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Businesses need employees. Rarely does someone ever stick it out alone for years and years, trying to run every single little facet of a company they’ve started, and rarely do they do it well.

Having talented and skilled people around you makes the working world a pleasure to be in, and having them on your side makes your company a pleasure to run. But you’re a small business, and you don’t want to expand too fast and too soon – how do you know you’re ready?

So you’ve taken on maybe one or two members of staff, or you’ve been very successful in your hunt for a PA, but now you’re thinking about taking your hiring process a step further. After all, you’ve got twice the clients and customers and products and services as you did last year, and you’re going to need more and more people on hand to keep the wheels turning. So here’s a couple of questions to ask yourself before you go searching for some new hires, to make sure you and your business are ready to take on a full team.

Are You Missing a Certain Skill You’re Going to Need?

You want to expand your business, and that means you’re going to need a capable and skilled team on hand to help you look after every step of the process. You’re going to want people who can take initiative, and focus on the goals you set with the drive and motivation you’d expect of yourself. But before you start trying to put a team like this together, you’re going to need to know what gaps there are in your payroll.

After all, you can’t fill these hiring gaps with just anyone who has a good looking resume. You need to assess your own company needs, relate these to someone who is trained in dealing with them, know that this person is going to rub along well with the rest of your staff, and then hire them on once you’re sure. It sounds simple to set out, but it can be a lot more complicated in reality.

Maybe you’ve noticed your online presence lacking a little recently – could you do with hiring a social media manager? Maybe you’ve noticed how unorganized and messy the office has become with all these new bodies – could you do with hiring a cleaner?

Do You Know the Ins and Outs of Employee Law?

Hiring on new employees means you’re going to need a clear grasp of the laws that protect them, as well as the common etiquette a manager should have when it comes to dealing with staff needs and payroll responsibility. You want to pay your employees on a regular basis, at a regular time on a regular day. You want to get to know your employees to make sure the schedule you plan out for work is one that works for them too. And you’re going to want to know if you’re ever overstepping the boundary between boss and employee.

There’s quite a few moments in your working relationship where the potential for being an overbearing boss occurs. For example: Contacting an employee on sick leave – is that something you should even do as an employer? Or is it something you need to simply be careful about? What should you be calling them about, and is it an appropriate thing for them to think about whilst they’re in recovery?

Are You Realistic about the Hiring Market?

Hiring is something we think we can get done in a week or so. We don’t need too many people to apply and make their way into the interview room – after all, as long as you’re paying someone, they can get on with any work you set them, right? Wrong.

A lot of companies these days tend to think in a way like this, and set all kinds of tasks and responsibilities that a person is either not paid enough to do, is too busy to try and keep up with, or they’re not trained in a way to handle something extraneous you’ve set them. And that’s a big problem – you’re going to need more than one or two people to fill all the gaps you’ve found in your business team, and that’s going to take a lot longer to process than you might have first thought.

Your business could very well take on more employees, as long as you know what you’re doing and have the resources to back you up.

This is a collaborative post.