End of Year HR Checklist

Nov 08, 2022
end of year hr

Are you up to speed on which end-of-the year HR tasks need to be taken care of?


Checking your list twice as each year closes will ensure the next one starts off on the right foot. Now is the time to start if you haven't already!


In this month's blog, we have provided you a checklist to help you get started.


End-of-Year HR Checklist


 *NOTE: You must be an Expedition HR Subscriber to gain access to most of the links in this checklist - but the bullets will still be beneficial in ensuring you know the right things to prepare for the new year.


Recruiting & Onboarding

  • Set onboarding/new employee orientation dates for the upcoming year - to be efficient with onboarding
  • Encourage each department to determine their staffing needs/requests for the new year before the end of 2022
  • Update job descriptions (remember, to accurately assess performance AND to accurately recruit for each position, you must have a job description in place with accurate essential duties for each role within your organization)
  • I almost guarantee your interview questions need an update or total overhaul - take the time and you'll find you spend less time interviewing and get hire faster!
  • Audit your I-9s (or make a plan to do it in new year) and ensure they are disposed of properly

Performance Management


  • Review exempt vs non-exempt employee statuses and be sure that you head into the new year with everyone classified correctly
  • Audit personnel files to ensure medical and employment documents are separate (things can get messy during the year when things are busy in the office, so a clean-up to ensure employee file compliance is highly recommended)
  • Verify that correct labor laws are properly posted – it is best practice to order updated employment law posters for each work location for new year (order them easily online!)
  • Prepare for OSHA filing in February, if you are required to file 
  • Distribute annual notices to employees, i.e. 401k and benefits plan documents (Reach out to your benefits broker - they can guide you every step of the way on this and answer your questions – you shouldn’t need to issue these notices on your own)

Handbook & Culture

  • Boost your Core Values on your website, in your handbook, in interviews (If you don't have values, start thinking now as the year comes to a close about what values are most important to your organization that you want to talk about/promote/highlight in the new year.)
  • Prepare new year updates to your employee handbook (factoring in any new laws specific to states in which you have employees!)
  • Review and update company policies and communicate to team
  • Reflect on your culture - what can you do in the new year to boost the culture you want to promote in your organization? (For example, can you change the verbiage in your employee handbook to reflect that culture? Can you be more intentional about your interview questions and ensure you are asking questions around your company values and not just about skills?)

Recognition & Engagement

  • Do you have a formal employee recognition policy in place? It doesn't need to be complex or hard to administer. Consider implementing one in the new year - such as encouraging managers to dedicate 5-10 minutes per week to specifically recognizing someone on their team with lunch or a small treat with a hand-written card (we promise you, these efforts go a long way!)
  • Determine what you want to reward and recognize employees for in the new year (For example, actions aligned with your values, actions that positively impact the company bottom line, and actions that affect your customers or clients in a positive way)

HR Systems & Technology

  • Are you in the process of switching technology or software currently? Be thinking of how you will communicate these changes to employees BEFORE they go into effect
  • Are you struggling with your current technology and want to know what options there are to start the new year off fresh? Subscribers have access to our Preferred Vendor List and also numerous resources under the HR Tech & Metrics module. Not a current subscriber and want access to these resources too? Reach out for more information.

Benefits & Compensation 

  • Inform employees of any changes which will go into effect as of Jan 1 with their insurance benefits plans (be thinking medical, dental, vision, short-term/long-term disability, etc) - that is, if your benefits plan run on a calendar year
  • Check with your broker to ensure your employees are in line to have their new benefits insurance cards BEFORE Jan 1
  • Remind employees to update/double check their insurance and 401k beneficiaries (hopefully you will not experience an employee passing away, but if they do, it is important to ensure you know who is set to receive any benefits payouts)
  • Share a new year Company Paid Holiday list
  • Ensure proper end-of-year Paid Time Off (PTO) carryover in your payroll system or pay employees out for any accrued PTO at year end, all depending on your policy - OR inform them if it is "use it or lose it" per calendar year!
  • Schedule & issue holiday bonuses to hit the final paycheck this year, if applicable
  • Distribute new year payroll schedule and pay dates so employees are clear on when they are paid 
  • Ensure everything is in order with your payroll processor for your employees to be issued their W-2s and 1099s by January 31
  • Do you have a process in place for how you pay employees within their pay range? If not, if you are a current subscriber, this resource can help guide you. Perhaps you want to spend some time establishing more of a framework for this in the new year...)
  • Will you issue Total Compensation Letters in the new year? 


  • Schedule trainings for the next year, either in-house or outsourced – Recommended annual training topics are: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I), Microaggressions, Management Training, Communication and Delivering Feedback, Harassment, etc (need support with these trainings? Email us for more information. We offer virtual and in-person trainings on a variety of topics.)
  • Re-evaluate your current (possibly stale?) trainings --- refresh and update them for the new year!
  • Consider recording in 2023 - Overwhelmed by the need to hold trainings? Consider recording them in early 2023 and use for the year. (Subscribers, check out the resource 4 Tips for Better Trainings)

Misc - but important!

  • Do you have a competent Office or HR Administrator who handles these and other important annual tasks? And if so, do they have the right experience? If not, we should talk. As an Expedition HR subscriber, you receive access to all the resources linked in this blog as well as 1:1 expert HR support whenever you need it. Sound appealing? Schedule a time to talk - we want to get to know you and your business!
  • Review HR budget for the new year to begin to allocate resources
  • Remind employees to update their information in your HR database (address, emergency contact, phone number, personal email, etc.)
  • Encourage your team to clean and organize their personal workspaces – to start new year off fresh, organized and focused!

Schedule a time to talk - we want to get to know you and your business!  One way to have the support and resources is to become an Expedition HR Subscriber or participate in the next HR Jumpstart Training ProgramWe look forward to hearing from you soon!


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