Owning a small business takes a lot of incredibly hard work and dedication. Much of the time, small businesses also retain employees to help keep their businesses going. As a business owner, it’s essential to have some understanding of employee management. This can have a significant impact on the culture of your business, retention of staff, and mitigate the risk of employee issues later down the road. Working with a business lawyer for your business needs, can prove to be a helpful resource when you have a business with employees. Here are the answers to several frequently asked questions by small business owners:

 

What should I know about managing employees before hiring them?

As a small business owner, the idea of having employees is probably something that you have given considerable thought. However, it’s important to realize that as an employer you stand to face a number of complicated employment issues. Because of this, you will want to have some basic knowledge of employment law and employee management. Retention of good staff is key and ultimately can help to ensure a harmonious workplace. Here are some tips for small business management:

 

  • Offer employees the opportunity for growth
  • Have systems in place for training your staff to easily learn to do their jobs
  • Don’t take on tasks that are better suited for someone else
  • Don’t hold on to employees who aren’t pulling their weight or are toxic for too long, it can be damaging to your business

 

What employment laws should I be aware of?

If you have never had employees before, it’s important that you have some basic understanding of employment law. Your business lawyer can assist you in understanding employment law and having practices in place to mitigate problems. Here are key employment law issues to educate yourself around to avoid facing legal issues down the road:

 

  • The Civil Rights Act of 1964
  • The Equal Pay Act of 1963
  • The Family Medical Leave Act
  • The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
  • The Fair Labor Standards Act

 

Is an employee handbook necessary if I have a small business?

Although having an employee handbook is not essential to having a small business with employees, it can certainly help to outline your business’s policies and procedures. Employee handbooks can help to clearly convey your expectations to all employees which may mitigate the risk for staff to accuse you of treating them unfairly. For example, the employee handbook can clearly outline how many vacation days that staff are entitled to. Having written policies provide you and your employees with something to refer to when facing specific situations. Your business lawyer can assist by reviewing your handbook and helping you to have the proper language in place, while making sure that you have left nothing out.

 

If you are starting a business that will have employees, it’s important that you at least have some basic knowledge of employment law. Without knowing the basics, managing your staff will surely be a challenge. For the guidance you deserve in putting the proper procedures in place and ensuring that your employment practices are in accordance with state and federal laws, contact a business lawyer today. 

 

Contact a lawyer, like a business attorney in Charlottesville, VA, for more information.

 

Thanks to Dale Jensen, PLC for their insight into business law.

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