How to Make an Employee Handbook Announcement

Clear communication is always important, but especially so when it comes to your HR policies and employee handbook, which serves as a comprehensive resource outlining company policies, procedures, and expectations for both employees and employers.

In this article, we’ll delve into the significance of announcing the release or updates of an employee handbook and provide you with practical tips on how to effectively make this announcement. From ensuring awareness to fostering understanding, we’ll explore the steps necessary to make your employee handbook rollout a success.

Prepare for the Announcement

Before diving into the announcement of your employee handbook, it’s important to make sure you’re fully prepared. Here are some simple yet effective tips to get you ready:

Finalize the Handbook

The first step is to ensure that your employee handbook is complete and up-to-date. Review all policies and procedures, and any recent changes to guarantee accuracy. Take the time to double-check for any inconsistencies or outdated information. A well-polished handbook will instill confidence in your employees and set clear expectations from the get-go.

Plan the Communication Strategy

Next, strategize how you’ll communicate the handbook’s release or updates to your employees. Consider using multiple channels such as email, intranet announcements, or in-person meetings to reach everyone effectively. Tailor your approach to fit the culture and preferences of your organization. Planning ahead ensures that your message is cohesive and reaches all employees promptly.

It’s not enough to simply announce the release of or updates to the employee handbook; it’s equally important to ensure that it’s easily accessible to all employees. Accessibility ensures that everyone has the opportunity to familiarize themselves with company policies and procedures. 

Whether it’s providing physical copies, digital access, or both, make sure that employees can easily reference the handbook whenever needed. Leveraging online handbook providers like Blissbook definitely offers distinct advantages. Online handbooks are accessible 24/7 via a web browser on any device, with a single, easy-to-remember URL. This eliminates the risk of handbooks being lost, forgotten in a drawer, or misplaced on a server or Sharepoint, ensuring continuous accessibility for all employees.

When you prepare thoroughly and prioritize accessibility, you lay the foundation for a successful employee handbook announcement that promotes understanding and compliance across your organization. This allows employees to make informed decisions in alignment with company guidelines.

Create the Announcement

When rolling out a new or updated employee handbook, it’s essential to communicate changes clearly and effectively. Whether you’re launching a brand-new handbook or announcing periodic updates, your announcement should be clear, concise, and engaging. Here are tailored guidelines for both scenarios:

Launching a Brand New Handbook

1. Write Clearly and Concisely

Keep your announcement straightforward and easy to understand. Avoid using jargon or complex language that may confuse employees. Clearly communicate the purpose of the announcement and its significance to the organization. Use bullet points or numbered lists to highlight key information and make it easily digestible.

Here’s what the default (and customizable) announcement email looks like when Blissbook customers launch a handbook on our platform:

Blissbook launch email template

2. Engage Your Audience

Capture the attention of your employees by making the announcement engaging. Incorporate relevant anecdotes or examples to illustrate the importance of the handbook. 

Consider using a friendly and approachable tone to accompany the design of your handbook that reflects your company culture, incorporating visuals, colors, and language that resonate with your employees. 

3. Be Creative

Introduce the handbook through engaging events or creative initiatives that encourage exploration and interaction with the new content. Consider using digital platforms for virtual walkthroughs (e.g. make a Loom video of you walking through the handbook) or interactive Q&A sessions to foster familiarity and ease of use.

Announcing Updates to the Handbook

1. Summarize Updates Clearly

Focus on the changes by outlining what has been updated, the reasons for these updates, and their expected impact. This approach helps employees quickly grasp the significance of the changes and how they apply to their roles.

If you’re using Blissbook, you can skip this by annotating your updated content. Then, in your email or other communication, you can say something as simple as, “When you open the Employee Handbook, you’ll be guided through all the major changes.” This prevents your change notes from being missed, forgotten, or ignored.

2. Engage Your Audience by Illustrating Practical Implications

Connect the updates to practical outcomes and everyday work scenarios. Highlight how specific changes will simplify procedures, enhance benefits, or clarify existing policies, making a tangible impact on daily operations and personal well-being.

For example, if a new work-from-home policy is introduced, discuss how it can lead to better work-life balance or enhanced productivity. Highlighting these benefits can help motivate employees to read through and adhere to the new policies.

Conclude the announcement by encouraging direct engagement, inviting employees to discuss these changes through scheduled sessions or an open-door policy period with the HR team. This not only facilitates a deeper understanding but also demonstrates the organization’s commitment to transparency and responsiveness to employee feedback, thereby building trust and ensuring a cooperative approach to the new policies.

Suggested Mediums to Make the Announcement

If your handbook is electronic, you have a plethora of creative options at your disposal, as you’re primarily trying to direct employees to a digital link. How about hiring one of those airplanes with a banner flying behind it that displays the link? Or organize a company-wide scavenger hunt that ends with the reveal of the new handbook URL. These approaches are a bit elaborate, but they would make the announcement memorable and engaging.

For more practical, lower-effort ideas, explore the following mediums and approaches for your employee handbook announcement:


Send out a company-wide email to detail the release or updates of the employee handbook, using a platform like Blissbook to streamline the process. In your email, include a brief overview of the handbook or its changes and provide a link to the full document. Blissbook not only facilitates the creation and announcement of the handbook through templated emails and automated reminders but also tracks the emails you send, which can be helpful in a legal situation if the employee does not read or sign their handbook.

Additionally, provide clear instructions on how employees can view and sign the handbook, and encourage them to provide feedback or ask questions to promote a two-way communication channel. This approach ensures that both admins and HR staff can easily manage updates and refer back to previous versions as needed.

Company Meeting 

Hold a company-wide meeting or town hall to announce the release or changes. Use visual aids such as slides or handouts to reinforce key points. Allow time for employees to ask questions or seek clarification on any aspects of the handbook.

Consider having your CEO or other leadership be the ones to present the handbook at a meeting like this. If they can’t appear live, try the next option.

CEO Communications

Leverage the influence of your company’s leadership by involving the CEO in the announcement. Consider having the CEO create a personalized video message that can be shared with all employees. In this video, the CEO could highlight the importance of the handbook, or discuss key changes and explain how these updates align with the broader goals and values of the organization. This personal touch not only underscores the significance of the handbook but also boosts engagement, as employees tend to respond positively to direct communication from top leadership.

The video can be distributed through company-wide emails, posted on the internal company portal, and/or included in regular newsletters to ensure it reaches everyone in the organization. Additionally, this approach fosters a sense of community and transparency, reinforcing the leadership’s commitment to the welfare and development of its employees.

Intranet Post 

Utilize your company’s intranet to post an announcement about the employee handbook. Include links to the full document and any additional resources or FAQs. Encourage employees to visit the intranet regularly for updates and announcements.

Other Creative Ways to Make the Announcement

Social Media Post

Utilize your company’s social media platforms to announce your employee handbook. Create engaging posts that can include infographics on key highlights or updates, short video clips from HR, or even live sessions where employees can ask questions in real-time. This approach not only informs but also encourages interaction and feedback, making the announcement more dynamic and accessible.


Feature the launch prominently in your company newsletter. Include a letter from the CEO outlining the importance of the handbook, links to access the handbook digitally, and possibly early feedback or quotes from employees who were involved in the handbook creation process. This keeps the communication formal yet informative.

Include a Themed Email Series

Initiate a themed email series leading up to the launch of the handbook. Each email can focus on a different section of the handbook, highlighting key points and offering practical tips on how to apply the policies in daily work. Use engaging subject lines to ensure high open rates and include interactive content like polls or feedback forms to measure anticipation and gather initial impressions.

Physical Mail or Placement on Desks

For a tactile touch, distribute physical copies of the handbook or place summary booklets on employees’ desks. This method can be particularly effective in environments where digital communication is less emphasized or in situations where a tangible copy is added for easy reference.

Posters with QR Codes

Strategically place posters in common areas within the workplace. These posters can feature QR codes that link directly to the online version of the handbook. This method captures attention visually and provides instant access to the handbook, encouraging employees to explore it in their own time.

Create your own QR code here. If you’re using Blissbook, here’s how you can find the link to your handbook or document.

Interactive Webinar or Handbook Highlight Sessions

Organize a webinar where HR walks employees through the key sections of the handbook. This interactive session can help clarify points and provide a forum for employees to ask questions and provide immediate feedback.

You can also prepare short, informal sessions over a week where team leads or HR personnel highlight crucial aspects of the new handbook. These could be brief 15-minute meetings held during lunch or right before the day ends, designed to accommodate busy schedules while ensuring that all employees have a chance to learn about the new handbook directly from their leaders. Use these sessions to foster open dialogue, allowing employees to ask questions and provide feedback in a relaxed setting.

Office Scavenger Hunt

Create a fun and engaging scavenger hunt around the office with clues related to the handbook’s content. This not only makes learning about the new handbook entertaining but also encourages teamwork and deeper engagement with the handbook’s material.

Handbook Launch Party

Host a launch party or a casual meet-and-greet with snacks and handbook-themed activities. This can include handbook trivia games or a “find that policy” challenge, turning the launch into a community-building event that emphasizes the importance of the handbook in a fun setting.

Cake, cookies, cupcakes, or other swag with a QR Code

Celebrate the launch with a cake that features a QR code icing on top. Employees can scan the code to directly access the digital version of the handbook. This adds a sweet touch to the event and makes the launch memorable.

Create your own QR code here. If you’re using Blissbook, here’s how you can find the link to your handbook or document.

You could also put QR codes on t-shirts or really any other swag you want to hand out to employees.

Video Series Teasers

Produce a series of short teaser videos featuring various team members discussing the impact of specific sections of the new handbook. Release these teasers one by one in the days leading up to the handbook launch. Each video can end with a teaser for the next, creating anticipation and building interest in the new handbook across the organization.

Key Points to Include in the Announcement

When crafting your announcement, be sure to include the following key points to effectively communicate what you want employees to know:

Where to Find the Handbook

Clearly indicate where employees can access the employee handbook, whether it’s through the company intranet, a shared drive, through Blissbook and other software, or physical copies distributed by HR.

If you’re notifying employees via email through platforms like Blissbook, employee handbook software, or any electronic handbook system, each notification includes a special link that employees can use to log right in. This feature simplifies access, making it easy for employees to view the handbook directly from the email without navigating through multiple platforms.

Summary of Significant Changes

If you aren’t launching something brand new but are instead pushing out a regular update, start by providing a brief summary of the significant revisions made to the handbook. Highlight any new policies, procedures, or guidelines that employees need to be aware of. This helps employees understand the importance of reviewing the handbook and familiarizing themselves with the changes.

Try to keep your summary concise, especially if you are using a platform like Blissbook. With Blissbook, you can personalize updates for thousands of employees by attaching digital sticky notes (called annotations) to policies that provide context alongside new or revised content. This approach allows you to say something as simple as, “Please review the updated handbook; changes relevant to you are annotated within the document.” This method ensures clarity and transparency, making it easier for employees to understand and engage with your changes.

Employee Acknowledgements

When it comes to securing employee acknowledgements for the handbook, understanding the differing needs of existing versus new employees is crucial. Existing employees, who are balancing their regular duties with this task to review and sign the new/updated handbook, may not see the handbook as an immediate priority. Typically, a timeframe of around thirty days is appropriate for them. In contrast, new employees, whose immediate tasks include completing onboarding paperwork like your handbook, can be expected to review and acknowledge the handbook much quicker. A shorter timeline of three to seven days is usually sufficient for this group.

Blissbook’s split due date functionality handles this with aplomb! You can assign different signature due dates based on whether an employee is new or not, ensuring that each group receives an appropriate amount of time to review the handbook without feeling overwhelmed. This strategic approach helps streamline the process, making it more efficient while respecting the existing workloads and priorities of all employees.

Leveraging electronic signatures is your most efficient and easiest solution for collecting handbook acknowledgements. However, if you do have a population of employees who require a printed version, or if you need to collect some physical signatures, managers may need to assist in this process. Even in such cases, Blissbook can support your efforts by enabling you to record offline signatures. This feature helps you keep track of who has and hasn’t signed, regardless of whether they do so electronically or on paper.

Follow Up After the Announcement

Once the employee handbook announcement has been made, it’s critical to address any questions or concerns that may arise. Be proactive in providing support and assistance to employees as they familiarize themselves with the handbook. Offer comprehensive help content, such as FAQs or user guides, to address common queries and facilitate understanding.

If you’re using a digital handbook, take full advantage of features like automated reminders for employees who have not yet signed, ensuring timely completion of acknowledgments. This feature streamlines the process without the need for manual follow-up.

Platforms like Blissbook also support manager participation in the compliance process, which can significantly reduce the compliance risk and distribute the responsibility, ensuring it’s not all on your shoulders. We can also provide your team with help documentation that you can provide to your employees to make things easier.

By using these tools, you can ensure a smoother transition to the new handbook while maintaining high levels of compliance, all without overwhelming yourself or your team.

Ongoing Awareness and Adherence to the Handbook

To maintain ongoing awareness and adherence to the handbook, there should be continuous effort beyond the initial announcement. Implement strategies to reinforce the importance of the handbook and encourage regular reference.

This may include scheduling periodic reminders or training sessions, integrating handbook policies into relevant workflows or processes (or vice versa), and celebrating milestones or achievements related to handbook compliance. 

Top 5 Ways to Keep Your People Engaged With Your Handbook in an Ongoing Way

Link to it from your intranet

Make the employee handbook easily accessible by linking it directly from your company’s intranet homepage. This ensures that employees can quickly find and reference the handbook whenever they need it. By making it prominently visible, you encourage regular interaction with the document.

Put it on posters around the office

Use eye-catching posters placed strategically around the office to remind employees about the handbook. Include QR codes on these posters that link directly to the handbook online. This not only promotes awareness but also facilitates immediate access, making it more likely that employees will engage with the content.

Remind people in newsletters

Regularly feature the handbook in your company newsletters. Highlight any recent updates or showcase particular sections that are relevant to current company events or policy changes. This keeps the handbook top of mind and reinforces its importance and relevance to everyday work life.

Leverage ease of updates with electronic handbooks

Take advantage of the flexibility offered by electronic handbooks, which can be updated easily and frequently. Regular updates keep the handbook current and relevant, which is essential for maintaining employee trust and engagement. By continuously integrating the latest information and policies, you ensure the handbook remains a vital resource for everyone in the organization.

Update cultural pieces of your handbook regularly

Keep the content fresh and engaging by updating cultural elements of the handbook regularly. For instance, add a monthly “Employee of the Month” section, update the company timeline with recent achievements, or highlight team-building activities and outcomes. These updates give employees a reason to revisit the handbook regularly and stay connected with the evolving culture of the company.

By implementing these strategies, you can guarantee that your employee handbook remains a living document that is continuously relevant and engaging to your workforce.

Final Thoughts

An effective employee handbook announcement is crucial for nurturing a positive and informed workplace culture. It serves as more than just a procedural step but as a cornerstone for clarity, compliance, and cohesion within the organization.

Blissbook offers a streamlined solution for creating, updating, and distributing employee handbooks. With its intuitive platform and automated features, such as email notifications and signature tracking, Blissbook simplifies the entire process, saving time and ensuring compliance.

It’s time for businesses to take control of their employee handbook management. Create, update, and distribute your employee handbooks effortlessly with Blissbook. Take the first step today by setting up a trial or requesting a demo, and experience firsthand the simplicity and effectiveness of Blissbook’s handbook creation and distribution process. Don’t delay in empowering your workforce and elevating your organization’s culture and compliance standards.


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