Having a detailed and thorough employee handbook is an important asset to any company. Staff handbooks can be a quick and easy way to introduce your companies values and induct new employees.

Your company handbook can display your main terms of employment and also address your companies policies (both of which are requirements of UK law), making it a very important document to provide to your staff.

Wurkplace offers bespoke employee handbook services throughout the UK.  At the outset, our HR advisors will assess your existing employment policies and procedures and provide a gap analysis to identify areas for improvement. How are we different from other outsource HR companies?

At Wurkplace we believe you should have control over your business, which is why we don’t do any long-term contracts, giving you the chance to choose what is best for you! We also customise all our services to your unique company, allowing you to choose what is best for your company.

 

Our team can support you in creating and updating your handbook to ensure your organisation complies with the ever-changing employment legislation.

This is especially relevant now due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, with policies and legislation being changed constantly it can be confusing, have peace of mind with Wurkplace.

Using our online HR Management System, Wurkplace will ensure all employees have a copy of the handbook and an electronic audit trail is kept to demonstrate this has been viewed and accepted, at a user level. Any updates can also be issued via the system.

 

What is an employee handbook?

The handbook should cover the areas of:-

Your handbook should provide detailed staff policies information on all key areas, including, but not limited to:-

attendance and timekeeping, overtime, sickness and absence, holiday entitlement, disciplinary, grievance, appeals, equal opportunities, data protection, maternity/paternity, compassionate and bereavement leave, training, travel, alcohol and drug abuse, harassment and bullying, flexible/home working and use of company vehicles.

Having a good employee handbook is a great tool that communicates your companies culture and ethics and provides your staff with clear and defined expectations (behaviour and performance). It can also save valuable time and resources by answering any and all employee questions – meaning you can focus your energy on what’s important for your business.

We also offer a regular Handbook and Employer manual update service to ensure policies are updated or added as needed. This is especially important now as companies get used to the new normal with COVID-19, things can change quickly and unexpectedly.

We all know that it can be confusing – let us do the hard work for you! Throughout the duration of the pandemic, Health and Saftey laws have changed to ensure workplaces are COVID Secure. For more information provided by our Wurkplace team, click here.

 

Why have an employee handbook?

The purpose of a handbook for employees is to govern the relationship between the employer and employee ensuring fair and transparent business processes are in place for all members of your companies staff.

To be compliant, it should cover 2 essential areas:

  1. Employee responsibilities
  2. Rules and procedures

When creating a handbook for employees it is critical that all processes are legally compliant, fit for purpose and reflective of business values. It makes it easier for your staff to know where they stand regarding issues such as your holiday pay or absences policies. Additionally, it can showcase any benefits your company may provide for staff (health insurance, paid maternity/paternity policies).

If there are any disputes between you and your employee, the company handbook will highlight the terms and conditions that both parties have agreed to, allowing for more simple and easy solutions.

When facing legal matters from past or current employees one of the most useful documents is your employee handbook. As your staff will have signed their own copy of the handbook, it shows that they have familiarised themselves with your staff policies and that they agreed to the terms of employment set out in your handbook. These terms are set out by the Employment Rights Act (1996) in section 1-6.

Many problems can come to light if your employee has not been provided with an employee handbook from the initial induction stage or if your handbook has had any amendments and staff are not aware. Wurkplace makes it easy for you, providing both a printed and an online version of the handbook that can be updated at any time and shows receipts to confirm your staff have read it.

Under the Employment Rights Act 1996 it states that any employee employed for longer than a month is entitled to have access to an employment handbook and should be provided with a written employment contract.

If employees are not made aware of their terms of employment then they could claim unfair dismissal if you have any conflicts with them, which could turn into a tribunal. Having a comprehensive employee handbook reduces the likelihood of workplace disputes – saving time and money to focus on what’s important to your business.

Failure to comply to the standards set out by the Employment Rights Act 1996 may allow for tribunals to adjust compensatory awards by up to 25% but more importantly, day-to-day, it may also affect staff performance and leave you with no formal agreement on the ‘rules’ surrounding the employment of that person.

Wurkplace also offers a large variety of amazing online training courses, such as our Developing Good Employee Relations. This course covers topics such as (but not limited to) the role of the employee handbook, benefits of good relationships and how to build confidence in management. Click here to find out more.

Get it right the first time. Call our employee handbook experts on 0330 400 5490 or contact our team of experts now.

 

Case Study

A leading document management company named cleardata came to us seeking full HR support and an implementation of a brand new HR system.

cleardata are a fast-growing business that is based in Newcastle, with offices now in London and Hawarden and they specialise in document scanning, data capture, archive storage and document processing services.

When they approached us, cleardata had no real HR procedures in place and they were operating on old contracts and handbooks, which needed an urgent update. There were no director contracts or job roles in place, and we needed to change this quickly.

cleardata had good management in places, but HR had been placed on the backburner because of the fast-growing rate of the business. This is why cleardata enlisted Wurkplace’s help to give them structure and updated their procedures. We went in and gave them a full action plan, which was analysed over a 30/60/90 day period.

There was a lot of work to be done regarding their contracts, so we reconstructed them and split them into contracts for directors, managers and employees. They also needed a way to manage their staff more effectively and a system for keeping track of holidays, absence, etc. Lucky for them, Wurkplace had the answer.

The implementation of our HR system provided cleardata with the easily management tool they needed, allowing them to track holidays and absence easier. This was good news for the payroll department, as they were able to keep track of this information and implement it into the system.

Now that all of these new procedures had been put in place, things were a lot easier to manage. Two years on and cleardata are now taking out more management and training courses with us, training their directors and managers. We look forward to continuingly working with them for years to come.

“Wurkplace have been an essential part of shaping cleardata to what it is today. We are very thankful for the hard work and dedication they provided when it came to establishing structure in the business. We couldn’t imagine going anywhere else for all of our HR needs. We’re excited to keep working alongside Wurkplace for the foreseeable future.”

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