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Don’t Ignore Poor Performance

Don’t Ignore Poor Performance — It rarely improves with time. In fact, it usually gets worse. I have seen it many times in my HR practice. Business owners call me because they are at the end of the road with a problem employee. Performance problems or behavior issues are left unaddressed. One incident pushes everyone over the edge. Managing an employee is time-consuming, emotionally draining, and potentially expensive, but it doesn’t have to be that way. We tend to avoid difficult conversations. However, when problems are identified early and addressed through feedback, things usually turn out better. Not all problem employees become …

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Change in FLSA Classification – Time to Communicate

  With our Overtime Ready series of newsletters since May 2016, we have shared guidance on what business owners and managers need to know to get ready by the implementation date of December 1st. It is ONLY a MONTH AWAY! If you have followed the series, you have: Identified your “at risk exempt’ employees  Established a plan for the next 3 months  Collected hours worked to understand who works overtime and how much Calculated hourly rate for employees will be reclassified as non-exempt  Now is time to pull it together and communicate with employees. Find the right approach Don’t assume …

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Encourage Voting on Election Day

Having the privilege to vote was a big reason why I chose to become a US citizen. And since my naturalization in 2005, I have voted in every single election. Election day is a big deal for me. I always take my children to the polls so they acquire the “voting habit.” With the presidential debates under way, employers are wondering about their obligation regarding time off for employees on Election Day. There is no federal law mandating employers to provide time off for employees to cast their ballots.  Currently, 31 states have voter leave laws. Virginia is not one …

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Exceptions to the New White Collar Exemption

To the surprise of many, the change to FLSA white collar exemption doesn’t provide for a small business exception. Regardless of the number of employees, come December 1, 2016, the rules governing overtime pay will be affecting low-paid salaried employees. However, a few professions will not be affected by the increase in salary to meet the exemption from overtime. Certain “White Collar” Employees Are Exempt from Exemptions First, the FLSA rule kicks in for businesses making at least $500K a year in gross revenue. None of the FLSA rules apply to micro businesses. In addition, the December rule will not …

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OSHA Rules- Safety Updates For ALL Employers

I don’t usually write about OSHA rules. Some would argue that OSHA knowledge is outside of HR’s expertise. I don’t disagree but this new update is major and all employers and their HR folks should be at least aware of its implications. So here it is….. All Employers Pay Attention to This In May, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) published a final rule regarding reporting injuries and illnesses in the workplace and protecting employees who make those reports. With increased penalties and new regulations less than a month away, you need to review your workplace safety policies IMMEDIATELY. …

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New Overtime Rule – Determine Hourly Rate for Non-Exempt Employees

Reclassifying exempt employee to non-exempt has implications on many HR systems. None is more important than pay.  Because non-exempt employees are paid for hours worked, it is paramount to calculate an hourly rate of pay that is competitive and makes sense for the business and the employee. This is particularly critical for those who work more than 40 hours a week. Come December 1st, lower paid exempts might be reclassified as non-exempt and will be eligible for overtime.   Not assessing the impact higher labor costs could put your business at risk. Conversely, it might make good financial sense to …

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Tracking Work Hours In A Fluid Workplace

When I worked as a shift supervisor in a Procter & Gamble plant, reviewing the weekly time cards of my guys was an important job. If I didn’t report their hours accurately to payroll every Monday morning, I knew I would have a difficult time on Friday when distributing paychecks. Occasionally, the suspicion of falsified time records would launch me on an investigation to smoke out the dishonest employee. So I know firsthand how important tracking work hours is in the workplace. With the change in salary level for white collar exemption,  more employees will need to track their hours. …

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Three Steps to be Overtime Ready in 3 Months

On December 1st the new overtime regulations will be effective. December 1st is only 3 months away. Is your organization ready? In a recent blog, I explained how to identify your “At Risk Exempts.” Now that you know who is at risk of losing their exemption status, let’s see what you need to do to be Overtime Ready by December 1st. September 2016 – Gather numbers of hours worked by “At Risk” exempts. With the list of “At Risk” exempt employees (those earning a salary under $47,476) in hand, you now need to find out the hours worked by each one. …

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Federal Contractors’ Obligations With Prevailing Wage and Fringe Benefits

Unique compensation requirements apply to federal contractors. In the construction sector, the Davis Bacon Act (DBA) requires covered contractors and subcontractors to pay a specific prevailing wage and fringe dollars for each hour an employee works on a covered job site. The regulations are difficult to understand for the non-initiated. Luckily, Lind Sawyer of Capital Strategies can make the confusing understandable. Here’s my conversation with Lind who was educating me on the finer points of the regulations. This could be illuminating for you too! Anne-Lise Gere, SPHR – What are the risks of not complying with prevailing wage and fringe …

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It’s Time For New FLSA Poster

Since August 1, 2016, employers must display an updated version of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Employee Polygraph Protection Act (EPPA) posters. On July 27, 2016 (four days before the required implementation!), the Department of Labor (DOL) published new posters to for immediate use. What are those posters anyway? Those posters are required for businesses with describe employee’s rights when it comes to the limited use of polygraphs in employment (EPPA poster). The FLSA poster describes employees’ rights relative to minimum wage, overtime and other wage and hour regulations. Both posters must be posted in a “prominent and …