Employee handbooks are typically boring. They aren’t exactly what we would call page turning. But they are important an employee handbook not only helps protect your company from legal claims and ensure regulatory compliance, but it can also be beneficial to a companies culture.

Your employee handbook should be a guide that your employees want to interact with on a regular basis. So how do you put one together that makes them want to do just that?

Let’s start with the basics.

What is an employee handbook?

An employee handbook is a set of guidelines and regulations given by employers to employees which contains information about HR policies and procedures to help staff understand what is expected of them. It also outlines the companies missions, values, and culture in order to motivate employees & to enhance a companies operation.

What to put in it?

Start it off on a positive note.

Don’t just write a long list of rights and wrongs. Start your handbook by telling your employees your company’s mission and values. That will set the framework for the rest of your policies and procedures, not only for the reader, but also for you. Your mission should engage your employees on both an emotional and intellectual level, establishing an exciting challenge they care about.

Promote those perks

Employers, especially small businesses, are getting more and more creative with the benefits and perks they offer. Employers are now finding way of awarding there employees rather than just giving them a pay cheque.

If you’ve invested in including great perks or benefits for your employees, include them in your handbook. Don’t bury them somewhere deep in the back, put them up front.

The rest of the handbook is filled with the expectations you have for your employees and how they are expected to invest in your company so let them know that you will reward them for doing so. Turn your handbook into a dialogue by telling your employees what they can expect from you, and how you plan to invest in them.

employee handbook

Avoid Jargon

It can be tempting to use legal jargon but there’s really no need for it. Remember that this kind of language introduces barriers and instills a work environment that’s more serious and cold. It’s better to use a friendly note as it helps staff feel more at ease.

Ensure Handbook Reflects Employer Brand

Employer branding is a key player in talent acquisition and retention and, as such, needs to be reflected through all of your companies policies and guidelines. It can be tempting to simply issue a manual with everything an employee is expected to do and not do, but if you are trying to brand the company as an ‘all opinions matter’ company, then the manual needs to reflect that attitude.