This handbook isn’t about fringe benefits or how to set up your workstation or where to find source code. Forrester™ works in ways that might seem counter intuitive at first. This handbook is about the choices you’re going to be making and how to think about them. Mainly, it’s about how not to freak out now that you’re here.
Once you have gone through the sections of this book, please help us make it better for our next group of new employees. We appreciate any suggestions for new sections or ideas on changes to be made to the existing sections. Please, add to the glossary if you come across something you think needs to be included. Let us know of any ideas you have for improving our employee handbook, and we will make the changes together.
So you’ve gone through the interview process, you’ve signed the agreements, and you’re finally here at Forrester™. Congratulations, and welcome. Forrester™ has an incredibly unique way of doing things that will make this the greatest professional experience of your life, but it can take some getting used to. This book was written by people who’ve been where you are now, and who want to make your first few months here as easy as possible.
Forrester™ is self-funded. We haven’t ever brought in outside financing. Since our earliest days this has been incredibly important in providing freedom to shape the company and its business practices. Forrester™ owns its intellectual property. This is far from the norm, in our industry or at most entertainment content-producing companies. We didn’t always own it all. But thanks to some legal wrangling, we now do. This has freed us to make our own decisions about our products and subsidiaries. Forrester™ is more than a global media consolidator. We started our existence as a pretty traditional Business Services company. And we’re still one, but with a hugely expanded focus. Which is great, because we get to create better products as a result, and we’ve also been able to diversify. But mostly, we’re a company full of passionate people who love the services we offer.
Welcome to Forrester™ (hereinafter referred to as "Company"). We hope that you enjoy your position with us and that it will prove beneficial to both you and the Company. We offer our best wishes for your future success. We hope you will be just as proud to be a member of our organization as we are to have you.
II. Company Policy
To provide our customers with consistently high quality products and friendly, competent service.
To provide all our employees with equal opportunities for advancement.
To provide you with good working conditions, to pay you a fair wage and to promote your welfare.
To produce a profit for the Company's future growth and the stockholders' investment.
Effective: January 1, 2015
III. Purpose of This Handbook
This handbook is for the information and use of all employees of the Company. It contains the policies of the Company relating to hours, compensation, employee benefits and conditions of employment, and provides a reference manual that should be followed by the Company and its employees. Company policies are operating practices and procedures of the Company. These policies have been established for the benefit of the employees and management in order to provide the best working conditions possible.
THE LANGUAGE OF THIS HANDBOOK AND THE RULES AND POLICIES STATED WITHIN ARE NOT INTENDED TO CREATE, NOR DO THEY CONSTITUTE, A CONTRACT IMPLIED OR EXPRESSED BETWEEN THE COMPANY AND ANY OF ITS EMPLOYEES. THE POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE NOT UNCHANGEABLE. IF CIRCUMSTANCES ARISE THAT WARRANT CONSIDERATION OF A CHANGE IN POLICIES OR PROCEDURES, EMPLOYEES SHOULD BRING SUCH CIRCUMSTANCES TO THE ATTENTION OF MANAGEMENT. THIS HANDBOOK AND THE RULES AND POLICIES CONTAINED IN IT ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE AT ANY TIME WITHIN THE SOLE DISCRETION OF MANAGEMENT.
EMPLOYMENT AT THE COMPANY IS ON AN "AT WILL" BASIS AND MAY BE TERMINATED BY THE COMPANY OR THE EMPLOYEE AT ANY TIME FOR ANY REASON, WITH OR WITHOUT “JUST CAUSE”. ANY CHANGE TO THIS AT WILL EMPLOYMENT STATUS, INCLUDING EMPLOYMENT FOR A PARTICULAR REASON, MAY BE GRANTED ONLY WITH THE SPECIFIC PRIOR WRITTEN APPROVAL OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE COMPANY.
It is the duty of the management to administer fairly without discrimination these policies, and all employees are expected to abide by and follow these policies. In the event you have any questions concerning the application of any procedure or policy, you should first ask your supervisor, if possible. Any employee who feels that a policy has not been administered in accordance with this handbook should refer the problem directly to his/her supervisor or to another member of management. No employee shall be penalized or discriminated against in any way for having requested consideration of the application of these policies or questioning the application of a policy in any situation.
Management intends that justice and fair dealing be the practice as well as the policy of the Company. Every employee should feel free to discuss his or her problems and any policies contained in this handbook with members of management. We welcome suggestions from you that will aid in maintaining constructive and harmonious relationships throughout the Company.
Please read this handbook carefully and review it with whomever you like-your family, your fellow employees, or your supervisor. If you have any questions, please bring them to the Employee Relations Office/Human Resources Department. When you have completed your review, please sign the form at the end of the handbook stating that you have reviewed the handbook, understand its contents, and agree to abide by it. Please return the form to the Human Resources Department.
IV. What You Can Expect From the Company
A. Company Policies
1. Labor Policy
The Labor Policy of the Company is one of open communications between all levels of employees within the organization. Each employee has the right to deal with members of management with reference to all working conditions. No employee is required to obtain any other person or organization to represent him or her in the presentation of problems or questions of regarding the application of the Company's working policies. No employee need pay to any person or to any organization any contribution or assessment for the right to work here. Management does not and will not discriminate against any employee because of membership or non-membership in any organization, whether it is religious, fraternal, professional or social. Each employee has the right to bring any problems to the attention of his or her supervisor or to any member of management. It is the duty of management to aid and assist whenever possible, in the solution of any problems or in the working stages of suggestions. It is by solving our problems and capitalizing on suggestions that progress is made.
The management has attempted to provide the best conditions of employment, the most satisfactory tools and the most opportunity for advancement for each employee. It is the policy of the Company to compensate each employee in accordance with his or her work effort, ability and skill, and to provide him or her with every opportunity for training and development.
2. Hiring Policy
The Company hires individuals on the basis of their qualifications and expectations as to their ability to complete the responsibilities and tasks of the job that they are to occupy. Unless otherwise provided in writing, employment with the Company is considered to be at will, so that either party may terminate the relationship at any time and for any lawful reason.
The Hiring Policy of this Company includes the following:
a. Equal Employment Policy
The Company is an equal opportunity employer. It is our policy to grant equal employment opportunities to qualified persons without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy, age, veterans' or military status or non-job physical or mental handicap or disability or other classification protected by applicable federal, state or local laws, except where there is a bona fide occupational disability. The Company will provide equal opportunities in employment, promotion, wages, benefits and all other privileges, terms and conditions of employment. All recruiting, hiring, training, and promoting for all job classifications is done without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age or national origin except when a bona fide occupational qualification exist. All decisions on employment are made to further the principle of equal employment. All promotion decisions will continue to be made in accordance, with Equal Employment Opportunity principles, and only valid job requirements will be used.
b. Conflict of Interest (Please click to be directed to our Conflict of Interest Page)
All persons employed by the Company owe a duty of fidelity to the Company. Employees must never place themselves in a position where their self-interest may conflict with this duty. Any employee who breaches this policy is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including discharge.
c. Anti-Nepotism Policies
Under the Company's Anti-nepotism policy, no relative may exert influence over a relative's hiring, salary, or promotion.
"Relative" is defined as a member of an individual's family, including wife, husband, son, daughter, mother, father, brother, sister, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, mother-in-law, father-in-law, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, grandmother, grandfather, stepparent, and stepchild.
Employees may engage in other employment provided it does not interfere with duties as an Employee of the Company or impair the ability of the Employee to perform Company duties.
e. Introductory Period
The first 90 Days of your job at the Company are considered an introductory period and will be used to confirm what you have indicate and what we believe are your skills, capabilities and suitability for our Company. Likewise, this gives new employees the opportunity to evaluate the Company as a place to work. During this time, paid employees will receive life insurance benefits and retirement plan participation, but you will not be eligible for other benefits.
f. Standards of Conduct (Please click to be directed to our Standards of Conduct Page)
It is anticipated that Company employees will apply themselves fully to their work. Included in this assumption is that employees will report to work punctually as scheduled, perform their work assignments in a timely and professional manner, and follow all the Company policies, procedures, and practices.
Conduct that interferes with operations will not be tolerated. Simply put, “Work time is for Work”. If you are being paid for the time you should be as productive as possible during that time.
The Standards of Conduct are designed to be used to encourage the appropriate work behaviors and to discourage the inappropriate work behaviors. For the most part, they follow the principles of positive rewards and negative consequences. Progressive discipline, will be the primary method of administering negative consequences.
Forrester™ values the efforts of all employees. However; there are times that all of us need to redirect our efforts back to the requirement to produce the highest quality product at the price point our customers demand. When that happens, we may need to resort to corrective discipline. This policy outlines the features of that program. Please note that the Progressive Disciplinary Process is separate and apart from the Attendance Program.
Progressive Disciplinary Steps:
A written warning is the first step in the disciplinary process. It documents the offense and remains "active" for subsequent disciplinary actions for a period of six (6) months from the date it was issued. After six months it is removed from consideration for any further action unless an accumulation of written warnings would lead to the conclusion that a pattern of poor conduct exists.
A suspension is a very serious step in the process. It can be considered a final warning and it remains "active" for subsequent disciplinary actions for a period of twelve (12) months from the date it was issued. After twelve months it is removed from consideration for any further action unless an accumulation of suspensions would lead to the conclusion that a pattern of poor conduct exists.
A discharge is the most serious disciplinary action and it is the final step in the process. It may be preceded by an announcement that the offense is serious enough that the employee must be suspended immediately, pending investigation, with a view to discharge. A discharge under the Progressive Disciplinary program will make the employee ineligible for rehire with Forrester™.
Progressive Disciplinary Levels:
These are the common infractions of work rules. Examples could be slow speed of production or careless work or errors in record keeping. They are the kinds of violations that happen when a worker is just not paying as careful attention to the work as the work requires. There is not any element of intentional harm present. Standard violations follow all three steps of the Disciplinary Process.
These are far less common and are far more serious violations of the work rules. Good examples of these kinds of violations would be insubordination or disruption of the workforce. In these kind of infractions there is an element of intent. That is, it is clear that the worker intended to challenge the authority of Forrester™ Management or the success of the operations. Expedited violations go immediately to a Suspension level.
These are relatively rare violations of the work rules and are considered so serious that they warrant immediate action. Examples of this type violation would be any illegal activity, theft, sabotage, assault on another employee. These tend to be very dangerous to the well-being of other employees and the welfare of Forrester™. An Immediate violation may be begin with a suspension, pending investigation, with a view to discharge.
If you have been subject to a disciplinary action and you believe that it was not appropriate, please speak to your supervisor. If you cannot resolve it, please feel free to utilize Forrester™'s Employee Complaint Procedure.
g. Employee Reference and Background Checks
The Company will perform reference checks on all employees. A background investigation to evaluate a job candidate's qualifications, character, fitness and any criminal history that might indicate a potential hiring risks for safety and security reasons will also be performed. A background investigation will require your consent and you will be given a copy of the results. They will certainly include criminal history, social security number trace and past employment verification. For certain positions, they may also require a credit check.
h. Health Examinations
The Company employing units may require periodic physical examinations and/or tests to certify an Employee's continued ability to perform job duties or to serve as a measure of disease control. The costs of these examinations and/or tests are the responsibility of the Company. If there is reasonable cause to believe that an Employee has an illness that can be detrimental to other staff, the Company may require the Employee to have a health examination to indicate whether the Employee has such an illness.
i. Immigration Law ComplianceThe Company does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of citizenship or national origin but, at the same time is committed to employing only those candidates who can demonstrate that they are authorized to work in the U.S. In compliance with the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Each new employee, as a condition of employment, must complete the Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 and present documentation establishing identity and employment eligibility.
3. Employee Virtual Policy
Employees are expected to log on and off the system based on their agreed work schedule. The employee agrees to be accessible by phone and email within a reasonable time period during agreed upon work schedule. Consistent variations in accessibility will be viewed as a performance issue and managed as such. Their calendar must reflect weekly work schedule and must be posted two weeks in advance.
Employees must report immediately all technical/ computer related issues to their supervisors via phone.
Although internet outages are out of everyone's control, employees have the option of connecting to an alternate internet connection. Consistent outages (three times a month) go against Forrester’s™ employment contract and will result in immediate termination. The same goes for computer technical difficulties. If an employee is unable to use his or her computer for some reason, this employee must use other resources to continue with work until the situation is resolved.
Employees are expected to work Monday-Friday and between the hours of 9am-5pm EST.
Employees are expected to treat all other employees with integrity, trust and respect at all times.
4. Internet Policy
Forrester™ employees must use the Internet for work every day. It’s essential that each employee is logged onto the system during designated hours to be able to do his or her job, and to communicate with other employees. The purpose of the following policy is to ensure the proper use of the Company's internet system and make its employees and users aware of what the Company deems as acceptable and unacceptable use of its internet system. This policy also provides for sanctions in the event of a breach or violation of the policy terms hereunder.
This Policy applies to all users of company technology, including employees, contractors, vendors, partners, associates, and any other parties accessing or using the Company's System through on-site or remote terminals.
Disclaimer of liability for use of Internet.
The Company is not responsible for material viewed or downloaded by users from the Internet. The Internet is a worldwide network of computers that contains millions of pages of information. Users are cautioned that many of these pages include offensive, sexually explicit, and inappropriate material. In general, it is difficult to avoid at least some contact with this material while using the Internet. Even innocuous search requests may lead to sites with highly offensive content. In addition, having an e-mail address on the Internet may lead to receipt of unsolicited e-mail containing offensive content. Users accessing the Internet do so at their own risk.
Duty not to waste computer resources.
Employees must not deliberately perform acts that waste computer resources or unfairly monopolize resources to the exclusion of others. These acts include, but are not limited to, sending mass mailings or chain letters, spending excessive amounts of time on the Internet, playing games, engaging in online chat groups, printing multiple copies of documents, or otherwise creating unnecessary network traffic. Because audio, video and picture files require significant storage space, files of this or any other sort may not be downloaded unless they are business-related.
No expectation of privacy.
The computers and computer accounts given to employees are the exclusive property of the Company. No individual should have any expectation of privacy in any communication over this System. The System is to be used solely for company-related business, and is not to be used for personal business or pleasure.
Monitoring computer usage.
The Company reserves the right to monitor, intercept and/or review all data transmitted, received or downloaded over the System. Any individual who is given access to the System is hereby given notice that the Company will exercise this right periodically, without prior notice and without the prior consent of the employee. The Company's interests in monitoring and intercepting data include, but are not limited to: protection of company proprietary and classified data; managing the use of the Company's computer System; preventing the transmission or receipt of inappropriate materials by employees; and/or assisting the employee in the management of electronic data during periods of absence. No individual should interpret the use of password protection as creating a right or expectation of privacy. In order to protect everyone involved, no one can have a right or expectation of privacy with regards to the receipt, transmission or storage of data on the Company's Internet System.
Blocking of inappropriate content.
Company may use software to identify inappropriate or sexually explicit Internet sites. Such sites may be blocked from access by Company networks. In the event you nonetheless encounter inappropriate or sexually explicit material while browsing on the Internet, immediately disconnect from the site, regardless of whether the site was subject to company blocking software.
Material that is fraudulent, harassing, embarrassing, sexually explicit, profane, obscene, intimidating, defamatory, or otherwise unlawful, inappropriate, offensive (including offensive material concerning sex, race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability, or other characteristic protected by law), or in violation of Company's equal employment opportunity policy and its policies against sexual or other harassment may not be downloaded from the Internet or displayed or stored in Company's computers. Employees encountering, witnessing or receiving this kind of material should immediately report the incident to their immediate supervisor, by phone at (347) 440-1190 or email at info@ForresterCorporation.com. Company's equal employment opportunity policy and its policies against sexual or other harassment apply fully to the use of the Internet and any violation of those policies is grounds for discipline up to and including discharge.
Games and entertainment software.
Employees may not use the Company's Internet connection to download games or other entertainment software, including wallpaper and screensavers, or to play games over the Internet.
Employees may not illegally copy material protected under copyright law or make that material available to others for copying. You are responsible for complying with copyright law and applicable licenses that may apply to software, files, graphics, documents, messages, and other material you wish to download or copy. You may not agree to a license or download any material for which a registration fee is charged without first obtaining the express written permission of your immediate supervisor and Human Resources.
Accessing the Internet.
To ensure security and to avoid the spread of viruses, employees accessing the Internet through a computer attached to Company's network must do so through an approved Internet firewall. Accessing the Internet directly by modem is strictly prohibited unless the computer you are using is not connected to the Company's network.
Files obtained from sources outside the Company, including disks brought from home; files downloaded from the Internet, newsgroups, bulletin boards, or other online services; files attached to e-mail; and files provided by customers or vendors may contain dangerous computer viruses that may damage the Company's computer network. Employees should never download files from the Internet, accept e-mail attachments from outsiders, or use disks from non-company sources, without first scanning the material with company-approved virus checking software. If you suspect that a virus has been introduced into the Company's network, notify us via the main line immediately.
Sending unsolicited email (spamming).
Without the express permission of their supervisors, employees may not send unsolicited e-mail to persons with whom they do not have a prior relationship.
Amendments and revisions.
This policy may be amended or revised from time to time as the need arises. Users will be provided with copies of all amendments and revisions.
Violations of this policy.
Any employee who abuses the privilege of access to the Company's Voicemail, E-mail or the Internet System will be subject to Progressive Discipline, up to and including termination. If necessary, the Company also will advise law enforcement officials of any illegal conduct.
Use of Internet.
Use of the Internet via Company's computer system constitutes consent by the user to all of the terms and conditions of this policy.
Points of Contact.
Questions concerning the use of the Internet System should be directed to Department Supervisor, by phone at (347) 440-1190 or email at info@Forrester. Questions concerning the improper use of the System should be directed to the employee's immediate supervisor and Director of Security Operations, by phone at (347) 440-1190 or email at employment@ForresterCorporation.com.
5. Email Policy
The purpose of this policy is to ensure the proper use of the Company's email system and make the users (defined below) aware of what the Company deems as acceptable and unacceptable use of its email system. This policy also provides for sanctions in cases of breach of violation of the policy terms.
This policy applies to the use of the Company's email services by the users at the Company's offices, as well as remote locations, including, but not limited to, the users homes, airports, hotels, and client offices.
All company employees, full-time or part-time, independent contractors, interns, consultants, clients, and other third parties who have been granted the right to use the Company's email services are defined as the users for the purpose of this policy and are required to sign this agreement confirming their understanding and acceptance of this policy.
Email Accounts are the Property of the Company.
All email accounts maintained on the Company's email systems are property of the Company. Company has the right to read and keep a record of any emails that users transmit via the Company's email system.
E-mail exists for Business Purposes only.
The Company allows its e-mail access primarily for business purposes. The users may use the Company's email system for personal use only in accordance with this policy.
Authorized Personal Email Use.
Although the Company's email system is meant only for business use, the Company permits the reasonable use of email for personal use subject to the following guidelines.
i. Personal use of email should not interfere with work. Employees can send them only during non-work hours.
ii. Personal emails must also adhere to the guidelines in this policy.
iii. Personal emails are kept in a separate folder, named Private. The emails in this folder must be deleted weekly so as not to clog up the system.
iv. The forwarding of chain letters, junk mail, jokes and executables is strictly forbidden.
v. On average, users are not allowed to send more than the number of personal emails a day as fixed by the Company.
vi. Personal emails are allowed; but not encouraged.
Unacceptable use of Email.
The following acts shall constitute unacceptable use of the email system of the Company:
i. Use of the Company's communications systems to for a personal business or send chain letters;
ii. Forwarding of the Company's confidential messages to external locations;
iii. Distributing, disseminating or storing images, text or materials that might be considered indecent, pornographic, obscene or illegal;
iv. Distributing, disseminating or storing images, text or materials that might be considered discriminatory, offensive or abusive, in that the context is a personal attack, sexist or racist, or might be considered as harassment;
v. Accessing copyrighted information in a way that violates the copyright;
vi. Breaking into the Company's or another organization's’ system or unauthorized use of a password/mailbox;
vii. Broadcasting unsolicited personal views on social, political, religious or other non- business related matters;
viii. Using email to operate another business, conduct an external job search, or solicit money for personal gain;
ix. Transmitting unsolicited commercial or advertising material;
x. Undertaking deliberate activities that waste staff effort or networked resources; and
xi. Introducing any form of computer virus or malware into the corporate network;
xii. The deletion of Corporate Emails is strictly prohibited.
Legal Risks Involved.
Email is a business communication tool and the users are obliged to use this tool in a responsible, effective, and lawful manner. Although by its nature email seems to be less formal than other written communication, similar laws apply. Therefore, it is important that users are aware of the following legal risks of e-mail. Both the user and the Company can be held liable for:
i. Sending emails with any libelous, defamatory, offensive, racist or obscene remarks;
ii. Forwarding emails with any libelous, defamatory, offensive, racist or obscene remarks;
iii. Unlawfully forwarding confidential information of others;
iv. Copyright infringement for unlawfully forwarding or copying messages without permission; and
v. Sending an attachment that contains a virus.
The above list does not enumerate all the legal risks involved. However, by following the guidelines provided in this policy, the users can minimize the legal risks involved in the use of e-mail. If any user disregards the rules set out in this Email Policy, Company can take corrective action up to and including termination of employment.
The Company considers email an important means of communication and recognizes the importance of appropriate email content and prompt replies in conveying a professional image and delivering good customer service. Therefore, the Company institutes the following guidelines for users to adhere to:
i. All email messages sent on company equipment should be professional and appropriate;
ii. Write well-structured emails and use short, descriptive subjects;
iii. The Company's email style is informal. This means that sentences can be short and to the point. However; the use of Internet abbreviations and characters such as smileys is not encouraged;
iv. Signatures must include your name, job title and company name. A disclaimer will be added underneath your signature (see Disclaimer);
v. Use the spell checker before you send out an email;
vi. Do not send unnecessary attachments. Compress larger attachments before sending them;
vii. Do not write emails in capitals;
viii. If you forward mails, state clearly what action you would like the recipient to take;
ix. Only send emails of which the content could be displayed on a public notice board. If they cannot be displayed publicly in their current state, consider rephrasing the email, using other means of communication, or protecting information by using a password;
x. Only mark emails as important if they really are important;
Replying to Emails.
i. Emails that require a reply should be answered at the earliest possible time;
ii. Prioritize emails from existing customers and business partners;
The users need to request permission from their supervisor before subscribing to a newsletter or newsgroup; Subscribe to a newsletter or newsgroup only if it directly relates to the nature of your job;
i. Email passwords should not be given to other people and should be changed periodically;
ii. Email accounts not used for a long period will be deactivated and possibly deleted;
iii. Delete any email messages that you do not need to have a copy of, and set your email client to automatically empty your deleted items on closing;
Business Record Retention Policy.
E-mail messages are written business records and are subject to the Company's rules and policies relating to retaining and deleting business records.
Avoid sending confidential information by email. Unless authorized to do so, the users are prohibited from using email to transmit confidential information to outside parties. Users may not access, send, receive, solicit, print, copy, or reply to confidential or proprietary information about the Company, its employees, clients, and other business associates.
Confidential information includes, but is not limited to:
i. Client lists;
ii. Credit card numbers;
iii. Social Security numbers;
iv. Employee performance reviews;
v. Salary details;
vi. Trade secrets;
vii. Passwords; and
viii. Any other information that could embarrass the Company and its associates if the information were disclosed to the public
The following disclaimer shall be added to each outgoing email:
This e-mail message, including any attachments, are the property of Forrester™ and is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain information that is confidential, privileged and/or exempt from disclosure under applicable Federal or State Law. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please contact the sender by reply e-mail, and destroy all copies of the original message.
For further information please visit our website at:
610 5th Avenue. New York, New York 10020.
Telephone: (347) 440-1190.
If you have not done so already, please add the sender of this e-mail to your e-mail address book to ensure ongoing reliable delivery.
You received this service e-mail notice because you have engaged in Forrester's™ Electronic Points of Contact Program.
The source of this e-mail notice is the Forrester's™.
This message may contain an advertisement of a product or service and thus may constitute a commercial electronic mail message under US Law.