Tackling common compliance issues for small service businesses

February 22, 2018
Loc8 Insights Tackling common compliance issues for small service businesses

Starting your own service business can be an exciting proposition. And if you’re a tradie who has the experience, expertise and connections required to ensure a business survives the initial tough years, then starting your own operations is a sensible decision to make.

However, as experience will tell you, one of the biggest obstacles while starting any business is the hassle of adhering to compliances, especially those that require having to deal with local, state and national-level regulations.

To help you out on your entrepreneurial journey, here are some of the most common compliances you will need to keep a check on when starting your own field service business.

Safety Regulations

When your business entails having to deal with technicians who work with sensitive and often dangerous tools and equipment, your number one priority should be their safety at the workplace. While most safety regulation compliances deal with having to maintain a certain standard of equipment and ensuring the working environment is not overly hazardous, it also involves maintaining multiple records such as data on testing, calibration, quality control and other things. Ensure you do your research thoroughly to avoid unwanted legal action, as safety compliance infractions are extremely common in the service industry.

Human Resources

Small service businesses generally do not hire a dedicated resource to handle HR issues, which are often just a part of an existing employee’s task list. Unfortunately, even service businesses are not free of disputes stemming from insensitive handling of an employee’s needs or violations of employment law. To keep your business in the clear, take the time out to define proper policies for handling employee issues. This will save you tons of time, which would otherwise be wasted in dealing with legal problems related to non-compliance.


Just like a dedicated employee to handle HR-related tasks, having one to handle payroll issues is a hassle for young and growing service companies. However, in most countries, not paying your employees on time can lead to having to deal with serious infractions. Consider outsourcing your company’s payroll process to a third-party service provider or use small business software to manage payroll matters.


When a small service business starts doing really well, it can open up a new set of problems, one of which is dealing with the increase in the number of jobs that need to be completed. Utilizing your existing workforce to the best of its capacity may seem like an obvious solution to such a problem. However, you should be careful not to overwork your technicians, especially if your business is based in a state/country with strict regulations on working hours. Always check if there are overtime policies that need to be adhered to and ensure they are followed.


While most small service businesses take care of common compliances like safety and HR, many forget about a very most important one: pollution. Environmental regulations are often ignored and can leave your business open to unnecessary legal issues. If your business involves usage/disposal of corrosive chemicals or the emission of harmful gases or radiation, ensure you have all the regulations covered that deal with such sensitive environmental issues.

Properly managing compliance issues can be the difference between running a smooth field service business and having to run from pillar to post. So, ensure you do the proper research or take the help of professional consultants to get all your compliances in order.

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