Business Basics: 5 Things to Do When You Hire Your First Employee

Hiring your first employee can be a monumental moment. It signifies the expansion of a thriving business, the prospect of boosted profits, and a promising future. However, there’s more to hiring an employee than simply giving them a name tag and welcoming them aboard. Don’t forget to take some of the following actions: 

Obtain Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Just as you would obtain insurance for yourself, your stock, and your building, you must consider workers’ compensation insurance. This form of coverage can protect your business from lawsuits and provide financial protection for your employees while helping you comply with state laws and avoid fines. 

Fortunately, obtaining this form of insurance is straightforward. To get started, all you have to do is get a workers comp insurance quote online. Once you have this necessary form of insurance, you can receive financial assistance in the event of unexpected medical costs and lost wages. 

Manage Your Legal Obligations

Hiring a new full-time employee requires you to abide by multiple forms of legislation to remain on the right side of the law. Ensure you’re aware of them to protect yourself and your new employee from unwanted repercussions. 

The first essential step is to obtain your new hire’s Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS and report them to the National Directory of New Hires under the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act. This act helps legal entities track non-custodial parents and ensure they fulfill their child support obligations. You must also prepare Form I-9, which confirms your new employee’s eligibility to work in the United States. 

Establish Employee Benefits

If you secured your new hire based on the offer of workplace benefits, put them in place to ensure your new employee can reap the rewards immediately. Some examples include health insurance, parental leave, and retirement plans, just to name a few. 

If you haven’t promised any employee benefits to your new hire but would like to provide some to remain competitive in the job market, you have a range of options to consider. While some benefits come at a high cost to employers, it can be worth it if it fosters a loyal, long-standing professional relationship with an employee who values you as much as you do them.

Develop an Employee Handbook

Developing an employee handbook might be a time-consuming project, but it’s a worthwhile one for ensuring your current and future workers know what you expect of them. They can also refer to these handbooks when unsure about your requirements and expectations.

At a minimum, employee handbooks typically include dress codes, codes of conduct, attendance rules, health and safety policies, and even how paid time off works. Fortunately, many online templates are available to draw inspiration from, so you won’t need to write one from scratch. 

Create an Employee Filing System

If you’ve never had an employee before, it’s unlikely that you’ll already have an employee filing system in place. Now’s the time to create one. These filing systems typically hold a wide variety of documents for all employees, such as their name, social security number, address, hourly rate, total earnings, and pay periods. 

All employers covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act must have these records in place under the authority of the U.S. Department of Labor.

There’s a lot to do when you hire a new employee for the first time, but most requirements are straightforward. Take care of the tasks above, and you’ll be able to put your new employee to work and reap the rewards.


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