HR BLOG: Five steps to clean your HR

THROW open the doors, slide up the windows and take a deep breath. Spring’s here; refreshing isn’t it?

Farewell seasonal affective disorder, goodbye to commuting in the dark… but it’s hello to the spring clean! Usually spring cleans are reserved for the house, where that room or cupboard finally gets the thorough clean it’s been nagging you for all winter. Most stop their spring clean when the home is spotless, but why not take it a step further?

Your business will be crying out for the same treatment, and you’d be surprised at the wonders a spring spruce up can do. There has been an avalanche of employment law directed at small businesses over the last 12 months, so whilst you’ve been focussing your efforts on growing your business, you’ll be forgiven for feeling somewhat engulfed when it comes to HR. Luckily we’ve put together a list of proactive steps that you could take to get your HR and subsequently your business sparkling for the rest of 2016.

Ensure employee contracts are in place and up to date. Don’t forget the handbook!
Let’s look at the fundamentals to begin with. It’s a legal requirement to have a contract in place within eight weeks of employment. This, alongside your staff handbook, is your opportunity to set out how you want staff to work, and what they’ll get from you in return.

Get a training plan
Staff training initiatives are often first to fall to the bottom of the priority list. At face value it’s easy to understand why. Losing an employee for a length of time and paying for the privilege doesn’t seem like great value. Truth is, if you want your team to perform better, this is one of the most effective ways to do it. And with the new National Living Wage coming in, having a productive team may really help some businesses. Your employees are likely to respond well to your investment in them too, so expect a strengthening of the employment relationship.

Discuss training initiatives with your staff and with management to formulate a training plan throughout 2016. Take a look at some of the workshops The HR Dept are running in the coming months.

Streamline it!
This is going to save you hours upon hours of time in the long run. All those files, all that paperwork such as your contracts, holiday request forms, training docs: move them all on to an online platform. Our HR Dept Toolkit system is brilliant for this. Not only is everything you need accessible wherever and whenever you need it, but getting rid of all that paperwork is likely to restore some feng shui back into the office (better get the elbow grease back out!).

Keep in the know
HR is always changing, and it’s these changes that your business can’t afford to miss. If you don’t do it already, use The HR Dept to ‘know the stuff’ for you. Subscribe to our newsletter, a monthly email with everything you need to know alongside expert tips to really boost your HR. You’ll find the subscribe box at the bottom of the page.

Give back
Want your talented team to stick with you throughout 2016 and beyond? Spring clean your reward systems and give them a reason to stay. Reward systems are notoriously difficult to get right, it’s easy to underestimate their complexity. A reward that appeals to one member of staff may not appeal at all to another. If you’ve got your benefits offering wrong, you’ll have wasted the time and the money invested. This spring, take a look at how you reward your staff. Our flex benefits package designed for SMEs allows your staff to pick what they want, not what you think they want – so everybody wins.

For more info, visit HR Dept Durham and Darlington.