"Employee Handbook Template"

What Is an Employee Handbook?

An Employee Handbook is a unique document created for employees to describe expectations for everything company-related - from the conduct policy to the office attire. It should be informative for new employees and useful for individuals who work in the company for years, easy to read and understand, and accurate to represent the entity properly and appeal to the target audience. Even if the business has just opened and you only have a few people working for you, a basic Employee Handbook is essential in educating the employees and setting the workplace boundaries.

If you are looking for an Employee Handbook template, you can download one below.

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How to Write an Employee Handbook?

Include these details in your handbook for employees:

  1. Basic definitions and questions. State the types of employment contracts you have, promote workplace respect and equality, describe the steps of your recruitment process, and write down the attendance rules;
  2. Company policies. Ensure health and safety conditions, remind the employees that workplace violence and harassment are unacceptable, and establish confidentiality laws applicable to your business;
  3. Code of ethics and conduct. Describe the requirements, layout company guidelines about the digital devices, and explain whether it is allowed to invite visitors to the office;
  4. Compensation. Tell the employees when they will receive their wages and clarify overtime rules. Here you can also describe various perks and benefits - company vehicles and equipment, parking, remote working, etc. List the work-related expenses you will cover and explain how employees can claim their money back;
  5. Employee training. To make sure employees become better in a professional and personal sense, you can create special programs to develop their skills;
  6. Working hours and vacation time. Indicate the business working hours, list the holidays, describe the sick leave, parental leave, and bereavement leave;
  7. Termination of employment. Layout the procedure of ending the employment, address the resignation process, and promise to give references to employees who leave the job.

When you distribute the handbook to the employees, give them an Acknowledgment Form to sign and confirm they know all the information and are prepared to behave accordingly.

What Should an Employee Handbook Not Include?

Below are some examples of what to avoid in your Employee Handbook:

  1. Outdated practices and vague information that can be interpreted in the wrong way. Do not use legalese to remove ambiguity and apply a consistent approach throughout the document;
  2. Harsh disciplinary actions. You have to anticipate workplace issues and disagreements and quickly deal with them, but there is no need, for instance, to fire someone for the first minor offense;
  3. Restrictive policies related to social media. You cannot forbid your employees to discuss the business with their friends and relatives and you are not allowed to control their social media presence.

Note that you have to review the handbook regularly to keep it updated and notify employees about the modifications included in the new version of the document.


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Employee Handbook Template
1.
Welcome
2.
Getting to Know Our Company
2.1.
Employment Basics
2.2.
Employment Contract Types
2.3.
Equal Opportunity Employment
2.4.
Recruitment and Selection Process
2.4.1.
Background Checks
2.4.2.
Referrals
2.5.
Attendance
3.
Workplace Policies
3.1.
Confidentiality and Data Protection
3.2.
Harassment and Violence
3.2.1.
Workplace Harassment
3.2.2.
Workplace Violence
3.3.
Workplace Safety and Health
3.3.1.
Preventive Action
3.3.2.
Emergency Management
3.3.3.
Smoking
3.3.4.
Drug-Free Workplace
4.
Employee Code of​
C onduct
4.1.
Dress Code
4.2.
Cyber Security and Digital Devices
4.2.1.
Internet Usage
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Employee Handbook Template
1.
Welcome
2.
Getting to Know Our Company
2.1.
Employment Basics
2.2.
Employment Contract Types
2.3.
Equal Opportunity Employment
2.4.
Recruitment and Selection Process
2.4.1.
Background Checks
2.4.2.
Referrals
2.5.
Attendance
3.
Workplace Policies
3.1.
Confidentiality and Data Protection
3.2.
Harassment and Violence
3.2.1.
Workplace Harassment
3.2.2.
Workplace Violence
3.3.
Workplace Safety and Health
3.3.1.
Preventive Action
3.3.2.
Emergency Management
3.3.3.
Smoking
3.3.4.
Drug-Free Workplace
4.
Employee Code of​
C onduct
4.1.
Dress Code
4.2.
Cyber Security and Digital Devices
4.2.1.
Internet Usage
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4.2.2.
Cell Phone
4.2.3.
Corporate Email
4.2.4.
Social Media
4.3.
Conflict of Interest
4.4.
Employee Relationships
4.4.1.
Fraternization
4.4.2.
Employment of Relatives
4.5.
Workplace Visitors
4.6.
Solicitation and Distribution
5.
Compensation and Development
5.1.
Compensation Status
5.1.1.
Overtime
5.2.
Payroll
5.3.
Performance Management
5.4.
Employee Training and Development
6.
Benefits and Perks
6.1.
Employee Health
6.2.
Workers’ Compensation
6.3.
Work From Home
6.3.1.
Remote Working
6.4.
Employee Expenses
6.5.
Company Car
6.6.
Parking
6.7.
Company-Issued Equipment
7.
Time
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7.1.
Working Hours
7.2.
Paid Time Off (PTO)
7.3.
Holidays
7.4.
Sick Leave
7.4.1.
Long-Term Illness
7.5.
Bereavement Leave
7.6.
Jury Duty and Voting
7.7.
Parental Leave
7.7.1.
Paternity and Maternity Leave
8.
Leaving Our​
C ompany
8.1.
Progressive Discipline
8.2.
Resignation
8.2.1.
Tuition or Relocation Reimbursement
8.2.2.
Forced Resignation
8.3.
Termination
8.4.
References
9.
Policy Revision
10.
Employee Acknowledgement
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1. Welcome.
Hello and welcome! Thank you for joining [​
C ompany name​
] , where we strive to
[​
m ission statement or values​
] . We can’t wait to see what you will achieve with us.
This employee handbook defines who we are and how we work together. we will do
everything possible to create a fair and productive workplace, but we need your help.
We’ve created this handbook to guide you. This handbook isn’t a contract or a
guarantee of employment. It’s a collection of our expectations, commitments, and
responsibilities. Please read this employee handbook carefully and consult it whenever
you need to.
 
2. Getting to Know Our Company.
[​
P rovide a brief history of your company. If possible, use illustrations and charts to
make this information memorable. Present your company’s culture and vision. Avoid
jargon and overused phrases​
] .
[​
I nclude quotes and pictures of your company’s founders, CEO, or other executives to
make this introduction more personable​
] .
 
2.1. Employment Basics.
In this section, we explain our employee contract types and define our basic
employment policies.
 
2.2. Employment Contract Types.
Full-time employees work at least [​
H ours​
] per week or [​
H ours​
] per month on average.
Part-time employees are those who work fewer than [​
H ours​
] per week.
Full-time and part-time employees can have either temporary or indefinite duration
contracts. Full-time employees under an indefinite duration contract are entitled to our
company’s full benefits package.
[​
F or U.S. employees only: We remind you that, in the U.S., employment is “at-will.”
This means that you or our company may terminate our employment relationship at
any time and for any non-discriminatory reason(s).​
]
 
2.3. Equal Opportunity Employment.
[​
C ompany name​
] is an equal opportunity employer. We don’t tolerate discrimination
against protected characteristics (gender, age, sexual orientation, race, nationality,
ethnicity, religion, disability, veteran status.) We want all employees (including
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executives and HR) to treat others with respect and professionalism. In practice, this
means that we:
1. [​
H ire and promote people based on skills, experience or potential and try to
reduce bias in every process (e.g. through structured interviews.)​
]
2. [​
M ake accommodations to help people with disabilities move about safely on
our premises and use our products, services, and equipment.​
]
3. [​
U se inclusive diversity-sensitive language in all official documents, signs, and
job ads.​
]
4. [​
C onduct diversity and communication training.​
]
Apart from those actions, we commit to penalizing every discriminatory, offensive, or
inappropriate behavior. To do this properly, we ask you to report any discriminatory
action against yourself or your colleagues to HR. Our company will not retaliate
against you if you file a complaint or discrimination lawsuit. Any employee who
retaliates or discriminates will face disciplinary action.
 
2.4. Recruitment and Selection Process.
Our hiring steps might vary across roles, but we always aim for a process that is fair
and effective in hiring great people. If you are hiring for an open role, you will likely
go through these steps:
1. Identify the need for a new job opening.
2. Decide whether to hire externally or internally. iii. Review job descriptions and
write a job ad.
3. Get approval for your job ad.
4. Select appropriate sources (external or internal) to post your job opening.
5. Decide on hiring stages and possible timeframes. vii. Review resumes in our
company database/ATS.
6. Source passive candidates.
7. Shortlist applicants.
8. Screen and interview candidates.
9. Run background checks and check references.
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