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It goes without saying that retail management staff are under a lot of pressure. Store managers are expected to juggle sales, admin, recruitment and even HR.

The high staff turnover in retail environments prompts managers to recruit as quickly as possible. This can frequently lead to corners being cut, with the potential risk to the business of exposure to considerable fine, penalties and prosecutions:

  1. Conducting a Right to Work check on an individual after employment has commenced

This is a common mistake. With the need to get staff on the shop floor as quickly as possible, the temptation is to leave the Right to Work check until sometime after the person has started.

This a fundamental breach of legislation, leaving the organisation badly exposed. Right to work checks must be performed prior to the commencement of employment. Without doing this the organisation will not have any statutory excuse from prosecution.

  1. Asking the candidate to provide photocopies of ID documents

This can seem like a quick, simple way to get the check done. However, once again, it’s completely non-compliant. The store manager must view, check and correctly attest the original documents in the presence of the candidate in order conduct a compliant check.

  1. Not checking the right documents

The final issue we frequently encounter is store managers simply not knowing what documents to check.

The tendency can be to simply use whatever documents the candidate has to hand (e.g. driving licence, bank statements etc.), copy them and send off to HR.

A robust policy for conducting Right to Work checks is vital. This policy must ensure that all staff/store managers involved in the front line of recruitment are aware of their responsibilities and the process they must follow to ensure the right documents are checked – dependent on the nationality and circumstances of the candidate.

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