HR Companies: A Buyer's Guide
“Our People are our greatest asset”
This is a phrase trotted out on a thousand company websites. In many cases it’s a fact – most businesses would find it impossible to function without any staff. But your greatest asset can also be your greatest weakness and when things go wrong, just one problem employee can cause massive disruption to your business.
- Long Term Sickness
- Frequent Absence
- Poor performance
- Bad attitude
- even theft
No matter the problem, the result is often the same – many hours of wasted time, people being moved away from core tasks to deal with it and lower morale among other staff.
A professional HR company can put in place a framework for dealing with even the most complicated staffing problems. They can also provide ongoing support and assistance to minimise disruption to your business.
This Buyers’ Guide for HR Companies has been written in partnership with HR Business Expert Deminos.
Deminos provide HR Outsourcing and expert Employment Law advice to companies throughout the UK.
The Benefits of Employing a HR Company
There are a number of areas where HR problems arise and where costs can be incurred:
Employment Rights and Employment Law
Your employees are now better educated in their employee rights than ever before. If you say the wrong thing in a meeting or miss out one step in a complex process then you can leave yourself exposed. A No Win No Fee lawyer will pick up on this and could make your life a (costly) misery.
The statistics make frightening reading for business owners. There are 250,000 new tribunals every year. That is nearly 1,000 per working day and now the average payout for an unfair dismissal claim is £8,924. You have to add the cost of legal representation to this and factor in the time out of your business to deal with it.
Employers of all sizes are expected to comply with the same employment laws. This is fine for BT with a whole HR department and legal advisors to look after their thousands of employees. However if is very unfair and very daunting for a company that is taking on their first member of staff.
Help and Support
Within these areas a HR company can provide a number of services to take the strain off your own people and minimise your exposure to losses:
- Compliance – getting your paperwork right. This includes your employment contracts and an employee handbook full of policies and procedures. Updates are usually included.
- Advice – advice, guidance and support on what to say and when.
- Legal – help with tribunals, sometimes backed by an insurance indemnity.
Other HR Services
HR companies aren’t only useful when things go wrong. There are many staffing and employment related projects that the right HR partner can assist with:
- Appraisals – putting a performance management system in place. This will reward good work, highlight areas for improvement and increase employee retention.
- Training – the right training to keep employees and managers on top of changes.
- Recruitment – help with recruitment processes and induction for new employees.
Choosing the Right HR Company
When you hire an HR company you’re not just procuring a service, you’re forming a partnership. A good working relationship between yourselves and the people at the HR company running your account is therefore critical. Here are some points to bear in mind:
Are you being forced to take a fixed package that suits the HR company, not you?
Who will you call when you have an issue? A massive call-centre or the same consultant all the time?
What level of support is being offered? For example, will you have to fill in templates or are bespoke letters being written for you?
1 year, 3-5 years, even 7 years are on offer. Do you know what your business will look like in 5 years time?
A massive corporate HR provider may not suit a family business with 5 long-serving individuals.
How much indemnity? What does it cover? Is it totally independent or is it owned by the advisory firm? This conflict of interest may affect the advice that is being given.
There are lots of issues to consider, but choosing the right firm will provide all of the support, guidance and advice that you need. They will use employment law to your advantage and free you up to concentrate on running your business.
This Buyers’ Guide was written in partnership with HR Business Expert Deminos.
About Deminos:“We ensure compliance and keep you fully updated with changes in employment law. Your qualified account manager gives you instant answers to employment law queries, and we will write all the letters that you need - no need to fill in templates.
We guarantee our advice with tribunal cover and employ our own advocacy team.
We can also help with one-off projects like TUPE transfers, acquisitions or Employment Law Training for line managers.”
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