Contract of employment

Employee contracts and handbooks: is it time for a spring clean?

The pandemic has changed the way a lot of companies do business. In light of the shift towards remote working, our HR gurus explain why it’s time to make sure your documentation reflects your company’s requirements.

The future of business is changing – are you ready?

With the vaccine rollout in full swing and a roadmap firmly in place for the easing of lockdown restrictions, there are certainly brighter days ahead. That said, 2020 brought a great deal of change to the way we do business, and many companies are now considering a complete transition to remote working (or potentially offering their staff the option of a mixture of home and office working).

The landscape of business looks very different to how it did pre-pandemic, which is why it’s a good idea to make sure your employee contracts and handbooks are an accurate reflection of how you operate as a company. It’s an exciting time for businesses right now, and a chance to emerge from lockdown with a fresh outlook and new way of doing things.

With this in mind, here’s our checklist of things to consider if you’re one of the many companies planning to offer the option of remote working on a long-term basis:

  • Does your employment documentation reflect current and future requirements from a legal, business and employee perspective?
  • Do you have the right policies in place to deal with issues such as home and lone working, risk assessments, supervision, cyber security, data protection and employee wellbeing?
  • Have your grievance and disciplinary procedures been adjusted to accommodate your new way of working?
  • Have you carried out risk assessments that address health and safety measures, mental health, lone working and stress?

It’s also a good idea to think about any additional training and support you could be providing, to help your employees not only adapt to but thrive, in their new working conditions.

We’re all about being open and honest because we believe that’s the key to helping your staff feel valued and supported. Being transparent with your communications as an employer throughout this period of change is a big part of maintaining an engaged, motivated team.

Implementing changes – where to start?

If changes need to be made to your employment contracts or handbooks, there are many things to consider. If your contract of employment or handbook doesn’t allow for minor changes to be implemented, a consultation will be required to amend contractual terms.

This throws up a whole host of questions and legal issues to navigate. Sound tricky? It really needn’t be if you have help from people who know a thing or two about HR, like us! We can help you implement the necessary changes to your employment documentation while meeting all legal requirements and ticking the boxes in terms of compliance.

Working with someone who understands the ins and outs of HR (and all the relevant legislation) will safeguard you against complaints and even tribunal action from employees. Not only that, but it will help to create and maintain a healthy workplace culture.

At Streetwise HR, we offer something that we like to call an HR health check. As part of this, we’ll review your staff contracts, handbook, and any relevant policies, then advise on the necessary changes to keep your business compliant.

Time for a spring clean? We’re here to help!

Let us grab our metaphorical dusters and help you make sure your employment documentation is spick and span and fit for purpose. To get in touch with our friendly HR experts, please call 0844 682 7488 or email yourjourneystartshere@streetwisehr.co.uk today.

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