A guide to employing staff

Staff are the backbone of every business. After all, it’s the staff of a business that complete the work required to keep the business going. The process of advertising, interviewing, and contracting a new hire isn’t easy – especially if you’re new to the process.

So, if you’re looking to expand your business by hiring some new employees, this is the guide for you. We’ll cover how to draft a contract, where to find the best talent, choosing the right candidate, and much more.

  1. When to hire extra help
  2. Drafting a contract
  3. Where to advertise vacancies
  4. Interviews/Offering feedback
  5. Choosing the right candidate
  6. Employers liability insurance

When to hire extra help

Like everything else in life, there is a right time to do things and a wrong time to do things. The same applies to hiring staff. This is because employing a new member of staff takes a lot of time and comes at a cost. Howver taking time to find the right person will be worth it in the long run.

The two main reasons for hiring a new member of staff is that your business is growing, so you need h elp taking care of your customers. Or you’re looking to take some time out of work.

If your business is growing, taking on an extra member of staff can help to spread the additional work, and allows you to take on even more work.

If you run your own business, bringing on an extra staff member can help to reduce the number of late nights and weekends you may be working.

When considering taking on someone new, if you view it as an investment rather than an extra expense, this is the right frame of mind to be in.

Drafting a contract

Once you’ve decided that you would like to take on someone new, you need to map out the role that you want them to take on. What is the position that you want to be filled? How many hours a week will they work? What are the tasks you expect to be completed?

All of these questions will be answered in the contract that you draft for your new starter. The reason that this document is a draft is that the terms may change during the interview process and once you select a candidate.

When writing this document, you can do so yourself from scratch or you can use an online templates as a guide. Once you’ve drafted, and proofed your first version of the contract, we recommend having a legal professional look over the terms to ensure that everything is clear and above board.

It’s important the contract clearly outlines the following for your new starter:

  • The start date, probation period, and notice period that is required should they wish to leave.
  • Their job title, the scope of their work, and the working hours (e.g. 35 hours per week).
  • The location of an office, and the daily hours (e.g 9-5). If you’re offering flexible working, this needs to be clearly stated.
  • The Salary or hourly rate, along with any bonuses. If it is a commission based role, the commission structure needs to be outlined.
  • When salary will be paid, along with NI contributions, PAYE tax (if applicable), and pension schemes.
  • The expectations and requirements of the role.
  • Any behaviour guidelines or code of conduct that the staff member must adhere to.

Make sure this document is kept in a secure place, and that you have multiple back-ups on file.

Where to advertise vacancies

Now that you’ve outlined the position you want to hire for and you’ve drafted a contract, it’s time to advertise the position. If you want to attract the best talent to apply, you need to make the job advert as appealing as possible (whilst being factual of course).

We recommend looking at job websites to advertise your position as this is the most common way people look for work today. The following websites are popular with job seekers:

There are a number of other job sites, some of which even focus on certain industries or sectors. If the role you are advertising fits with one of these sites, advertising on these may help you find the right candidate.

Keep in mind that some websites may charge for you to advertise or promote the position in search results.

Interviews/offering feedback

Once the CV’s start coming in, it’s time to start reviewing them and booking interviews. The interview process takes time – in most cases, you may be spending at least an hour speaking to each candidate.

Be selective with whom you choose to speak to – this is your business after all.

We recommend thanking each candidate who applies (a generic email is fine), notifying them with a rough time of when they should receive a response. If you don’t wish to notify people that they are not progressing, outline this clearly in the application email to set expectations.

Choosing the right candidate

It’s important that when you go into the interview process you have a clear idea of what you want. If you’re not sure what you want, knowing what you don’t want can help to clarify this.

To choose the right candidate, you need to be flexible. A person may not tick all your boxes, but if they tick the most important ones, you’re heading in the right direction.

The most important thing to remember is hiring for attitude. Skills and other aspects of the job can always be taught and trained. Attitude, however, is much harder to change. Go with your gut, and prioritise the approach and attitude of a person above everything else. Keep in mind that this doesn’t cancel out any necessary qualifications. For example, if you want to be a doctor, you still need to study medicine.

Employers liability insurance

When taking on new staff, you have certain responsibilities for the health and wellbeing of your employees. This includes providing a safe environment and taking steps to ensure you have limited potential risks. Unfortunately, sometimes the worst can happen, which is why you need the right comprehensive insurance to protect you and your team.

Don’t leave yourself exposed to expensive lawsuits and loss of earnings, get a great quote on employers liability insurance today.

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