Free advice on HR issues

Free advice on human resources issues such as recruiting and managing staff is available from a website set up by Investors in People, the organisation dedicated to training and development.

The site,, breaks human resources down into 5 topics: recruit; reward; manage; change; develop. There are also 4 “zones” entitled Starting Your Business, Investors in People, Improving Your Business and finally, the Learning zone.

Within these areas there are a number of guides containing small business-focused advice on employment issues, legal documentation and salary levels, amongst others.

Visitors to the site can also register and “Ask the Expert” through questions posted on the site, which will then be answered by one of a number of professionals working in various fields of human resources.

The site offers tips on recruitment. These include:

* Decide which skills, experiences and personal attributes are essential and which are desirable

* Use the job description to create interview questions.

* Advertise the vacancy. Local newspapers, the local job centre, job fairs or professional recruiters are all good ways to publicise the vacancy

* On receipt of CVs, eliminate those who do not have the essential qualifications for the job but interview all others if possible

* The first interview should be a technical interview lasting approximately 30 – 45 minutes to determine if the candidate has the necessary skills and experience.

* The second interview for all those that are technically able to do the job should be to determine their personal suitability. The easiest way of doing this is to develop a workplace scenario and ask how they would handle it. Ask open-ended questions such as ‘Why this company?’ to get a further feeling for the candidate’s personality. Ideally the second interview should be at least 45 minutes long and be conducted by two experienced interviewers.

See also: A guide to outsourcing HR

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