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When to employ staff

If your business is consistently growing and your earnings are repeatedly on or above target, you might be thinking it’s time to get some extra help.

Taking on an extra set of hands can be a great move, give you time to concentrate on the important things and help you grow your business. Here’s what you need to know to get started.

Assess if you’re ready to hire

You’re likely to be ready for staff if you:

  • don’t have the time to manage all the work yourself
  • see opportunities for growth and want to offer services that require skills you don't currently have
  • want to expand and need increased skills to compliment your own
  • don’t have time to do all the paperwork
  • don’t have time to provide excellent customer service
  • have excess revenue that you’d rather put into the business, as opposed to directly financially rewarding yourself.
casestudy gardener

Case study

Weighing options

For five years, Ben’s Gardening Service has mown and weeded suburban gardens. Ben, the owner and only gardener, has found it easy to keep on top of the work and the invoicing. His accountant handles his GST and tax responsibilities.

Having won a contract to maintain the grounds of two retirement villages, Ben considers hiring another gardener. After discussing it with his accountant — and using the Employee Cost Calculator (external link) to check if he can afford help — Ben decides on a permanent employee working three days a week.

Ben’s plan is for his new employee to take over the existing clients, while he concentrates on the retirement grounds, the paperwork, and winning new work. Ben’s happy his business is growing and that he took the time to figure out what kind of employee he needs.

Deciding on the role

If you’re reasonably comfortable you are ready to hire, it’s important to first put some time aside to figure out:

  • which type of employee you should get, eg should you get a permanent or casual employee
  • what kind of skills your business needs to expand or diversify
  • how many hours a week it would take to do the required tasks
  • how much responsibility you’re willing to delegate
  • whether you are willing to train someone to get them up to speed, or you need someone who can hit the ground running
  • the candidate’s likely salary expectations
  • what resources you will need in place, eg wages, insurance, tax levies, computers etc.

Employee Cost Calculator

Add up the true costs of hiring staff — salary, recruitment and training — before you take the next step.

Do you feel more confident about hiring an employee after reading this information?

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