Employing My First Employee…

You have now got to the point you need to think about employing and trusting
someone else to help you grow the business.

The realisation that you cannot create the 28 hour day, means you have to
now take on another responsibility – a member of staff.

A few considerations:

  • Do I need full-time or part-time? What hours do I need for the business and can I be flexible?
    Make sure you read the guidance available at https://www.gov.uk/part-time-worker-rights.
  • What do I want this employee to do? What skills, qualifications and experience do I need?
    We stress the importance of giving this careful thought. Write it down and ensure you are being sensible and not asking for a level of expertise which is going to cost too much or conversely, unsuitable skills or knowledge.
    See http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=1371.
  • With an employee comes some cost – you have to register for PAYE, make regular returns and pay employer NI. This is best organised via your accountant or bookkeeper who for a few pounds will ensure you are compliant.
    Again see http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/factsheet/first-time-employer.pdf.
  • Work out the cost before you proceed. How much can I afford? This will influence the hours you will also offer. Be aware of the minimum wage requirement (https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage) and also what holidays you have to offer, see https://www.gov.uk/holiday-entitlement-rights.
  • Think it through. If you are paying someone this month but not receiving the payment for the work until next month requires an investment.

What else?

Bear in mind, that you are going to be working closely with this person for some time every week. Therefore choose somebody who you feel you can work with and trust.

Taking the time to interview and get to know the person is so important. Even then a couple of hours of discussion will not tell you everything, so follow-up their references and reassure yourself.

Be prepared, things can still and do go wrong, even with the best will in the world. If things break down, ACAS continues to provide free help and support – their help line is 08457 47 47 47.

OK, now all the preparation is done, you’ll need to recruit and draw up contracts – that’s another story.