Employee handbooks have been a tool for Employers from small to large companies for several years. Many companies, elect to have employee handbooks and utilize employee handbook templates that are provided on-line which we call “cookie cutter handbook” since they are created as a “one size fits all”. Unfortunately, employee handbooks can be a huge risk if not updated regularly, adapted to each company, reflect policies that are followed consistently and reflect current regulations. Employee handbooks are also a critical communication tool for employees to understand what the company expects from them as well as what the company expects from employees. In my workplace compliance experience, employees review the handbook when they are new employees coming onboard to company and when they are considering leaving the company or when they are considering suing the company
I know that sounds like paranoia but, in the world of compliance it is better to be proactive than reactive. Many lawyers who are colleagues say that the employee handbook is one of the first set of documents they request and review when working with employees on potential discrimination allegations, wrongful termination lawsuits or harassment cases just to name a few. It is important for risk management, that employees have a handbook that is current, includes the necessary regulations and portrays the guidelines that will sustain “the first line of defense” that employment law attorneys seek when defending companies from potential litigation. Now that it is clear how important a current employee handbook is to companies as a risk factor, add all the changes in laws that have occurred since 2016. There have been numerous changes in regulations and laws impacting companies depending on where they are located, the number of employees, if they are multi-state, national, federal, public sector or private companies. You add new laws, changes with the Department of Labor (DOL), (EEOC), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Immigration and Privacy focused regulatory entities, and there is potential for a few of those regulations to slip through the cracks. New regulations, new focus and pending regulations include:
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Margie Faulk, PHR, SHRM-CP is a senior level human resources professional with over 14 years of HR management and compliance experience. A former Compliance Officer for a defense contracting technologies firm, Margie has worked as an HR and Compliance advisor for major corporations and small businesses in the small, large, private, public and Non-profit sectors. Margie is bilingual (Spanish) fluent and Bi-cultural.
Margie’s focus is on multi-state, national, state and local workplace compliance. Additionally, Margie is working on International compliance initiatives globally which includes workplace compliance in other countries like the UK, Canada, France, Brazil, China, Africa, Mexico and India, just to name a few.
Margie has created and presented seminars/webinars for many compliance institutes. These national training providers, offer compliance training to professionals, business owners and companies interested in having their company compliant with workplace and industry regulations.
Margie holds professional human resources certification (PHR) from the HR Certification Institution (HRCI) and SHRM-CP certification from Society for Human Resources Management. Margie has completed the Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional training and is a member of the Society of Corporate Compliance & Ethics (SCCE).