If you’re a small business owner, you likely started your business so you could be your own boss and take your wedding and event business in the direction you wanted most! But with the majority of weddings taking place between April and October, your business is entering the busy season. Is it time to enlist the help of a brave first employee or expand into a small team?
If you’ve hit the critical “breaking point” where you’ve decided you can no longer manage your booming business on your own, you know there’s a whole new list of legal, financial and time obligations associated with bringing on your first employee. It can be a lot to handle – you are, after all, just one person right now – but it doesn’t have to be as stressful as you might think.
To help you navigate these new waters, we’ve created our list of the precautions to keep in mind as you go about hiring your first employees!
Decide on all the details ahead of time
Before you even bring in your first candidate for the position, make sure you have all the details set in your mind (and in the job listing). Come up with a formal list of activities the new employee would be involved in, a “wish list” of skills and experience you’d like the employee to possess, and more specific details like salary and employee classification. Make sure those details are compliant with minimum wage requirements as well as other Department of Labor standards.
Don’t skip the background check
Don’t just rely on your instincts – make sure to do your due diligence when hiring your first employee by performing a background check. While you may feel that a candidate seems trustworthy, there are a lot of liabilities associated with new employees. Anyone you hire is a representative of your business, so you should make sure they represent you in the correct way and, more importantly, keep your business out of potential litigation. For example, firms like Sterling and Intellicorp are examples in the area of background checks, and don’t forget to notify the applicant in writing that you are performing a background check if you do decide to move forward with one (it’s required by law).
Take the time to check references
References can be a huge part of a hiring a new employee, yet they’re often skipped because of time constraints. References can tell you far more than what’s on a candidate’s resume! It’s important to speak with people who know the candidate both professionally and personally to get a good understanding of his or her ability to do the job and everyday personality. Ask the applicant to provide a few references, and make a few phone calls following the interview.