3 Things You Need to Know Before Hiring Your First Employee

Hiring your first employee is a noteworthy milestone. It’s a sign that your business is growing and you are now able to build a solid team. Having employees means a lot more responsibility, but it also means more legal obligations. Compared to freelancers or independent contractors, the employer-employee relationship is bound by certain laws. And if you are not familiar with these laws, legal disputes or trouble could be in your future. Additionally, when hiring a new employee you have to consider what kind of individual you are looking for. What are your company’s current demands? What kind of qualifications should your employees have to fill those needs? There is a lot to consider on all fronts when recruiting. Below are a few things to keep in mind so your hiring process can be as smooth and seamless as possible. 

What’s their educational background?

Understanding a prospective hire’s background and experience is crucial. You need to make sure their skill set and knowledge match with your organization’s needs, but also provides a unique, outside perspective. You want someone who compliments your own education and skills and can contribute knowledge and insight you don’t have. Look into the kind of online forensic psychology degree, certification, or licenses they have and ask about their coursework and special skills.

Sometimes it isn’t enough to check your potential employee’s resume and conduct an interview. Screening and testing may be necessary to ensure you are hiring a qualified candidate. Check references, conduct a background check, and administer skills-based testing. Pre-employment assessment testing can help you determine if the potential hire can actually perform the duties they say they can. Evaluating a person helps you make a more informed decision when hiring and helps weed out unqualified candidates. It is also recommended to implement some form of training for the new hire. This way, they are fully prepared to do the work requested. It may also be wise to offer training for your employees regularly to help keep them up-to-date on new technology and information and gain new skills. These sorts of assessments guarantee you are employing a competent and capable workforce. 

What are your finances?

Hiring an employee over a freelancer or contractor comes with a substantial cost. You are not just paying a salary, but could be paying for employment taxes, insurance, and workers’ compensation fees. You may also want to provide benefits, vacation time, and 401k contributions. This all adds up so you need to be realistic about your company’s financial stability or budget. Outline your organization’s financial trajectory and make sure you feel comfortable with the heavy financial responsibility employing individuals comes with. If any concerns arise regarding your financial situation, then you might want to hold off on hiring employees. 

What kind of paperwork is needed?

The recruitment process can become even more complex and time-consuming when you realize the extensive amount of paperwork involved. In order to legally hire a person, you need to obtain the required certifications and paperwork. Make sure to get an employee identification number (EIN) to establish yourself as a business entity with the IRS. Your new hire will also need to fill out certain paperwork and be eligible to work. You need to have your employees provide verification that they are authorized to work, such as a passport or green card. A new employee will also need to complete a W-4 form, a tax document that informs the employer of how much money to withhold from the employee’s paycheck and submit to the IRS. Finally, familiarize yourself with laws relating to anti-discrimination and workers’ protections.