Employment regulation and owner‐managers in small firms: seeking support and guidance

Lynette Harris (Department of Human Resource Management, Nottingham Business School, The Nottingham Trent University, Burton Street, Nottingham, UK)

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development

ISSN: 1462-6004

Publication date: 1 December 2000


As the volume and complexity of employment legislation increases, small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) without access to internal human resource expertise are increasingly vulnerable to litigation and its associated costs. The disproportionate impact of employment regulation on the small firm has long been a concern of SME owner‐managers and is expected to increase as a result of the recent rapid expansion of labour law in the UK. This paper will consider evidence from a recent survey of small businesses, which examined their main employment concerns and the sources of advice they use on employment relations matters. The survey’s findings illustrate the particular challenge increased employment rights presents to the smaller organisation. It identifies a need for more intensive support tailored to the specific circumstances of individual firms in developing proactive approaches to human resourcing which not only comply with but also reflect the spirit of the legislation.



Harris, L. (2000), "Employment regulation and owner‐managers in small firms: seeking support and guidance", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 7 No. 4, pp. 352-362. https://doi.org/10.1108/EUM0000000006851

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