The hiring dilemma
Contributed by: Berley

As a start-up entrepreneur, it’s quite a major accomplishment to get to a point where you’re ready to hire someone to help you out. Questions such as should you hire a freelancer or find the right employee abound and there isn’t any right or wrong approach. As we have helped entrepreneurs across London to grow their business and manage their payroll services, we thought it’d be great to share some tips pertaining to the hiring process.

Freelancers vs employees

Using freelancers to fill gaps in the workforce is inexpensive and efficient as it requires less commitment from both parties. Starting with freelancers also allows you to move to hiring permanent employees gradually. This progression path allows you to adjust your workload, identify the desired knowledge, skills and qualifications, pinpoint the specific areas you need help and get the right person to do the job.

Hiring a permanent employee is an important decision as it requires commitment from you and the new hire. Your employee is now ready to spend their time and effort to help make your business a success. In exchange, you’re required by law to register as an employer with HMRC, set-up PAYE (Pay As Your Earn), pay taxes, give them holidays and sick pay, among other benefits.


Apprenticeship is an increasingly popular option among growing businesses because it provides competent workers at a lower price. The idea behind apprenticeship is to give young adults a chance to learn skills and experience, and as an employer in England, you may get government funding to cover some of the training costs provided the following criteria are met:

• Your apprentice is working with experienced staff

• They learn job-specific skills

• They study during their working week with an organisation that offers additional training

• You pay them at least the minimum wage, which is £3.90 from April 2019 if the apprentice is younger than aged 19

Hiring tips

Be it hiring a freelancer, a permanent employee or an apprentice, the recruitment process can be daunting so here are a few useful tips:

• Be specific,
Have a clear idea about the role, write down a specific job description, and establish a selection process.

• DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check,
There are four types of checks – basic, standard, enhanced and enhanced with barred lists. It is worth noting that if you carry out criminal records checks, you must have a policy on employing ex-offenders and show it to any applicant who asks for it.

• Reference check,
With people purchasing fake degrees online or lying about their work experience, fraud is as big an issue as ever. Protect yourself by following up on their references.

• Test the candidate,
Consider using a personality test to identify someone likely to be the best fit in your company and its culture. Other tests like hard-skill and cognitive ability tests also can help you better profile a candidate. In addition, when interviewing them don’t be afraid to ask tough questions to test their honesty and integrity, and to check any facts they state.

• Look at the numbers,
Before making any hiring decision, look at the numbers and see how much you want to spend and the revenues you can make out of it. In short, make it a ‘P&L’ exercise. Will hiring an employee double or triple your revenue within three months? Does your cash flow forecast allow it? Remember that the hiring process is costly, and you cannot afford to waste money hiring people who will not directly benefit your business. If you need to discuss the hard numbers with someone, look no further than Berley.


The payroll process can be a complicated affair as you’d need to consider National Insurance, sick pay, student loan, holiday pay among others plus various forms to fill. Consider outsource your payroll service to us and focus on other areas of your business. Our payroll services include:

• Preparing your monthly payroll<\p>

• Providing summaries and analysis for general accounting purposes

• Preparing and distributing payslips to your employees

• Providing any compliance work for PAYE regulations

• Completing of P45s

• Completing of year-end employer return

• Liaising with you to assist in the preparation and filing of P11D

To find out more about our payroll service, give us a call on [Phone_number] or fill out our Online Form.

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This post is intended to provide information of general interest about current business/ accounting issues. It should not replace professional advice tailored to your specific circumstances.