1. A warm welcome paragraph including their job title and who they report to.
2. You could highlight their job responsibilities and/or include an attached job description. Be sure that the job description lists "other duties as assigned." You may also want to add their basic work hours.
3. Compensation: If they're an hourly/non-exempt employee, present the wage in hourly terms. If they're a salaried/exempt employee, present their wage per pay period. Do not tell them that their annual salary is $xx,xxx - although you can state that it is "annualized to $xx,xxx." This avoids guaranteeing them 12 months of pay when they work fewer months.
4. Noncompete Agreements: In order for these agreements to be enforceable, they must be discussed with the employee prior to the offer of employment. So, if you've discussed the agreement with the candidate, you should include the agreement with the offer letter.
5. Confidentiality Agreement: If this is also a requirement of employment, then include this agreement with the offer letter.
6. An outline of Insured Benefits is common. Most candidates want to know when their coverage will begin. Just be sure to state that the details of the benefits are included in the benefits plan documents.
7. An outline of Time Off Benefits is also common. The same applies as in #5 above, be sure to reference your employee handbook for the details of the benefits.
8. Many letters include I-9 requirements and a reminder to employees to bring their identification with them.
9. Orientation and first-day reporting details are always useful in this letter. That way the new employee arrives at the right time and asks for the right person.
It's also nice to follow up the offer letter with with a phone call to confirm that the candidates received the letter and to answer any other questions they may have. That personal touch goes far when someone is determining whether to join your company.
Copyright (c) 2009 Arlene Vernon, HRx, Inc.