When hiring an employee, checklists can ensure your new worker is a good fit and help you avoid making mistakes. We’ve put together this brief guide to streamline the process to hire and manage employees.

What kind of help does your business need?

Determining whether you need a new employee and what their role will be depends on the specifics of your business.


The type of business you have will affect what type of employee you look for. Pop-up restaurants and small boutiques might need temporary workers, whereas nonprofits might need volunteers or interns.


Businesses with remote or international headquarters should look for employees that are comfortable working from home or a satellite office. Corporations with remote workers also need to have capable management, so finding supervisors that are comfortable with long-distance teams is important.


The size of your business influences the role of your new hire. In a small company, an employee might be required to wear multiple hats. Larger organizations will want to form departments that each serve a specific role to avoid confusion.


If your business operates in a niche industry, your new team member might need specific hard skills that make them well-suited for the position. Someone who can train others in these necessary skills is a good choice for a first hire.

Different types of workers

Before beginning the process of drafting a job ad or hiring new employees, you need to determine what type of employees you’re looking for.

Full-time employees

The traditional full-time employee works a 40+ hour workweek. However, many businesses define full-time workers as those who average more than 30 hours per week. They often receive comprehensive benefits packages not afforded to other kinds of workers.

Part-time employees

Part-time employees usually work less than 30 hours per week and may or may not have a benefits package. Your business can often choose whether to categorize an employee as a full-time or part-time worker.

Freelancer/independent contractors

According to the IRS, employers who use independent contractors or freelancers can only control the direct result of the work done by these workers. This differs from the increased control employers have over traditional employees. Many employment laws on the federal and state levels don’t apply to self-employed workers.

If you’re not sure if your workers qualify as employees or not, review the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s definition of an employee.

Get the right insurance to protect your business

Your insurance needs will change once you’re in charge of an employee or a group of them. For example, worker’s compensation insurance is required for all businesses, except in the state of Texas. Many states have different insurance requirements depending on the size of the business. Obtaining general business and professional liability insurance policies is also prudent. Review the state and federal requirements for businesses in your industry and talk with a qualified insurance agent.

Finding the right people for the job

When crafting a job listing, the first things you should consider are the specifics of the position. What kind of background do you want your ideal employee to have? What’s the necessary skill set and level of education for the position? This information comprises the backbone of your job posting. Next, consider which sites you’re going to post your ad on.


LinkedIn is a social-networking-meets-job-board site that has a lot of top talent. The site makes your listing available to more than 740,000,000 users. Its “personalized targeting” feature shows your listing to users that match up with your desired qualifications. You can also use filtering tools to sift through applicants and reach out to the ones you’re interested in.


Monster is a good resource for employers that want to attract the most qualified candidates with an appropriate skill set. Its dashboard tells you how well candidates fit with your requirements and gives you an applicant summary.


Indeed is the most popular job site in the world. Posting your listing here means appealing to the largest pool of applicants. Indeed makes it easy to screen applicants with questions you can include in the application process. Employers have the opportunity to complete the bulk of the hiring process on its website. This might be helpful for business owners just stepping into their human resources role.


ZipRecruiter matches employers with users that are the best fit for the jobs they want. It invites users to apply and helps you connect with them through the platform. You also have the opportunity to send a pre-written message to candidates. Job listings on the platform aren’t limited to 30 days.

Tips for posting jobs

Creating your job posting is a make-or-break moment. You need help, and your potential employees want a great work environment, benefits, and culture that help them thrive. You can showcase these aspects of your business and connect with talented professionals by creating detailed job posts.

Explain what your company does, what kind of culture you’ve established, what you’re looking for, and what perks you’re willing to extend. It’s important to include your company’s non-discrimination policy, too.

Plan and put in place employee benefit programs

Different workers may look for different benefits that suit their personal lives. Instead of guarantees, use persuasive and inviting language to convince applicants that you’re offering something special.

There are some programs that businesses are required by state or federal law to participate in, such as health insurance, workers’ compensation, leave benefits dictated by the Family and Medical Leave Act, disability, unemployment, and more. To avoid penalties, business owners need to pay careful attention to what programs they must participate in under state and federal law.

In addition to the legally required programs, there are also plenty of optional benefit programs that might draw qualified workers, such as a 401(k) or tuition reimbursement. The US Small Business Administration further explains these benefits on their website, so take a look for more details.

Starting on the Right Foot with New Hires

There are several tasks that need to be completed before your new hire steps into the workplace. Getting legal paperwork in order will ensure you’re meeting state and federal requirements and avoiding any potential problems.

Employment contract

Your employment contract can be a simple or complex document, depending on the role you’re hiring for. You should include pertinent information, including the employee’s:

  • Name
  • Job title
  • Position details
  • Salary
  • Hours
  • Paid and unpaid time off
  • Conditions of terminating the contract

IRS forms

You’ll have to fill out different IRS forms depending on the type of employee you’re hiring. For example, you’ll likely have to fill out W2s and 941s. Your employee will also have to fill out a W4 form. If you’re hiring an independent contractor, you’ll need to have W9s on hand with your employee’s taxpayer information.

Employment eligibility verification

It’s also crucial to verify whether the person you’re hiring is authorized to work in the country. As an employer, you’ll need to fill out the IRS I-9 form to confirm this with the federal government.

State withholding tax forms

Some states use the federal W4 form for withholding state taxes, while others have their own. Be sure to check your state requirements to confirm whether you need to provide an additional W4 for your new hire. This step isn’t necessary if your employee lives in a state with no income tax.

New hires internal paperwork checklist

Non-compete agreements

You may want your employee to enter into a non-compete agreement with your corporation. This ensures that they won’t start a similar company or begin working for a similar company that’s in competition with yours.

Non-disclosure or confidentiality agreements

If there’s a chance your hire will be handling sensitive information, a non-disclosure agreement will ensure they don’t disclose private company information with anyone. Some companies call these confidentiality agreements or confidentiality clauses.

Employee handbook

A handbook will explain more about the company, its culture, and its policies. It should also include legal and human resource information in addition to your expectations of employees.

Intellectual property agreement

This agreement confirms that any intellectual property created by the employee for the employer during their tenure at the company belongs to the employer.

Employee benefit information

If you’re going to offer benefits to your new employee, make sure you provide them with all the information when you hire them. This can be included in their contract for a simplified process.

Drug/alcohol testing protocol

If you choose to ask a new employee to take a drug or alcohol test, it’s important to have safe and legal protocols that your company adheres to. Make sure that these tests are administered at a safe laboratory and that the employee knows about the tests and protocols ahead of time.

Employee Management and Retention

Set clear expectations and goals for your employees

Now that you have your team assembled, you need to figure out how to keep them motivated. One way to do this is by setting clear expectations and goals for them. You can engage employees and foster good morale by regularly providing performance reviews and incentives for exceptional performance.

Have fair and transparent company policies and procedures

Fair and honest policies go a long way in building trust and keeping employees for the long-term. These policies should concern more than benefits and bonuses. Having clear-cut rules governing how your company handles sensitive issues like harassment will encourage your employees and show them you care about their happiness and comfort.

Keep lines of communication open

You can foster a team-focused mindset in your employees by keeping lines of communication open. Everyone should have a way to speak their mind respectfully and feel heard by others. Company lunches and regular chats with your employees help to keep communication flowing freely.

Useful Employee Management Tools

Employee management tools help to keep the workflow running and ensure your staff is making the most of their hours on the clock.

Time and productivity tracking tools

Some software collects pertinent information on employee internet use, so you can determine how much time they spend working while on the clock. Tools like Time Doctor, RemoteDesk, and Timely are great monitoring tools for companies with remote workers.

HR management tools

Breezy HR and Evernote are two tools that can be used for HR professionals to keep track of important employee documents or handle administrative tasks. Other software like Kissflow HR Cloud can automate some of these administrative tasks.

Payroll management tools

Payroll management tools like JustWorks, Paychex, or TriNet can handle the tasks of managing payroll, including deposits, tax information, and filing federal tax forms. These tools often provide updated IRS information and can work well for companies with independent contractors.

Business connectivity and communication tools

Microsoft Teams, Slack, and Zoom are some communication tools that keep employees connected and engaged with each other. These tools are often more efficient than endless emails and can encourage employees to resolve issues and conflicts quickly.

Program management and organization tools

IFS is one organization and project management tool that can help you and your employees balance multiple clients at once. Asana is another common name in the industry. Its sterling features — including the ability to connect projects across any team with the platform — make it a good choice for busy project managers.

Cloud storage and file-sharing programs

Google Drive’s simple interface and almost universal use has helped it gain massive popularity. Microsoft OneDrive and Dropbox are also storage and sharing services that can connect across multiple devices.


Hiring employees can be a tough task, but following a checklist and consulting with professionals can make the task more manageable. ZenBusiness can help you launch your business and guide you every step of the way. Get started today!


  • Businesses have the choice of hiring part-time or full-time employees that work in person or remotely. They can also hire independent contractors and freelancers.

  • Federal laws like the Fair Labor Standards Act also set clear guidelines for overtime, the employment of minors, and other payment and legal details. State laws might enforce further regulations, such as establishing a higher minimum wage.rn

  • The equal employment opportunity commission (EEOC), a federal agency, enforces the federal laws governing employment. State labor agencies will enforce laws in your territory.rn

Disclaimer: The content on this page is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.

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Written by Team ZenBusiness

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