hearings, Non-Compete Agreements, Release of Non-Compete Agreements, Severance Agreements, Non-Disclosure Agreements, Confidentiality Agreements, Other Employment Agreements, Maternity Leave Termination, Mediation, Arbitration