HR Support on Creating Employee Handbooks

Editors Note: A current and enforced employee handbook is HR's most important tool!

Beth ZollerOverview: To create employee handbooks that are effective, employers should include all necessary workplace policies, procedures and practices. In many instances, this policy manual can serve as an employer's best defense in defending any workplace practice or action such as the enforcement of a dress code policy or the investigation of a claim for sexual harassment in the workplace. An employer should ensure that all of the policies in the employee handbook are communicated to all employees and supervisors and that proper training on the policies is provided to the employees. An employer should frequently review the policies in its handbook to see if any need updating based on a change in any law or workplace practice or as the result of a workplace incident which requires clarification of a policy.

Trends: While best practice is to include a disclaimer in the employee handbook in order to prevent it from becoming part of an employment contract, employers should be aware that the National Labor Relations Board has ruled that an overly broad at-will disclaimer in an employee handbook may violate the National Labor Relations Act by infringing upon the rights of both union and non-union employees to engage in a protected concerted activity, i.e., working collectively to improve working conditions. Employers should also be aware that in confronting the diverse workforce of today, it may be necessary for employers to develop handbooks and policies in multiple languages to address employee needs.

Author: Beth Zoller, JD, Legal Editor

Latest items in Employee Handbooks

  • About This State Supplement Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers seeking to explain how the handbook and supplement should be read together and that neither the handbook nor the supplement alter an employee's at-will status should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • EEO Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Pregnancy Accommodation Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers with four or more employees that seek to inform employees, including supervisors, that employees may be entitled to a reasonable accommodation for known limitations relating to pregnancy, childbirth or related conditions (including lactation) should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Whistleblower Protections Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers with four or more employees that seek to inform employees about protections provided by the Delaware Whistleblowers Protection Act (DWPA), help fulfill notice obligations under the DWPA and help ensure that employees who engage in activity protected under the DWPA are not subject to retaliation should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Access to Personnel Files Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers seeking to inform employees of the rules surrounding the review of employee personnel files should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Meal Breaks Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers with five or more employees that seek to encourage and demonstrate compliance with the state's meal break requirements should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Meal Breaks for Minors Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers who employ minor employees (those under age 18) and that seek to inform the minor employees and their supervisors about legally-required meal breaks and to demonstrate compliance with the law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Crime Victim Leave Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of leave for this purpose and to show their compliance with Delaware's crime victim leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Jury Duty Leave Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers seeking to educate employees, including supervisors, about the availability of leave for service as a juror and to show their compliance with Delaware's jury duty leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Election Officials Leave Handbook Statement: Delaware

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Delaware employers with more than 20 employees and that seek to inform employees that accrued vacation or paid time off can be used for the purpose of working as an election official should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

About this topic

HR guidance on how to create employee handbooks that includes all employment policies and practices.