The honesty, sound judgment, and integrity of the employees, officers, and directors are vital to the company’s reputation and success. The employee handbook entails a resource compiling rules, expectations, and requirements that guide employees and give answers to common questions. It acts as a tool to regulate business relations and solve conflicts that emerge in the company. It also provides guidance and information related to the organization´s history, mission, values, policies, procedures, and benefits in a written format. (Van Zanten & Van Tulder, 2018) Notably, it is not a mere list of the rights and responsibilities of the employee but rather a reflection of the company’s culture and ethical principles. Eventually, this builds an organizational culture and creates a productive or unproductive working environment. Therefore, creating and implementing a company handbook is significant because it improves consistency and clarity in the company, ensures compliance and risk management, empowers employees, and fosters the formation and promotion of an effective culture in the company.
The employee handbook offers the backbone of the business by promoting consistency and clarity in company procedures. This is because the company book incorporates company policies, a mission statement, a vision, values, and other conditions of employment for the employees (Bogers et al., 2018). Describing what the employees are expected to do in the company is made easy by the company handbook, as staff understands their responsibilities. It can cover a range of policies such as attendance expectations, employment benefits, use of company property, and procedures to request time off duties. Employees should show integrity and professionalism for the firm’s reputation and standards. The expected behaviour should be aligned with the nature of the profession itself (Van Zanten & Van Tulder, 2018). Therefore, the employee handbook promotes consistency in its application because it details workplace procedures. The managers and those in control use this document to answer employee questions regarding the firm’s policies. Thus, this ensures fair treatment for all staff in line with company policies.
In addition, the employee handbook ensures reduced risk and legal liability in the company. A well-written employee handbook and written policies help reduce liability risks since they are the manual for all company policies and procedures. It is a safety net that ensures all employees are treated fairly (Bernile et al., 2018). In case of a national emergency due to a pandemic, the policy provides for paid leave according to the act. Employers are supposed to comply with the new rules as employees understand their rights. Notably, they protect the firm against costly discrimination and claims of favouritism. The lack of written rules on vital issues such as harassment, paid leave, and termination exposes the company to liability lawsuits. Therefore, the employees are concerned with how the company can handle complaints to avoid a situation of noncompliance and, thus, expensive lawsuits. Also, it assures the protection of the overall company reputation and brand image to the external stakeholders. Customer service should be the company’s most valuable asset, and responding to concerns or complaints from stakeholders should be a priority to protect the company’s reputation. Customers love it when dealing with someone who solves their issues instead of creating them and making their life hard (Van Zanten & Van Tulder, 2018). Complying with legal issues and managing risks that might occur in a company ensures that the firm only takes part in activities and business operations as stated in the certification of operation. Therefore, these documents together serve as vital legal protection for the company.
Moreover, the employee handbook creates a sense of trust and security in the human resources department through employee empowerment. Every firm has unique policies and procedures, and this makes it challenging for new employees to approach certain issues (Bernile et al., 2018). However, an employee handbook empowers employers as they make sure their employees are familiar with firm procedures and follow them to the letter. An employer finds it fulfilling when the workers are comfortable approaching their leaders whenever there is an issue in the workplace. Therefore, this document provides a point of reference in times of need, thus fostering trust and security in the human resource. It upholds and improves responsibility and professional accountability among the employees. Their general responsibilities on safety, reporting, and timekeeping are communicated. The handbook clarifies to whom an employee should report anything in case a certain situation comes up (Bogers et al., 2018). For example, in case there is a workplace violation and a report should be given, a handbook can detail which management section the employee can turn to and designate another person in case the employee disagrees with the initial decision. Therefore, this improves a sense of ownership of the firm among the employees in the company.
The employee handbook helps promote diversity, inclusivity, and equality in the organization by forming and promoting an effective culture in the firm. Introducing the workers to the company’s core values, mission statement, and culture is among the most vital aspects of the employee handbook (Bernile et al., 2018). This helps in solidifying the commitment to open communication and a meaningful workplace culture. As a result, this will attract top talent and help retain the best employees. Also, facilitating a healthy company culture helps foster a sense of pride and belonging to the workplace, so employees can put these abstract principles into practice. Notably, the introduction part of the handbook gives the context for how the firm was established. This helps the employee identify the foundational stories of the business and eventually helps them fit with the culture. Encouraging and rewarding employee participation and engagement in the firm helps promote a good culture in the company. This will increase productivity, which is the main expectation from the employer. Successful companies understand that an engaged employee translates into increased business benefits. Devoting well-deserved attention to people who are willing to keep the company operating every day makes the organization make high profits through improved productivity, customer loyalty, and employee retention (Bogers et al., 2018). Motivated employees can be more creative and innovative, work efficiently, and handle work-related problems calmly. Therefore, the employee handbook creates and enhances a suitable tone that is used in the organization.
To sum up, a well-defined employee handbook and rules that are used consistently help employees thrive and the business. A consistent and clear employee handbook ensures effective management through clear policies and makes employees reliable in their profession and experience. Protecting the company’s reputation and brand image to the stakeholders is important because a poor image tarnishes the brand and reduces the number of clients who believe in it. Creating and implementing a company handbook is significant because it improves consistency and clarity within the company, ensures compliance and risk management, empowers employees, and fosters the formation and promotion of an effective culture within the company. The employee handbook should ensure that employees are motivated, engaged, and empowered.
Bernile, G., Bhagwat, V., & Yonker, S. (2018). Board diversity, firm risk, and corporate policies. Journal of financial economics, 127(3), 588-612.
Bogers, M., Chesbrough, H., & Moedas, C. (2018). Open innovation: Research, practices, and policies. California management review, 60(2), 5–16.
Van Zanten, J. A., & Van Tulder, R. (2018). Multinational Enterprises and the Sustainable Development Goals: An institutional approach to corporate engagement. Journal of International Business Policy, 1, 208-233.