Employing casual staff
Employing casual staff
How do you know whether someone is an employee or not? There are a number of things to consider.

By Michelle Rowe, Senior Accountant at Hive Business

Remember the time when you had a cleaner who came in at the end of every day to clean your practice? They hoovered, polished and tidied with a big smile on their face and then, at the end of the week, you gave them £100 in cash. Nowadays, things are a lot more complicated! You have to consider whether they are classed as another employee and, if they are, they must go on the payroll.

So, how do you know whether your cleaner is an employee or not? There are a number of things to consider:

  • Do they appear to be in business for themself?
  • Can they decide what work they do, when they do it and how they do it?
  • Can they send someone else to do the work for them?
  • If they don’t do a good enough job, do you expect them to come in and do the cleaning again without you having to pay them?
  • Do you pay them a fixed fee regardless of how long it takes them to clean?
  • Do they provide their own cleaning materials and apparatus?
  • Do they clean for other businesses as well as yours?

Assuming that the answer to all the above questions is “No”, I’d suggest that they are another employee of your business.

Since the introduction of RTI (Real Time Information) by HMRC back in 2013, the details of ALL payments to staff must be included in regular payroll submissions. You can no longer pay your cleaner £100 cash-in-hand, slip an employee £20 for staying late, or hand out £50 notes to employees at Christmas time as a bonus – all are deemed as additional employment income and must go through the payroll.

Now that we’ve decided your cleaner is an employee, they have the same statutory rights as all other employees:

  • To be paid at least the national minimum wage;
  • To receive a written contract or statement and an itemised payslip for each pay period;
  • To have daily and weekly rest breaks (20 mins for any work day exceeding 6 hours and at least one day off in every seven);
  • To have at least 5.6 weeks paid holiday each year (part-time workers receive a pro-rata entitlement);
  • To work not more than 48 hours on average per week;
  • Protection against unlawful discrimination in all its forms.

In addition to these rights, if the new employee is aged between 22 and the state pension age, and is earning over £10k per year, you will also have to enrol them in a workplace pension scheme.

Whether your new employee only works 4 hours a week, is on a work placement for two weeks or is on a short-term contract, they must all be enrolled on your payroll and be provided with the same rights as any other full-time employee.

If you’d like to find out more about casual staff or our payroll services in general, please call us on 01872 300232 or email [email protected].

Michelle Rowe
By Michelle Rowe Senior Accountant
If you have any questions or comments about this article, please get in touch.