Byte of Prevention Blog

by Jay Reeves |

Four Choices for a DIY Employee Handbook

One big mistake law firms make when designing an employee handbook is to forget the handbook is a living document that must change over time as the firm changes.

Handbooks that are set in stone will create headaches.

“The employee handbook is the first opportunity an organization has to establish a healthy work culture by outlining the organization's history, goals, vision, and values in one place,” according to business writer Kaytlyn Mroz. “What could be considered as background information about the organization can ultimately help foster a sense of belonging for employees.”

Some things to keep top of mind when creating a employee handbook for your small firm:

  • Make it work for you.
  • Follow the Rules of Professional Conduct.
  • Set expectations early.
  • Outline key codes of conduct, procedures, and responsibilities.
  • Explain benefits, vacation, and insurance issues.
  • Include must-have policies and procedures (anti-harassment, anti-discrimination, workers’ comp, health and safety, remote work, computers and tech, holiday and leave)

Read “Employee Handbook Templates for Your Small Business” here.

The practice of law is always changing. But for lawyers in North Carolina, one thing has remained constant for nearly 40 years. Lawyers Mutual is here for you at every stage of your law career: from your first day on the job to your last day before retirement. Our Byte of Prevention blog features industry news, tips and valuable links on everything from work-life balance to winding down your practice. Our email newsletter “Practice Reimagined” brings cutting-edge insights straight to your in-box. And our skilled team of underwriters, claims counsel and risk management professionals are by your side when you need us most. Lawyers helping lawyers. It’s who we are, and it’s what we’ve been doing since 1977.


Four DIY Handbook Suggestions

Here are four software products to create an employee handbook. Hat tip to the US Chamber of Commerce CO for these recommendations.

  • Betterteam. Download the template, input the information and presto, your handbook is ready.
  • Xtensio. This is a more robust package with full-spectrum capabilities of videos, charts and links.
  • Document360. Here is an employee handbook that exists as a website.
  • Guru. This product offers customizable templates and resources for remote and hybrid employees.

Source: How to Create an Employee Handbook (


While a lot has changed since the company was founded in 1978, the one thing that hasn’t changed is the importance of our relationships with our insureds. We want our insureds to see us as trusted advisors who will work with them to deal with the daily challenges of practicing law. There is a great ongoing research study at Harvard that, for the past 80 years, has been looking at what contributes to happiness and longevity. The study reveals that the single best predictor of happiness and longevity is good relationships. It turns out that genuine connection with other people makes us happier, healthier and more successful.” – Will Graebe, Lawyers Mutual Relationship Manager


About the Author

Jay Reeves

Jay Reeves practiced law in North Carolina and South Carolina. He was Legal Editor at Lawyers Weekly and Risk Manager at Lawyers Mutual. He is the author of The Most Powerful Attorney in the World, a collection of short stories from a law life well-lived, which as the seasons pass becomes less about law and liability and more about loss, love, longing, laughter and life's lasting luminescence.

Read More by Jay >

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