HR Policies and Procedures

Editor's Note: Develop comprehensive policies and procedures to manage effectively.

Beth P. ZollerOverview: It is important for employers to develop and institute a comprehensive set of HR policies and procedures to guide the conduct of both employees and supervisors in the workplace and protect both employers and employees. Standard policies and procedures also ensure that similar situations are dealt with in a consistent manner and the employer's business runs efficiently. The workplace policies and procedures should be memorialized and may be provided in the employee handbook or other document given to employees and/or supervisors.

An employer may want to develop different HR policies and procedures for different groups of employees depending on the department that they work in, whether or not the employee is part of a union, and whether or not the employee is an exempt or non-exempt employee. Workplace policies and procedures may cover such varied topics as discrimination and harassment, social media use, employee benefits, compensation, employee discipline, affirmative action, FMLA and employee leave. While workplace rules provide employees with standards of conduct that must be followed, policies and procedures are usually more formal and provide supervisors and management with a standard manner of handling frequent situations. Workplace policies and procedures should also carefully lay out the consequences and discipline that employees and supervisors may be subject to for violating a workplace policy.

Trends: Employers should be aware that changes in society, technology and the law may require employers to revise existing policies and create new ones. We live in a society in which our technology and the way we connect with others in changing rapidly. As a result, employers must constantly revisit their policies with respect to electronic communications and social media use. Employment policies on employee benefits and compensation also may need to be frequently updated based on changes in the law. Further, based on the fact that the amendments to the Americans with Disabilities Act significantly expanded the definition of an individual with a qualified disability, workplace policies regarding managing employees with disabilities should also be reviewed and revised on a frequently basis.

Author: Beth P. Zoller, JD, Legal Editor

Latest items in Policies and Procedures

  • Illinois-Specific Employee Handbook Policies Now Live

    Date:
    24 February 2015
    Type:
    Editor's Choice

    The Illinois employee handbook policy statements and associated "when to include" and "employer guidance" for each policy are now live and have been added to the new Employee Handbooks Tool.

  • Pregnancy Accommodation Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers should include this statement in their handbook to educate employees about the availability of reasonable accommodations for pregnancy, childbirth and related conditions and to demonstrate compliance with Illinois law.

  • Accommodation for Victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault or Stalking Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers with 15 or more employees should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Access to Personnel Files Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers with five or more employees seeking to inform their employees of the rules surrounding the review of employee personnel files and medical records should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Meal Breaks Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers seeking to encourage and demonstrate compliance with the state's meal break requirements should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Lactation Accommodation Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers with more than five employees seeking to encourage and demonstrate compliance with the Illinois law requiring that employers provide unpaid break time and reasonable locations for employees to express breast milk should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Vacation/Paid Time Off (PTO) Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers that provide paid vacation or paid time off (PTO) are required by state law to pay employees for accrued but unused vacation days or PTO upon termination of employment and should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Mandatory Time Off/Day of Rest Handbook Statement: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers seeking to indicate that certain employees will receive one day of rest in each calendar week and to demonstrate compliance with Illinois law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Family Military Leave Handbook Statement [15-50 Employees]: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers with 15-50 employees (including independent contractors) seeking to educate employees about the availability of family military leave and to demonstrate compliance with Illinois' family military leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Family Military Leave Handbook Statement [51+ Employees]: Illinois

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Illinois employers with 51 or more employees (including independent contractors) seeking to educate employees about the availability of family military leave and to demonstrate compliance with Illinois' family military leave law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

About this topic

Guidance on creating and implementing HR policies that provide employees and supervisors standards and procedures with which they should comply.