Hiring Your First Employee: When is The Right Time to Do So?

Image Source:  Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Now, at the outset of this article, your question might not be…

When is the right time to hire my first employee?

But rather…

Do I need to hire an employee?

And if that is the question, then chances are, you may not need to hire an employee at all. If you are running a small business from the comfort of your home, perhaps along the lines of a hobbyist ecommerce business, then you probably don't need to go through the hiring process. After all, if it's just you and your computer, what would the employee even do? Make you a cup of tea? Run your household errands? Some businesses are run by one-woman armies, and the need for assistance isn't necessary.

However, if your business has room for growth, and your business model necessitates the need for help eventually, then yes, you will need to hire an employee at some point. But when? Is now the right time?

It isn't the right time to hire an employee when…

1. You don't have the funds to do so

Of course, an extra pair of hands will give you the means to make a profit in your business, but if you aren't sure you can afford to pay somebody regularly, then you might want to wait before hiring. In the meantime, you could outsource certain tasks or automate some of your duties to help you run your business and manage your time. When you have started to see a profit, and you know that it's safe to hire somebody without the risk of not being able to pay them, you might then consider the viability of a hire.

2. You don't know the first thing about hiring somebody

Sure, you could stick an ad in your local newspaper or on an online job site, but there is more to hiring an employee than that. What if you make a mistake in the hiring process? What if you get the wrong person for the job? What if you breach employment law? Before you advertise any vacancies, you need to commit to finding out more about the legalities involved, including gaining info on how to write a contract and searching for information about your responsibilities as an employer. You need to find out how to carry out the necessary applicant checks, perhaps using the resources provided at this website. And you need to look at the rules around holiday pay, sick pay, etc. It's a bit of a minefield, but there is plenty of advice online to guide you in the right direction.

Image Source:  Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

When you know it is financially viable to employ somebody, and after educating yourself on your employer obligations, you might then be in a better position to employ somebody. This is especially true if the following apply in your business.

1. You need a specific skill set

You could outsource certain tasks, but it might be more cost-effective to have an employee at hand if these tasks are key to the day-to-day running of your business. So, you might need somebody with a marketing background, for example, or you might choose to hire somebody with experience in I.T. or accountancy. Especially when you are weak in any of these areas, having somebody on hand to deal with these aspects of your business will give you room to manage those tasks that are better suited to your strengths.

2. You are exhausted, all of the time

Running a business is time-consuming, so you can expect to feel tired occasionally. However, if you are regularly exhausted, and you aren't getting time off because running your business is too demanding, then having an employee to help you could be a literal and metaphorical lifesaver. With an extra pair of hands in your business, you will have less on your plate in the day, and provided you can trust your employee to manage key aspects of your business, you might also have the opportunity to have time off occasionally.

And so…

If your business has the capacity to grow, then hiring an employee might be a no-brainer. Provided you have the means to pay them, and as long as you understand your responsibilities as an employer, then it might be time to get the ball rolling with the hiring process. This is especially true if you know you need help, and your work-life balance is skewed too heavily in the direction of the former. Commit to further research online then, seek advice from others, work out it what it is you need your employee to do, and then advertise your position. Hopefully, you will then attain the right person to help you grow your business.

Let us know your thoughts, and if you have any other advice for our readers, please share your tips with us.