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Small Businesses

February 2016

If you own a small business you need to keep paper work to a minimum but not cut corners when it comes to employment law. But without any in-house HR support this can be harder said than done.

Faced with a long list of business needs - like taking on a new member of staff, changing working practices and dealing with discipline and grievances - where do you start?

Check you are ‘Getting it Right’ - the Agency has taken issues facing all small businesses and distilled employment law and good practice into a series of short leaflets.

Get help if you are Getting it Wrong - LRA pre-claim conciliation  can help if you are faced with a dispute at work


More advice

  • Sometimes reading a guide isn't enough. If you need help on a specific issue we have a free helpline to answer your specific questions. You can call the Labour Relations Agency’s Helpline on 028 9032 1442 from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.
  • Use our Employment Questions and Answers to answer your questions or get it right with our advice leaflets
  • The Agency also has a full range of workshops, good practice seminars and briefings.  They are designed to raise awareness of relevant legislation and to promote and develop good practice. The subjects covered reflect the Agency's experience in dealing with employment issues through its advisory and dispute resolution services.

For other small business services visit nibusinessinfo

A Guide for New Employers

Many small firms feel they don’t have enough time or...

Leaflet 1. Know the Law

February 2016 Employees have a range of legal rights derived from...

Leaflet 2. Plan Your Employment Needs

February 2016 By keeping up-to-date employee information on...

Leaflet 3. Recruiting People

February 2016 Hiring employees, if done badly, can be costly. It...

Leaflet 4. Induction Programme

February 2016 Once the employee starts working for you, you have a...

Leaflet 5. Pay the Right Rates

August 2017 As an employer, you have a number of legal obligations...

Leaflet 6. The employment Contract

February 2016 This leaflet  tries to explain in general terms...

Leaflet 7. Rules and Procedures

February 2016 Good company rules benefit employers and employees....

Leaflet 8. Controlling Absence

February 2016 This Leaflet deals with how to control levels of...

Leaflet 9. Workplace Communications

February 2016 Most employees need to be instructed about their...

Leaflet 10. Managing the Performance of Your Employees

February 2016 Effective performance management can bring about...

Leaflet 11. Handling Redundancies in a Small Business

February 2016 This leaflet is aimed at employers where fewer than...

Telephone Enquiry Point

The Agency’s Enquiry Point is available to employers, employees, trade unions and others. Enquiry Point advisors provide information and advice on a wide range of employment matters. The Enquiry Point is also an important contact point for identifying circumstances, or clients, who would benefit from being referred to other Agency services.

The Enquiry Point provides clear, confidential, independent and impartial advice to assist the caller in resolving issues in the workplace.

While the advisors cannot provide a legal opinion they can help callers gain a better understanding of their rights and responsibilities as well as identifying possible options to help resolve their issues.

028 9032 1442

Monday - Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm

Contact Us

Please note that we cannot deal with employment-related enquiries by e-mail. To receive information or advice about an employment-related issue, please telephone our Helpline on Belfast 90 321442 where an officer will speak with you directly about your query. Please note that the Agency can arrange the services of an interpreter if required.

If you have an employment relations issue in Great Britain please contact the ACAS Helpline on 0300 123 1100 .

For all non-employment related queries or questions please fill in the box below.