- Decide how much to pay someone – you must pay your employees at least the National Minimum Wage.
- Check if someone has the legal right to work in the UK. You may have to do other employment checks as well.
- Check if you need to apply for a DBS check (formerly known as a CRB check). This would apply if you work in a field that requires one, e.g. with vulnerable people, schools, the care industry or security.
- Get employment insurance – you need employers’ liability insurance as soon as you become an employer.
- Send details of the job (including terms and conditions) in writing to your employee. You need to give your employee a written statement of employment if you’re employing someone for more than 1 month.
- Tell HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) by registering as an employer – you can do this up to 4 weeks before you pay your new staff.
- Check if you need to automatically enrol your staff into a workplace pension scheme.
However then the trouble starts, you will need to process a payroll periodically (normally weekly or monthly) and ensure all the correct taxes and deductions are made. This can be made easy or difficult depending on how you want to pay people or based on which system you use.
The process of paying staff (running payroll) can cost nothing if you are prepared to do a bit of reading and research, or you can outsource the task completely to a payroll bureau, accountant or bookkeeper who will take the workload from you for a fee.
Payroll sounds complex but it’s not. Decide up front whether you want to spend the time and effort understanding it. Someone in your team may be up for it or to outsource completely. Ask someone impartial for advice and seek professional help.