Employee Handbooks Can Help Retailers Meet Unique Compliance Challenges

employee handbookAs if high turnover rates, seasonal demand and supply chain management weren’t difficult enough, retail employers face a variety of compliance challenges that are unique to their industry.

Some states and municipalities have enacted requirements that apply specifically — and sometimes even exclusively — to the retail sector. These requirements involve things like scheduling, work days, meal and rest breaks and more.

An up-to-date employee handbook that reflects these retail-specific requirements is a key tool for HR professionals working to help their companies comply and stay out of court.

XpertHR’s Employee Handbooks tool offers sample statements that a retail employer can customize, as well as real-world guidance on how to implement them in the workplace.

Among them are statements addressing:

  • Laws in Massachusetts and Rhode Island that prohibit certain retailers from requiring employees to work on Sunday or on certain holidays and require them to pay overtime if employees do work on those days;
  • A San Francisco ordinance that, among other things, requires certain retailers to provide new employees with a written good faith estimate of their expected minimum number of scheduled shifts per month, as well as the days and hours of those shifts;
  • A Maryland law that requires certain retail employers to offer meal and rest breaks to employees; and
  • A North Dakota law that requires retail establishments to allow employees at least 24 consecutive hours of time off each seven-day period and to accommodate employees’ religious practices.

Of course, these are in addition to the more broadly applicable federal, state and local requirements that should be reflected in all employee handbooks.

Perhaps the most significant of these for retail employers are the upcoming Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime rules currently set to take effect December 1. The National Retail Federation has estimated that 2.2 million retail and restaurant workers will be affected by the new rules.

What does your retail company do to keep its employee handbook up to date? Let us know by leaving a comment below.


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