Facts about the Employment Agreement template

What is a Employment Contract?

After a job candidate accepts a job offer, employers must draw up an employment contract that describes everyone's obligations, rights and responsibilities as long as a relationship exists between employee and employer. With a proper contract, all parties understand their relationship and how to maintain it. General items that appear on most contracts include addresses and names of worker and employer, salary, salary schedule, job responsibilities and requirements, benefits, time off, job title and a confidentiality clause.

One major factor that determines what belongs on a contract is employment type. Permanent full-time employment means the worker meets the state's full-time status requirements and does not have a predetermined employment end date. Permanent part-time employment workers work part time and do not have a predetermined employment end date. Fixed-term and fixed-period employment means that an employee has a predetermined employment end date. Also, neither party bears an obligation to give notice to end employment under fixed-term or -period employment.

Another employment classification is "contract employee." This means a company hires a person for a specific project, but the business relationship and contract end along with the project. Contract employees receive a specific wage as long as they uphold their end of the agreement. Examples of contract employees include copywriters, landscapers, consultants and graphic artists.

What is a Employment Contract used for?

Employment contracts help ensure employer and employee remain on the same page regarding job responsibilities, wages, employer/employee rights and benefits that companies offer. Even if a new hire understands her or his job duties and salary, an employer may create an employment agreement that includes a confidentiality agreement to protect company secrets or sensitive information. Employers who bring on interns or temporary employees should have them sign an agreement so everyone understands the nature of employment and how long the internship or temporary position lasts. Because oral agreements do not offer the same legal protections as written contracts, employers should use employment contracts that reiterate all terms and details of an oral agreement.

Why should you use a Employment Contract?

Without a proper employment agreement, workers and companies may have differing opinions about an employee's job title and responsibilities, which can lead to confusion, frustration and potential legal action. Besides defining job roles, employment contracts also offer all parties legal protection under state employment law. For instance, contracts may explain how to resolve disputes, a specification that can save a lot of time and money. If over time, parties feel that an existing contract no longer serves them, they can renegotiate and sign a new agreement. Without a written contract, employers and employees may have no choice but to handle disputes in court, which could prove expensive and time-consuming.

How to write a Employment Contract?

The contents of an employment contract depend on the specific employment type. Some of the most common elements of an agreement include:

  • Wage Information: The contact should note if a worker receives a salary or an hourly wage. This is also the section of the agreement to include commission information and how often employees receive payment.
  • Non-disclosure or Confidentiality Agreement: Employers should note company information that they classify as confidential, such as designs, products, inventions, pricing, client lists, and trade secrets. Contracts that include a confidentiality or non-disclosure agreement often note how long the agreement lasts.
  • Benefits: Jobs with benefits and perks require a rundown of dental, health and vision insurance. Other examples of benefits include disability and life insurance. Benefits sections also include whether workers receive paid time off, vacation time or personal days.
  • Termination and At-will Employment: If a person is an at-will employee, the employment contract should explain whether the employer must offer a reason for terminating the employee. Companies may also wish to explain their termination policy, including how and whether terminated employees must return company property.
  • Good Faith/Best Efforts Clause: Companies may expect employees to perform to their highest ability at all times. This section of the contract may detail a business's severance package.
  • Conflict of Interest/Non-Compete: Some businesses and employers do not want workers engaging in work that may lead to conflict. For instance, a coffee shop may not want baristas lending their talents to competitors.

How to fill out a Employment Contract with PDFSimpli in five steps?

  • 1: Prepare

    Employers must gather all relevant employee information, such as the person's legal name, Social Security number and current contact information. Referring to a job application or supplementary application materials may provide all the required information. Companies must also decide what employment type the contract covers.

  • 2: Choose a Software

    Software either helps or hinders employment agreement creation. Rather than a standard PDF editor or word processor, companies should rely on top-quality software, such as PDFSimpli. The program makes it easy for users to edit, create, download, save and sign their PDF files at their own convenience. PDFSimpli offers access to all tools during a free trial period, including choosing from various agreement templates.

  • 3: Edit or Fill the Employment Contract

    After selecting a template, users can choose specific open boxes on the document and edit or enter text. PDFSimpli makes it easy to edit existing text by using the "text" tool, selecting the text to change, and using the "erase" tool to delete sections. An employer may have to enlist help from an HR representative to include all relevant files and documents.

  • 4: Review

    Employers and employees should take time to review a completed employment agreement, enlisting help from an HR representative if necessary. Besides contact information and names, users should also double-check that an agreement includes necessary images or supplementary documents, such as certification or a professional license. This is the stage to make all final edits and additions.

  • 5: Save, Download, Print or Send for Signature

    After a final review, it is time to save the final contract draft and download it for safekeeping. Then, employers should print the document, sign it and have the new employee sign. PDFSimpli makes it easy to add an electronic signature. In addition to saving the document to a computer, companies may need to print a contract and add it to an employee's file.

Employment Contract frequently asked questions

To further determine whether a new employee matches a business's company culture, an employer may require that new hires complete a probationary period. Besides fitting in well with the company, this period lets business owners determine whether new team members possess the proper skills and education to fulfill their role. During the probationary period, employers reserve the right to terminate the employee without cause or offering severance pay. After the period ends and all parties agree to maintain their professional relationship, employees qualify for any benefits that the position offers. Successfully completing a probationary period also means that moving forward, the employer must have proper grounds to terminate an employee, give an employee notice of termination and offer severance pay to qualifying workers.

Also referred to as "contract employees," independent contractors do not have the same rights as standard employees, nor do employers owe contractors the same obligations as they do employees. For instance, companies do not have to pay state or federal income taxes for contract employees. Employers may not have a say in when contractors perform their work, and companies do not have to provide contractors with tools to complete their duties.

Employees must often work during specific hours, and they usually have specific premises where they work. State law may determine how companies must pay employees.

Other than a non-compete clause, an employment agreement may include a non-solicitation clause. Such clauses prevent employees from persuading customers or other employees to work for or give their business to a competitor. Valid clauses must meet certain regulations and last for a specific time, such as two years from the end of employment termination.