Deciding to take on your first employee is a pretty big deal. It means that you will be giving them some of your own responsibilities and you will be taking on the added responsibilities of being an employer. You could look at specialist help for specific employees, such as a payroll for nannies. Here, though, we’ll take a look at 10 things that need to be done when hiring your first employee.
1. Perform Adequate Checks on the Applicant
It is an employer’s responsibility to make sure that any candidate they consider is eligible to work in the UK. If the position requires a criminal background track then that is a responsibility that needs to be carried out by the employer as well. If they are working with children they may need a DBS check.
2. Prepare a Written Statement of Employment
If you decide to take on a new employee and they will be with you for more than a month then you must prepare and send a statement of employment to them. This statement will cover the conditions of employment. This document must be given to them within two months of their starting work.
3. Every Employee Is Required to Have a Contract of Employment
An employment contract is a document that outlines what responsibilities the employee will have, what their rights are, and what the working conditions will be. It is not necessary for this to be a formal document. It does, however, need to have all the details of the terms of employment.
4. Properly Insure Your Business
You will need to have insurance that protects you against employee claims if they become ill or injured while in the workplace. Employers liability is compulsory insurance that has been required since 1969. When you hire an employee it’s necessary that you carry EL insurance.
5. Officially Register as an Employer with HMRC
The majority of times it is necessary to register with HMRC when you hire your first employee. It will be necessary for you to pay any employees the agreed-upon salary. It will also be necessary for you to deduct taxes as well as National Insurance contributions. This comes out of your employee’s salary.
6. Employee Pay
On whatever schedule you’ve arranged to pay your employee, you’ll need to do so by providing them a payslip that shows their gross and net pay. It’s also necessary that the payslip shows the taxes that you took out as well as NIC deductions. If they have contributions toward pensions or other deductions those will need to be shown as well. The Real Time Information regime was created in 2013 and so it is now required that payroll information is submitted to HMRC every time you pay employees. Before that was created it was only necessary to provide the information at the end of the tax year. You also need to make sure you’re complying with the National minimum wage.
7. Maintain Health and Safety Obligations
The work environment must be safe and secure for your employees. Making sure of it is your responsibility as the employer. If you have fewer than five employees then you are not required to have a formal H&S policy in place but if you have over five then you will. Either way, you should take the time to examine the risks your staff might face while working.
8. Auto Enrolment for Employee Pensions
New regulations require employees to put their staff in an auto-enrolment pension scheme if they are at least 22 years old or more and earn over £9,440 per year. Until 2018 only larger businesses were impacted by this regulation but now it has been phased in for all employers.
9. Follow the Rules for Sick Pay, Maternity and Paternity Pay, and Holiday Pay
There’s a lot of legislation that regulates employee rights. There are periods of forced absence or holidays and other situations where an employee takes off. An employer must make sure that they are complying with the rules for these instances.
10. What Happens If an Employee Doesn’t Work Out?
The laws that regulate what happens with an employee is often complex. If an employer fails to dismiss an employee properly then it could be a problem for them. If the employee resigns because of any breach of contract between you and them, this is also a problem. If a former employee decides you did something unfair then they may take you to an employment tribunal. This type of tribunal will often involve employment dismissals, discrimination, or disagreements over pay.