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Having a solid HR policy can save you a lot of headaches later on, regardless of the size of your business

It’s easy to overlook HR issues until they are absolutely necessary as a small business owner.

It’s also common to rely on informal processes when it comes to things like recruiting new employees and managing their performance.

While such an ad-hoc approach might work for a while, it will soon become unsuitable for your growing business. You could even end up in legal trouble if your HR policy is inconsistent, causing confusion and resentment among your team.

In summary, we would advise small businesses to formalize their HR approach early and stick to it.

To get things right from the start, we get into detail about HR advice.

Interviews should be prepared correctly 

Your business values should align with the qualities you look for in a new hire. However, don’t wing an interview if you want to succeed.

You should always prepare proper questions beforehand for every interview, regardless of the tone you choose. In addition to reducing selection bias, this can also help you judge candidates fairly. During the interview, pay attention to what they say.

Try not to finish their sentences or interrupt them before they’ve finished a thought. You should not be afraid to challenge them or ask more probing questions if you have any concerns about their suitability.

Last but not least, don’t undervalue the role you’re hiring for. Your business operations can be negatively affected by hiring someone who is a poor fit just because they were first to apply or were ‘good enough.’

A guide for small businesses on HR - getting it right at the beginning - KC Group

Ensure fair and consistent performance evaluations 

Having worked hard, someone asks for a pay raise. Sure, what’s the harm? Someone is consistently underperforming and needs to step up. Just a little chat and a nudge should do the trick.

This kind of informal approach to performance processes works well for small teams, but as your team grows, you’ll find it unsuitable.

To ensure everyone has an equal chance to advance, you should set universal pay rise and promotion conditions, so decision-making is transparent whether they are awarded or not. Underperforming employees should also be provided with a consistent performance improvement plan.

Consistent processes ensure everyone is judged by the same standards, which prevents bias and improves your company’s chances of advancing the most qualified people. In addition, they are scalable, giving managers the ability to make decisions based on fairness and confidence.

Awkward conversations should not be avoided 

There is enthusiasm in a new employee’s personality, but it’s clear that he or she is not suited to the job. An employee who has worked for the company for a long time is not promoted. Someone’s behavior makes others uncomfortable on the team. It is human nature to avoid awkward conversations.

In spite of this, there is no better time than the present, because the longer you avoid them, the worse the impact will be, ranging from bad morale and productivity to damaged customer relationships and even revenue losses.

It’s for this reason that you should have those conversations right away. You can ensure their effectiveness by following these steps:

  • Avoid ambiguity – use clear language to avoid misunderstandings

  • Conduct the conversation with the right person – the information needs to come from the right person, whether it’s you or a manager

  • It is essential to maintain privacy – in addition to holding the conversation in a private space, avoid revealing sensitive details to others.

  • Write a follow-up and get confirmation of receipt – In case of a disagreement or subsequent conversation, a written summary proves everyone was on the same page

Hire an HR service or software provider 

With HR services and HR software, you can achieve all of the above much more easily.

  • The interview process – HR software allows you to store and review CVs, create interview templates, and create candidate score sheets.

  • Processes for tracking performance – Your HR software can track KPIs and objectives, and the targets and requirements for promotions and pay increases can be detailed in easily accessible documents, ensuring fairness and transparency.

  • Talking about difficult topics – All the data and documentation stored in your HR software can be used to provide evidence, and to record the essential details of difficult conversations.

For assistance in finding the right candidate for your small business and support with your interview process, contact The KC Group Recruitment Agency. Your specialist finance, payroll, HR and business support recruitment partner.

Amie

Author Amie

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