A Comprehensive Employee Handbook Outline

A Comprehensive Employee Handbook Outline

These articles are developed from the ComplianceHR whitepaper: What Should Be Included In Your Employee Handbook, download it here.

Employee Handbook Outline

Employee handbooks are often as unique as each individual organization. The contents of your employee handbook will vary depending on your company size, industry, and culture. For example, a small software firm operating out of one office will likely have much less complexity and be more informal than a large professional services firm with a national or global footprint.

As a starting point, following is a more comprehensive employee handbook outline that you can edit to best fit your organization:

    1. Employee Handbook Outline

    2. Introduction and welcome to employees

      • Welcome message from founder or CEO
      • Purpose of the employee handbook
      • History and background information on the company
      • Introduction to company mission, values, purpose, and vision for the future
      • Equal employment opportunity statement
      • Conflict of interest statement
      • Confidentiality agreement
      • Contractual disclaimer and at-will statement (where allowed)
      • Orientation: Organization structure, key contacts, office locations, etc.
    3. Standards of conduct

      • Remote/work-from-home policy
      • Attendance
      • Dress code
      • Hours of work
      • Substance-free workplace
      • Taking disciplinary action
    4. Policies and procedures

      • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodation
      • Anti-discrimination
      • Anti-harassment
      • Meal and rest periods
      • Overtime
      • Timekeeping
      • Personnel records
      • Payroll schedule
      • Payroll deductions
      • Overtime policy
      • Garnishments
      • Performance reviews
      • Salary and bonuses
      • Promotions
      • Transfers
      • Termination: Reduction in force, layoff/recall
      • Bulletin boards
      • IT policy: Security, personal devices, company email, internet, systems, etc.
      • Social media
      • Travel and expense reimbursement
    5. Benefits

      open enrollment

      • Benefits eligibility
      • Company observed holidays
      • Paid time off (PTO)
      • Sick leave
      • Disability leave
      • Personal leave
      • Bereavement leave
      • Family and medical leave
      • Jury duty
      • Military leave
      • Health insurance
      • Dental insurance
      • Vision insurance
      • Life insurance
      • Retirement and pension plans
      • Training
      • Educational assistance program
      • Service awards
      • Workers’ compensation
      • Unemployment insurance
    6. Safety

      • Commitment of the company
      • Employee and employer responsibility for safety
      • Violence and weapons
      • Emergency procedures
      • Medical services
      • Personal protective equipment
      • OSHA requirements: Safety Rules, reporting accidents
    7. Procedures

      • Hiring
      • Travel and expense
      • Performance reviews
      • Promotions and transfers
      • Conflict resolution
      • Progressive discipline
      • Exit process
      • COBRA
  1. Summary and acknowledgment

      • The importance of the policies and procedures
      • Employer right to change rules without notice
      • Statement that the handbook does not create a contract
      • Acknowledgment of receipt by employee


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About ComplianceHR

ComplianceHR offers the only on-demand, intelligent suite of compliance applications focused on helping companies address the ever-changing federal and state employment law requirements on many common HR topics such as minimum wage, overtime, independent contracting, and more.

We provide employers of all industries, sizes, and locations with solutions that empower employers to handle complex compliance issues. Our solutions take less time, cost, and complexity than traditional methods. The Navigator Suite simplifies employment law compliance, allowing you to streamline your compliance workflow in only a few simple clicks.

One of our most popular applications, PolicySmart, is an intuitive handbook compliance tool that provides employers with national and state specific templates, a unique compliance timeline, and so much more. Fueled by the subject matter expertise of Littler, the world’s largest employment law firm, PolicySmart allows users to easily create and maintain legally compliant handbooks that are cost effective, up-to-date, and delivered on-demand.

If you are not already a ComplianceHR client, we welcome you to sign up for a quick intro call and product demo with one of our compliance experts. After the demo we also offer a free, 14-day trial to explore all of the Navigator Suite applications and see for yourself how they can transform your compliance practices. Register for a demonstration today.