When you’re used to working alone, hiring your first employee can be a milestone as it shows that all your hard work has begun to pay off. However, it can be quite a time-consuming procedure especially when you’re impatient to recruit someone and get the job done. In such a situation, it’s quite easy to hire the wrong person. Our guidelines will take you through the process so that you’ll find the best person for the job.
Draw up an ideal candidate checklist
Before you even advertise the jobvacancy and start interviewing candidates, you should have a clear idea of what skills you expect the new employee to possess. Think about paper qualifications as well as personality traits and prioritise which are most important. Remember that at the start you’ll be working in close proximity to the employer, and the right person will help you achieve your long-term goals.
Read up on your legal requirements
As soon as you make that step from sole trader to employee, you’ll have to make sure that you operate within the law and abide by statutory employment rights. You’ll have to give your employee a written statement of employment within 4 weeks of their recruitment and check you know their legal entitlement to pay, paid leave, workplace pension (if applicable), etc.
As soon as you employ someone, you are obliged to take out employers’ liability insurance, worth at least £5 million, to cover you in case they suffer an injury in the workplace.
If you work in certain fields (notable childcare or healthcare), your employee might have to undergo a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check as well.
Conducting the interviews
As far as possible, try to make the interview as informal and relaxed as you can so you get an idea of the candidates’ character, strengths and/or weaknesses. Social inclusion is a great philosophy, but you must ensure that foreign-born candidates have the right to work in the country.
At the end of each interview, make notes about each candidate so you’re able to remember your first impressions. This will help to narrow down the field. A second interview will then help you to clarify your choice after you’ve checked references and so on. Don’t rush this part of the procedure. It’s all too easy to make a rushed decision which you may later regret.
As far as pay is concerned, you need to make sure your new employee has both a National Insurance number and the correct tax code so they can be paid through the PAYE scheme. Such details should be kept in a personnel file with a copy of their written statement of employment.
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