Should employees sign a handbook receipt?

| Mar 12, 2021 | Employment |

Running a successful business may seem more challenging than ever. After all, not only must you meet customer demands, but you also must comply with an ever-expanding framework of federal and state employment laws. Drafting a comprehensive employee handbook may help you keep your sanity.

Employee handbooks describe the policies, procedures and guidelines by which companies operate. They also may outline disciplinary procedures and both traditional and novel employment perks. Because of this, it is a good idea to ask employees to acknowledge receipt of the handbook by providing their signatures.

Dispelling a common notion

While reading through an employee handbook is a good idea for employees, some may believe refusing to sign an acknowledgement form frees them from accountability. That is, workers may think by not acknowledging receipt of the handbook, they do not have to follow its rules.

This is simply not the case. Still, you may want your handbook to dispel this common notion by explicitly stating the handbook applies even if employees do not acknowledge its receipt.

Using a refusal alternative

If employees do not want to sign an acknowledgement, you probably cannot force them to put pen to paper. You probably can, however, ask refusers to sign refusal statements. If workers do not want to do so, you may want to consider having someone from human resources document the refusal.

Obtaining future acknowledgements

From time to time, it may become necessary to modify the language in your employee handbook. Because you can do so unilaterally, your handbook is probably not an employment contract. Nevertheless, you may want to obtain acknowledge from your employees for any material changes in the handbook.

If you use it properly, your employee handbook may improve both business operations and employee morale. Obtaining a signed receipt for the initial handbook and any substantial revisions ensures you and your workers stay on the same page.