End Your HR Year by Setting Up 2018 for Success

By Brad Johnson on November 29, 2017

Ask anyone who works in human resources about the signs of autumn - chances are, leaf colors and pumpkin spice beverages aren't at the top of the list. In the HR world, open enrollment, preparing form 1095-C and setting up next year’s payroll schedule are really what signal that fall is here. There’s paperwork to file (or e-file), employee data to verify and did we mention the deadlines? It can make for a hectic time with lots of projects to keep track of. Read on to stay organized and manage the chaos.

Topics: Human Resources, Regulations

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Boomerang Employees: Tips for Rehiring

By Brad Johnson on November 08, 2017

It used to be that once an employee left a job, they were cutting ties with the organization forever. However, it’s becoming more common for employers to rehire former employees, anyone from seasonal workers to full-time professionals. A 2015 national survey of more than 1,800 human resources professionals, managers and employees found that ”nearly half of HR professionals claim their organization previously had a policy against rehiring former employees – even if the employee left in good standing – but 76 percent say they are more accepting of hiring boomerang employees today than in the past.”  So - how do you do it right?

Topics: HR, Hiring, rehiring

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Strong US Economy Heading into Q4

By Brad Johnson on October 11, 2017

In July the Dow hit a record high of 22,000 and it continues to climb as 2017 rolls on. While the stock market is volatile and influenced by many factors, the Dow's continued growth is one sign that the economy is strong. Here are a few other key indicators that are looking up as the US heads into Q4, indicators every employer should be familiar with.

Topics: US Economy

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Exit Interviews: Let Departing Employees Get the Last Word

By Brad Johnson on October 04, 2017

Employees facing exit interviews need only look to Google for article after article offering guidance on what to say and what not to say. Leaving a job can be an emotional roller coaster, so employees are often advised to be constructive and diplomatic, honest but guarded and most of all, to avoid burning bridges. There’s an art to giving constructive criticism without breaking confidence with coworkers or making one’s manager look bad. Not everyone can pull it off and some don’t even want to try. The result for employers? Vague answers to exit interview questions and a lack of actionable insights. But, there’s plenty you can do to help departing employees give useful feedback while still taking the high road.

Topics: HR, Exit Interview

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Reduce Overtime Monitoring to Just Minutes a Week

By Brad Johnson on September 20, 2017

Are you a business owner? Or maybe a supervisor with hourly employees? Are you running shifts that vary according to your staffing needs? Then you're probably well aware that mismanagement of overtime can increase labor costs in addition to having significant compliance implications.

Topics: overtime

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Hiring Minors? Follow These 5 Best Practices

By Brad Johnson on September 11, 2017

In October 2015, 23.7% of US high school students age 16-19 had jobs. Where are these young people working? According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, industries in accommodation and food services (e.g. restaurants, hotels), retail (including grocery and food stores) and arts, entertainment and recreation (including amusement parks) see the highest numbers of youth workers. These tend to be companies looking for entry-level, minimum wage and temporary workers, maybe even yours. 

Topics: FLSA, Minor Employees

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When Is An Independent Contractor Really An Employee?

By Brad Johnson on August 30, 2017

In our blog last week, we explored the general problem of employee misclassification.  This week we're taking a closer look at independent contractor versus employee status.

Topics: Employer vs. Contractor

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Can You Afford to Misclassify Your Workers?

By Brad Johnson on August 24, 2017


It’s Monday morning: Employees make their way to their workstations, the Keurig whirrs in the break room and the office starts to hum along as usual. Then, an employee approaches you and says that he’s done some research and discovered that his exempt job has been misclassified, and he’s actually nonexempt. What? No one has ever questioned their job status before, and your company’s job titles and descriptions are all in order. Is this employee correct? Are there others?  How is a misclassification fixed? Or do you need to do anything about it? If he’s right, does the company owe him money? Are there tax penalties?

It’s going to be a long week.

Topics: HR, Exempt vs. Non-Exempt

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8 Reasons You Need Automated Timekeeping

By Brad Johnson on August 15, 2017

Think you don't need automated timekeeping? Think again. But what exactly is it and how can it help your business?

Topics: automated timekeeping

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The New I-9: What You Need to Know

By Brad Johnson on August 02, 2017

The US Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS), part of the Department of Homeland Security, released a revised I-9 Employee Eligibility Verification form on July 17, 2017. You may be curious as to why the USCIS revised the form only eight months after its last publication. Read on to find out why a new form was created, what has changed about the form and what you need to know as an employer. 

Topics: I-9 form

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Get On Board with Onboarding: Why The Way You Hire Matters

By Brad Johnson on July 26, 2017

Most of us can remember being the new person on the job. Even if you’re excited for a change, it can be a little scary when you don’t quite know what to expect from the group (or what's expected of you). Did your new co-workers help you learn the ropes, or were you left to sink or swim, clutching your benefits application and employee handbook and little else? It’s not hard to guess which scenario most people prefer. Let's talk about how to avoid the latter.

Topics: HR, onboarding, Hiring

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How to Evaluate Your Labor Audit Liability

By Brad Johnson on July 20, 2017

Why Worry?

According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM),

"Employers should keep in mind that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) can audit employers at any time, although the most common reason for a DOL audit is a complaint from an employee. The DOL has also targeted employers in low-wage industries for wage and hour violations, particularly in the areas of agriculture, day cares, restaurants, garment manufacturing, guard services, health care, hotels and motels, janitorial services, and temporary help."

Even if you aren't in one of the previously-targeted industries mentioned above, you should be aware of what an audit entails and what you need in order to ensure compliance.

Topics: HR, DOL Audit

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Employee Social Media Posts: Should You Go There?

By Brad Johnson on July 12, 2017


“Social media has irreparably blurred the line between one’s personal persona and one’s professional persona,” says Jon Hyman in Workforce magazine. If you consider that a recent Pew Research Center survey of 1,520 U.S. adults that found 79% of those online use Facebook, 24% use Twitter and 29% use LinkedIn, chances are pretty good that most of your employees are active on one or more social media platform. What does that mean for you, the employer?

Topics: social media, Human Resources

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$3.8 Million Disney Fine Underscores Importance of Accurate Timekeeping

By Brad Johnson on July 05, 2017

When businesses run afoul of labor provisions, the fines can be sizeable.

Recently, Walt Disney Co. reached an agreement with the Department of Labor (DOL) to pay out $3.8 million to 16,339 employees. The DOL’s Wage and Hour Division determined that Florida-based Disney Vacation Club Management Corp. and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S. Inc. failed to observe the the Fair Labor Standards Act overtime, minimum wage and record keeping provisions.

Topics: automated timekeeping, timeclock

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Your 7-Point Plan for Choosing a Payroll Partner

By Brad Johnson on June 27, 2017

If you dread payroll processing, you’re in good company. In fact, it’s becoming pretty common to outsource all or part of an organization's payroll tasks. According to a 2014 survey by Deloitte, 22% of North American organizations outsource all payroll functions.  And among those who use a vendor for some payroll functions, “the most commonly outsourced functions in North America  include year-end tax form printing (87%), payroll tax preparation and filing (76%), year-end tax form distribution (63%), check printing (57%) and garnishment administration (52%).”

So why do organizations choose to outsource? And what should you look for when doing so?

Topics: HR, payroll, Human Resources

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High Turnover Does Not Have To Mean High Cost

By Brad Johnson on June 13, 2017


The restaurant industry is known for its high employee turnover rates. According to the National Restaurant Association,  "the turnover rate in the hospitality sector topped 70 percent for the second consecutive year" in 2016. 

Restaurants aren’t the only businesses experiencing high turnover. Industries like tourism, lodging, healthcare and entertainment struggle with high turnover every day. It's difficult to calculate the true cost of turnover, but estimates from the Center for American Progress show that each new employee earning less that $30,000 per year costs around $4000 to replace. Management positions can cost more than double that amount. Is there a solution?

Topics: automated timekeeping, payroll, new employee, onboarding

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Attention New Employers: Avoid These Top 3 Payroll Mistakes

By Brad Johnson on May 25, 2017


Owning a business, especially after being someone's employee, can be very rewarding. You're the captain of the ship and can chart your course without having to answer to anyone else. When you get to the point where you need your own employees, however, it’s vital to realize that being an employer can be complicated - especially when it comes to payroll. To ensure the best chance of success, be certain you avoid these three common payroll pitfalls. 

Topics: payroll

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What At-Will Employment Really Means

By Brad Johnson on May 16, 2017


At-will employment basically means that the employer or the employee can terminate their relationship at any time, for any reason. 

What this says versus what it really means often leads to misunderstanding among employers. Does this mean you can arbitrarily fire an employee without documentation, without a reason? Nope. And even if you document every detail, it still may not land in your favor.

Topics: Employee Handbook, workforce management, at-will employment

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Hire Interns Without Taxing Your HR Resources

By Brad Johnson on May 08, 2017


Creating a strong internship program is advantageous for any organization, big or small, and internships benefit both the employer and intern. That's right - internship programs aren't just for large corporations. Regardless, many employers shy away from hiring interns due to the temporary nature of their employment and the onboarding/offboarding work involved. Let’s examine why internships are important and how to more easily navigate temporary employee statuses.

Topics: payroll, onboarding, internships, interns

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Two Ways You Are Getting Ripped Off Every Time You Run Payroll

By Brad Johnson on April 17, 2017


There is an Epidemic of Employee Time Theft

As employers, we like to think we can trust our staff members. Without trust, not much can be achieved, but there are a couple of areas that provide an easy opportunity for your employees to take advantage if you aren’t watching cautiously, and it can cost you thousands.

In a survey of over 500 retail and service industry workers, over 30 percent admitted to flagrant time theft.1 Workers specifically mentioned using buddy punching and clock creep to steal time. You may already know what these are, but it's worth a review and a look at what you can do about them. 

Topics: automated timekeeping, time theft

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