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Tips for drafting a nonprofit employee handbook

On Behalf of | Nov 27, 2023 | Non-Profit Organizations

Many employers have employee handbooks. You might not consider an employee handbook a priority, but a well-written employee handbook is valuable for a nonprofit organization. A good employee handbook contains certain information that protects you and your organization from risks and potential lawsuits.

While your employee handbook can include almost any information you want, an employee handbook serves as a guide to employees and keeps everyone informed on an organization’s policies and procedures.

Start with this general information

An employee handbook should first contain basic information about the organization, including the nature of the job employees are expected to perform. You can also include some statements common to employee handbooks involving anti-discrimination policies, disability accommodation and the nature of the employment, such as at-will employment.

Other general policies, including confidentiality, conflict of interest or whistleblower policies should be included in this first section, as well.

Employment categories and statuses

The next section should define employment categories, describing what constitutes full-time, part-time, exempt or non-exempt employees, and information about any trial period of employment.

Additionally, it is a good idea to include information about your hiring and recruitment process, including how transfers or promotions are handled. This eliminates confusion and potential conflict among employees who are in these situations.

Pay and benefits

Information on salary and benefits is one section of an employee handbook that should not be overlooked. This is likely the section that your employees are most interested in. Include items on pay periods, overtime pay, how timesheets should be submitted and vacation and other leave time.

In general, the more information in an employee handbook, the better. You may find yourself in a situation where you must prove your organization has a certain policy and an employee violated it.

The easiest way to do this is to have the policy in writing in an employee handbook. Some examples of these include attendance, dress code, drug and alcohol and safety policies.

Once your employee handbook is ready, having it reviewed by a professional can help you confirm you are best protected and set both you and your employees up for success.