If you are a new business owner or an existing company looking to employ people for the first time then there are many laws governing employment that you must be aware of. There will be differences in employment law depending upon which country your business operates in but in general these points will apply. Not abiding by these laws can have very serious consequences and can even lead to your business being shut down by the government so it is advisable that you familiarize yourself with them and do everything in your power to comply.
Minimum Wages And Payments
Most countries have a minimum wage that must be paid to workers to comply with the law. In the United States this is currently around seven dollars per hour and it applies to the majority of workers. There are some exceptions to this and these include executive, administrative and professional employees, commission only sales workers and teachers and professors. You need to check with the government whether the positions that you want to fill are covered by the law or exempt from it. Payments for overtime worked are also governed by this law.
Safety In The Workplace
It is the company owner’s responsibility to ensure that the safest possible working conditions exist for their employees. Failure to do this could lead to heavy prosecution especially if an employee is injured due to the employer’s negligence in this area. There have been many cases where businesses have been closed due to violation of safety laws. It is mainly common sense and is not onerous to implement. Providing protective clothing, fire extinguishers and proper fire exits, using signs to indicate hazardous areas or spillages and the storage of dangerous materials or items are a few of the common safety requirements.
There should be absolutely no discrimination against people in the workplace based on their gender, race, their country of origin or if they have disabilities of any kind. This also applies to job interviews before a person actually becomes employed by the company. An interview should be based solely on the person’s abilities and specialized knowledge that is required to perform the work and no discriminatory factors based on them as a person should be taken into consideration. Once a person is employed they should be provided equal opportunity in terms of wages, hours of work, type of work to be undertaken and advancement within the company.
Although not required by law in most countries, a handbook which details what is expected of employees in terms of conduct, hours of attendance, pay and conditions, company procedures and safety will be viewed as a very positive step by the authorities. It is important that all workers are clear on what their responsibilities are and also can see the steps that the company are taking to ensure their safety and offer them equal opportunities in their workplace.