Employing Staff

The Management Committee becomes an employer as soon as the organisation recruits paid staff.  Whilst the Committee is not expected to be expert in all the associated legal responsibilities, they are required to keep up to date with changes and ensure they access expertise and advice where necessary.

Your role as employer and associated legal requirements should be taken very seriously:

  • You are responsible for seeing that staff work effectively towards achieving the aims of the organisation.  If they don't, you are not managing the organisation's resources effectively;
  • Your organisation may face serious penalties if you do not obey the laws covering employment; and
  • In some circumstances you may face personal liability for debts that result from mismanagement of staff or failure to adhere to employment legislation.

Employment law

The Management Committee cannot possibly know every aspect of the law, but must gain an understanding of the main requirements, and make an effort to stay up to date with changes in the law.  They will need to be aware of legislation setting minimum standards for areas such as:

Annual leave National Minimum Wage
Dependent leave Pensions
Discipline & grievance Recruitment of employees
Equal opportunities Redundancy
Equal pay Statutory sick pay
Fixed Term Regulations Terms and conditions (contracts) of employment
Harrassment/Bullying Termination of employment
Health & Safety Working Time Regulations
Maternity/parental leave  

The Citizen's Advice Bureau provides a useful reference list of Basic Rights At Work with details of relevant legal provisions.

Where can I get help on....

....specific topics?

Click here for details of who to contact for further information on each of the key areas of employment law.

....overall employment information?

Try the following sources for information on employment law and practice:

Highly recommended:

Also very useful:

  • Employing People - provides a range of resources for voluntary and community organisations in NI.  Refer to NICVA's Staff Handbook for up to date terms and conditions.

  • NI Direct - under Information & Services- Employment section, provides a range of useful guidance and key contacts.  Website: www.nidirect.gov.uk
Quick Reference