Employee Handbooks Are Giving HR Departments A Headache, Survey Shows

May 5, 2022 10:15 AM ET

Employee Handbooks Are Giving HR Departments A Headache, Survey Shows 

More than six in 10 employers struggle to get employees to read the employee handbook 

New York City (May 5, 2022) – A new survey published by XpertHR suggests HR departments have an employee handbook headache. When it comes to handbook-related challenges, getting employees to read it, keeping it compliant with state law and training managers for its enforcement are the top three challenges HR managers face. As reported in XpertHR’s 2022 Employee Handbook survey, over three-fifths of employers rated the following issues as “somewhat” or “very” challenging:
XpertHR_Handbooks 2022_ChallengesChart

  • Getting employees to read the handbook (68%),  
  • Keeping their employee handbooks compliant with state law (66%), and 
  • Providing training for managers so they can enforce the handbook (64%). 

According to XpertHR Senior Legal Editor, Policy Solutions, Melissa Silver, JD, the challenge of training opens a window of opportunity for employers. The survey found that nearly one-half (47%) of employers do not provide any employee handbook training. 

“Employee handbooks don’t just cover company values and culture, benefits and compliance, but they also inform employees of work rules and expectations. If managers do not enforce work rules uniformly, this could expose a company to litigation,” Silver said. “Our data suggests a real need for HR teams to train managers on the role of the employee handbook and how to properly enforce the policies within the handbook.”  

The survey also revealed the methods HR departments use for both distributing the employee handbook and encouraging employees to read the handbook.  

  • Employee intranet, hard copy and email comprise the top three ways organizations distribute their handbooks and revisions.  
  • The top two ways organizations encourage employees to read the handbook are: requiring them to acknowledge receipt of the handbook (91%) and encouraging them to read it during onboarding (70%).  

XpertHR’s Employee Handbooks Survey 2022 was conducted from February 22 to March 18, 2022. The survey included responses from 366 U.S. employers of various industries and workforce sizes, representing over 460,000 workers. The survey report explores the critical subject of employee handbooks, such as preparation, distribution, approaches to multi-jurisdictional compliance, challenges, resources and more.

Editor’s Note:
Melissa Silver, JD, Senior Legal Editor, Policy Solutions at XpertHR, is available for interview. If you use any of this material, please include this link. 

 XpertHR_Handbooks 2022_TrainingChart

Image caption: Almost half (47%) of employers do not train employees on handbook content, according to recent XpertHR research.    

About XpertHR:
XpertHR has been providing HR solutions since 2002, empowering organizations across the globe to build successful workforces and create a purposeful workplace for all. The platform delivers expert insight, trusted resources, data analysis and practical tools to help achieve greater efficiency, reduce risk, and increase employee engagement. XpertHR is developing smarter data analysis tools and cutting-edge technology to support future demands on HR in an increasingly digital world. To learn more, visit xperthr.com. 

Media Contact:
Lauren Doyle



Contact Information

Name: Lauren Doyle
Email: ldoyle@wordsworthweb.com
Job Title: Communication Specialist