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Importance of Employment Contracts to Employers and Employees

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In this modern world that we live in, everything needs to be done by the book. If not, then there can often be nasty repercussions, and when it comes to running a business, it’s best not to invite this willingly. In the public sector alone, around 31% of employees have some form of conflict that’s common in the workplace.

With that said, it’s good to do all you can legally and in the right manner. Most businesses and those in the position of hiring employees will have an employment contract in place. This article will discuss what an employment contract is and why it’s so important to have it in place.

There are also some helpful tips towards the end when creating an employment contract for the first time.

Employment Contracts

What is an employment contract?

Employment contracts are legal agreements between the employee and employer providing written acknowledgement of the terms between the two parties.

Depending on the type of employee the employer is hiring, this might affect the type of contract they provide. The employment contract will list the relevant information concerning the role and the various aspects of working for the employer.

You’d typically find the working hours, pay and terms of employment in general. Many employment agreement templates are available online for those who aren’t quite familiar with the structure and how to draft them up correctly.

Both parties are legally protected.

Any type of contract is good because it’s an agreement that’s legally binding. Whenever an employer wants to hire a person for their company, they want to ensure the person they’re hiring will benefit the company.

The same goes for the person looking for a job and wanting to join somewhere that does everything legally and legitimately. Both parties will be protected when this contract is drawn up, agreed upon, signed and dated. That way, both parties should have had the opportunity to dispute or negotiate anything within that first draft and be happy with the agreement.

Protecting both parties can help in keeping the relationship a trustworthy and respectful one. This contract can be seen as the foundation of any employee/employer relationship. Without that foundation, either party can find themselves running into some form of trouble as a result.

The contract can also assist either party in terminating the agreement should there be a reason to do so. For example,  maybe the employee wants to leave the job, or the employer uncovers a breach of the agreement.

Outlines everything expected from either party

An employment contract of any type is likely to be very detailed. It will contain everything that the employee needs to know before commencing their role within the company. For the employer, it’s a chance to detail everything that is needed to make the role valuable for the company.

Having communication is important, and the contract clearly outlines everything that’s expected from both parties. With 64% of businesses finding communication in their strategy, values and purpose as a key priority, there’s no doubt that this is essential.

There can often be somewhat of miscommunication or lack of in some businesses, and so to avoid this happening for yours, these contracts are beneficial. Having good communication in everything that’s done in a business will likely aid its success and growth.

From an employee’s perspective, it’s useful to know what the employer expects from them and everything they do for the business. It’s often detrimental to their own happiness and appreciation for the job.

Enforces accountability where necessary

If everything went as expected, then there would likely be very little that goes wrong. However, that’s wishful thinking when it comes to business and being part of a workforce.

Things won’t always go smoothly, and in the case of employment, not every employee or employer behaves appropriately. There may be times when workplace disputes occur, which may result in legal action from either party.

The employment contract is a written document that has been signed and dated. It, therefore, acts as proof of a mutual agreement and evidence that can be used if either party finds it necessary to do so.

It, therefore, enforces accountability to be taken should either party be found to have breached or broken their agreement with the other. For example, if you’re an employer, your employee may decide to take action against overtime that hasn’t been stipulated prior in the contract.

In the case of an employer, confidential data could have been stolen by an employee and used to damage the company’s reputation. Many cases have come up over the years relating to employment law.

Keeps confidentiality and maintains data security

data

For the average business, there is often a lot of confidential data that the company holds, whether concerning the company itself or their customers’ trust in storing.

An employment contract will ensure confidentiality is maintained when employees are accessing such data for work purposes.

Data security is one of the main concerns for businesses nowadays, especially as 95% of cybersecurity breaches are caused by human error. You really can’t be too careful!

In the contract, there will likely be more detail depending on what role the employee has and how much influence they may have regarding the company’s data. For example, some employees may have access to more data than others. It’s good to pay attention to this section of the contract for accuracy.

Keeping confidentiality and data security at the top of your list as a business will also strengthen the relationship and trust with your customers.

Creates a trustful working relationship

A successful company is often down to the happiness and productivity of its workforce. Companies with a highly engaged workforce are seen to have around 21% more profit as a result.

As mentioned above, with a contract in place, there’s this trust and reliance created between the two parties.

You must do everything possible to cement this relationship from the beginning. Your employees are an integral part of the business, and if you’re not willing to put a legal contract in place or one that isn’t detailed enough, that’s not a good start to the working relationship.

The creation of the contract should be open for discussion. Even though the employee has accepted the job and the employer has offered it to the employee, there can still be some room for negotiation if either party isn’t happy with the agreement.

Tips for creating an employment contract

So now that you know the importance of employment contracts, it’s imperative to include every detail. With that said, here are a few top tips when creating one.

Remember the basics

Some basics are essential to include, and these will be the key information regarding the role itself. Usually, this will be the job title, the department and the head of that department or manager for the employee.

There will also be the location of the business included here, so don’t forget that!

Pay and benefits package

It’s not all about the money, but it’s important for your employment contract to include details and pay.  Remember, the detail here may change depending on the type of employee you’re hiring and whether or not they’ll also be incorporated into the benefits package that a company provides.

There may also be levels of benefits that are available depending on the role.

Annual leave, sick pay and parental leave

There are certain entitlements that an employee is allowed to have regarding matters of annual leave, sick pay and parental leave. In this section of the contract, you can outline the individual benefits that the employee has when it comes to taking time off.

Employment type and duration

For your employees, not all of them might be working full-time, and there might be some who are on fixed-term contracts and others on temporary.

The employment contract will mention the type of employment and duration, as well as any mention of overtime.

Policies and terminations

Most businesses will have privacy policies relating to the internet and use of data, as well as termination procedures should either party want to terminate the contract. Notice periods will also be mentioned here.

An employment contract is a must-have and having one, and it’ll protect both parties. Not only that, but it’ll be useful should either party need to refer back to it.

Editor’s note: A shout-out to Natalie Redman for her contribution – thanks.

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Education

How to Deal with a Workplace Accident Efficiently

man injured

No matter how well prepared you and your business are, workplace accidents can occur with no notice.

How prepared is your workplace for the unforeseen accident? The owner of the company is responsible for and has the ultimate liability in a workplace accident. If this scares you, it should, but there are steps you can take to ready your team and places of work to minimize bad outcomes from accidents.

Let’s look at your first responder action when a person is injured in a workplace accident.

Use your first aid training and if you haven’t been through the training, then reach out to someone in your vicinity which has the training. Why do you need to respond as a first aider? Well, there is a step process to minimize danger, get medical assistance and in some situations save lives or prevent further deterioration of injured persons.

DR(S)ABC

A first aider knows the acronym DR(S)ABC is vital in the event of an accident.

  • D = Danger. Assess the accident. Is there any imminent danger? If so, you don’t go in but call the emergency services (police, fire, ambulance – paramedics)
  • R = Response. If you can get to the injured – first assess their response. Call out and get them to respond. If there is no response…
  • S = Seek help. Call the emergency services.
  • A = Airways. Make sure nothing is constricting their airways.
  • B = Breathing. Check if the injured is breathing – if they are awake and respond, then they are breathing. If not, then you need to find out if they are breathing by listening for breathing noise, watching their chest rise and fall, or feel the breath on your hand.
  • C = CPR. Yes, you may need to do CPR to keep the person alive while waiting for the paramedics to arrive.

Summary of Action

The most obvious thing to do after a workplace accident is to ensure that everyone receives the assistance they need straight away.

Do whatever you can to help out yourself, but remember to stay on the safe side of things.

Don’t attempt to do anything that might put someone else at unnecessary risk. Be prepared before an accident with first aid training and ensure that your employees are also up to speed with workplace safety and first aid.

Have Some Important Contacts Handy

It’s also a good idea to have some contacts readily available, so you can assist your employees as best as you can. For example, if your business is in Minnesota, you’ll want your employees with legal experts like the Minnesota’s worker’s compensation law experts at Mottaz & Sisk .

Of course, due to the delicate nature of a situation like this, you should not be surprised if people prefer to go with their own legal representation.

Stay in Touch with Affected Employees

Last but not least, remember to stay in contact with everyone who has been affected by the event. There are exceptions to this – you might be prevented from contacting someone if there is a perceived conflict of interest during an ongoing lawsuit, for example.

However, reach out to your employees and provide them with as much assistance as they need during this time.

Remember that a workplace accident is not only difficult for you, it also brings a lot of stress to those immediately affected by it.

If you do everything right, an incident like this can actually solidify your employees’ trust in you and your business for putting their safety first.

So is your workplace an accident waiting to happen? Get a workplace safety assessment and carry out all recommendations to ensure the fatal accident will never happen on your watch. Ready for some more learning on how to be a great leader? See this article.

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Education

Three Major Types of Forex Market Analysis

stockmarket

Forex has become very popular in recent years due to its excellent security and the money earning potential. Because of its vast potential, a significant number of investors show interest in this marketplace.

Beginners are also joining without any prior study, but they should know the right approach before executing any Forex trades. Everyone must conduct enough research to have the best performance in the Forex. Today, we will discuss the different types of Forex analysis and how to achieve them.

Types of FX Analysis

There are various types of research methodology for Forex, but the main types are fundamental analysis, technical analysis and sentimental analysis.

Fundamental

FX is an extremely volatile market, and the trends of this market change in a brief period.
Fundamental incidents play a significant role in the trading platform as due to the change like these, the investors become reluctant to invest their wealth. For example, during the United States of America’s presidential election, there was a reluctance to make a significant investment.

Trading during volatile events is a high risk. When the government changes, investors become very uncertain about the new rules regarding taxes and business laws. Therefore, they do not want to take a high risk as the return is uncertain to them.

Likewise, during a heavy natural calamity, the economic foundation of a country may collapse.

Investing will be a foolish deed in this case, as the market is uncertain. When this type of thing happens, then the downtrend prevails. To get more info, you can use the learning center at Saxo.

By enhancing your trading skills, you will slowly develop the ability to avoid the massive falls in the price.

Experts learn the essential microeconomics, which may help them to make the right decision at the right time to execute trades well.

Technical

This one is done using the technical chart and provides a visual display of the data utilizing dynamic tools. Using the technical chart, measurement of the data becomes much more manageable. This type of analysis mainly done based on the historical flow of the chart.

A trader may check the moving average position on a specific date in the previous year. Analyzing the data of the earlier trades, sharpening the strategies for future trades becomes effective.

Using historical data, an investor may assume the upcoming trend and make the necessary prediction. The candlestick chart works great as the movement of the pips can be seen in detail to see the data.

Sentiment

This type of research mainly depends on the emotional attachment of the traders. Experts do thorough research on traders in the market and check their attitude towards the market. In this method, investors’ sentiments are mostly analyzed to make the best possible prediction about the market.

To conclude, beginners must conduct research properly to make a profit in the Forex market. Buying financial instruments without any prior research may ruin your career in FX, and for this reason, experts believe in effective research methods before executing trades.

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Education

How to Improve Employee Development

staff

How are you developing your employees? Hiring and retaining the right staff is a top priority for most businesses, and the process needs a failproof plan.

Employee development should also be part of your HR strategy and include online training for your remote workers. Plus professional development should commence from the moment staff are hired and continue throughout their employment.

If you’re wondering if your employee development program is up to scratch, don’t worry, we can help, and there are some straightforward steps you can take that will improve it immediately.

Below, we look at what employee development is and what it takes to make it successful.

Employee Development Explained

Supporting your staff to develop their skills is not solely about their current job. Nor is it just about where they can progress within your organisation. Staff development is about providing a series of training and knowledge programs and workshops that develop the employee.

Hard Skills

The training should include on the job training, and ‘hard skills’ pertinent to their ability to perform their current role and move up the ranks in their profession. For example, a cybersecurity analyst will undertake certifications, and industry recognised training or learn a new skill like pen-testing.

Soft Skills

The training also should cover soft skills which are transferrable to other roles. Every employee needs to develop their social and communication skills. Emotional Quotient (EQ) or emotional intelligence, will play a role in the hiring and promotion opportunities for all staff.

Now we know the basics of professional development let’s look at how you can improve your program.

How To Improve Your Employee Development

Immediacy

Employee development should begin from the moment that your new member of staff steps through the door. This means coming up with a training program that gets them up to speed with the company and how it does business at the earliest possible opportunity.

Not only will this help your company, but it will also show the new employee that you are committed to their development right from the get-go. As a result, they are more likely to stay with your organization as it improves their career prospects in the future.

Run Regular Programs

Running a series of mandatory and voluntary employee development programs that take place throughout the year ensures that your staff members are always learning something and never stagnating. The programs could focus on their soft skills, particularly communication, or focus on something that is altogether more technical and specific such as looking at their Google cloud abilities.

Plus when there are some assessment and certification at the end of each program, the employee keeps it. Plus exams or tests are evidence the knowledge has been properly absorbed and retained.

Create Individual Development Plans

The general training programs that you put into place also help if you make some of these more specialized and personalized for each employee.

Usually, the setting of goals and targets can take place at each employee review. As well as the setting of targets, you also need to go back and check that everything has been followed up effectively.

Make sure that each employee is closely involved in their own development plan and that they agree to the targets that have been set for them.

Give Constructive Feedback

The art of giving feedback is a difficult one to master. Essentially, it should involve ensuring that any advice you give to your employees is constructive. If it’s too critical, it can have the opposite effect on the one you were intending. This is also the case if you make it too vague with no actionable steps that the employee can put into practice.

There is a balance to be struck along the way, and you may not be able to get the hang of it straight away. Over time, you will be able to put your finger on which feedback is constructive and not.

Use Certified Trainers

While you may want to take care of some of your own training in-house, there is a lot to be gained from getting in touch with certified trainers and bringing them in to manage some of the programs.

They are experienced in the sector and have specifically designed their classes to get the best from the people who take them. However, make sure that you read all the reviews and hire a team that knows what they are doing and talking about.

Summary

Hiring is costly and retaining the right employees can be even more expensive if your only option is to pay them more.

Improving employee development should be a reason staff stay, and it can end up bringing all sorts of unexpected advantages to your organization beyond staff retention. So, now is the time to put some of these techniques into practice.

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