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.

A Small Business Guide to Recruitment

A Small Business Guide to Recruitment

It is a fact of working life that, more often than not, searching for a job is time-consuming and difficult. But for employers, the challenge of recruiting the right employee can seem even more so – the result of which can be a protracted and tiresome recruitment process. Finding an applicant who suits the role will always require a bit of good fortune, but by knowing what information to look for, and having a proper procedure in place, you can vastly improve your chances. This guide aims to help you with planning your recruitment, locating suitable candidates – and how to select the strongest candidate amongst them. When planning when to recruit, think hard about what needs your business has and what problems it is facing. Consult your business plan and consider what future your business ... »

Teambuilding: A Guide for Business

Teambuilding: A Guide for Business

Effective teamwork is the lifeblood of any business. Whether it is developing policies, a new product, or working towards a sales goal, people working together in harmony can produce results much greater than the sum of their individual inputs. Luckily, there is a skill to forming a good team, and by following a few simple rules you can create genuinely productive teams time and time again. Which people should I choose to form my team? When assembling a team to deliver a project, there are a few important things to remember. Firstly, size does matter. Keep the number of team mates between five and 12 people. Larger than this and the process loses efficiency as people will constantly need to be brought up to speed. If your goals necessitate a larger team than this, consider redefining your ... »

Modern-Day Mentorship: How it Can Help Your Small Business

Modern-Day Mentorship: How it Can Help Your Small Business

Once deemed as necessary to achieve successful career growth, the concept of a mentoring programme hasn’t really changed over the years; yet still we find many businesses no longer using them. In the past, a hierarchy system was the norm; however, in this day and age, our approach to forming new relationships with other business professionals has changed. Be that as it may, at CV-Library, our recent survey revealed that 94.1% of UK workers still believe that having someone they can receive guidance from is beneficial to career progression. Yet, less than a quarter of employees have actually been offered any form of mentoring by their employer, indicating this is no longer a priority to businesses. So if mentorships aren’t what they used to be, why are they still relevant in today’s world? ... »

A Guide to the Law on Flexible Working

A Guide to the Law on Flexible Working

Flexible working is a term you need to be well aware of as an employer. Employment law now currently stipulates that you must ‘consider seriously’ a request from any employee. This is regardless of whether they have a dependent or not. It is worth noting, however, that the rule diffes in Northern Ireland. What is flexible working? Flexible working has a wide definition; it essentially refers to any working pattern other than the employee’s regular working pattern. There are many common kinds of flexible working such as: Flexitime arrangement Flexitime requires an employee to be at work during a specified ‘core period’ but lets them arrange their other hours around their own commitments. Compressed hours Compressed hours allow employees to work the same number of hours they normally do but ... »

A Small Business Guide to Remuneration

A Small Business Guide to Remuneration

The remuneration package is what binds you and your employees together – fail to pitch and fine-tune it correctly, and you will find yourself unable to attract or keep the standard of workers you want and need (no matter how rewarding you think the job is in itself). If you want to employ and maintain the best possible workforce, you must be able to sell the package properly and tailor the rewards to ensure employees stay with you. This guide will help you to calculate what wage to offer, keep in line with minimum wage regulations, organise pay reviews and rewards, and more. How do I know what to pay? Any remuneration package needs to comply with the basic levels of pay set by law – national minimum wage (NMW). NMW currently stands at £3.87 for workers aged 16-17, £5.30 for workers aged 18... »

A Small Business Owners Guide to Using a Consultant

A Small Business Owners Guide to Using a Consultant

Whether for marketing, efficiency or another purpose, bringing a consultant is a necessary part of running any business. Choosing the right consultant is of course crucial, but it is only half the skill of maximising the return on your investment. This article covers how to manage a consultant effectively in order to get the best possible results. What should my objectives be when bringing in a consultant? Clarity is the key word here. If you are not entirely clear about what you want to achieve, it will be difficult to use a consultant effectively. There are many ways you can narrow down your objectives but first start by working out the end goal. Thinking in broad terms, what is it you want? Are you expecting a concrete, tangible output such as an increase in sales, or more ephemeral obj... »

How to Manage Stress in the Workplace

How to Manage Stress in the Workplace

Erroneously considered by some to be part and parcel of modern life, workplace stress is no joke as a business owner; affecting employers and employees alike, stress can lead to poor productivity, bad decisions and a lowering of morale generally. Learning how to recognise and deal with stress and its causes can bring myriad benefits as an employer, so it is important to know how to recognise the tell-tale signs of stress, common causes of it and how to manage it effectively. How important is managing stress? Dealing with stress and its causes effectively is an absolutely crucial skill as an employer, as the consequences of ignoring it can be severe. A 2012 survey carried out by CIPD found that a quarter of employers in the UK said that stress was one of the top five causes of employee abse... »

A Small Business Guide to Employment Contracts

A Small Business Guide to Employment Contracts

Employment contracts are a necessary part of employment for all businesses in the UK, setting out the terms under which you and your employee will be working. So many employers find themselves cobbling together terms from emails and other correspondence, without having any formal written arrangement. Not only is this a real hassle that wastes lots of time, it’s breaking the law. It’s a legal requirement that you provide the written terms of employment to your employee within eight weeks of their start date, giving you a bit of time to ensure everything is correct but also ensuring that everyone is on the same page. So, if you’ve taken on a new employee, what should you do if this is the first you’ve heard about this? First of all, don’t panic. Second, have a read of our guide to make sure ... »

A Small Business Guide to the Maternity Leave Letter

A Small Business Guide to the Maternity Leave Letter

Maternity leave can be a real challenge for any employer, after all they’re facing the loss of what could be a crucial member of their team for potentially a year. Therefore, sweating the small stuff like ensuring the expectant mother understands their rights can sometimes seem like an extra unnecessary hassle, but it’s all part of the process set out in UK law, so there are no excuses. With this in mind, we want to take a weight off your shoulders and give you a helping hand for drafting a model maternity leave letter. We can’t write it for you, after all we don’t know your staff and wouldn’t want you to sound like a robot, but we can give you a good structure to follow all the same. An employee’s maternity leave rights Once they have informed you of th... »

Employment Law and Holidays: What are Workers’ Rights to Time Off?

Employment Law and Holidays: What are Workers’ Rights to Time Off?

Working Time Regulations give all workers the right to paid holidays, irrespective of the hours they work. However, the definition of worker is wider than ‘employees’ and may in fact cover more people than you think. Casual, part-time and even agency workers are included in this description, including people you may label self-employed, for example if they perform work personally and the relationship isn’t a client/customer one (i.e. if they are not genuinely self-employed). Some sectors aren’t covered by Working Time Regulations, but unless you’re a seafaring business or work in civil aviation, I’m afraid you’re going to have to keep reading. So let’s start with entitlements. Each employee is entitled to 5.6 weeks’ paid holiday pro-rata (that’s 28... »

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