Are you a small to medium-sized business considering employing new staff members? If so, ensure you are up to speed with what you need to do legally and, learn how to get the very best from your new recruits.

This article covers:

  • New employee contracts
  • Health and safety
  • Settling in new members of staff

 

New employee contracts

Section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA) stipulates that all new employees must receive a statement of written terms of their contract of employment within two months of starting work.

This can be in the form of an offer letter or written contract of employment. Both methods must incorporate the following details:

  1. Full names of the employer and employee
  2. Employment start date
  3. Date on which any continuous employment began (including employment that counts with a previous employer)
  4. Scale or rate of pay or how it is calculated (including overtime pay and bonus payments etc)
  5. The frequency in which employees are paid
  6. Terms and conditions relating to hours of work
  7. Terms and conditions concerning holidays, holiday pay and entitlement on termination
  8. Terms and conditions concerning sickness or incapacity, sick pay, pensions and pension schemes
  9. Notice period required to terminate the employment on each side
  10. Job title or brief description of work
  11. Expected length of employment, if not permanent
  12. Place of work and employer’s full address
  13. Details of collective agreements affecting terms and conditions
  14. Details of the duration, currency of payment, benefits and terms and conditions on return if the employee is required to work outside the UK for more than a month
  15. Disciplinary rules and procedures (or where they can be found)
  16. Grievance process and with whom a grievance and appeal against a disciplinary decision can be raised
  17. Whether or not the employment is contracted out of the state second pension

Health and safety

Employers must provide employees with relevant information about health and safety risks identified by risk assessments and other employees. They must then outline the preventative and protective control measures that have been adopted, as well as any procedures relating to serious and imminent danger and danger areas. In addition, staff must be informed of who the organisation’s fire wardens are, and made aware of other staff, who may have also been nominated to help in the event of an evacuation.

Information on specific hazards may be required and vulnerable groups, such as young people, may require additional information. Employers must also ensure that the relevant information is shared with temporary workers and other employers with employees working within the business.

You also need to provide:

  • Employer liability insurance
  • A health and safety law poster and statement
  • Risk assessment forms
  • A health and safety policy
  • A healthy working environment, which includes good ventilation, a reasonable working temperature, lighting suitable for the work being carried out, enough space, suitable workstations and clean surroundings

Settling in a new member of staff

An effective induction programme enables managers to integrate a new employee into the business so that they are encouraged to become a valued and motivated member of the team. Inductions are a major contributory factor in retaining newly-appointed staff. They do not need to be long-winded or complex.

We can work with you to design an induction that incorporates the following legal requirements, which are widely considered as good practice for all businesses to follow:

  • A health and safety induction encompassing fire and safety procedures
  • Understanding if any reasonable adjustments are required in order for your new employee to perform their role
  • Core business objectives and values
  • Departmental structure
  • The workplace
  • The purpose and key responsibilities of your new employee’s role
  • The individuals they will be working with
  • Expected standards of behaviour and performance
  • Probationary arrangements
  • Completion of all necessary documentation relating to the appointment
  • All policies, procedures and rules, including equal opportunities

Need Help?

Need more assistance? Take a look our induction checklist here. If you are still in a dilemma about taking on your new employee PlusHR offer a free no obligation telephone consultation to ensure you are on the right path. Get in touch now by calling +44 (0)20 3751 4422 or email info@plushr.com or download our free contract of employment template here.

New HR Videos