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Hiring your first employee? Read this first

Thinking about hiring your very first employee? Congratulations. Recruiting a staff member is a huge step for any start-up – so well done on growing your business to this point.

It’s an exciting time. You’re going to gain a new brain, a new set of hands, and a lot more time. Things are about to start moving faster.  

But before you begin feverishly scrolling through LinkedIn profiles, there are a few things you should consider. 

Are on you on top of the legals?

Before you kick off the hiring process, you should use this government checklist to help you understand both the federal and state laws around employing staff. It’s best to be on top of all legal requirements and restrictions so you don’t get any unwanted surprises during the recruitment and probation processes – and so you can develop a comprehensive and professional contract for your employee (and potential future ones). From wages and entitlements, to compensation and working visas – there’s a lot to be aware of from a legal standpoint. 

Full-time, part-time or contract?

Now that you’re well versed on the laws around hiring employees, it’s a good idea to really consider what basis to hire someone on – do you need a full-time employee, someone there part-time or a contractor you can utilise on a needs basis? And how exactly do you determine what kind of employee your start-up or small business needs? This will depend on a few different variables. Theyare:

a)   How many hours a week will you need you’re the new staff member?

b)  Will these hours vary from week to week? 

c)   Are you prepared to take on the overheads of a full-time employee?

Full-time staff come with a package deal of paid annual leave, sick leave, public holidays and more. This means you might need to hire a contractor to replace them while they’re gone. On the flipside, contractors or freelancers aren’t entitled to paid leave – but you do need to pay them 25% more per day. If you’re after a more flexible arrangement, or only need someone for a specific project, a contractor would be the way to go. For a permanent set of hands, look into part-time or full-time employment.

Where to find the right talent

There are so many places to look, but the first should be your network. Ask partners and industry peers if they know anyone who’d be suitable for the role. People usually only confide in their close friends about plans to move on, so this is a great way to access intelligence that isn’t widely available. 
Social media is a natural extension of word-of-mouth that goes well beyond your day-to-day contacts. LinkedIn is proven to be an effective place to look for new recruits, as it can lead you to people with the right skill sets and contacts. It’s also worth posting about the position on any of your business social media platforms. If someone is following your business, there’s a good chance they might be interested in what you have to offer. More traditional routes, like advertising on careers websites or hiring a recruiter, should also be considered. 

Get the paperwork prepared

Once you’ve found your Rockstar employee, you’ll need to get organised and provide them with some paperwork. Documents you’ll need to give them are:

·       A contract of employment

·       Fair Work information statement

·       Tax file declaration form

·       Superannuation choice form

·       An induction booklet with policies and procedures

Once you’ve handed the employee these documents, you’ll need them to give you information about their bank account (so they can get paid!), citizenship status, and emergency contact details.

This is an incredibly exciting time for your business – and if you take the time care to do things right, you’ll set your first recruit up for major success. 

With a growing business can sometimes come growing risk – so it might be a good time to look into Business Insurance, and feel confident knowing your business – and your ambition –  is backed.