Managing people

Managing people

Find startup business help, news, features and advice on people management for startups, from performance management to human resource management.

Advice What should I do when staff choose to depart?

You should discuss the matter with the employee in private to determine why he or she feels they must leave. Ask whether the issue is employment related and if anything could be done to increase their chances of staying on.

Advice How should I go about dismissing staff?

The first step is to put your decision in writing and hold a meeting with the staff member. You should also consider having a third party attend and inviting the staff member to bring a third party too.

Advice What grounds should I dismiss someone on?

sually a business will fire an employee if they have either clearly broken a workplace policy, or have committed a serious crime. However, it is more likely a sacking will occur when a policy has been broken. These can relate to occupational health and safety regulations, sexual harassment or even privacy. You are right to expect a reasonable level of behaviour in your workplace, and if this is not being met, following a number of warnings, you may be able to fire the employee. Some of these grounds could include theft, fraud, violence or the threat of violence and breaching health and safety policies. Also consider policies around information technology and what staff are, or aren’t, allowed to share over corporate networks and the internet. Breaches of policy could include sharing pornography over a network, or giving out other inappropriate material. Monitor the use of social media. Following some recent legal cases there are now grounds to fire staff based on comments made on social media – especially if those comments are made during work. Make sure these policies and procedures are clear, documented and are known to all employees. No staff member should have an excuse if a workplace policy is broken.

Advice How do I make redundancies?

You should first be absolutely sure the redundancy is necessary for the business to continue. Fair Work will only accept that a redundancy is genuine if you are unable to move the employee to another role or area within the business.

Advice How do I work out pay and leave levels?

If you are employing casual or part-time employees, you will need to contact Fair Work and get advice on what awards will apply to your industry and subsequent pay rates.

News Andrew Mason fired as CEO of Groupon: “I’m okay with having failed”

Groupon founder Andrew Mason has posted a letter on Twitter explaining why he had been fired, following the group buying site’s December quarterly loss.

News Penalty rates to remain unchanged in an Abbott government, angering SMEs

Under an Abbott government, the Productivity Commission could be charged with overhauling workplace laws, but penalty rates will remain unchanged.

News SMEs warned to get up to speed on new parental pay scheme

Just as businesses were getting used to the idea of the federal government's maternity leave scheme, experts are warning SMEs to stay on top of the latest addition to parental benefits – Dad and Partner Pay.

Features Hiring an apprentice: A start-up guide

Hiring an apprentice can be very rewarding – both from a business and a personal perspective. Here is everything you need to be aware of before you start. BY MICHELLE HAMMOND.

Features Stopping corporate culture from strangling your start-up

Corporate bureaucracy can squeeze the creativity out of any business. However, there are ways to retain your entrepreneurial edge as your start-up grows. BY MICHELLE HAMMOND.

News Chris Bowen speaks out but SMEs want action, not words

Small Business Minister Chris Bowen has fired a broadside at the Coalition, but SME leaders want to see reform not rhetoric from the new minister.

Taskmaster Why the Taskmaster is looking at jobs sites

The Taskmaster has just spent part of the morning perusing LinkedIn, My Career, Seek and other major jobs websites. If you’re an entrepreneur, there’s a good reason why you should as well.

Features From the altar to IPO: Doing business with your partner

There are some unique challenges that emerge when your life partner is also your business partner. But there are also ways to mitigate the risks. BY [email protected]

News Business critical of Fair Work push to police workplace bullying

Proposed law changes on workplace bullying complaints have business groups worried by the prospect of forum shopping litigants.

News Government details flexible work changes, experts say clarity still missing

New legislation is on the cards for more flexible workplace arrangements, but industry groups say they are still in the dark about how it will work.

Taskmaster Spend money to make money

Napoleon Perdis has suggested Australian department stores could reverse their fortunes by investing in staff. It’s a suggestion with implications far beyond the retail sector.

News Fair Work changes coming, business hesitant over flexible working rights

Flexible work arrangements are very much on the election agenda, as Labor releases more details about legislation changes.

Taskmaster Turn your sales staff into “interns” one day each fortnight

Yesterday, the Taskmaster outlined why it’s a good idea to have your staff spend one day per week or per fortnight in sales. But should your sales staff spend time in other departments?

News Franchisee cultural diversity on the rise

An expert has highlighted some of the challenges of hiring immigrant franchisees, after Retail Food Group said more than 50% of its successful franchisee applicants over the last six months spoke English as a second language.

News FWO to crack down on unpaid work experience

The Fair Work Ombudsman today announced a new focus on unpaid work experience, following new research into the practice.

Taskmaster Send your staff to the sales coalface

Are your staff getting lazy? Old Taskmaster says it’s time to send them to the coalface!

Features The Australian economy under a re-elected Gillard government

While they’re behind in the polls, it’s worth taking a look at what another term of Julia Gillard and Labor would mean for the economy and your business. BY BERNARD KEANE and GLENN DYER.

Features Why lawyers are failing start-ups

There are many regulations you need to deal with when starting a business. However, how many traditional law firms aren’t designed to help new start-ups. BY OLIVER MILMAN.

News Australian workers bullied over social media in the workplace: AVG

Misuse and abuse of social media in the workplace is on the rise, according to new figures.

Taskmaster To whom it may concern: A letter to the small business minister

Last week, the Taskmaster suggested it was time to write to a few pollies ahead of the next election. However, after four small business ministers in just 14 months, it’s easier said than done.

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