7 ways employee handbooks can prevent employment disputes

Any legal dispute involving a business has the potential to be costly, both financially and with regard to company resources. As such, business owners and employers in Albuquerque would be wise to take whatever steps they can to prevent legal battles.

One such step is to have a comprehensive employee handbook. These handbooks can prevent disputes with employees in a number of ways.

  1. Sets expectations-An employee handbook should be one of the first tools an employee receives upon the start of a new job. Your handbook should therefore set expectations with its tone and content to help employees understand what is expected of them.
  2. Provides consistent guidance-When you put certain policies or procedures in writing and make them available to everyone, then you ensure they are getting consistent information and guidance. 
  3. Establishes workplace culture-Your handbook can include your mission statement, values and history which can help employees understand the culture. 
  4. Informs employees of their rights-Employees have numerous rights on the job, and having this information in a handbook can make them aware of these rights.
  5. Clarifies benefits-Handbooks typically specify benefits available to employees, from job-protected leave and holiday hours to break times and compensation bonuses. This can prevent misinformation from contributing to workplace disputes.
  6. Protects confidential information-Details about privacy, trade secrets and other sensitive information should be addressed in a handbook, along with instructions for who can access it and how it should be protected.
  7. Addresses behavior that could reflect poorly on the company-Policies like social media clauses can make clear what employees may not do or say on behalf of the company. They can also guide employees in responsible use of social media on the job.

Without a clear, comprehensive handbook in place, employers leave the door open to numerous disputes and legal complications. For suggestions on the specific terms you can include in your handbook, you can read articles like this one Inc.com.

For legal guidance in creating and enforcing the policies in your handbook, you can consult an experienced attorney.

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