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Managing Christmas Leave Tip

Managing Christmas Leave Tip

Managing Christmas Leave Tip

Ensuring that you have the right staff on board during this season is key. Whether Christmas is your busy season or your low season, you don't want to pay more in labour than what you need to.

National Minimum Wage and Salary Employees

National Minimum Wage and Salary Employees

Burger King was recently fined for paying one of their salary employees below national minimum wage. In this video, we explain the connection between National Minimum Wage and Salary employees.

How to have a challenging conversation

How to have a challenging conversation

How to have a challenging conversation

Managers should be prepared to have challenging conversations as part of a performance review (sometimes referred to as difficult or even courageous conversations). Here are some suggestions to help you through…..

       Kick start 2018 with a good recruitment and selection plan.    It’s a new year, so I bet you have already set some business goals that you would like to achieve in 2018 and beyond. If expansion is on your list, then you are probably considering adding members to your team. Finding the perfect person for your team isn’t always easy. Recruitment can be a tricky process, so here are some things to consider before you go ahead and sign on the dotted line.   Consider the team environment:  If you have   fostered an environment where people want to work, have a good atmosphere, respect your staff and have an open-door policy when to comes to making yourself available to staff, then you are probably in a good space to attract and retain your new recruit(s).   Be clear on the role you are recruiting for:  Make sure you know exactly what the job will entail before recruiting. If you are vague on the details of the position, then it will be hard to find the right person.   Shortlisting:   If you are overwhelmed with applicants, conducting phone interviews can be a good way to drill down to the most suitable candidates to put through to the next stage of the recruitment process.  This is a great way to cut down on the number of face to face interviews, saving both hiring manager and candidates time.   Take your time when interviewing:  Interviewing is not a process to be taken lightly. It is your best chance to find out more about your candidates. Make sure your interview style is structured and consistent. Be objective and involve other people in the process, the hiring manager should not make the final decision alone.   Use all tools available to you:  We live in a digital age where our lives are broadcasted through social media. Before adding someone to your team, Google their name and see what comes up. You might be surprised by the results!   Reference Checks are vital:  Make sure you complete reference checks for every short-listed candidate. Past employers have worked with the candidate before, so will be able to share insights around the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses.   Know the next steps:  Have an on-boarding process in place before you hire a new team member. It will allow them to settle into the role, instantly feel part of the team and you will not waste precious time scrambling for a training plan.  Your employee’s impression of your business starts with how they were treated during the recruitment and selection process.  In today’s candidate short market, nailing your recruitment will ensure that you have the right people to take your business into 2018.   Sign up to our mailing list  and receive FREE HR tips for your business

Kick start 2018 with a good recruitment and selection plan.

Finding the perfect person for your team isn’t always easy. Recruitment can be a tricky process, so here are some things to consider before you go ahead and sign on the dotted line.

The Proposed Changes To The 90 Day Trial Period

The Proposed Changes To The 90 Day Trial Period

The Proposed Changes To The 90 Day Trial Period

In their 100 day plan, the new government are intending to make changes to employment law. One change is to overhaul the 90 day trial period, let’s explore...

Are You Ready If The Labour Inspector Comes Knocking?

Are You Ready If The Labour Inspector Comes Knocking?

Are You Ready If The Labour Inspector Comes Knocking?

So tell me, could your business afford to come up with $200,000 to fix wage errors? Well, that is what happened in a recent case investigated by a Labour Inspector.

       The Importance of Good Record Keeping   How do your employment records look? Are they colour coded, filed alphabetically and 100% up to date? If they are looking less than desirable, then you want to read this blog. As of 1st April 2016, new employment legislation states that employers must keep accurate employment records, and be able to produce them when requested. Read on if you need to double check you are complying with good record keeping.   Why is good record keeping important?   Due to the large number of businesses who are keeping incorrect records, Labour Inspectors have issued a warning that businesses should be prepared for a visit. If the inspectors find that your records are not up to scratch, then you could face penalties.  Don’t be complacent and think that your business is too small, too unimportant, or too under-the-radar for an inspector to call on. What if they do come calling, and your records are poorly kept or non-existent?  Apart from the threat of a Labour Inspector, good record keeping has many other benefits:   Builds a relationship of trust with your employees  Safeguards you in case of an employee dispute  Ensures you are meeting your obligations as an employer by giving your employees the correct entitlements    What records do you need?   You will need to ensure that you have records in the following three areas:    Wage and Time records  including all employee details and the hours worked   Holiday and Leave records  showing leave owing, and taken by each employee   Employee file records  to include the individual details for each employee including employment agreements.   All of these records will need to be easily accessible, and able to be produced at a moment’s notice. The requirements for each category are quite extensive, so it is worth dedicating some time to getting each one right.   Why is this coming to light?   Recently there have been a lot of cases of employees being treated unfairly. This is another step that the government are taking to protect employees in their jobs. Every employee is entitled to at least minimum wage, appropriate annual leave, and set hours of work.   Record Keeping Requirements   Employment New Zealand [] have indicated some top tips for the increased responsibility around good record keeping. They are...   Keep your records up to date  Retain your business files for at least 6 years  Maintain accurate information so that you can easily calculate leave entitlements or a final pay  Have accurate role descriptions to help manage performance  Even if you outsource your payroll, you need to maintain accurate records   Penalties for poor record keeping start at $1000 and can reach up to $20,000. These are not small sums of money. Could your business afford to receive a $20,000 bill?   How We Can Help   Have you been reading through this article and second guessing your current records? Or maybe you know your files are not up to scratch.  It can be an imposing task to update your records if you don’t know what they should contain. Don’t waste time blindly working on your records. Our new e-course shows you exactly what to do to get your records compliant with New Zealand Law.  The course contains five comprehensive, practical modules with videos and workbooks. Those modules are:    Why Record Keeping is Important:  how to avoid fines and penalties   What Records Need to be Kept:  with exact directions on each piece of information required   Record Keeping Case Study:  a practical look at how you should be keeping your records   How Should Records Be Kept:  the means for documenting and filing records appropriately   Safeguarding Your Business:  good records can protect your business   As you work through the course, you can update your records as you go. You will be certain that your records are legal, and you will be able to use those good practices going forward.  Check out this  link  for more information on our record keeping e-course -  Click here to access the course.   This course is also available in Mandarin -  Click here to access Mandarin course    

The Importance of Good Record Keeping

How do your employment records look? If they are looking less than desirable, then you want to read this blog. Good record keeping is key to protecting your business.

       The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Of Employing Family Members   Are you considering employing someone in your family? Before you take the plunge and do something you might regret, it is vital to assess whether it is the right decision for your business or not. Employing family members can be fantastic, but it can also turn out as a disaster. We have done the homework for you so that you can read up before jumping in with both feet.   The Good    Loyalty and Trust   One of the most fantastic things about employing family is that you know exactly what you are going to get. As you have known them for many years, you will have seen them at the best times and also at their worst times, so know how they react to pressure. Because they will have your best interests at heart, you can expect loyalty, and trust they will do the best job possible.   Good Culture   When you work with your family it can be easy to build a great workplace culture. You get on, you will be comfortable around each other, and know when to steer clear. There is no awkwardness of needing to get to know each other before you can work together efficiently.  In a family business, often the culture has been built over generations and tweaked for the current situation. The culture will be able to drive a cohesive decision making process that aligns with the business values and growth goals.   The Bad    Taking Advantage   Some family members can have a tendency of taking advantage. You may find some of the lines get blurred and the rules are only loosely observed. They may expect more leniency, more time off, higher salaries, or better job content than their colleagues. You will need to manage this carefully so that their behaviour does not affect your business.  You as an employer must not take advantage either. Employing family members still means paying them fairly, at least minimum wage. They must also have suitable working conditions, reasonable working hours, and appropriate holiday entitlements.  Also, if you have more than one team member, be very careful not to play favourites with your family members by being more lenient. This can cause resentment from the other team members, and let the family member get away with poor behaviour without reprimand.   Conflict   It is easy for home and business life to collide into one when you work together. Don’t let personal conflicts affect business, and likewise, don’t let business conflicts tarnish personal relationships.  A family business is often full of intense passions as everyone wants what is best for the business. But, you might not always be able to agree on what the best thing is. You may want to consider an outside perspective to resolve conflict over the direction for the business. Whether this means a business coach, a trusted advisor, or even governance from an external board or director - use the means that suit your business.   The Ugly    Safeguard The Unexpected   No matter who you employ, things can go wrong. Whether it is a simple dispute that needs resolving or a major issue, it is important to safeguard your business.  You NEED to have a contract in place with all of your staff or contractors, and that includes family members. That means if push comes to shove, you can put aside the family aspect and fall back on the paperwork. You can follow the correct processes for resolution without the heart strings getting in the way.   Hostile Takeover   Remove the danger of hostile takeover in a family business by succession planning. Get a structure in place that works in the best interest of the business, but still satisfies the individual parties involved.  Recognise that everyone will want to have different levels of involvement. Some will want to see the business continue to tick over and will be happy to maintain the day to day running. But some will want to push the business forward, growing it and opening up its potential. Respect each person’s involvement and assign roles accordingly.   Vital Considerations When Employing Family Members   So we have gone over some of the things you can potentially expect when employing family members, or working in a family business. To help you out, this is a handy list of reference points to make the process as smooth as possible…  ●       Have a formal Job Description and Contract in place so that all parties know what is expected of them  ●       Keep all of the appropriate documentation you would for any other employee: contract, hours worked, pay history, leave taken, proof of their ability to work legally in New Zealand, and legislation records like PAYE  ●       Set clear expectations in terms of behaviour, responsibilities, hours, salary and other potential points of conflict  ●       Ensure that they have the skills and temperament required for the role, don’t give them a job they aren’t qualified for because it seems easy, or you feel sorry for them  ●       Seek external advice from someone able to see the bigger picture  ●       Try to separate business and personal life as much as you can, especially if you have members of your team who are not family members. This removes the perception of favouritism, or preferential treatment  ●       Go into it with your eyes open and be willing to admit if things need to change, or are not working. An awkward conversation is better than jeopardising your whole business  If you need some advice on employing family members, dealing with one already in your employment, or if you need assistance with your family business, then don’t hesitate to get in touch. At In2HR, we work with a number of family businesses and therefore we are able to give you that outsider perspective that is so vital in the success of a business involving family. Get in touch with one of our friendly HR Consultants today!

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Of Employing Family Members

Before you take the plunge of employing family members and do something you might regret, it is vital to assess whether it is the right decision for your business or not.

       Performance Reviews - Your Survival Guide      That time of year is rolling around again, dare we say those two words… performance review. Yes, we know they can be time consuming and there is a whole lot of paperwork involved, but they have so many positive benefits for your business. Don’t groan and roll your eyes because you don’t know where to start on your performance reviews, check out our survival guide to get you through!      Why Are Some Performance Reviews Flawed?   Performance reviews don’t always have the best reputation. Often employees are simply ranked on a scale of ‘not performing’ through to ‘exceeding expectations’ without much consideration. This system can be flawed as employees can be compared against their peers. Ratings are can be used as an easy out in place of meaningful conversations, and performance based pay increases are almost always based on the ratings.  This causes resentment and hostility towards the process from employees and managers alike.  By having a one on one review process, the results are determined almost entirely by the manager. Some managers are lenient and some are harsh, some pay close attention and some are disconnected, or they can be biased in their opinion if they particularly like or dislike an employee.  It can be a difficult task for disconnected managers to evaluate the performance of a number of employees across a long period of time. So for ease they often rank employees as first, second and third which is not a fair representation.      How Can I Make My Performance Reviews More Effective?   Performance reviews are not about rating your employees, they are about providing feedback on their work and if they are meeting expectations. Use these tips to get the most out of the experience...  ●        Have regular catch ups with your team every couple of weeks to provide ongoing feedback, celebrate wins and deal with negative feedback.  ●        If you choose to conduct an annual review, take notes on employees throughout the year. Reference their great achievements and the areas they need to work on. Highlight especially great work when it is completed, don’t save up your praise for an annual review.  ●        There should never be any surprises for the employee in a performance review. Any deficiencies should be highlighted as soon as possible and the appropriate training given to remedy them.  ●        Don’t use the opportunity as an assessment of the employee but more an open discussion on performance, expectations, and future growth.  ●        You may choose to have official quarterly meetings as opposed to one annual review. This keeps the feedback channels flowing with your employees.  ●        Both employers and employees should be given plenty of time to prepare for a review meeting. Taking the time to reflect and prepare notes will make the process more valuable.  ●        Make sure your employee knows that their hard work is appreciated and recognise areas for advancement. Or if their performance is less than desirable, give them the guidance to improve.  ●        Put personal feelings and views aside during the process and approach it objectively. Treat all employees in the same way.      Considerations for a Performance Review   Before you embark on the performance review process, it is important to take some things into consideration:   Variables   There are so many variables in day to day business. Each day your employees can work with a different team member, or they might work on a different project, expectations evolve, and personal circumstances can affect an employee’s contribution levels. You will need to take all these variables into consideration during your review process.   Multiple Opinions   When reviewing an employee’s performance, it is important to get feedback from all of the people an employee has worked with. It doesn’t just have to be those at management level either, consider how the employee interacts with their peers and subordinates also. This will help determine all of the contributions an employee has made throughout the year.   Consider the Future   Instead of focusing on an employee’s past performance, use the review process as an assessment of what they can work on for the future. This will allow you to use feedback to develop the skills of an employee.     If you need some help with getting your performance reviews sorted, then don’t hesitate to get in touch. At In2HR we are experts in all areas of HR, so can help you nail your processes.   

Performance Reviews - Your Survival Guide

The performance review process is disliked by employers and employees alike. So we have created a survival guide to make your next round of reviews more effective.

       The changing immigration landscape that could cripple a business   It’s certainly been hard to escape the topic of immigration with the amount of press coverage it has received this year.  Over recent years the rate of Immigration has been blamed for a number of economic issues, from the housing crises to putting additional strain on infrastructure and transport.   The government’s response has been to review our immigration policy and start to tighten up on the rate of immigration.  While this may not affect all employers, there are a number of sectors out there who are more reliant on migrant workers than others and will no doubt experience some pain as a result of the pending changes.   So why hire immigrants in the first place?      The industries that will feel the immigration changes the most include the Hospitality, Horticulture and Retail industries.  Countless times we have seen and heard stories from all over the country where these industries cannot find kiwis willing to take up farming, retail or hospitality based roles and therefore find themselves with no option but to hire migrants.  Recruitment searches in these industries will often turn up hundreds of applicants for the roles, however inevitably most of the candidates are visa holders.  There is nothing wrong with this in theory, but for one fact, most of the time migrants are on visa’s which have expiration dates.  This means that visa employees either obtain another visa and continue to work for the same or another employer, or are denied a visa and leave the country.  This creates a cyclic effect for the employer, where they either decide to invest in training new staff regularly, or support their migrant workers (who they have already invested time to train) through the visa application process, and hope that they don’t lose another trained employee.  In previous years the visas were usually provided for a period of 2 to 3 years, however over the last couple of years employers have seen this timeframe contract and in many cases visas are given for a much shorter duration.  During my experience of working in the hospitality industry, we saw visa expiration dates change from 2 years down to 1 year within a very short timeframe.  The hoops employers have to jump through in order to support visa applications is administratively cumbersome, not to mention time consuming and requires careful planning to ensure that the process is started early enough before the original visa lapses.   I guess what I’m getting at is that employers don’t generally put themselves through this unless they have to.  One finds themselves feeling somewhat sympathetic towards employers who are so heavily reliant on the migrant workforce, particularly where genuine effort is made to search for kiwis to do the roles on offer.   With immigration numbers which last year were proportionately triple that of the UK, we will be watching with interest to see how these industries and businesses respond and adapt to the changing immigration front.   Migrant worker exploitation      Immigration gets the blame for so many things, often making it hard to reconcile that Migrant workers can find themselves the victims of exploitation.  We have seen numerous examples of migrant worker exploitation bandied about in the media in the last few years.   A quick google search on ‘migrant worker exploitation NZ’ brings up an embarrassingly sizeable number of examples.  Examples of worker exploitation include; not being paid leave entitlements, being forced to work long hours, living in overcrowded substandard accommodation, not receiving breaks, and being paid below the National Minimum Wage.  As a result of these types of cases, The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment have started to crack down harder on employers who breach minimum employment standards and are turning their attention to small businesses and franchise businesses.  April 1 of this year saw some changes to legislation come into effect, giving Labour Inspectors greater powers to impose penalties on businesses who are found to be in breach of employment minimums.  Labour inspectors are checking businesses compliance through conducting audits and they are more than happy to name and shame employers publicly who do not stack up.  Even a minor breach of minimum employment standards such as an employment agreement missing one of the minimum employment clauses, will result in that business incurring a penalty.  Additionally, if the breach affects migrant employees the employer will also receive a mandatory stand down on recruiting migrant labour for a set period (minimum 6 months).  Multiple breaches will result in greater penalties and longer stand down periods of up to 2 years depending on the severity of the breach.  As you can well imagine it could very well cripple a business that is heavily reliant on a migrant workforce.  Since the new law was brought in a few short months ago, we have seen 10 employers receive stand downs for breaches of minimum employment standards. The Labour Inspectorate has stood true to his word about naming and shaming employers and publishes a list of employers who have received penalties for breaching New Zealand employment standards.  I  This report is also shared with Immigration NZ.   Click here to see if your business or franchisee is on the list   So what? It’s just a list, right?  Wrong!   Imagine what it could look like if your business was on this list:   The damage to your employment brand could make it even harder to recruit in an already tight labour market.   You will be competing for talent against companies who are regarded as good employers, so they will have first pick of quality candidates.  Your business will be on the Labour Inspectors radar, and they will be checking to see if you have remedied any compliance issues and can expect to be subjected to further scrutiny from the labour inspectors.  If part of a franchise system, the Labour Inspectors will also focus on the other businesses within the franchise.   If your business relies on migrant workers, it could shut down your business.   Essentially, it means your business will suffer.  So, ask yourself this ‘what does your workforce look like and could you continue to operate if you can’t hire migrant workers for 6, 12 or even 24 months?’.  Also, consider what would happen if none of your migrant workers visas were renewed.  Would either of these scenarios mean that your business would struggle to operate?  Could it lead to having to close the doors of your business?  Employers should be doing everything they can to avoid being on this list at all costs.  We are only half way through 2017 and already the Labour Inspectors focus is becoming more evident.  Two thirds of employers who have been audited were found to be in breach of the minimum employment standards.  The most common breach found so far in 2017 is due to non-compliant employment agreements.  This has seen the total dollar value of fines imposed for the first half of 2017 to be more than double for the full 12 months of 2016.     How do you protect your business?   Labour inspectors won’t be slowing down on auditing businesses anytime soon, and small businesses and franchise businesses are definitely high on their radar.  Businesses shouldn’t wait for the labour inspectors to find fault in their employment standards, but be taking proactive steps to ensure that they are compliant with minimum employment standards.   Remember even one missing clause from an employment agreement can wreak havoc on a business’s ability to operate, so it’s more critical than ever that business owners and franchisees take note of the warnings coming from the Labour Inspectorate.   Safeguarding your business and protecting your brand can be as simple as having an independent audit conducted on your employment standards.  This will provide you with a better understanding of what your businesses risk is, and have an opportunity to rectify any issues identified before a Labour Inspector finds it.  At in2HR we have a number of employment auditing solutions to suit your business needs; from compliance on minimum employment standards [employee entitlements, record keeping, employment agreements], to a review of your businesses HR Framework, coupled with the bigger picture stuff which includes employee insights.  Phone one of our friendly consultants today to find out more about how we can help your business stay on the right side of the law.               

The changing immigration landscape that could cripple a business

Could your business operate without a migrant workforce?

Labour inspectors published list of employers to be named and shamed – are you on it?

       Joint Employer Predictions Come True – Proposed Changes to Legislation   It’s great to hear that our crystal ball is working well. Back in January, we wrote an article on the potential that Franchisors and Franchisees could be seen as Joint Employers [ you can read that article here ]. That prediction seems to be coming true, as the wheels are turning in Australia on proposed legislation changes. It will only be a matter of time before we see the same legislation changes here in New Zealand.  Here is what is happening currently…   Senate Committee Making Progress   As of an April 6th deadline, the senate committee responsible for reviewing the Australian Protecting Vulnerable Workers Bill had received a number of public submissions in support of changing current legislation.  The proposed legislation would make Franchisors liable for any outstanding wages in their networks. This even means outstanding wages for workers who are employed and paid by their Franchisees. The ruling comes in the wake of the recent 7-11 debacle, where the privately-owned company has been forced to repay almost $88 million to underpaid workers.  This bill is a controversial one. While the intention of ensuring all workers get fair wages and fair treatment in their employment is well-meaning, organisations such as the Franchise Council of Australia and The World Franchise Council oppose the liability on franchisors. The danger of an entire network being brought down by the actions of a couple of franchisees is worrying.   The Risks of the Bill   The major risk to Franchisors if the bill is passed in its current form is, that they could be liable for their Franchisee’s failure to pay their own staff correctly.  The change in legislation would see the Franchisor judged on if they ‘could reasonably have been expected to have known’ about the infractions of their Franchisees.  A Franchisor would not have to have direct knowledge of a Franchisee’s wrongdoing to be held liable. And it is not just underpayment of employees that is covered by the Protecting Vulnerable Workers Bill. It extends to a large number of workplace law compliance areas.  As well as increased civil penalties, a Franchisor can be ordered to directly compensate employees that have been underpaid by their Franchisee.   A Target on Franchisors   Franchisors are being targeted in these legislation changes as, franchises are commonly known to have ‘vulnerable workers’. These proposed changes are in direct response to the practice of Franchisees deliberately underpaying employees and Franchisors claiming no knowledge of such a business model.  The proposed changes in legislation will see a significant increase in the responsibility of Franchisors. They will be directly responsible for all of the independent businesses operating in their network. This leaves many Franchisors questioning the difference between company owned stores versus franchised stores - a question that we will have to wait and see as the legislation evolves.    What Can Franchisors Do?   This new legislation will allow Franchisors to remove liability if they have taken reasonable steps to prevent their Franchisees from acting with incorrect practices.  However, this is not a safety net. There are no set rules around what the ‘reasonable steps’ should be. It will all depend on the individual circumstance of the franchise. Consideration will be made to the size of the network and the available resources for regulating the Franchisees within, as well as the Franchisor’s influence, and their arrangements for assessing compliance with the Act.   NZ Franchisors - Time To Get Prepared    While these proposed changes relate to Australian Law, it will not be long before New Zealand Employment Law falls in line. Now is the time to make arrangements that will protect your franchise network. Put systems in place to assess that your Franchisees are abiding by correct employment practices. Then you will be ready for this when these changes come to New Zealand.  At in2HR, we have been busy preparing franchise systems for these changes. We can help you safeguard your franchise by implementing:     A robust on-boarding program for your Franchisees so that they understand their employer obligations.  Ensuring that your Franchisees have the HR support mechanisms to implement best people practices into their business and your franchise.  Provide visibility to you as a Franchisor into your franchisees business through conducting regular HR audits. This will give you peace of mind that your Franchisees are complying with employment legislation and that your brand is protected.    If you are an established franchise or a new franchise in NZ, get in touch with us at in2HR to see how we can help you develop robust systems that will keep you out of hot water.

Joint Employer Predictions Come True – Proposed Changes to Legislation

Does your Franchise have a robust system in place for checking that your franchisee's are compliant with current Employment Legislation?   Now may be the time to review your practices with joint employment looking like it may become a reality for the franchising industry. 

       Why You Need An Onboarding Plan for New Staff   Do you have an onboarding procedure for new staff? If you don’t, it is time to get one in place. Onboarding is a very important part in building great team morale, and setting the scene for the new staff member’s journey with your business. It doesn’t take much for a first impression to be tarnished. Make sure your new team member gets the right impression of your business from day one. Here are our favourite 3 tips for onboarding a new team member successfully.   Onboarding: What To Do    Be Ready    The first and biggest tip we can give you is to be ready for your new team member. From the minute they walk in the door, make sure they are comfortable and feel welcome. As an established employee, their first day is just another day at the office. But for the new employee, the success of the hire can hinge on what happens on the first day.      Here is what you need to have organised:     Their workspace:  Straight away they will be able to come in, put any personal items down and instantly have a place in the team.  T heir equipment:  Hit the ground running on your training plan by having their computer and other equipments set up and ready to go. This includes a way for them to log on to your system.   A Welcome Party:  You don’t actually have to throw a party. But make your new team member feel welcome by introducing them to their new colleagues on day one. You could even arrange to take them out for lunch on their first day to get to know them in a more social context.       Have a Formal Plan   In the week before your new team member starts, set out a formal training plan. Factor in all the areas that you want to cover, and how long you will dedicate to each aspect of the role. Include a general overview of how the rest of the team works together so that your new employee has an understanding beyond their own role.  Having a plan will ensure that you cover all aspects of training, no parts will be missed, and you will have a timeframe to complete the training within. Your new team member will get to see that you are a professional business that cares about their new staff.  Don’t be tempted to rush the process. Incomplete training, or unnecessary pressure to undertake a job they don’t understand fully can be detrimental to the hiring process. If your new team member does not feel completely comfortable, then it might affect their decision to stay with your business.      Set Your Expectations From The Beginning   Start as you mean to go on. Make your new employee aware of your expectations for the role and their behaviour. Ensure that your expectations are realistic and fair. Clear communication on these expectations will allow your employee to check their own progress, and evaluate their performance.  Set some goals in the first days so that your employee can have a target to work to. These could be goals on completing the required training program, or goals on performing the tasks of their role correctly. You should also allow your new employee to provide feedback on the process, you won’t know if there are any parts of your plan that need improving otherwise.  Set a date for a formal performance review to take place several months after their start date. You can both provide honest feedback, and it’s a great opportunity for plenty of praise if it is deserved.     Onboarding is a very relevant topic for us at in2HR, as we recently welcomed a new member to our team...     






     We are in growth mode at in2HR! As such, we are pleased to welcome Katherine Dowler into our in2HR family as our newest HR Consultant.    Katherine has come from an extensive HR and franchising background and has worked for global names including Komatsu and Adidas.  Most recently she was the HR Consultant for a successful global Franchisor, where she was supporting a portfolio of approximately 2000 employees across New Zealand.    Katherine is passionate about HR and enjoys helping Managers to achieve the best out of their people.                                                                                                           Welcome on board Katherine! 

Why You Need An Onboarding Plan for New Staff

Onboarding is an important part in building team morale, and setting the scene for the new staff member’s journey with your business. Have you got a procedure in place?

       What are your employer rights if Cyclone Cook closes down your business?   It’s fair to say that NZ has seen its fair share of natural disasters over recent years with Christchurch and Kaikoura devastated by earthquakes, and the more recent damage caused by freak summer storms and Cyclone Debbie.  Many regions of NZ are battening down the hatches in preparation for yet another storm, as Cyclone Cook threatens to hit our shores just in time for the Easter holidays.  The volume of natural events is starting create questions from business owners who are wanting to find out what their obligations are when they and/or their employees are affected by such an event.    Here are some tips for business owners faced with not being able to open for business because of a natural disaster:   Before looking to make any deductions from employees’ wages/salaries:   Check your employment contract to see if contains a force majeure clause, and specifically a clause allowing you to deduct from wages/salary.  If your employment agreement does not contain a force majeure then you cannot deduct from an employee’s wages/salary, particularly where they are ready and willing to work but simply can’t because the premises are damaged/unable to be opened.   This of course then poses another question, what if I am open for business but my employee(s) have been affected and can't attend work?   In the event that the business is unaffected and is open for business but employees are unable or unwilling to attend work due to the natural disaster then there is potential for the employer to make a deduction from wages.   Invoking such clauses requires a robust process to be followed, and we strongly recommend that you contact a member of in2HR for further advice should your business be confronted in such situations.  With that said, our recommendation would be to do the right thing wherever possible, and pay the employees for hours that they would have otherwise worked (particularly when the business interruption is short term).  Additionally, the emotional toll these types of events has on employees can vary greatly; while some employees remain relatively unaffected emotionally and just seem better equipped to handle this type of stress, others may need further support.  Employee Assistance Programmes such as those offered by EAP ( are a great resource to call on for employee support post a natural disaster.  For short term interruptons, these recommendations are sure to get your business and employees back up and functioning normally as quickly as possible.      

What are your employer rights if Cyclone Cook closes down your business?

For some businesses, Cyclone Cook will not only mean closing down their business but employers will need to support employees who are emotionally and physically affected. 

       Are you doing enough to protect your brand from the wrong type of publicity?    Do you have visibility of your franchisee’s employment practices? If not, now is the time to find out.  International employment standards are changing rapidly, to a point where franchisors and franchisees could be seen as a joint employer. It won’t be long until this will have an impact on NZ employment legislation. Check out our recent blog post on this topic to read more about it [].  As a master franchisor, you need to ensure that your franchisees are compliant with employment law. This means treating their employees fairly, maintaining accurate employment records and paying them at the correct rate. A recent ruling in Australia has seen the master franchisor, Yogurberry, penalised for the actions of their franchisees. We predict that these types of decisions will be seen in New Zealand before too long, so it’s best to be on top of this now.   Yogurberry    The frozen yogurt chain has recently come under fire for exploitation of its workers. Four Korean workers who held jobs under a Sydney franchisee were being paid as little as $8 an hour, well below the minimum wage . They were also not receiving the correct employment entitlements, such as superannuation.  Penalties totaling AU$146,000 have been handed out, with almost half of those penalties assigned to the master franchisor of the Yogurberry Group. The master franchisor has been deemed an accessory to the exploitation of the workers at the franchisee's Sydney outlet. The Fair Work Ombudsmen has ordered the Master Franchisor of Yogurberry to carry out an external HR audit of their system. This will ensure that all franchisees within the chain are compliant with employment law. All of the Yogurberry franchisees and their managers will require training on employment law.   Domino’s Pizza    Recently in Australia, Domino’s Pizza has been making headlines for underpayment to its staff. A Fairfax recording was released where allegations were made against a Domino’s Franchisee for receiving ‘kickbacks’. This means that a Domino’s franchisee was caught selling falsified employment agreements for immigration purposes. This was in the range of $100K-$150K for each agreement.   Domino's Pizza in Australia are currently under investigation for these allegations.    Franchisor Responsibility    The ruling for Yogurberry and the ongoing investigation of Domino’s sends a strong signal to franchisors that they remain responsible for their brand.    What To Do Now    Because of these high profile international cases, The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) are looking to enforce correct practices across all areas of employment, including small business and franchising. They have stated that it is ‘time for franchisors to ensure franchisees are compliant with employment law’.  As a franchisor, you need to ensure that you have correct procedures in place for franchisee behavior. Your franchisees are required to abide by NZ employment law, so make the following considerations:  1)     You need to put thought into how and where your franchisees receive HR support  2)     Have the mechanisms in place to check on your franchisees’ businesses to ensure they are abiding by employment legislation. This will give you visibility of their practices and ways to mitigate risks to your brand. At in2HR, we call this conducting a Pulse Check on your franchisee.  3)      For new franchisees coming into your franchise, set them up for success by giving them in2HR’s franchisee on-boarding program. This provides them with tools and resources to transition from being an employee to being an employer.   The Yogurberry case illustrates how costly it can be for the brand if their franchisees are not complying legally. Now is time to take action to prevent anything similar happening to your franchise.

Are you doing enough to protect your brand from the wrong type of publicity? 

Franchise systems are hitting the headlines for the wrong type of publicity. Now is the time to safeguard your franchise from the wrong type of publicity. 

       Franchisors and Franchisees as Joint Employers   Recently, international law has undergone changes that could impact your franchise in NZ. The law is rapidly changing to reflect franchisors and franchisees as joint employers. Now is the time to ensure that your business is utilising the correct practices.  In recent times many large franchise corporations have come under fire for their employment practices. International cases like the ones with 7/11 and Caltex are moving closer to home. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) are enforcing correct practices across all areas of employment, including small business.  Franchisors – now is the time to wake up and be prepared. Don’t let yourselves get in a mess over incorrect practices.   Franchise Joint Employers – What does it mean for me?   In the eyes of the law, franchisors and franchisees could be viewed as joint employers. This means that franchisors are being held accountable for their franchisees’ actions. Franchisors need to ensure that their franchisees are operating within the boundaries of New Zealand employment law. This means keeping correct records, meeting all the correct obligations and treating staff fairly.  The Labour Inspectorate has recently released a warning to say that all small businesses should expect a visit in 2017. Now is the time to be proactive and ensure that your franchisees are following best people practices.   What do I need to do?   First and foremost, you need to ensure that all of your own employment practices are correct. The next step would be to check in with your franchisees and ensure that they are following the correct procedures. There are a number of areas that they will need to be compliant in. An example of these areas are:   -           Fair and correct staff employment contracts   -           Fair treatment of staff   -           Following company policies and procedures   -           Maintaining proper employee records   -           Meeting immigration requirements   -           Meeting obligations for kiwisaver, PAYE and deductions  These are just some of the main areas that your franchisees will need to comply with. There will be other things to consider too. It is vital to ensure these practices are correct now, to prevent major headaches down the track.   How do I safeguard my franchise?   As a franchisor, have you thought about how you can provide HR support to your franchisees?  Here at in2HR we have specialist knowledge in franchises. This means that we are experts in helping both franchisors and franchisees with their people practices. We would be able to help you develop effective HR procedures that will keep your business out of hot water. Know that you are ready for a visit from the Labour Inspectors by having all of your practices complaint with employment law.  Get in touch with us today to see how we can help.           </iframe>" data-provider-name="YouTube"

Franchisors and Franchisees as Joint Employers.

Employment law is rapidly changing and it will impact your franchise. Franchisors and Franchisees could be viewed as joint employers. Is your franchise ready?