Hire with confidence as we take the guess work out of Human Resources!

The hardest part of owning and managing a small business is the human resources side of things.  Unlike large corporations who have a whole department dedicated to HR, as a small business owner it all falls to you.  It is an area of business management that isn’t commonly discussed and despite this, is arguably one of the most crucial components to your business.  Detailed and well dictated staff contracts are pivotal to not only protection of your employees but also to yourself as a small business.  The points noted in a pre-employment documentation are important to have reference to should you ever find yourself in the unfortunate situation of a staff dispute. 

In this blog we hope to provide you with some essentials of well-drawn up employment documentation, so that next time you are handling your own HR department you will feel confident doing so.  

There are four main documents to consider when undertaking a hiring process*

Position description

An invitation to potential employee to fill the advertised position

Employment offer

An outline of the work that is required for whoever is filling the role to complete

Employment contract

An agreement on conditions of a role between yourself as the employer and the employee

Non – Disclosure Agreement

A legal contract to protect sensitive business information and control information sharing

* Please note that not all of these documents may be relevant to your practice

It is important to take the time to carefully consider what to include in any or all of the above-mentioned documents.  They form the basis of the grounds of employment, and act to hold both yourself as the employer and the employee accountable during the course of employment.  Any claims made in these documents can be utilised and drawn upon by either party should the situation arise.  Because of this, you must be very careful to dictate precisely what you do or do not want, this eradicates any grey areas that could be misinterpreted.  It also means you must be wary of making vague statements and ‘false’ claims or promises, as these too can come back to haunt you should things go a little wayward in your employer/employee relationship.

Must include components are things like;

  • Employee roles & responsibilities
  • Renumeration rates
  • Superannuation specifics
  • Leave/allowance entitlements including paternity/maternity leave, sick leave, annual leave etc
  • Notice time periods for cessation of employment
  • Expectations in terms of things such as presentation, uniform, punctuality etc

At the end of the day, HR documents provide you the opportunity to dictate precisely what you would like to get out of the person/s who will fill the role advertised.  They are important to be revised should employee’s position within your business changes too.  For instance; if you hire a trainee optical dispenser, once their traineeship is complete and you wish to keep them on, it is essential for you to sit down with the newly qualified optical dispenser to refresh HR documents to reflect their new skill set and role within your practice.  This ongoing mutual agreement between yourself as the employer and employee, just covers you both should anything untoward take place.  Another good way to ensure your documents are up to date, is to schedule yearly professional development meetings or ‘catch ups’ if ‘meeting’ seems too serious for your business style.  This way components in contracts can be mutually reviewed, and you will be able to have a good understanding of each other’s expectations moving forward.  Where required, HR documentations can be updated to reflect this.

If you are still a little overwhelmed when it comes to these documents and what they should entail.  Don’t stress, our Support Hub contains an entire Employment Resource Centre dedicated to all things HR.  Here you will find templates that are readily available to download and tailor to reflect the position you are advertising, offering and even contains a non-disclosure agreement template.  All templates feature key inclusions and will help you take the guess work out of HR and have you employing with confidence in no time at all!

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