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

  • Cell Phone Use / Texting While Driving Handbook Statement: Maine

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Maine employers seeking to show their compliance with Maine's law prohibiting manual composition of electronic communications while driving should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • EEO Handbook Statement: Texas

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

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

  • Texting While Driving, Unpaid Interns: Handbook Statements Updated

    Date:
    20 August 2015
    Type:
    Editor's Choice

    The updated handbook statements reflect recent legal developments in Maine and Texas.

  • Emergency Responder Leave: Handbook Statement Added

    Date:
    10 August 2015
    Type:
    Editor's Choice

    A new Rhode Island law provides a leave of absence for volunteer emergency responders.

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

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

  • Cell Phone Use / Texting While Driving Handbook Statement: Rhode Island

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Rhode Island employers seeking to show their compliance with Rhode Island's texting while driving law, to promote driving safety and to limit liability from accidents involving employees who are driving and using electronic devices for work-related purposes and/or in a company-owned vehicle should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Schedules, Hours and Retention of Retail Workers Handbook Statement: San Francisco, California

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    San Francisco "Formula Retail" establishments that have at least 20 retail sales establishments worldwide, and employ 20 or more people within San Francisco (including corporate officers and executives), that seek to educate employees about special rights and protections available to employees under the San Francisco Hours and Retention Protections for Formula Retail Employees Ordinance and the Fair Scheduling and Treatment of Formula Retail Employees Ordinance should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Disability Accommodation Handbook Statement: California

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    California employers with five or more employees for each working day in each of 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year are covered under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA ) and should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Religious Accommodation Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers covered by Title VII and seeking to advise employees of their right to seek accommodations based on religion should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Religious Accommodation Handbook Statement: California

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    California employers with five or more employees for each working day in each of 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year are covered under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and 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.