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Acas launches new guidance for small firms

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Small firms who are thinking about taking on their first member of staff or have had a bad experience managing staff for the first time can now access guidance, launched today by Acas.

The free step-by-step guide will help small and medium sized businesses get the best from their people and stay on the right side of the law.

The guide breaks down the most common employment issues into a series of practical steps that a manager or supervisor can pick up and put down as needed.

Employment relations minister Jo Swinson said: "We know that small businesses can find taking on staff a daunting prospect because of a lack of understanding of employment law. It is important to help employers better understand their responsibilities.

"This is why promoting the benefits of good communication, better management, and early dispute resolution is important as it can lead to the best outcomes for everyone and cut out the need for costly and stressful employment tribunals."

Anne Sharp, Acas chief executive, said: "These new free online guides are simple to use and help employers understand the basics of how to hire, manage and get the best from their staff.

"Some employers want to grow their business but are worried about getting employment law right or find it too time consuming as they just want to run their business.

"The step-by-step guides build on our knowledge as workplace experts to make it as easy as possible for small business owners to quickly pick up a guide that best suits their circumstances and get it right first time.

"A better understanding of the law can make the difference between managing staff well and potentially facing a costly and stressful employment tribunal when things aren't handled correctly."