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When to Update Employee Handbooks and HR Policies in Iowa

And why to consider an employment attorney when doing so

A company’s employee handbook and/or formalized HR policies play an essential role in business operations. These documents serve as a guide for office protocol. A well-crafted employee handbook can help you limit issues in the workplace. Employers should review and, if necessary, revise their employee handbook on a regular basis. Here, you will find an overview of the four main reasons why companies and organizations in Iowa need an updated employee handbook and HR policies.

Four Reasons Why Every Company Needs a Fully Updated Handbook and/or HR Policies

If a business or organization is operating with an outdated employee handbook, major problems can arise. Both the employer and its employees may be vulnerable. Here are four key reasons why employers in Iowa should update their handbook and/or HR policies regularly:

  1. Legal Changes: An employee handbook should be fully consistent with federal law (such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964) and state law (such as the Iowa Civil Rights Act). Of course, there are many other labor & employment regulations on the books. These laws can and do change. It is crucial that your company’s handbook and HR policies are fully compliant.
  2. Cultural Changes: Beyond legal changes, the general culture also changes. The best practices of three decades ago may not be applicable. As an example, a seemingly simple thing like a dress code can grow outdated over time.
  3. Company Changes: An employee handbook should be updated to reflect any changes to the company. This is essential because many state and federal employment laws only apply to employers of a certain size. When a company grows, it may face different labor and employment law requirements.
  4. Technology Changes: Finally, it is important to note that technology in the workplace is fast-changing. Make sure that your company’s employee handbook and HR policies consider technology. For instance, many companies have expanded their use of Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and other video conferencing over the last year. An employee handbook may need to be updated to address these technological changes.

It is a best practice for employers to review (and, if needed, revise) their employee handbook and HR policies on an annual basis. Additionally, there should be a review when there are significant changes—such as a new law or a major change to the company’s day-to-day operations.

An Employment Attorney Will Ensure Your Employee Handbook Protects Your Company

Drafting an effective employee handbook is a complicated task. There are a number of different potential pitfalls that a company or organization can run into. An employment attorney will ensure that your company’s handbook is fully updated and properly crafted. If you have any questions about updating an employee handbook and/or HR policies, contact an experienced Iowa employment & labor attorney for immediate assistance.

For more information about employment and labor law, read our overview article.

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