This week we have a guest blogger with us, Charlotte Allfrey, the founder of Metro HR. Charlotte set up Metro HR to help small and medium sized businesses deliver great HR. She does this by helping clients to put a proactive HR framework in place as their business starts to grow. Having this in place allows them to avoid staffing problems, support employees and retain the best team.
Over to you Charlotte!
Hiring – How To Get It Right First Time!
Any new hire has a major impact on your business. Getting the right person for the role and the business, and someone who will stay the distance is critical. But, what can you expect when you make your first hire?
It’s a daunting, but exciting, prospect. It’s no longer ‘me and my laptop’, but ‘me and my team’. You now have to manage the running and growth of your business and ensure there is enough work, that they get the right training, and that you can pay them and look after them as an employee.
It may be tempting to take a flexible, laissez-faire approach to your first hire. After all, you might not need them in the office all the time, there could be peaks and troughs in workload, and you are used to complete flexibility yourself. You have a friend that might be interested. Surely we can tick along and see how it goes?
When you take on your first employee you set the tone and culture for the future. Processes, customs and practices are formed, and once established, they are hard to change. Get it wrong now and you could end up having to resolve future disputes. And, disputes are costly, in money, time, energy, fall-out, motivation, diversion and business success. In extreme cases they can jeopardise the business continuing.
Here’s what you should consider or do to be legally compliant as an employer. Or to set and manage the expectations of your first recruit.
- Purchase Employer’s Liability Insurance.
- Prepare a job description – don’t be afraid to ask for passion, enthusiasm and flexibility. Make it clear that job description will be routinely reviewed.
- Ensure any recruit is legally eligible to work in the UK and do some basic pre-employment checks.
- Register with HMRC, choose someone to do your payroll, provide an itemised pay statement.
- Prepare a ‘Written Statement of Employment’ (aka contract) setting out the main terms and conditions of employment.
- Provide holidays – the statutory yearly minimum is 28 days paid leave.
- Consider family friendly benefits, such as maternity, paternity and adoption, and flexible working arrangements for parents and carers;
- The law says you must have a handful of HR Policies in place:
- Disciplinary and grievance –how you will deal with employee conduct or performance issues, or complaints/concerns raised by employees.
- Pensions information – see the Pensions Regulator’s website to check out your obligation to auto-enrol employees in a pension scheme.
- Health and safety – if you have over 5 employees you legally have to provide a safe and secure working environment. It’s good practice to think about this for less than 5 employees. Display the statutory health and safety poster, visit the HSE website. Consider lone working arrangements – in the early days employees may be alone in the workplace.
- Set up a process to review employee performance, give constructive real-time feedback and reward successes.
If you need any help with all of this (and it can be overwhelming!) please do get in touch.
Charlotte Allfrey, Founder of Metro HR