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The best ways to take on extra people

You have to consider the type of worker you wish to employ, depending on factors such as:

  • How constant the work is
  • How long the work will last
  • The number of hours of work each week

You have a number of options:

Permanent employees can be full-time or part-time. They have an open-ended employment contract with you. You have obligations to them but they will be an investment in your business.

Fixed-term contract employees have an employment contract with you but it is for a predetermined time or until a specific task has been completed.  You'll still have employer obligations but only for the duration of the contract.

Employment agency - temporary staff are engaged by the agency and supplied to you. Your contract is with an employment agency to supply you with staff, but you still have certain legal responsibilities towards the agency worker.

Using self-employed freelancers, consultants and contractors gives you the minimum of employer obligations. But you need to be sure that the people are legally defined as self-employed.

Zero-hours contracts allow you to have people on-call to work whenever necessary and mutually convenient. Generally, you are not obliged to offer work, nor is there a responsibility for the worker to accept any work. Look at the terms of any zero-hours contract carefully as it may affect the employment status of the worker and your responsibility towards them.

If you plan to employ children or young people, you should keep in mind that there are restrictions on the hours and types of work that they can legally carry out. 

You will also have to make tax arrangements for permanent and fixed-term employee, more information at HMRC: Employers

Full-time or part-time employees


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  • Inward Investment Services
  • Town Hall & Civic Offices
    Westoe Road
    South Shields
    Tyne & Wear
    United Kingdom
    NE33 2RL

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