Employment Documents for New Starters

You’ve made an offer to a candidate and you’re about to give them the job. But did you know there are a series of employment documents for new starters, including a legally binding contract? We look at the different types of documentation you should be providing.

Employment documents

Whether it’s your first hire or your business is expanding, giving new employees the right documents can save you time and headaches in the long run. Not only will your new starter know what’s expected of them, but you can use this as an opportunity to set expectations at the start of their employment. Employers can also include important policies and procedures with employment documents for new starters.

The types of documents will vary depending on the individual’s employment status. In this article, we focus on PAYE employees (permanent, fixed-term, full-time, and part-time). If you’re unsure how to work out someone’s employment status, speak to our team, as there are legal and financial penalties for getting this wrong. If you need advice on casual workers or zero-hour contracts, get in touch for a chat.

There are specific employment documents for new starters that should be issued before employment starts and those that are useful when included in a new starter pack. We look at each one to give you greater clarity, so you can check what’s missing from your current onboarding process.

Offer of Employment Letter

Once a verbal offer of employment has been agreed, an offer letter in writing should be sent, which details the terms of the new employee’s engagement. In this letter, you should state that the offer of employment is conditional upon receiving evidence of the person’s legal right to work in the UK. Depending on the job role, you might also need to add other conditions, such as references, having a valid driving licence, or a DBS (Criminal Records) check.

Employment Contract

An important part of the employment documents for new starters is the contract of employment. This is a legally binding agreement containing relevant information about your new starter’s employment. This employment contract should include terms, such as the employees’ rights and duties, as well as a written statement.

The written statement should include the business name and address, employment start date, location, working hours, notice periods, pay details, sick pay and holiday entitlement. It should also include job title, job description, the employee’s responsibilities and details of any pension schemes. You should also include your disciplinary and grievance procedures.

Since April 2020, PAYE employees must be issued with a written statement of their terms and conditions of employment before they start work or on the first day of work. We recommend giving this to your new starter as soon as possible to avoid any issues. Also known as a Section 1 statement of the employment contract, employees have the right to this written statement as per Section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA).

References and PAYE

As an employer, you may need to obtain references for the new starter. There are also other types of information required, such as bank details and emergency contacts. It’s advisable to supply employee forms to collect and process this information as efficiently as possible. You will need to obtain their P45 as this will state their tax code. It’s also a legal requirement for employees to be issued with itemised payslips.

Employee Handbook

Your employment documents for new starters should include an employee handbook which will include a variety of policies and procedures that enable your new starter to understand how your organisation operates. This handbook can become a crucial tool to help you share important information and to ensure employees follow your rules. You should include all company policies and procedures and any relevant legal terms and conditions. If you employ over five people, you will need a Health and Safety policy.

A key document to include is a GDPR (General Data Protection Regulations) compliant Employee Privacy Notice (although this may change with the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill) This should explain how you will manage their personal data while employed and what happens if they leave your employment. It’s also useful to include policies on personal email, internet use, alcohol and drugs (especially with the use of machinery and driving), and dress codes in the workplace within your employee handbook. If you would like a list of all the policies to include, get in touch.

Do you need employment documents for new starters?

Jude Read-HR has a dedicated service to help you with your new starters. Our Fixed Fee Employment Documents Service will provide your company with all the employee documents you need, including employment contracts and employee handbooks. Don’t just take our word for it, see the testimonial from one of our valued clients. We can also check whether your company policies and procedures are correct and legally compliant.

If you need employment documents and HR support to onboard your new starters, or you would like advice on another type of employee matter, please get in touch.

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