People

Our employment section contains a comprehensive list of business advice articles to help you choose and manage the right staff for your small and medium enterprise. Read on to ensure you create a productive and positive working environment.

Salary Sacrifice Schemes: What Next?

Salary Sacrifice Schemes: What Next?

Towards the end of 2016 The Finance Bill 2017 was published, containing provisions intended to eliminate tax advantages that many previously enjoyed through entering into salary sacrifice schemes. Salary sacrifice schemes are agreements undertaken between employers and employees to provide non-cash benefits. However, changes to such schemes, announced in November’s Autumn Statement, mean that employers who have these arrangements in place must prepare to adhere to the new legislation coming into effect from 6 April 2017. The change is due to the government’s concerns regarding an increase in the use of salary sacrifice arrangements, especially as employees effectively pay for the benefit themselves through the reduction in their gross pay. What changes are proposed? Consultation documents ... »

Disciplinaries: The Correct Way To Handle Things

Disciplinaries: The Correct Way To Handle Things

There are several different reasons why an employer might need to take an employee down the disciplinary route. It may be that they are not performing to the required standards of their role or they have unacceptable levels of absence or timekeeping. In more extreme cases, disciplinary may be as a result of gross misconduct, such as indecent behavior, assault or stealing company property. Whatever the reasons, it is important for employers to follow the correct disciplinary procedure, otherwise they may end up attending an employment tribunal. These are the steps to take to handle disciplinaries in the correct way. Informal meeting No one really enjoys going down the route of disciplinary. It can be just as distressing for the manager, as it is for the employee. As such, it is good practic... »

5 Ways to Address High Staff Turnover Rates

5 Ways to Address High Staff Turnover Rates

Having a high turnover rate among a workforce is generally bad news for any business but for smaller businesses it can be particularly damaging. The processes involved in hiring and training people to become valuable contributors to your business usually requires a considerable investment of both time and resources. So to lose these people for any reason soon after those investments have been made can be a real setback and a source of concern. With that in mind, here are some ways in which a small business might aim to reduce the rate at which its employees move on and aim to establish a more sustainable turnover rate among its workforce. 1. Refine your hiring processes If you have a high staff turnover rate then it could be that the processes you’ve relied upon to identify potential new h... »

Navigating Tricky Terrain: Employee Share Schemes

Navigating Tricky Terrain: Employee Share Schemes

Many companies offer some type of share scheme to their employees. Setting up the right scheme in which shares in the company are given to, or bought by, employees can boost morale and productivity significantly. But ensuring the scheme meets the needs of the business is paramount, and all too often what should be a relatively simple process is plagued with complexity particularly in the area of employment law and especially in tax law. Attempting to resolve these technical and regulatory issues too early in the process can often create additional issues and distort the scheme ultimately adopted. The first rule of share scheme design is to first identify the particular needs and objectives of the business for which it is intended. The design drivers here are simple: who is it for, what sho... »

Address The Gender Pay Gap, Before Mandatory Reporting

Address The Gender Pay Gap, Before Mandatory Reporting

From April 2018, under new government regulation, employers with more than 250 employees, will be required to publish data relating to the pay of their male and female employees. This gender pay legislation is a long time coming, since the original Equal Pay Act was launched in 1970. Equal Pay legislation has evolved and tightened for employers since then, with the 2010 Equality Act stating that employers must give men and women equal pay if they do the same or broadly similar work. Yet, the national pay gap, as reported by Office of National Statistics (Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings), still stands at 19.4 per cent. Having discussed the proposed regulations with many organisations, I do not believe that employers will generally have a problem actually meeting the legislation. The tim... »

Improving Customer Retention Levels Outside of Work Hours

Improving Customer Retention Levels Outside of Work Hours

If you’re running a small business, then you probably don’t need to be reminded exactly how important customer retention is. Even a 1% drop in repeat custom, or a dip in life time value (LTV), might seriously affect your cash flow. However even having great customer service doesn’t guarantee great retention levels. Today, I’d like to share with you five steps that you can take to shift your service levels from great, to exceptional, reduce attrition and maximise client contract value. Analyse inbound call data Even out of business hours, inbound call data will afford you invaluable insight into your customers’ mind-set and behaviour. With an efficient business telecoms system in place using a call management suite to analyse call data is your first step in better customer service. If there... »

How to Manage a Poorly Performing Salesperson

How to Manage a Poorly Performing Salesperson

For many small business managers, performance management is one of their least favourite jobs – it conjures up memories of awkward conversations, anger, defensiveness and finger pointing – situations that they would much rather avoid. But the fact is, a small business can carry no passengers – especially when it comes to sales, where poor performance can acutely impact the bottom line. However, addressing poorly performing salespeople needn’t be a headache. Done right, it should be a positive experience for both parties that ultimately results in happier staff and a more profitable business – a win/ win for both parties. The key is to follow this formulaic process, which can be replicated across all departments of the business: Defining performance Tactics for managing behaviours Your role... »

Apprenticeship Levy: What You Need to Know

Apprenticeship Levy: What You Need to Know

With the confirmation that the Apprenticeship Levy will come into affect in less than six months, we take a look at what business owners need to know. What is it? The Apprenticeship Levy is a government-led initiative that will require businesses to make an investment in apprenticeships. How much will it cost? The levy will be charged at a rate of 0.5% of a business’s annual pay bill. There will be a levy allowance of £15,000 per year to offset against the levy, meaning only businesses who have a payroll bill above £3m will be obliged to pay. As an example: Example 1: an employer who would pay the levy An employer with an annual pay bill of £5m: levy sum: 0.5% x £5m = £25,000 subtracting levy allowance: £25,000 – £15,000 = £10,000 annual levy payment Example 2: an employer who would ... »

Auto-enrolment: What Is It and What Do I Have to Do?

Auto-enrolment: What Is It and What Do I Have to Do?

What is auto-enrolment? Automatic (or auto) enrolment is part of The Workplace Pension Reform, and requires every business owner in the UK to automatically enrol their workers into a workplace pension scheme provided: The worker earns more than £10,000 in a tax year The worker is between 22 and state pension age NB: A worker is defined as: “An individual who has entered into, or works under a control of employment, or any other contract by which the individual undertakes to do work or perform services personally from another party to the contract.” As of January 1 2016, small businesses with 30 employees or less must start the auto-enrolment process and comply with regulations by their staging date (explained below) between now and April 1, 2017. What do I have to do to comply? 1. Figure o... »

The Key Hires You Should Make to Help Your Business Grow

The Key Hires You Should Make to Help Your Business Grow

Running your own business is no mean feat, and while the initial stages are likely to consist of a small and tight-knit team of employees, it’s important to plan ahead, and ensure that you’re bringing in the right people to help your business grow. One thing I’ve learnt since starting CV-Library is that it’s essential to hire people whose strengths and weaknesses complement your own; building up a team of intelligent, skilled employees is the best way to ensure your business really takes off. Hiring for a small business can be just as challenging, and who you bring on board could determine the success of your venture. So, it’s crucial that you get it right. The size of your current team will likely determine how many new hires you need, but generally speaking, there are five key areas that... »

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