If you are a business owner, you may already have a long list of things to do before the end of the year, but one thing you shouldn’t overlook is reviewing your employee handbook.
There are many critical reasons why it can be pertinent to take a look at your existing handbook, and focusing on a few areas can be a good place to start.
Guidance on laws
Depending on your business and where you are located, there could be legal updates that will affect you and your employees in 2023. Common areas include:
- Wage requirements
- Paid and unpaid time off
- Expanded protections against discrimination
You might even need to update your policies regarding marijuana, as Minnesota recently legalized marijuana in food and beverages. And some advocates expect new legalization measures to come in the near future, which means you may want to review your drug testing or drug use policies.
Even if you do not think there are legal updates that are relevant for your business, reviewing your handbook with an attorney can give you the confidence that your presumption is correct.
Updates on the work environment
Workplaces have been slowly returning to normal over the last year, though sometimes with pandemic-era practices or policies carrying over. Updating related information to reflect current practices can be crucial.
Some areas to focus on include remote work eligibility and expectations as well as guidance on discrimination and acceptable workplace behaviors.
When you update your handbook annually, you can better protect your employees against a harmful environment and your business against legal issues.
New business information
Updating your employee handbook is also important if you have new people in your business, new branding, or new systems. An up-to-date guide can help prevent conflicts arising from decisions made based on old information.
Changes could involve updating contact information for where to report workplace complaints or creating confidentiality clauses.
Whether you ultimately make significant changes or only minor corrections to your handbook, taking the time to address them now can give you and your employees confidence as we start the new year.