Employee personnel files should include information pertinent to the employee's work performance, along with their personal and employment information. In theory, the employee's personnel file should provide the viewer with a general overview of the employee's overall performance.
Create a section for the employee's personal information such as W-4 withholding information, address, emergency contact information, pay changes, application for employment, offer letter, and resume.
Include all of the employee's performance reviews, both formal and informal. This includes correspondence from customers, awards, and special commendations.
Every time the employee receives disciplinary action, the original document should be placed in their personnel file.
Policies and Procedures
All signed company policies and procedures should be kept in the employee's file. This becomes essential should you be required to document the employee's understanding of a policy or procedure. If the employee signs off on an employee handbook, include the sign-off document in this section.
Non-Medical Benefit Enrollment Forms
Keep enrolment forms for non-medical benefits such as 401(K), tuition reimbursement, flexible spending accounts, along with benefits waivers in the personnel file. Do not include any document that identifies a disability or a medical condition, as that information is protected by employee privacy laws.
What Doesn't Belong in the Personnel File
Create separate files for I-9s, medical, and leave information. It is good practice to only include documents in the file that the employee has seen and, ideally, signed.
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