Anytime you have to hire someone, you put yourself at risk. Luckily, there are easy ways employers can avoid costly litigation that can arise from employee disputes.
This article discusses 5 simple ways employers can avoid costly litigation.
Take employee complaints seriously.
It doesn't even have to be a complaint about sexual harassment or discrimination. Take any complaint seriously. If your employee is suffering from a hostile work environment, conduct an investigation into the matter. Create a clear and simple policy for handling employee complaints and document everything!
Use an attorney to draft employee contracts, confidentiality agreements, workplace policies, non-competes, and any other important documents.
An attorney should be used to draft important legal documents for your business. If you skip this step because it costs too much money, you may regret it because the legal battles down the line will cost way more. It's better to cover your back early on in anticipation for employees potentially trying to hurt your business. Don't let an employee walk out with trade secrets because you didn't anticipate the possibility. Something like that could crush a startup company.
Maintain a professional environment at work.
As long as you're in the workplace, speak and write in a professional manner. You never know if something you wrote could get out to your employees and come back to bite you. Avoid the possibility by conducting yourself professionally.
Give employees honest feedback.
This is valuable if you even have to let an employee go for poor performance. If you do not give honest feedback regarding their work performance and then decide to terminate them due to their poor performance, you may face a lawsuit. Don't let your written records contradict you. If you keep a written record of all your issues with the employee, you'll have an easier time fighting legal battles against that employee if they falsely claim you terminated them based on discrimination.
5.Train your managers to handle employee disputes.
Minimize problems before they blow up. Invest the time and money to train your managers in best human resources practices. Your managers should be able to diffuse the situation before they become problems. Set up a proper budget so that managers can learn up to date employment regulations, state laws, and company polices. Also, have your managers run yearly training sessions for employees on harassment and discrimination in the workplace.
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