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cherry64

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How complicated is hiring seasonal help while running an inn? I have horrible visions of being buried in goverment paperwork if I decide to buy in inn that would require additional help. Or messing it up and they come and audit me or whatnot...
 

muirford

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There definitely is extra paperwork when you have staff, but there are products that can help you with that. If you hire them as part-time employees you have to do payroll taxes and whatever your state requires. If you hire them as independent contractors you have to produce 1099s at year-end for them. We use the Quickbooks with payroll processing so it is pretty straightforward to do either thing. Our Quickbooks only allows three employees though (you can do more with an upgraded version) so you should check that out. Do you have a specific place in mind yet or are you just projecting? I would say it's harder to hire good people than to do the paperwork...
 

cherry64

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There definitely is extra paperwork when you have staff, but there are products that can help you with that. If you hire them as part-time employees you have to do payroll taxes and whatever your state requires. If you hire them as independent contractors you have to produce 1099s at year-end for them. We use the Quickbooks with payroll processing so it is pretty straightforward to do either thing. Our Quickbooks only allows three employees though (you can do more with an upgraded version) so you should check that out. Do you have a specific place in mind yet or are you just projecting? I would say it's harder to hire good people than to do the paperwork....
Just thinking ahead... I have found a couple of inn's that I am interested in, but I am still a little lacking in the funds department.

 

agoodman

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Above and beyond the actual hourly cost, remember the taxes, SS and medicare that you have to pay. I just have to bite the bullet as I am on my own. With regards to paperwork, the IRS keeps changing forms on me and then fines me when I submit the form that they told me to submit before the time the told me to use the other forms grrr. Umm hello on x date you sent me a letter telling me to now use THIS form and now you are fining me because I did not use the form that I was using originally??
I have a wonderful bookkeeper now that does it for me, SHE gets to deal with them and is reasonable. I have gotomypc so she signs directly onto my computer and pulls the reports from Quickbooks, but yes if you have the time and the skills you certainly can do the paperwork on your own.
 

Morticia

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Some other things to be aware of besides those that have been mentioned...unemployment payments when the season is over and you let your help go. No, you don't pay the employee, the gov't does but you have to pay unemployment insurance to cover those payouts. The gov't will not be in the minus for this...you will pay them eventually for all of the $$$ claimed by those who are collecting after having you as their employer.
Because you're a small biz, you'll never pay in enough to cover what goes out. When we have employees, we are taxed at the maximum amount for unemployment insurance. There is still a $12,000 debt that was paid out in unemployment benefits at some point in the past. We are still paying that off.
Hiring isn't all that hard. I say that even tho we had one call for the job we had, hired one person and she worked for a week and never came back. Maybe we just didn't put the ad in the right place. Now we know we can do a whole season on our own.
 

agoodman

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Good lord what happened with the $12K claim?
I had one employee who started and of course I did not ask and she did not tell me that she was pregnant - she told me she was going to come back after the baby. She held her baby shower here. She came to get a check the day after she gave birth. Confirmed she was coming back. Called her 3 weeks, then 5 weeks after the birth - she confirmed she was coming back. Next thing I get a letter she was claiming unemployment. I jumped on that form so quick I burnt a hole in it - they denied her claim and told her that although having a child is a good reason not to work, she could not claim unemployment.
Then I get a call for a reference .....
By the way for those of you that have ever had to deal with reference requests, legally the only things you can say are employment dates and whether they are eligible for rehire. Period. Forewarned is forearmed.
 

Morticia

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Good lord what happened with the $12K claim?
I had one employee who started and of course I did not ask and she did not tell me that she was pregnant - she told me she was going to come back after the baby. She held her baby shower here. She came to get a check the day after she gave birth. Confirmed she was coming back. Called her 3 weeks, then 5 weeks after the birth - she confirmed she was coming back. Next thing I get a letter she was claiming unemployment. I jumped on that form so quick I burnt a hole in it - they denied her claim and told her that although having a child is a good reason not to work, she could not claim unemployment.
Then I get a call for a reference .....
By the way for those of you that have ever had to deal with reference requests, legally the only things you can say are employment dates and whether they are eligible for rehire. Period. Forewarned is forearmed..
agoodman said:
Good lord what happened with the $12K claim?
I had one employee who started and of course I did not ask and she did not tell me that she was pregnant - she told me she was going to come back after the baby. She held her baby shower here. She came to get a check the day after she gave birth. Confirmed she was coming back. Called her 3 weeks, then 5 weeks after the birth - she confirmed she was coming back. Next thing I get a letter she was claiming unemployment. I jumped on that form so quick I burnt a hole in it - they denied her claim and told her that although having a child is a good reason not to work, she could not claim unemployment.
Then I get a call for a reference .....
By the way for those of you that have ever had to deal with reference requests, legally the only things you can say are employment dates and whether they are eligible for rehire. Period. Forewarned is forearmed.
Someone got $12,000 in unemployment benefits. Who? We don't know. When? We don't know. We could pay the unemployment office $40/hour to do the research and tell us, but what then? We figured that somewhere along the way one of the owners claimed unemployment during the slow season. It all gets registered against the business name (buyer beware, which we weren't) and the NEXT business owner ends up with the higher unemployment insurance payments until the total amount is paid off. At the rate of about $18/week (WHEN we have an employee) this will take more than my lifetime to pay off.
In re the legality of stating employment dates, etc for references...that's not all you can legally say. You can SAY whatever you want as long as it is a fact. If the employee was late 3 days out of 5, you may state that to the next employer, if you have documented it. You may not construe the reasons for the lateness, 'He's a drunk, he's always late.' Unless, of course, the employee walked in with a beer in hand and threw up on your shoes on all of those days. Still, you're limited to the employee was late (fact) and that he had a beer in hand (fact) and that he threw up on your shoes (fact). You still don't know if he's a drunk or not or if he is always late for everything or just work.
I do know many large companies will have the HR dept be in control of any requests for info and they will generally only state that you worked there and were paid $x. That's not a legal requirement, it's a corporate policy.
I happily give rave reviews for an employee we had 2 years ago. Maybe she's awful today and that's why she puts me down as a reference. I leave that little discrepancy to the hiring manager to figure out. HERE she was a great employee.
 

happyjacks

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In my previous life in the corp world, when giving a reference I could answer the question "would you hire this person again?" but I couldn't give subjective reasons if my answer was no.
 

agoodman

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Gee and I thought dealing with the IRS was difficult, I cannot believe that you were not able to get a reason with paying them some more money!! I see the amounts some states give out on food stamps and I could feed the entire B&B and some of the neigbors on that - are we doing something wrong?? It has to be US because it cannot possibly be THE SYSTEM!!
 

agoodman

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FYI I agree that you can say whatever you want to when giving a reference however if the employee does not get that job because of the ref you gave, they can turn around and sue. And even though you may have all the documentation in the world, one still has to deal with the costs of the lawsuit .. and the time and hassle.
I beieve the saying is that we are caught between a rock and a hard place.
 
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