PRIME: Updating the employee handbook

Our PRIME Advisory Panel includes some of the remodeling industry’s top companies. This month’s question to our PRIME experts is, “When did you last review your employee handbook?”

January 29, 2013

Addressing the Internet & social media

Within the past year we reviewed our handbook. We have added a few things that were absent, such as the Internet policy and social media. We are also currently in the process of hiring an HR generalist to assist us in this department as it is an ever-changing area.

Emily Lindus, Vice President, Lindus Construction/Midwest LeafGuard, Baldwin, WI

Address throughout the year

I personally review both our employee handbook and our policy and procedure handbook in December of each year. I would not say I am surprised by anything I found, but the process is always evolving. I work closely with our human resource department, not only in December, but also during the year as things change.

Nick Cogliani, Owner/President, NEWPRO, Woburn, MA

Third party review of handbook

We retain a law firm to review our company handbook annually. This firm drafts any revisions. They are also tasked with drafting our employment applications, offers, contracts, and even decline letters. We have them audit our internal systems as the systems relate to employment policy and procedure. Not a year goes by that I’m not surprised by the employment laws California enacts. Because of our highly litigious state, we have to make sure all i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed. As a result, our handbook is now 91 pages in length and covers what we believe to be everything required by law.

Bill Simone, President, Custom Design & Construction, El Segundo, CA

Constantly evolving handbook

Our benefits administrator and I review our employee handbook quarterly and make notes for what has amounted to about an annual or two-year complete overhaul. Once a year we attend an all-day HR review of Oregon, Washington, and federal law hosted by a partnership of our corporate law firm and the Society of Human Resource Management local chapter. We always come away with a big list of things we need to change—most often very small changes or changes in application, but sometimes big issues.

Tom Kelly, President, Neil Kelly Inc., Portland, OR

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