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Sole Trader, Spot the Signs You Need Some Staff

Sole Trader, Spot the Signs you Need Some Staff

One of the most common questions we get when it comes sole traders is: am I allowed to employ staff?

The simple answer is yes, sole traders can recruit staff but where it becomes trickier is knowing when the time is right to do so.

Knowing when to employ staff when you’re a sole trader

The identity of a sole trader is a real mixed bag and can vary drastically from person to person, so pinning down the time when recruitment might be required will be different for everyone.

For this reason, it’s pretty impossible to give you one definitive answer about when you need to start rolling the job vacancy adverts out.

However, there are some alarm bells or red flags that everybody across the board should look out for to help them with this decision.

You can pick up on these by regularly asking yourself the following set of questions:

  • Am I struggling to meet deadlines or manage my workload?
  • Are my mental health or stress levels in an unhealthy state due to work?
  • Is the quality of work or level of service I’m producing lacking on account of my workload?
  • Are my relationships with clients, customers or any other external parties suffering?
  • Is my work-life balance non-existent?
  • Is my creativity and ability to think clearly and freely being regularly hindered?

If you find yourself answering yes to even just one of the questions outlined above, it may very well be time to start building yourself a workforce.

Enlisting the help of an extra pair of hands (or multiple pairs of hands if you see fit) can be instrumental in providing invaluable benefits including:

  • Extra time to spend building professional relationships, seeking new business, streamlining processes and improving the quality of your output.
  • Additional skills that you may not already possess yourself that you can then use to the advantage of your success strategy.
  • Nurturing better physical and mental wellbeing as you can take time out to breathe, rejuvenate and do whatever it is that helps you relax, unwind and return to your to-do list in a refreshed frame of mind.

Some important things to remember!

If you are a sole trader thinking about hiring your first employee(s), here are some essential factors to keep in mind:

  • You will need to inform HMRC of your next move at least 4 weeks before you employ and pay your first member of staff. You could face a hefty fine if you fail to do so.
  • Employees must be paying Income Tax and National Insurance payments. This will be part and parcel of setting up your PAYE (Pay as You Earn) payroll system.
  • If anybody you employ is over the age of 22 and earning more than £10,000 a year, they will need to auto-enrolled into a pension scheme – just like they would in any other business or limited company.

If you would like some more information or expert advice on any of the points mentioned above, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team of qualified finance professionals who’ll be more than happy to help.

Reach us by phone on 020 3355 4047 or by sending an email to


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