You’ve established your business, you’re making money and your company is growing, so what’s your next step? Hiring your first employee is an important stage in your business and that person could play a very important role in furthering and developing your ideas or hindering your strategy altogether.
Some people often forget that one of the earlier roles they will have to take on as a business owner is recruiter. Recruitment is a key aspect in business and the process of hiring your first employee will teach you a lot. As you hire more and more employees, your own recruitment process and interview strategy will develop and improve.
Firstly, you have to figure out where you’re going to advertise your job vacancy – online, in the newspaper or in your shop window. You have to make every word count and state what you are looking for straight away. Identify the skills and qualifications they must have to apply and what responsibilities the role offers. Make sure you describe what your business does too. If you want more information from candidates before you begin the process, you could ask them to send you a cover letter explaining why they would be good for the job – simple, but effective.
Interviews have to be finetuned – the only way you will find the person you want is by asking the questions you need answered. You need to know that the person you hire will share the same values and vision as you. Be open to many different types of interviews too, especially if your business is new and modern. After you have looked through all the applicants’ CVs and decided on a longlist, carry out some brief telephone interviews to find out a bit more about your candidates. From there, you can invite potential employees to a second meeting face-to-face – by this point, you both should feel a little more relaxed. It’s your first employee, so take your time and don’t accept the first person that contacts you. If you urgently need an employee and are panicking under the pressure of your growing company, it might be easier to just hire straight away. However, this may not pay off in the long run, especially if you hire someone that doesn’t fit the job right.
Although it may be your first hire, it may be their first job, so assure them you are there to support them through the whole process.
Ensure you make the potential employee aware that they are the first employee you are hiring, and what you expect from them in their role. Start-up businesses may be under a lot of pressure and you must make sure they know that your business is still growing, and so will the privileges and rewards with it. A working progress always turn out worthwhile in the end.
Documents and the Important Stuff
After you have found the right candidate for the job, you must remember all the important documents that come with hiring the employee. You will need an official contract and insurance. Also, you will have to contact HMRC to register as an employer. There are also other important aspects to becoming an employer such as pension schemes, payslips, tax and external factors that may impede their ability to work, such as maternity leave, sickness and holiday days. You may also have to consider how you will handle the situation if the employee doesn’t do their job right and you need to dismiss them.