Employer tips for the start of 2017

365 days already! In this short blog I am going to give you 7 pointers to kick start 2017.

  1. Reflect, evaluate and measure.

Take some time to evaluate the last year of business. What went well? What could have gone better? What did you learn? What was unexpected and How can you improve? This has to be the starting point for any employer. That way you can keep the great things, and improve the not so great things.

      2. Visualise a perfect 2017

This might seem a little clichéd but it is important for every business to have a vision. Your vision can change and should evolve as the business evolves. Your vision is what drives you to do what you do and if you have staff your vision needs to be clear so that they too can work towards achieving it. So once you have a vision, communicating that vision with your team is essential.

      3. Plan

Create a plan. Now that you know what worked in 2016 and what you want for 2017; how will you and your team achieve it?

     4. Get your house in order

When it comes to Employment Law documentation is key. Why not use the New year as an opportunity to ensure your paperwork in up to scratch. Check all staff have employment contracts and that they are still legally compliant, review your policies, ensure you still have the correct address and next of kin details for each staff member and check that you are still paying minimum wage or more.

     5. Training

We never stop learning. Identify your training needs as a manager. Refresh and revise training you have already had and invest in training for your team. Perhaps you promoted a member staff in 2016? Or maybe you took on a new worker? Either way it is important to ensure that they have the correct tools needed do the job you want them to do to the best of their ability. If you need advice on training I am happy to help or point you in the direction of someone who can.

   6. Employment Law things to look out for in 2017.

Changes in Employment Law for 2017 could be a blog in itself but a few key things to look out for are: Increase in National Living wage, increase in statutory sick pay, the removal of tax benefits to some salary sacrifice schemes and of course auto-enrolment if you haven’t already done it.

   7.Appreciate and Motivate

A great way to motivate your team is to appreciate them. Employees who feel appreciated work better and stay with you. This does not require a big gesture, a little ‘thank you’ can be enough. If you have more than one member of staff call a team meeting, inject the meeting with positivity and set some SMART goals.

All that is left for me to say is Happy New Year from Orchard Employment Law. If you need assistance  with Employment Law or HR during 2017, please contact me on 01634 564136 or info@orhardemploymentlaw.co.uk.

You can also follow me on Twitter @jemmafairhay


Your staff are amazing but what if..?

You have an amazing team. You may never have to take a member of staff through a disciplinary process. You might not have a problem with recurring sickness or long term absence due to illness. But what if one day you did?  Would you know how to deal with these issues?

Most of the time everybody in the workplace does what they are supposed to do. But, sometimes they don’t. Sometimes there is a clash of personalities which you have to sort out, sometimes complacency sets in and your star worker makes a big boo boo.

Misconduct needs to be dealt with and standards maintained. Yes you can still have a quiet word with staff over small things but there is no such thing as a verbal warning in Law. All warnings have to follow procedure and failure to follow the correct procedure can have costly outcomes. No employer ever sets out to defend a tribunal claim and this is why it is important to know how to handle situations before they occur. Unfortunately, “I didn’t know” doesn’t excuse you.

Of course staff will be sick with the odd flu and cold from time to time and in these instances there is no need to take action. However, some staff are absent for months at a time or for a few days each week.  This can cause a strain on the rest of your team whose workload has to increase to cover the absent employee or you might incur extra costs of agency staff and emergency cover. What about other financial implications of statutory sick pay and the holiday pay which ill members of staff continue to accrue?

Costs aside, long term absence often suggests that a member of staff may have a disability. If this is the case then you have certain obligations. There may be a need to make adjustments in the workplace to enable the staff member to return to work and sadly there  are times when it is just not possible to return to work.

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today’ Malcolm X

If you would like to come to a workshop on 24th January 2017 which will give you the tools to manage any of these situations. Visit Eventbrite at http://www.orchardemploymentlaw.eventbrite.com or email info@orchardemploymentlaw.co.uk for details.