Georgia Entrepreneurs: What Do You Need to Do Before Hiring Your First Employee?

There are only so many things you can do and hats you can wear as a business owner. Sooner or later, you must hire an employee to help shoulder the load. While this moment should be celebrated, you also have a lot of work to do before your first hire begins orientation.

Tax and Legal Forms

There is no shortage of forms you must submit to the IRS, the Georgia Department of Labor, and other agencies. If your business is a pass-through entity and does not pay taxes, you will need to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS and a withholding payroll number from the Georgia Department of Revenue. You must also get an unemployment insurance account number from the state Department of Labor (DoL). Within 10 days of your employee’s first day of employment, you need to report the hire to the Georgia DoL.

Your new employee must fill out several documents:

  • Form I-9, which affirms his or her legal eligibility to work in the U.S.
  • Form W-4, which dictates the amount of federal taxes you’ll withhold on each paycheck
  • Form G-4, which dictates the amount of state income tax you will take out of each paycheck

Employee Rights

Once your business has three or more employees, you must begin carrying a workers’ compensation policy. Regardless of the size of your company, you must conspicuously display numerous posters that inform your employees of state and federal employment laws. The U.S. DoL oversees the poster requirements for employers regarding federal laws. Accordingly, the Georgia DoL can inform you of required workplace posters.

The Interview Process

No two interview processes are exactly alike. The size and personality of your business will heavily influence the hiring procedure, among countless other factors. With that in mind, here are some useful tips for finding the right employee: 

  • Consider running some type of background check. There are multiple levels of background checks that reveal different information. You may not want to spend money to get every last bit of information available to you, but it is wise to conduct at least a basic background check. 
  • Ask for —  and call — references. Having a mixture of personal and professional references from a candidate can give you a more focused glimpse of his or her essential traits. 
  • Have candidates attend an “abbreviated workday.” If you want to go the extra mile to ensure a candidate is a good fit, have him or her perform a few tasks that would be performed in the position. It is highly unethical to use the work performed by a candidate in your actual business operations, but there is no better way to ascertain a candidate’s technical skills than to observe actual results. 

Is Your New Hire Stepping Into the Right Culture?

Apart from the forms, documents, and processes, you need to make sure your first employee has a smooth transition into the role at your company. Provide an employee handbook on your employee’s first day that clearly outlines expectations for the role. First days can be overwhelming — while you need to give your new hire the important information on the first day, make some time for a light activity or icebreaker session. At least treat your new hire to a nice first-day lunch. 

The Anderson Firm Can Help You Get it Right

While we just mentioned that an employee’s first day can be overwhelming, the same goes for employers in the lead-up to that important day. Between all the legal requirements and forms, housekeeping considerations, and actually training your first hire, it would not be surprising for something important to slip through the cracks. The Anderson Firm is here to help entrepreneurs implement the infrastructure they need to reach their full potential. Get in touch through our website to set up a consultation with our team today.

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The Anderson Firm, LLC

Precious Anderson knows her clients want quick, painless solutions for their small to mid-sized business problems.

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