YES! You really DO need an Employee Handbook!

  • By Nadia Ardebili
  • 02 Mar, 2017
This questions is asked a lot by small business owners, “Do we really need a handbook?” And my answer is always a resounding, “YES! Absolutely!!” Then the question is normally followed up by, “how often do we need to update it really?” To which I respond, “if you work in California, then probably at least […] The post YES! You really DO need an Employee Handbook! appeared first on California HR Services.
This questions is asked a lot by small business owners, “Do we really need a handbook?” And my answer is always a resounding, “YES! Absolutely!!” Then the question is normally followed up by, “how often do we need to update it really?” To which I respond, “if you work in California, then probably at least once a year!” Let’s look into this more closely and uncover why handbooks are so important and why so many HR professionals recommend periodic employee handbook updates.
First and foremost, no particular law requires a company to have an employee handbook. However, 10 out of 10 labor law attorneys and HR professionals recommend companies to have one.
Here are some facts: Your handbook is a guidebook for your employees. On one hand, it tells your company’s story. It describes your history, your culture, your mission, vision, and who you are. On the other hand, it establishes the rules, directives and boundaries by which both the company and employees are expected to behave. Some rules are attached to strict state and/or federal regulations (like OSHA/safety or meal breaks) and some deal with appropriate and professional decorum (respectful behavior or communication in the workplace). In all instances, it lets both sides know what to expect from one another (At Will employment) and what to expect if things go sideways. For example, employees need to know their rights but also where and who to go to in the event of a grievance or workplace violation. They also need to know that certain behavior by employees are not tolerated and will be dealt with in accordance with the company’s discipline and performance improvement plan policies. Actions such as theft, drug and/or alcohol in the workplace, repeated timekeeping violations or failure to take required meal breaks could lead to disciplinary action, including termination of employment. However, they also need to know that their rights as they pertain to protected leaves of absences such as Disability, Pregnancy, FMLA, Domestic Violence, and much much more.
Why do handbooks need to be updated every year?
New laws and legislation are passed on an ongoing basis throughout the year. Although most major changes can be implemented at the start of each year, some changes are required mid-year (for example, the latest CA sick leave law began July 2015). Addendums can be released mid-year to avoid too many handbook versions but it is best to audit, edit and distribute new versions at the start of each year.
In a nutshell, a well-crafted and up-to-date employee handbook is used to communicate valuable information (policies, procedures, laws, and legislation) to your employee population about their rights and responsibilities but it also serves as a valuable protective resource to defend the company if the need ever arises.
So if you operate in the state of California and you either don’t have an employee handbook or have not updated it in the last year or two, you’re in need of a new or slightly edited handbook.
Random Handbook Fact:Did you know that the average California handbook contains over 100 policies or procedures and is about 70 pages long?
If you’d like assistance with your handbook, call us today at 858/ 228-5535and speak to a resident handbook expert who would be happy to help you update or draft a new handbook – often in less than one week. You can also reach us by visiting our Contact Us page.
By Nadia Ardebili 16 May, 2017
  When was the last time you performed a methodical and objective review of your Human Resources policies, procedures and practices? Whether you are operating a small or medium sized business, the analysis obtained by an HR audit can give you an opportunity to gauge your current processes and determine gaps that could leave you […] The post Top 5 HR Audit Tips for Small Businesses! appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 04 May, 2017
  In this day and age, especially if you operate a business in California where almost everything you do in your business is affected by strict labor and employment laws, it is critical to ensure you have accurate and up to date policies, procedures, systems, forms, and processes as they relate to recruiting and hiring […] The post Is hiring an HR Consultant right for you? appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 02 Mar, 2017
This questions is asked a lot by small business owners, “Do we really need a handbook?” And my answer is always a resounding, “YES! Absolutely!!” Then the question is normally followed up by, “how often do we need to update it really?” To which I respond, “if you work in California, then probably at least […] The post YES! You really DO need an Employee Handbook! appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 31 Jan, 2017
Did you know that different laws apply to different business sizes? Whether you have 2, 15, 25, 50 or more employees, under CA law, you are required to follow different sets of and wage and hour rules, regulation, and labor laws. Violating each can carry significant fines and liability for your business. Please review the […] The post 2017 Laws Affecting You by Company Size appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 27 Jan, 2017
On April 4, 2016, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 3, which will increase California’s minimum wage annually, reaching $15 per hour for employers with at least 26 employees by January 1, 2022. This bill enacts the highest statewide minimum wage in the nation, on par with New York, which enacted a bill mandating a $15 […] The post 1/1/2017 City of San Diego Minimum Wage and Sick Time Changes appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 23 Jan, 2017
Effective 1/22/2017, when hiring new employees, employers must use the new I-9 form available at the following website. https://www.uscis.gov/i-9 To be certain you are using the most current new hire forms, contact CA HR Services at 858-228-5535 for our free 2017 Onboarding/Orientation Checklist. The post News Alert: Effective 1/22/2017, All Employers Must Use A New I-9 Form appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 17 Jan, 2017
When was the last time you performed a systematic and objective review of your Human Resources policies, procedures and practices? Whether you are operating a small or medium sized business, the analysis obtained by an HR audit can give you an opportunity to gauge your current processes and determine gaps that could be making your […] The post Top 5 HR Audit Tips for Small Businesses! appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 11 Jan, 2017
1/1/2017 City of San Diego Minimum Wage and Sick Leave Changes Effective January 1, 2017, businesses operating in the City of San Diego (see map below) must increase minimum wage from $10.50 to $11.50. This applies to all businesses operating within the City boundaries regardless of number of employees. Please use this map to determine […] The post 1/1/2017 City of San Diego Minimum Wage and Sick Leave Changes appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 22 Dec, 2016
The more questions you ask, the more you learn about a job candidate, right? Wrong. Here’s a better strategy. By Jeff Haden Contributing editor, at Inc. Eventually, almost every interview turns into a question-and-answer session. You ask a question. The candidate answers as you check a mental tick-box (good answer? bad answer?). You quickly go […] The post Best Interview Technique You Never Use appeared first on California HR Services.
By Nadia Ardebili 27 Sep, 2016
California Raises Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour and Increases Minimum Salary for Exempt Employees On April 4, 2016, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 3, which will increase California’s minimum wage annually, reaching $15 per hour for employers with at least 26 employees by January 1, 2022. This bill enacts the highest statewide minimum wage […] The post California Raises Minimum Wage appeared first on California HR Services.
Share by: