Recruitment is one of the key areas to assist the growth of your business, however, it is also one of the most overlooked areas of risk. From legal obligations including national minimum wage and discrimination to inducing a breach of an individual’s post termination restrictions, recruitment can often be a minefield for employers.
Getting the initial recruitment process right is one of the biggest challenges you’ll face as an employer. You want to find the right person not only for the job, but for your company as well. Our employment team can assist in guiding you safely through the process and avoid the pitfalls often faced at this early stage of engagement.
From ensuring your initial advert complies with employment law, to writing job descriptions and planning a well thought out interview, we can guide you through the whole recruitment process.
With liability for discrimination occurring from the very outset of the job advertisement stage, you should be careful not to make a job advert discriminatory in the criteria or requirements you set for the role. it is common for certain job roles to have occupational requirements which, on the face of it, may appear discriminatory. We can help identify such requirements and advise on whether, given the context and nature of the work, the requirements will satisfy any of the discrimination exceptions under current employment law.
Interviewing candidates is essential when recruiting, and again, you must be careful to not be discriminatory in the questions you ask or in the way the interview is conducted in general. It is common for businesses to slip up at this early stage with failure to make adjustments for written tests or psychological or aptitude tests a common cause of discrimination claims. We can advise on the extent to which adjustments might be required for individuals at this stage, and how these should be implemented in order to make the interview process as fair as possible.
When considering candidates, we can advise on the legalities of the use of artificial intelligence and social media monitoring to narrow down the pool, whilst keeping on the right side of employment law and data protection legislation.
When you have made the decision and offered an individual a role, you’ll need to consider the next steps including any adjustments required for the individual, reference requests, contracts and the induction process. We can assist businesses throughout the entire process and help build new or more streamlined ways of achieving the goal of recruiting the right people for your business.
Recruitment can be challenging and time-consuming. Depending on the role and setup of the business, you will need to consider whether you require an employee, a worker or a self-employed individual to carry out the work required.
You may want the flexibility of having an agency worker or someone on a zero-hour contract to lessen the pressure of having a full-time employee to manage. However, by outsourcing these employees, their loyalty may sit elsewhere rather than you as a business owner. If you choose to bring a consultant or contractor to provide assistance on one large project, you will need a bespoke contract outlining the exact parameters of their job role and you should be careful that they work in adherence with the IR35 regulations (more information on this can be found here).
Should you choose to hire someone as an employee of your business, you will have responsibility to comply with extensive employment rights, including annual leave, sick pay, maternity, paternity and adoption leave, as well as the ability to claim unfair dismissal and lodge grievances. Staff are a business’s greatest asset but can also be a very large expense.
If the individual sought is senior, consideration will have to be given to the contents of a directors’ service agreement and any share or bonus offering provided to attract the best talent for your business.
Irrespective of the type of role sought, each individual will require a contract, clearly stating their job roles and what will be expected of them. This will benefit you as an employer, setting the tone of the relationship, and individual knows what expected of them.
We can also work with you to ensure you have the correct policies and procedures in place in preparation of employing staff, as well as implementing the necessary practices to minimise the risk of employing an individual in the wrong type of role.
Directors Service Agreement
For senior individuals such as Directors, a Directors Service Agreement is the common approach to recording the terms of a Directors contract.
Such an agreement should identify the expectations of a Director, including the more onerous obligations imposed on such a senior individual such as Directors duties, insurance and what happens when the individual ceases to be a Director. These clauses can be crucial to setting expectations and protecting the business if things eventually turn sour.
From contractual entitlements for annual leave to dealing with shares, from enforcing restrictive covenants or senior executive exits, we can support you from any angle.
Whether you want assistance from the very beginning of the recruitment journey or at a single stage, our employment team are able to advise you, ensuring that you are offering equal opportunities to applicants and are making all the reasonable adjustments when you take someone on.
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