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Hiring your first employee is a major step for any small business. Doing so inevitably brings a certain amount of red tape. So citrusHR has put together this ten step guide to try to make it as easy as possible to cut through the red tape:

1. Identity

You must establish that they have the right to work in the UK. If they have an EU passport then all is fine. Otherwise you will need to see work permit or similar. Be warned, fines run as high as £30,000 per person.

2. Contract

You must issue a contract within two months of them starting work.

 3. Insurance

You must have employer’s liability insurance (so you could compensate an employee if they were injured or became ill because of their work). Fines for not having insurance can be as much as £3,500 per day.

 4. HMRC Registration

You must register with HMRC as an employer.

 5. Health and Safety

You must provide a safe workplace. Even for office workers, you must ensure a suitable desk and chair to work at a computer.

6. First aid

You must ensure there’s a stocked first aid kit in the workplace, and provide training where appropriate.

 7. Storing employee data

To comply with data protection, you need to keep employee information secure for at least seven years.

8. Equal opportunities

Everything to do with your employees needs to be done in a way that doesn’t discriminate against them because of their gender, race, ethnicity, disability, religion etc. The Equality Act 2010 has a wide range of provisions with which you’ll need to comply.

9. Holiday

Full-time staff must get at least 5.6 weeks (28 days) paid holiday each year, but bank holidays can be included in this.

10. Working hours

Employees are entitled to a 20-minute break once they have worked six hours in a day. And eleven hours rest between working days.

This is a brief list designed to introduce the main areas. citrusHR subscribers have access to the full online system that will support you as an employer as well as a series of management guides explaining what you need to know and how you need to act as a new employer. You can sign up for a free trial here.

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