Employment Advice on taking on Staff
New Employment Regulations came into force in April 2006.
The Vendor must provide details of all staff that will be taken over by the Purchaser.
I normally close for a few days to refurbish and advertise for staff, which any existing staff can apply, ensuring that all existing staff have been paid redundancy etc. by the vendor, where applicable.
It is not always possible to do this with key employees, in which case you need all the records of their job titles, when they started, how much accrued redundancy is due should they leave etc., your Accountant should be able to give you a comprehensive list of the requirements and your responsibilities.
Check for any employment disputes during the Vendors ownership or any possible pending regarding existing staff. Do not ignore this legislation, it can be extremely costly if you get it wrong.
These are the basic questions that you may be asked and need answers to whilst interviewing staff or you need answers to if you are going to work for a company. There will be others which we will be delighted to add to the list, if you would keep us updated.
1. What are the hours?
2. What breaks am I entitled to?
3. Is there the opportunity for paid overtime?
4. What are the arrangements for bank holiday working? Will I be paid more than my basic wage, or be given time off in lieu?
5. How long is the probation period?
6. Is it a permanent post or a temporary position i.e. One year?
7. Who will I report to?
8. What will my duties be?
9. How much holiday entitlement will I have?
10. What is my notice period (give and receive)?
11. Do I need to supply my own clothes, or is a uniform provided?
12. When will I be paid?
13. How will I be paid (cheque, cash, bank credit)?
14. Do I get free/subsidised meals while on duty?
15. Am I entitled to pension? If so, what is my contribution, and what is the employer’s contribution?
16. What (if any) assistance will you provide for further training/personal
17. What specific skills am I expected to demonstrate?
18. How will I be assessed that I’m doing the job well?
19. Why has the job become vacant?
20. What changes are there for promotion/advancement?
21. If the role requires heavy lifting: What are the Health & Safety guidelines for lifting heavy items and what precautions am I required to take?
22. If working late at night: What arrangements are there to ensure my personal safety when leaving the premises and going home?
23. What is my actual job description?
24. Do you have a sickness scheme
24. The BII used to have a course specifically for staff, to make them aware of their responsibilities in respect of the Licensing Laws, they provide a book which is an abridged version of the manual for the essential Licensing Qualification (APLH). The book costs about £5.00 from the BII it was well worth buying and keeping it available for the staff to refer to on any issue, also get every member of the staff to read it and sign a statement saying that they understand it, it comes under due diligence. It will not remove your responsibility, but it ensures that your staff have been made aware of their responsibilities and go in your favour should an error occur. Some licensing solicitors and large training companies like CPL Training Ltd have their own versions, these are often free to clients.
One serious nasty is redundancy entitlement.
Very few people selling businesses mention long term staff redundancy responsibility, this relates to the time that they have worked in the business being sold, there may have been several owners, at every change the redundancy should be deducted from the price of the business or a separate arrangement made for the member or members of staff qualifying for redundancy.