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Tips for Writing Employee Handbooks

When it comes to employee handbooks, there are a few things you should keep in mind to make sure yours is effective. In this post, we'll go over a few tips for writing employee handbooks that will help keep your employees informed and engaged.



An employee handbook is a document that outlines the company's policies and procedures. It is given to new employees during orientation and serves as a reference throughout their employment. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to writing an employee handbook, there are some tips that can help you get started:

  1. Keep it simple and concise.

  2. Use clear and straightforward language.

  3. Organize the information in an easy-to-follow format.

  4. Tailor the content to your specific business needs and culture.

  5. Include a table of contents and index for quick reference.

  6. Make sure the handbook is up-to-date with current laws and regulations.


Company History

Include the date the company was founded, a brief overview of how it has grown since then, and some of its major accomplishments.


Mission and Values

An employee handbook is a key tool for communicating your company's mission and values to employees. When writing your mission and values section, be sure to:

  • Keep it concise. Your mission and values should be clear and concise, so that they are easy for employees to understand and remember.

  • Make it specific. In addition to general statements about your company's mission and values, include specific examples of how these principles guide day-to-day decision making and behavior at work.

  • Use positive language. Phrases such as "Our goal is to provide excellent customer service" or "We value teamwork" convey a strong message without being negative or punitive.

  • Include a call to action.End the section with a statement about how each employee can help uphold the company's mission and values in their daily work.


Workplace Policies

When crafting workplace policies, it is important to consider the needs of your employees while also adhering to any relevant laws and regulations. Some key points to keep in mind include:

  • Defining what is and is not appropriate behavior in the workplace. This can help to avoid any potential conflict or misunderstanding.
  • Outlining the company's stance on things like social media use, internet usage, and dress code.
  • Providing a clear explanation of the company's attendance policy, including any consequences for violating it.
  • Clearly stating what the company's policy is on things like smoking, drugs, and alcohol.
  • Outlining the company's procedures for handling complaints and grievances.

Benefits and Compensation

When it comes to benefits and compensation, there are a few key things you should keep in mind when writing your employee handbook. First, be sure to clearly state what benefits your company offers. This includes health insurance, vacation and sick days, 401(k) options, and any other perks you offer. Also, make sure you lay out how employees can accrue and use these benefits. For example, if there is a waiting period for health insurance coverage or vacation days must be taken in blocks of time, this should be made clear.

Secondly, you will want to detail your company's compensation policy in the handbook. This includes information on salaries, bonuses, and raises. Be sure to explain how pay is determined and administered so that employees have a clear understanding of the process. You may also want to include information on commission structures or other forms of incentive-based pay in this section.

Finally, don't forget to mention any fringe benefits your company offers. These might include tuition reimbursement programs, discounts at local businesses, or gym memberships. By listing all of the benefits your company provides, you can help ensure that employees feel valued and appreciated.


Performance Management

Performance management activities that help employees improve their work and become more effective at their jobs. These can include regular check-ins, setting goals, providing feedback, and conducting performance reviews.

When writing your employee handbook, be sure to include a section on performance management. This will let your employees know what is expected of them in terms of their job performance. Include information on how you will evaluate their performance, set goals, and provide feedback.


Free Restaurant Employee Training Templates

Download and install these training templates right into your BarSight account.

Health and Saftey

When writing an employee handbook, be sure to include a section on health and safety. This will ensure that your employees are aware of the dangers of their work environment and how to protect themselves. Include information on the following topics:

  • First aid and emergency procedures

  • Personal protective equipment

  • Hazardous materials (such as MSDS sheets)

  • Safe work practices


Diversity and Inclusion

When writing an employee handbook, it is important to consider diversity and inclusion. This means creating a document that is welcoming and inclusive of all employees, regardless of their background or identity. Here are some tips to help you create a diversity and inclusion policy:

  1. Define what diversity and inclusion mean to your organization.

  2. Outline your organization's commitment to diversity and inclusion.

  3. Describe your organization's procedures for handling complaints of discrimination or harassment.

  4. Include a section on anti-discrimination laws that apply to your workplace.

  5. Provide resources that employees can use to learn more about diversity and inclusion.


We hope that should get the wheels turning on how to draft up an employee handbook or training manual for your restaurant employees.  When your ready to put the pen to paper (so to speak) - use our online employee training platform to create your own training modules for your employees to complete online!

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