“There are many pitfalls to employing staff and as a small business it is difficult to keep up to date with current employment law and practice.
I contacted Sam Swinstead of vivoHR to regularise the contract arrangements for my employees. Sam drafted appropriate contracts of employment and grievance and disciplinary procedures which were right for my business. She also advised me to have van agreement in place and provided these as well. I have sort advice from time to time and have always found the advice to be helpful and timely.
I have no hesitation in recommending Sam and vivoHR for all your employment needs..”
John Carpenter, John Carpenter Electrical Ltd.
“Sam & the team were incredibly helpful in setting up the HR for my new business. Going from a staff of 2 to an additional 9 was a big change and they gave me brilliant advice on a great HR system which made the transition much easier. I highly recommend vivoHR.”
Paul Widdowson, Event Planner Surrey.
“Sam is extremely knowledgeable and, together with her team, has been very supportive and helpful in assisting me with getting all of the relevant contracts in place when originally setting up my limited company and then employing staff. I have no hesitation in recommending Sam and her team for all of your HR requirements.”
Heather Spencer, AdminWorks Ltd.
“We’ve been working with Sam and VivoHR for some time now and questions and queries are always answered in a timely manner with very conclusive information. All guidance is knowledgeable and informative and professionally carried out. We would recommend Sam and her VivoHR services to anyone looking for reliable and effective HR support.”
Steve Williamson, Director Harmony Made-to-measure Furniture.
“We asked Sam to come and give us some advice on our contracts, in a FREE audit offered. We walked away with with 4 different types of contracts, along with a magnitude of advice and various forms we needed. Sam took the time to understand that as a trade business we need certain things in place. Also, we are still growing, and we are unsure what we needed to protect us as well as our staff. Sam guided us through all of this. It was just so mind blowingly easy. Her team are incredible and have been at the end of the phone to help with the finer details. Thank you vivoHR!”
Liv Gilbert, Peninsula Heating and Plumbing
“vivoHR helped us with some difficult staffing issues. Very helpful and reliable, always returning calls”
Kerry Betts, Ashley Lodge Residentail Home
“Sam and her team are great, so knowledgeable and helpful. The service we have received has been excellent! Happy to recommend.”
Chris Newcombe, Newcombustion Engineering Ltd.
“I wanted to thank you for the Presentation Training you gave us , it was really good. You made us feel very at ease and your feedback from all the presentations we did was extremely valuable. I will definitely take on board all that I learnt and hopefully I will get the opportunity to practice my skills soon”.
Karen Fowler, RadioTrade Ltd
“I’ve worked with VivoHR for a number of years now, and I very highly recommend their services to anyone needing HR support and advice. They’re knowledgeable, professional, speedy with responses and all wrapped up in a super approachable and friendly manner at all times. I can always rely on Sam’s advice and viewpoint which is a very comforting thing to have in your corner when dealing with tricky HR issues”.
Lisa Hoare, Bright Temps Ltd.
“I took Sam up on her offer of a free HR Audit and she came over to find out how we are set up and to get an in-depth analysis of how we do things. She was very professional and has great knowledge of employment law. It became clear that we needed to tighten up in a few areas which resulted in having to get a number of contracts rewritten to incorporate all the new legislation, and to give us more protection as employers. Sam and her team came up with the documents very quickly and at a very reasonable cost. If you haven’t had an audit for your business HR then I would strongly advise you do so – and that Sam is the right person for you to speak to”.
The Christmas Decorators, Hampshire
I know we employ you as a consultant but I really appreciate your professional input. I am in awe of the way in which you can grasp such complicated conversations and distill the important facts. I know we are in safe hands with you, as these matters are so delicate , and in such a small company the specialist HR support is essential.
Care Business, Surrey
“I think that the trainer was excellent and really engaging. I thought it was going to be a really boring course, but I was very well done, with key facts and underpinned by examples and discussion of thoughts and ideas was very welcome. I have a number of tips about the interview process and this was one of the best courses I have been on in years.”
“Sam was recommended to us by the firm of solicitors handling our family business demerger. There were some sensitive issues with regard to staff and director redundancies. It was a pleasure to work with her under some difficult circumstances. She communicated clearly enabling us to understand the processes we would be required to undertake to successfully resolve matters. She was always available on the end of the telephone to guide, direct and to offer helpful advice. Thank you Sam for drawing the negotiations to a satisfactory conclusion.”
Linda, Swattons Andover Ltd
“As a small independent business, Sam’s considerable HR expertise, knowledge sound advice and “no nonsense” approach has been invaluable to us. We would highly recommend Sam and vivoHR for both her professionalism and her understanding of the business dynamics of the SME sector.”
Barbara Law, MD Priority Appointments
“KBO Fire & Security have had the pleasure of working with Sam over a number of years. She has always offered great HR related advice across different subjects/projects. She has a great personality and a wealth of experience and knowledge in her role. Sam is easy to work with and the consummate professional in what she does. An absolute asset to any company lucky enough to work with Sam.”
KBO Fire & Security
“Sam is a naturally talented speaker who can hold a room and delight an audience with serious but often funny HR disasters she has experienced. I would have no hesitiation in recommending Sam in presenting a seminar or anything to do with employing staff and human resources – if you’re looking for a speaker with a personal touch, get in touch in Sam”
Matthew Larcome, B2B Expos
“We have enjoyed working together with Sam over a number of years. Sam has helped us get the appropriate systems in place that have helped us grow and keep pace with the every changing workforce market. Sam helped us by creating a bespoke company handbook and associated supporting contracts and letters. In addition Sam has supported us through ad hoc issues that have arisen over the years. Over this time, and by working together, we have become more confident in managing HR issues in general. In addition the emails on the change in the law are invaluable to a small business owner”
Emma, Director, Small is Beautiful Ltd
“We have worked with Sam for a number of years and greatly appreciate the sound advice and council that she offers in a professional yet totally approachable manner. You can not underestimate the need to have strong HR processes and a support structure in place, Sam offers all of this and more
Managing Director, Retail Distribution >
“I really enjoyed the training day, Sam – the whole day was remarkably good. You did a very, very good job for all of us. The whole day highlighted how important it is to get to know people, especially as some employees are still (fairly) new.”
Steve Jones, Leasehold Valuers
“Sam has been helping me with outsourced HR for a few years now but recently I needed to recruit and as usual had little to no time. I met with Sam and gave her a brief, she then took the entire process off my hands from A to Z, requiring me only to make a final selection from second interview candidates. She surpassed the brief. I could not have done this with anyone but Sam, she makes a real effort to get to know her clients and just “gets it”. She also gets it done. Why would a business owner try to do a job they are not qualified to do and don’t have time to when Sam could do it for you? It’s a no-brainer and Sam is fab. She’s also fun to work with and be around which puts her leagues above the competition! Thanks Samtastic!!”
Karen Jackson, didlaw solicitors
“In modern business you cannot afford to be without HR Support. vivoHR is my HR Department – always there when I need them with great advice and help.”
David, Blush Hair Nail and Beauty Salon
“A pleasure to work with. vivoHR were willing to get as involved in the process as we wanted them to be. They gave advice and told us when we needed to do things but also when we didn’t need to do things which I feel is much more important. Will definitely work with them again in the future.”
Dan Benton, Dogsbody Technology
“We use Sam at vivoHR for a variety of external human resources functions and we have always found her knowledgeable and friendly. She is responsive to our enquiries, we rely on her expertise and trust her to guide us through the maze of issues surrounding the employment of staff. Perfect for small businesses who don’t have an internal HR department.”
Melanie Richardson, Paul A Webster Wealth Management
“I met with Sam because I wanted to mull over options in maybe taking people on this year. She was, of course, friendly and knowledgable, and the information was great. I also really appreciated having no pressure to buy a service – so, of course, if the time comes, it’s her I’ll buy from.”
Andrew Richards, The IT Service
“vivoHR have provided an excellent services over some tricky HR issues. They are personable, fair, balanced and expert in their field.”
Nick Keith, Director, Navigate Design
“Sam listened very carefully at the outset to what we wanted to achieve from a team development initiative. We didn’t want the event itself to be an isolated day out of the office and so Sam tailored briefing and follow-up sessions, two weeks before and six weeks after the event respectively. Having doubled in size in twelve months, we were keen to improve the communication across all areas of the business (internal and external) and so communication was the main theme of the programme. The key learning point for staff was that people communicate very differently and that it takes all sorts of communicator types to build an effective team. We were very impressed with the development and implementation of the programme by Sam and Emma and look forward to working with them over the coming months to reinforce the positive results that have already been achieved.”
Alex Greenslade & Anna Bailey, Directors, Leasehold Solutions Ltd
“vivoHR provide a great service to small, startup employers. Their new employer’s starter pack gives you everything you need to get you up and running legally and following best practice. I’ve also used vivoHR to provide other ad-hoc forms and processes. Plus working with Sam is just a pleasure. Her practical, level headed advice and guidance is always shared generously. Top notch vivoHR!”
Paul Marden, Orcare Ltd
“I have no hesitation in recommending the services of vivoHR to any of my clients. I have introduced them to a number of clients and professional contacts. They have always responded promptly, appropriately and professionally. In each case the client has complimented me on their performance.
The referrals have covered a wide range of issues from technical employment questions to assistance with contracts, attendance at meetings or help with training requirements. On each occasion they have delivered the goods.
It is a feature of the vivoHR service that their complimentary personalities shine through. They have no difficulty in communicating with all levels of staff from the boardroom to the canteen. Making sense of employment law and practices is far from simple but Emma and Sam have the ability to present it in a manner that is easy to follow.
My first port of call for any HR issues is always vivoHR.”
Andrew Black, Partner, Graham Martin & Co
“Starter pack was great value for money, giving me all the documents I need. Also answered the silly questions I had from reading tabloid employment horror stories!”
Managing Partner, Maslins Accountants
“vivoHR has been a brilliant sounding board for all HR related queries since I have known them; professional, personable and know HR inside and out.”
Sue Pell, SP Office Services
“Just completed our new Employment Handbook and we couldn’t be happier with the service. A pleasure to work with and we look forward to a long lasting relationship.”
Kelly, Managing Director, Rubber Cheese
“Have been providing HR advice to Kendlebell for several months now. Always there for us and refreshingly sees things from an employer’s point of view! Fair, honest advice.
Karen Thurley, Director, Red
“Warm and helpful and always goes the extra mile for clients, thinking outside the box to resolve any issues they have. I would not hesitate to recommend her services. Would be an asset to any business!”
Lisa, PA, Vision Box Systems Ltd
“I attended Sam’s workshop on Business Growth and dealing with potential growing pains of people and process and I found it very informative. Sam gave a clear insight into HR and the problems small businesses encounter with this and helped me to mitigate against the. If you have problems with staff or just want to become more efficient in what you are doing then I could not recommend anyone more highly.”
Alan Donegan, Enjoy Presenting
“We really could not have handled this problem without her help and professional attitude, we would not hesitate to recommend you and your Company to others”
Managing Director, Property Renew
“We have always received very positive feedback from delegates attending the courses and our good IiP assessments prove that staff are able to put the learning into practice”
Liz, L&D Manager, Charity
“The feedback from each session was very positive, with many attendees stating it was an enjoyable training session, and all stating that they would be incorporating the skills learned into their work schedule. Many staff members have requested further information about some of the topics covered, a positive indication of the interest she inspired in them.”
Jenny, Accommodations Projects Manager, Emmaus Projects
A little while ago we took advantage of vivoHR’s Free Audit service, Rachel came to our office and talked through our current processes and systems with me. Rachel was very lovely, approachable and thorough. She spent a lot of time with us.
They say timing is everything, as a busy company director it took me some months to actually get round to asking vivoHR to become our HR provider. They were so kind, Sam insisted that we did not need to go onto the retainer package as we are quite a small company. However as a busy director who has no time for HR – I insisted for my own peace of mind as I wanted to know we were fully compliant with all HR processes. Sam & Rachel also proactively help me decide how to use their HR time each month if I have no HR business to raise, always ensuring we get value for money.
Not too long after we signed up, we found ourselves in these strange Covid-19 pandemic times and as if they weren’t excellent value for money before – vivoHR have truly shown their worth. Sam has sent over endless updates on various things such as Furlough leave, health & safety of our employees if working from home and many other things that I had not even thought to consider. Even with the government ever changing the goal posts on their guidance, we are updated from Sam via email before I have even had the chance to ask her where we stand.
I will never use another outsourced HR company again, I truly feel like they have become our own in house HR department. vivoHR will always look out for our business as though it were their own and I love popping into their super friendly offices for my monthly meeting & a cuppa.
Thank you to all at vivoHR for keeping us sane, compliant and on track!”.
Louise Martin, Director, Floor24.
“During the stressful time we are all going through currently with the Covid 19 Pandemic, it is very difficult to understand all the information coming through from the Government and other sources.
During this I have had to lay off & furlough staff as well as try to understand all the relevant information coming through to enable my business to come out the other side having to close both of my trading outlets.
Having a HR consultant like Sam is an absolute godsend! Her virtually daily emails coming through, some as late as midnight have enabled me to deal properly with all my team as well as giving them the correct paperwork with regards to furloughing to reassure the staff they still have a job going forward. The emails also enabled me to understand what support is available for both staff & business from Local & Central Government.
I cannot recommend Sam Swinstead highly enough as I have no doubt, I would have been overwhelmed by the information sometimes conflicting which has been put out by the media”.
Paul Widdowson, Director, Event Planners Surrey.
“Sam and the team from vivoHR give great practical advice and guidance on how to navigate the tricky field of HR, I can’t recommend them highly enough.
Paul Marden, Director, Carbon Six Neutral.
“We first used vivoHR for a simple vehicle agreement and found the service to be excellent and good value for money. When we had a situation in our business regarding an employee, we naturally thought of vivoHR! I would like to say a huge thank you to Sam and the team for their outstanding service. From start to finish they helped us through the process and got the situation dealt with correctly which saved us time stopped us worrying too much about the situation! Thanks again to all at vivoHR.
Mark Whitbread, Whitbreads Window Cleaning.
“I took up the great offer of a Free HR Audit after hearing fantastic testimonials from within the Farnborough Jets BNI group. The audit was both reassuring that I was doing a lot right, and also worrying where there were slight things that could trip us up in the future if they were not rectified. Time was taken for Sam to understand my business, the pressures and common challenges – offering pragmatic solutions throughout. Her confident and relaxed manner and the way that everything was made relevant to my business meant I had no hesitation in pressing ahead with the changes required. The team at vivoHR are quick to respond to queries, they all have a professional yet friendly approach which is always useful when dealing with some daunting contractual topics. They are a great source of support and a pleasure to work with. We are extremely pleased that we have vivoHR to help with our HR requirements. I would have no hesitation in recommending their great service to anyone.
Louise Le Poidevin, Pod Landscapes Grounds Maintenance Ltd.
“Sam and her team have supported our business for over 5 years and have always been extremely professional, responsive and informative. I would have no hesitation in recommending their services.”
“I was delighted with the service that I received from Sam and her team. They took over what was a very difficult situation and achieved a result that I didn’t think was possible. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend their services to anyone.”
Phil Binfield, Binfield Commercial Insurance Brokers
“Sam worked very hard in first establishing our training needs & then delivering an excellent training session. The feedback from the staff was excellent who all felt they benefitted from the two days.”
Brendan Cox, Managing Director
“Sam Swinstead at vivoHR has been a valuable extension to our team for the last six years. As a small business, we couldn’t justify having a dedicated HR resource in-house, but having Sam on hand allows us to maintain the highest standards of professionalism as a responsible employer. She ensures we are always up to date with the latest employment legislation, advises us on HR policies and assists with the occasional disciplinary issue, so that we can focus on running our business and delivering great products and services to our customers.”
Tony Smith, Image Corporate
“We’ve used the ‘starter pack’ to get all our employment contracts, policies and everything else sorted with the minimal of hassle, and with huge dollops of practical advice. HR guru extraordinaire :-)”
Julie, Director, Better Business Decisions
“vivoHR did a great job in helping us write up contracts for both our employed staff and for the self employed contractors that we use. Their service was always efficient and friendly. I can happily recommend vivoHR.”
Grant Pretorius, Farnham Chiropractic Wellness
“Having grown rapidly from a business with 5 staff to just under 50 staff we suddenly realised that HR was a huge part of our business and one that we knew we weren’t going to be able to deal with on our own effectively or compliantly. We’ve been using vivoHR for around 18 months. During this time they’ve implemented standards, policies and provided training for our staff to ensure they know how to deal with HR concerns. They’ve helped us with short listing, interviews, disciplinaries, staff redundancies and lots more! It’s great to know that they are only a phone call or email away to help with any concerns we may have or just to check that we are doing something correctly. They have a wealth of knowledge and if it’s something that isn’t particularly HR related they always know ‘a man that can’. I would highly recommend vivoHR, without them I feel we could have got into many a sticky situation by us not knowing employment law inside out.”
Emma Baker, Stateside Candy Co
“I used Sam for mediation, she brilliantly understood the issues and held a good mediation session which provided clarity on the issues in hand. I would definitely use her again.”
Manager, Borough Council
“I have worked with vivoHR for several years now, and I have always been very impressed – so much so that I have introduced them to a number of business partners as they offer an excellent range of services to suit each individual business needs/size etc. Whether you are looking for advice during a start up phase or your are national company, I have always found the team has the knowledge and skills to deliver.”
John Taylor. Consistent Quality Care
“vivoHR provided us with excellent policies, advice and the confidence to start recruiting.”
Alan Bell, Libertus
“Asked Sam to put together a couple of bespoke contracts – she’s been amazing! Great service, always prompt and knows her subject matter inside out. We wouldn’t go anywhere else.”
Gareth Mailer, Clickwork Media
“Sam has brought professionalism, energy and a broad knowledge base to our management training. We have seen exactly the results we had hoped for; it has been great working with Sam.”
Chris Thompson, Managing Director, Ski Famille
“vivoHR provide an outsourced managed HR function for Vision Box. Hanging around the neck of establishing a new business in the UK is a litany of unknowns so vivoHR were selected to manage and provide the HR function, ensuring that the company abides by all necessary legislation as well as providing on hand expert advice across the complete range of HR subjects, from designing and defining benefits packages, expense policies and a staff handbook through to recruitment and employee/employer rights.
Now that we’re established, the support we require now is irregular and unpredictable, and responses are always prompt, thorough and always followed through, which is exactly what we need. vivoHR have made a concerted effort to understand our business. They are responsive to our needs and we have utilised their experience helping small businesses in linking us to their partners who will also play a part in the company’s growth.”
Ian Stamatakis-Brown, Vision Box
“I used vivoHR for a delicate HR issue which the company dealt with in a responsible and professional manner and I would recommend their services.”
Jayne Shephard, Energique Health Club & Spa
“Gives us confidence that we are getting it right and helps us to do it even better”
“The professional advice and knowledge is formidable. This gives us access to the same level of service as employing a full-time HR Director, with the benefit of having advice when we need it and at a considerable saving to our budget. This is an innovative approach to people and performance solutions which helps me keep my budget low, without compromising of the quality of the expertise received.”
CEO, Tourism South East
We were established nearly ten years ago and we have recruited steadily throughout that period. We are currently experiencing a period of growth and recruiting at a faster pace than we have previously known. From the outset she listened very carefully to our ‘wish list’ of actions and, in only a few months, has worked with us to complete many of those. She quite literally rolls her sleeves up and gets the job done and I always get a feeling that we have achieved something significant at the end of a day. Going forward, this is an important resource to assist us in developing and retaining our staff and to help us take the most appropriate course of action for our business should we face any HR-related difficulties.
Anna, Deputy Managing Director, Leasehold Solutions
“If you need help with your HR forget the A team – give her a call!”
Wendy, Chief Executive, North Hampshire Enterprise
“Have been invaluable to our company over the last year. As a small company which was expanding rapidly we were not up to speed with all the procedures that a company should have in place, particularly as we had many staff that had been TUPED from our recent takeovers. Helped us implement all the necessary documentation and procedures that a business should have in place from writing our very own Employee Handbook, providing us with templates for official letters and providing us with training material to name but a few. We refer to them as our HR Help Hot-Line!”
Clair, Manager, Raspberry & Saffron Catering Company
“The rules and regulations on employing staff can be a minefield waiting to blow you up. Her approach and management of the processes gives me the confidence I need to employ staff, saving time and money. I wouldn’t do it without her”
David Saunderson, Director, DSHPR.
“Always gives so much more than she is asked for. The level of detail she offers when asked for support is far and beyond what I expected. I can sleep easier at night knowing we have the support of someone who not only has the experience but also the confidence to guide us through the maze of HR and employment matters.”
Jayne, HR, Critical Software
“Sam was extremely professional and knowledgeable in both planning and delivery and the feedback from attendees about the content and delivery of her presentation was extremely positive. I look forward to working with her again.”
Nick Bettes Consulting
“Certainly could not or would not have done this without you. You are a wealth of knowledge from the HR world – I am glad I met you! All your advice and support has been truly wonderful.”
Lorraine, Director, Venue Finding Service
“Prepares thoroughly, presents professionally, advises knowledgeably – always with a big smile. Working with her not only gives me the benefit of her expertise; it makes me feel good too!”
Geraldine, Careers Advisor, Community College
“Always well prepared and brings her audience into the topic by making the sessions thought-provoking and fully interactive with a touch of humour”
Delegate on Chamber of Commerce breakfast presentation
“Come in to our head office once a week for a day for the last six months as a HR consultant for the business. Has proved to be a very valuable asset to the business and I would highly recommend her services.”
Jane, Senior Care Manager, RCS
“I was provided with very detailed advice on dealing with my HR situation, from the first enquiry right through to verifying that correspondence I was sending was appropriate. Considerable follow up took place and I felt I could call at any point to recap on advice and information.”
Dr Cross, Davross Solutions Ltd
“I can’t recall anyone investing as much time & genuine cheer into development as you…I am sure we will boast lower staff turnover as a result of the improvement in morale & the changes for the better”
“It was a useful reminder that training doesn’t have to be formal with an outpouring of facts and theory”
Delegate on Chamber of Commerce workshop