Employing for the first time
Taking on staff is a big commitment that you want to get right.
New staff typically use up time and money. You need to recruit and train them, as well as understand your legal obligations towards them. As an employer you'll also have to pay employer National Insurance contributions under the PAYE (Pay As You Earn) system; this is an additional cost for every employee to take on and should be planned into your budget.
Before you start looking for a new employee, it's worth considering whether that's the best solution. If it's just a short-term requirement, you might be better off getting help from a freelance or consultant. Even if you do decide to recruit, you might just want a temporary worker - perhaps from an agency - or someone to work part-time. You will also need to be clear about what you want the person to do and what skills they will need.
Your legal obligations include things such as:
- Registering with HMRC as an employer and operating a PAYE (Pay As You Earn) system
- Providing your employee with a Written Statement of Employment (an employment contract)
- Paying your employee correctly - the National Minimum Wage must be adhered to and you should understand processes around sickness, maternity and paternity pay.
- Providing the correct information on the payslips you give to employees
- Understanding Working Time regulations and Annual Leave entitlement.
- Your Health & Safety| obligations as an employer are met.
- You may also want to write employment policies so that you and your employees are clear on how your business operates, see Business Essentials on the Health & Safety| page for a link to guidance and an example policy.
The GOV.UK| site has a number of tools that you can use to take you through these processes and, if you have already decided to take someone on, you can use this link to register with the PAYE system|.