When you start a new Alaska business, the steps you take early on may have far-reaching implications. Choosing an appropriate business structure is an important consideration. So, too, is the decision of whether to create an employee handbook.
Per Inc.com, a well-drafted employee handbook may help your business accomplish two important objectives. First, it may help put your staff members at ease by outlining your expectations, policies and other pertinent information. Second, it may help you protect your business against litigation.
How to draft the handbook
You need to take care when drafting your employee handbook to make sure it helps you accomplish these goals. The main rule when drafting yours is to keep things clear and succinct. Anything you leave open to interpretation may come back to bite you. There may be certain sections you have to include in the handbook by law. There may also be other policies and information you outline in yours to help protect your business against lawsuits or judgments.
What to cover in the handbook
You may find it beneficial to include information about your family and medical leave, equal employment and non-discriminatory policies in your employee handbook. You may also want to address how you handle workers’ compensation claims and what benefits your offer workers. Furthermore, you may want to cover how your employees receive pay raises or promotions, among other relevant areas.
It is important that you make your employee handbook distinct from an employment contract. It is also important that you have all employees read the handbook and sign acknowledgments stating they did so.