What are the top 3 HR documents I need to build a team?

It's true that people can be tricky to manage at times. That’s why it makes perfect sense to get good people paperwork in place 👍 so that everybody knows exactly where they stand. And, to stop your business featuring in the government employment tribunal statistics 📈

[Did you know that according to GOV.UK, in 2019/20 alone, a whopping 103,973 employment tribunal cases were accepted by the claims system on behalf of disgruntled workers] 👎

But HR can be a minefield for many, so I'm going to talk about THREE areas of that demand robust HR documents 📑 Read it carefully and start to protect your new business from today 🔐


As a new business owner, you’re no doubt in a hurry to get moving and start making money. And what’s more, hire staff.

However, before taking anybody on, you need to pull together your hiring strategy. This will get you really thinking about why you’re hiring, what the roles entail, and what kind of people you do and don’t want.

This type of upfront planning will not only help you to attract star talent more quickly ⭐ It’ll also prevent you from getting stuck with someone who’s not right. And what’s more, stop you from making costly mistakes that could result in an employment tribunal.

Key document #1 = Hiring Strategy

Download my FREE HIRING STRATEGY WORKBOOK and carve some time out to get strategizing.

Then, when you’re ready to place a job ad, check out my blog: HOW DO I WRITE GREAT JOB ADVERT?


Make sure you provide your new employees with a high-quality employment contract. In fact, it’s actually a legal requirement to do so. 

Having everything written down in a contract – hours, salary, holiday entitlement, notice period requirements etc – benefits both parties. Everyone knows exactly where they stand, and you both have something to fall back on should any disputes or misunderstandings crop up.

Contracts also help to protect your business from your competitors. Your employees will have privileged access to commercially sensitive information about your company. If they leave and go to a competitor, all your trade secrets – and business assets – may go with them. For example, client lists. This is where a contract of employment can help.

Your contracts should be well-written and comply with law. You can download freebie contract templates off the internet, but I would strongly advise against that. After all, as a smart entrepreneur, you’ll know that nothing comes for free in this life 👌

Key document #2 = Employment Contract

For just £147, you can download my tried and tested employment contract template to use with all of your staff. It’s easy to personalise with your company branding too. And when the law changes, you get an updated one for free! Check it out here

Nb. If you’re hiring a self-employed contractor, or a freelancer as they’re sometimes called, (rather than employee) you’ll need a different type of contract. If you’re unsure of the difference between the two, check out my blog, it’s called: WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF HIRING AN EMPLOYEE VS. A CONTRACTOR?


Alongside employment contracts, it’s a really wise idea to invest in an employee handbook.

This is a document that contains your HR policies, procedures, and guidelines that spell out HOW you run your business. Everything from how you promote health and safety, right through to how you handle claims of bullying and harassment from your staff.

Your employee handbook is also an opportunity to define the vision you have for your business and the culture you want to create for your company.

It isn’t simply a nice-to-have. It demonstrates that you’re a responsible employer because you have policies in place to deal with most workplace situations. It also ensures you’re consistent with your people and you treat them fairly.

Key document #3 = Employee Handbook

My employee handbook template contains over 30 policies to cover almost every employee scenario. And what’s more, it’s really simple to customise.

Want to read more about why you need one? Then check out a blog I wrote, called: I'VE ONLY GOT ONE EMPLOYEE? DO I NEED AN EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK?


👏 To grow your your business, you’ll need staff. But, to manage those staff, you also need robust HR documentation

🤔 Don’t rush into hiring people before you’ve really thought about what you’re looking for. Savvy business owners define their hiring strategy before they post any job ads

📑 When you’ve found the employee/s you’re looking for, you need to seal the deal with a high-quality employment contract that’ll stand up to scrutiny. Or, a contract for services if you’re hiring a self-employed contractor or freelancer

📕 As part of your employee’s induction, provide them with your employee handbook. This describes how you run your business and demonstrates you’re a super-responsible employer

😱 Be ready for people problems in your workplace by knowing exactly what could go wrong

🤗 And if you need help with anything, check out my online shop, or book a FREE, 30-minute consultation to discover how I might be able to help grow your business even faster. 

Mandy Hamerla

Mandy Hamerla​

Virtual HR Director & Leadership Mentor. I create game-changing HR & Hiring Strategies for ambitious small businesses in the UK and support you to lead your team with confidence. Check out my shop to download HR Templates & Contracts designed to make life easier.