If you are looking to create your own plumbing business, or expand your already existing plumbing business, it is advisable that you carefully consider the contents of your employment contracts. Employment contracts are essential in ensuring your business runs like a well-oiled machine, by protecting you and your business form any legal or financial liability, and fostering an amicable environment in which your employees can work to the best of their ability. In addition, employment contracts can protect your business from unfair competition, by ensuring that your employees cannot leave your plumbing business and become a rival. Finally, employment contracts outline the way in which your employees should interact with one another, which means each of your employees feels safe and is able to work in a nurturing environment.

What should I include in my employment contracts?

Employment contracts for your plumbing business, should include anything and everything that concerns how your employees should conduct themselves when working for your business. As a plumber, you work in a wide variety of situations, and every job is unique, except the ones you continually have to return, time and time again, because your customers are unwilling to pay the money to fix the problem permanently. Nevertheless, your employment contracts should be ambiguous enough that they can be adapted to any situation, while also being concise enough that there is no question as to the roles and responsibilities of your employees.

The most important aspect of your employment contracts from a liability perspective should be safety. There should be nothing more important to you, than the safety of those that work for your company. Consequently, you should consider including rigorous safety considerations in your employment contracts. The safety procedure included in your employment contracts should be able to be adapted to any situation that your employees might find themselves in. A good way to do this is by allowing some room for autonomy within your employment contracts, which will allow your employees to make a considered decision that they feel will keep them as safe as possible. Not only will this cover your business from any liability, but it will allow your employees to feel safe, and not be forced into a situation where they might have to do something that could harm them, in order to fulfil their employment contract.

Furthermore, your employment contracts should inform your employees of what is expected of them when they interact with each other. There is nothing more detrimental to a business than bullying or harassment in the workplace, and often, as a business owner, you will be so busy running your business that it can be almost impossible to pick up on such behaviour. As such, it is important that your employment contracts provide your employees with recourse to protect themselves from bullying or harassment. A good way to do this would be to appoint an employee whose job it is to hear complaints of such behaviour, and work on rectifying the situation before it gets out of hand. Not only will this allow your plumbing business to flourish, by creating a fair and nurturing environment for your employees, but it will also be able to nip any unsavoury behaviour in the bud, before it gets taken to court or a fair work commission.

Finally, you should ensure that your employment contracts remain employee focused, not business focused. This means that the employment contracts for your plumbing business must outline the role of your employees specifically, so that each employee knows exactly what you believe they are capable of, and what they are not capable of. This ensures that no employee is ever out of their depth, and can master the skills you need them to master, without attempting to do work that they are neither ready nor qualified for. This will ensure that your business is protected from unqualified employees making mistakes on jobs they should not be attempting.

To assist with the difficult task of creating employment contracts for your plumbing business, Legal Vision has created a comprehensive guide as to how you and a legal professional can work together to create employment contracts that protect your business, while ensuring it has ample room to grow. This list can be found here.

Conclusion

If you are looking to create your own plumbing business, or expand your already existing plumbing business, it is advisable that you carefully consider the contents of your employment contracts. Employment contracts are a way to create a firm basis upon which you can manage, grow and expand your business. They ensure that each employee knows their role at all times, while fostering a safe and nurturing environment form which they can expand their skills and become true assets of your business. In addition, employment contracts protect your business from unwanted liability by ensuring the safety of your employees and preventing them from taking on work you believe to be beyond them. However, creating employment contracts can be a daunting task for a business owner without prior legal experience, therefore it is advisable that you seek legal advice at some point during the process. If you wish for further assistance with creating employment contracts for your plumbing business, call Legal Vision for a fixed-fee quote.

Lachlan McKnight

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