When hiring a new employee, there are many areas of consideration for a business. Some, however, are more critical than others. This article highlights the most important factors business owners need to be aware of when hiring new staff for their business to ensure effective on-boarding of new employees, as well as ensuring the business remains compliant throughout the process.
There are modern awards, which lay out the minimum terms and conditions for jobs within industries. These include minimum rates of pay, hours of work, penalty rates, rosters, breaks and allowances. When bringing on a new employee the terms and conditions you offer them, as part of their employment contract with your business must at a minimum align to the conditions specified in the award that relates to your industry. To find the award that relates to your industry, a search can be performed here.
Additionally there are the National Employment Standards, which apply to all employees nationally. These standards are part of the Fair Work Act 2009, and include employment standards on matters including:
- Weekly Hours
- Flexible work arrangements
- Parental Leave
- Annual Leave
- Personal, Carers and Compassionate leave
- Community Service Leave
- Long Service Leave
- Public Holidays
- Termination of employment and redundancy.
For more information about the National Employment Standards, visit their website.
Workplace Health and Safety and Workers compensation
Everyone is entitled to a safe and healthy place to work, and employers have a responsibility to ensure their workplace protects employees against potential health and safety risks.
Safe Work Australia was established and is funded by Commonwealth, State and Territory governments to develop policy to improve workplace health and safety and workers compensation. Safe Work liaises with governments, unions and industry to reduce death, injury and disease in the workplace. More information can be found here.
Every state and territory has its own workplace health and safety body, these organisations are responsible for regulating and conducting investigations on breaches of laws relating to workplace health and safety, as well as bullying and harassment.
For a full list of state and territories regulatory bodies, visit the Fair Work website.
Every employee should have a Position Description
Another element to successfully on boarding an employee to your business is to have a position description. A Position Description may seem like a whole lot of unnecessary administration for your business, the truth is, it may save you from a lot of heartache down the track.
A Position Description will enable you to:
- Find the right employee for the job by matching the skills of the role to the skills of the candidate;
- Set clear expectations about the role from day one, and the skills and abilities required to do the job;
- Provide a basis for measuring and managing performance; and
- Creates a platform for pay and grading systems to be structured fairly, logically and in a way that is aligned to the award requirements.
An important part of managing an employee’s performance is to have clear guidelines as to what is expected of them, a position description is the tool to do this. During the first weeks of a new employee starting, having conversations around what is expected of them is critical. It is also important to have regular meetings during the first few months to give the employee feedback about their performance. This gives you the opportunity to recognise employees for doing a good job, and, conversely, address any issues with your new employee promptly.