City Early Years and Childcare - recruiting and managing staff

This information will help to ensure you have safe recruitment procedures in place and will support you with managing your staff.

Advertising on the childcare job vacancy list

If you are looking to advertise a job in early years and childcare see our advertising a vacancy webpage.

Ensure you are up to date with the National Minimum Wage (NMW) as new increases have been announced that will come into force 1 April 2021. The National Minimum Wage is a minimum amount per hour that most workers in the UK are entitled to be paid and includes Apprentices. Please check that you are advertising and paying your staff correctly.

Recruiting an apprentice

If you're thinking about recruiting an apprentice, get helpful information on the following links:

Safer recruitment training

All managers and those responsible for recruiting new staff to your setting must be fully aware of employment law and national safer recruitment guidance. To become more confident in the skills and knowledge required to safely and fairly recruit new staff members to your setting, we would advise you complete the Educare NSPCC safer recruitment e-learning training.

Recruitment and selection

A clear Recruitment & selection [PDF 133KB] process is the first step towards safer recruitment, ensuring your recruitment process follows the 12 Steps to Safer Recruitment [PDF 102KB]

A Job application pack [PDF 202KB] should be prepared prior to advertising a vacancy. As a minimum this will include a Job description & Person specification [PDF 111KB] and an Application form [PDF 109KB] CV's should not be requested. 

See our Advertising a vacancy [151 KB] guidance for what to include in your advert. The main purpose of the job advert is to attract good quality, suitable applicants and to deter unsuitable applicants. 

In preparation for Shortlisting [PDF 34 KB] know how to scrutinise the information on the application forms and know how to record the required information to demonstrate a safer recruitment procedure. Interviewing [PDF 102KB] is a key area to ensure you get the most out of your candidates and ensure they are treated fairly.  

Pre-employment checks, staff suitability and disqualification

It is essential to know what pre-employment checks [PDF 112KB] are required for safer recruitment and at what point in the recruitment process they should be completed. This pre-employment checklist will help you keep a written record of the checks you complete. 

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) helps employers make safer recruitment decisions and prevents unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups, including children. DBS checks must be completed on all employers prior to them starting work with you. If you have a positive DBS disclosure come back this Positive DBS Disclosure Decision Form  will help you risk assess the information that has been shared with you to help you make an informed decision. This DBS Update Service Permission Form is to be completed by all new staff. The NDNA have produced a staff suitability and disqualification factsheet that clarifies the current legal requirements for ensuring staff suitability to work with children and to support nurseries with procedures for checking staff suitability and disqualification. This Staff Suitability Declaration Form is to be completed by all new staff and existing staff annually.  

References (2 minimum) must be obtained. This reference request letter and pro-forma [46KB] should help you to get useful relevant information back. When you appoint the successful candidate ensure the Job offer [PDF 133KB] and contacting unsuccessful applicants is done correctly.

Performance management

There are lots of different areas that need to be considered when planning an Induction [PDF 145KB] For early years practitioners involved in day to day work with children and families, effective Supervision [208KB] is important to promote good standards of practice and to support individual staff members. Regular staff Appraisals [63KB] should be carried out to identify the training needs of staff, review performance and plan objectives.

Raising a concern / making a disclosure in the public interest / whistleblowing

It is very important to ensure a culture of safety in your organisation. It is vital that all staff and those associated with your setting are aware of what to do if they wish to raise a concern and that they feel confident in doing so if a situation arose. This is called making a disclosure in the public interest or whistleblowing (PDF 249kb).

Health, safety and wellbeing of staff

Employers have a general duty under section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of their employees at work. This guidance will support organisations to write a policy that enables them to meet their duty: HSE health, safety and welfare guidance [PDF 107KB] Employers also are required by law, to display the HSE law poster

Social Media and Social Networking

The impact of social media on the workplace is increasing and whilst the widespread availability and use of social networking sites bring opportunities to engage and communicate with people and organisations in new and exciting ways, it is also hugely important to ensure that we balance this with our legal responsibilities - to safeguard and protect our children and staff and also to safeguard your settings image and reputation.

See our social media and social networking guidance to help you strike the balance between the benefits of using social media professionally (for example for marketing and promoting your business and communicating with families) and the potential risks to children, their families and your staff.

Avoiding tribunal claims

The Acas Code of Practice on Discipline and Grievance provides basic practical guidance to employers, employees and their representatives and sets out principles for handling disciplinary and grievance situations in the workplace.

  • Disciplinary situations include misconduct and/or poor performance.
  • Grievances are concerns, problems or complaints that employees raise with their employers.

Acas provide on-line resources, training, advice booklets and a telephone helpline 08457 47 47 47 to support employers and emploees in key areas of employment law and best practice.