101 for new employers: Employment contracts

Hand writing on paper with a pen Hand writing on paper with a pen

Running a business is extremely difficult, especially when you don't have human resource managers. Not having a human resources department means that all of the responsibilities for human resources falls on you. Essentially as well as running the business, you are the human resource manager too:

  • Ensuring the recruitment process is fair and unbiased
  • Writing up health and safety guidelines
  • Sorting working times and holidays
  • Finding a suitable wage for your employees
  • Producing a good work environment with fair treatment for everyone
  • Meeting the specific needs of the individual employees

These are a few of the things employers need to deal with when carrying out the role of HR management. However, undeniably, the most important part for all human resource managers is getting down the particulars of the job roles. Whether that's in the form of a verbal contract or a written one.


The legal stuff

Employers can get in a lot of trouble for failing to provide an employment contract. In fact, it is a legal requirement for employers to provide their employees with some form of their working terms and conditions. Under section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 you must provide these terms within the first 2 months of their employment.

Don't misunderstand, although a written form of terms and conditions is by no means a legal requirement, it is just as important for HR managers. You benefit just as much from providing a written form of terms as conditions as your employees do. If not, more. Many employers think that by not providing a written contract they can find loopholes to save money or get more hours out of their employees. But this is simply not true, dealing with human resources is a bit more complicated than that.

You want the confidence that you have your back covered and that legal action cannot be taken against you when disputes arise between you and your employee and you don't have your own HR managing personnel. How better to do that than a written and signed contract that states everything you are required to do as an employer and everything your employees are required to do as employees. But that's only the beginning. All of this may seem a bit complicated but don't worry, we will break it down.


Employment contracts - Down to the details

Employment contracts can be pretty complicated but can be broken down into 10 main components:

  • Names - the names of the employee and the employer
  • Dates - start and end dates
  • Duties - this includes job titles and specifies what is expected from your employees
  • Location - this is the place of work or could be various locations depending on the nature of your work
  • Salary - salary, payment dates, payment methods
  • Work hours - details such as start times, end times, and breaks
  • Holidays - holiday pay, holiday entitlement
  • Sickness - details regarding sickness absences and sick pay
  • Notices - notice periods are required for employees and employers alike
  • Details of disciplinary - grievance procedures or disciplinary procedures must be written and are usually found in employee handbooks

Your human resources department would usually take care of all this. So, if you don't have your own Human resources department, we recommend looking at outsourced human resource managers.


How outsourced human resource managers can help

With all the HR details to sift through and paperwork to sort out you may be thinking, "when do I run my business if I have to deal with human resources?" Well, that's when outsourced human resources come in. If you are a new business or don't have a human resources department, you can skip all the hassle and focus on what's important. Not only does outsourced human resources deal with employment contracts but they also:

  • Provide human resources support at a fraction of the cost of employing your own human resources department
  • Advice on employment law and other human resources queries
  • Give access to employment lawyers if required
  • Offer support with employment issues onsite
  • Help to reduce the possibility of facing a tribunal claim
  • Audit your human resources and highlight any areas that need to be addressed
  • Keep your business up to date on legislation changes

Outsourced human resources provide all these services and more. If you want to focus on making your business great without having to go through the annoyances of dealing with HR-or spending money on a human resources department, then outsourced human resources is something to greatly consider.

If you are interested and want to find out more information about this, visit our page.