10.5 Top Tips on Sorting the Documentation in Readiness for a Business Transfer

Do’s

  1. Kick off your activities with an HR or more specialised HR Document Audit. Then get your employment contracts and employment policies reviewed and updated and, as appropriate, reissued to all staff.
  2. Check also that your directors and non-exec directors also have the correct paperwork – Directors Service Agreements/Business Protection Letters/Share Holders agreements etc.
  3. If you haven’t sorted it already create an organisational chart, ensuring you cover all the key roles in the business creating a great snapshot for a potential investor or purchaser of the ‘who’ and ‘where’.
  4. It’s time to get out your performance review forms and decide if they are fit for purpose. Does an annual review still work, are the competencies you measure still appropriate, should you be doing 360 reviews by now, what happens with interim reviews, are managers trained, are forms being filed etc? Work out whether these are fit for purpose and making you look professional. If not, its probably time for a review.
  5. It’s also time to start documenting the ‘informal’! Are any pay rises being given outside of a formal review structure, are all bonuses appropriately documented, are all benefits documented and accounted for correctly, do P11D’s contain all they need to every year, how is equipment issued and is it all properly logged, what rules are there around home working, what rules are there around removing information, equipment or documents from the office etc. Is it time to introduce new procedures perhaps and formalise some of the ‘informal’?

Don’ts

  1. Forget your associates and consultants when sorting documentation. Those not employed probably need to be issued with a Contract for Services (as different to a Contract of Employment).
  2. Think that documentation is a waste of time. It’s not and a well managed, professional looking business is likely to attract a high value when put up for sale.
  3. Leave it all to the last minute. Sorting the HR structure and paperwork can take up to a year to review and sort out so it is not a five minute job. Don’t leave it too late.
  4. Forget to consult with your staff about what you are doing and why. Failure to consult, particularly on contractual matters could create a dispute that could, in worst case scenario, derail a business sale.
  5. Forget training. Its not all about the paperwork and processes. You need to be able to demonstrate a great management team is in place that is well trained and professional in its approach.

And Finally…

10.5. Not everything has to be stressful, difficult or cost a fortune! Before you instruct expensive lawyers, see what you can sort yourself by using  www.docswizard.co.uk to check that you’ve got good contracts and policies in place, contacting www.jaluch.co.uk if you need support with an HR or more specialised document audit, performance reviews , contractual changes, TUPE transfers or for quotes for leadership training.

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