In reality, the employers are not compelled by the corporate laws to formulate their own employee manuals to be distributed to the workers. It is therefore up to them whether to furnish one. Usually, the employers consider employment handbooks, as some people call it, if they already have at least twenty-five employees in with them. However, there are various human resources rules and operational practices that the existing law requires. Hence, it would be practical for a company to have it in written form and have it distributed to the workers for proper awareness. |
Employment manuals inform the company workers about the rules and regulations that should be implemented in almost all the aspects of the company.
These handbooks generally include policies as regards to:
* work periods, * dress codes, * employee benefits, * disciplinary sanctions, * safety rules and * salaries among others.
In addition, these so-called company ground rules explain not only what the employees are restrained of doing but also what their benefits from the company are. Thus, a well-prepared employment manual can serve as a protection for the employers from claims that arise from discriminatory actions.
Moreover, an employment manual lays down a uniform set of policies and guidelines for all the workers. For example, if the office hours stated in the manual is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., all in the company regardless of his position should adhere with it. Then, if the manager happens to violate the rules, the same penalties imposed on regular employees should be enforced on him.
It is very vital for the said handbook to discuss matters about the workers' salaries. The amount of their wages may depend on their positions, work schedule and years of service in the business. Higher post certainly has to have higher salaries; this is very much accepted in all businesses. Meanwhile, those who are working on night shifts and who have accumulated overtime works should be given extra pay than the normal salaries. Bonuses and salary increases should also be given to those who have been loyal in the company for years.
The employment manual is also recommended to have an assertion that the employment in the company is "at will". It is therefore clearly stated that the handbook is not a contract that entitles the workers to avail the privileges that the regular employees have. Employment "at will" declares that the employer can freely terminate his worker any time he wishes; though the employees can also leave the company any time he feels of leaving.
On the other hand, a company's set of policies and regulations written on the manual should be consistent in the prevailing corporate laws. Meaning, the federal or any other civil laws are still superior to the company bylaws. If ever contradictions emerge, the company has to bend over and allow the corporate laws prevail. Strict consequences are bestowed to companies who will fail to follow the corporation's code.
To avoid having a defective employment manual, it is a wise action for businesses to appoint an expert corporate business lawyer to guide them in drafting one. A legal counsel who understands the corporate laws and who has notable experience in creating a good and consistent employment handbook will ensure the company of having a legally acceptable employment manual.
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