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5 min read

Our End-of-Year HR Checklist

As the calendar year draws to a close, it's crucial for HR professionals to stay on top of various tasks in order to ensure a smooth transition into the new year. With a large number of items to cover before the year is up, it can be overwhelming, even for a seasoned pro!  

Horizon’s end-of-year HR checklist is designed to help you manage the critical aspects of your business’s HR and financial needs during this time. From handling new and updated employee benefits to other essential housekeeping and compliance tasks, we've got you covered! Read on to learn how to mitigate this tough time of year for human resources.

Year's End Can Be a Stressful Time for HR Professionals

As we’ve stated, the end of the year can be a particularly stressful period for HR professionals in any industry. The culmination of various tasks, compliance issues, and planning for the upcoming year can feel overwhelming for so many! However, with the right strategies and tools at your disposal, you can navigate this challenging time efficiently and effectively.  

Managing Changes in Staff, Benefits, and More

When the calendar flips into a new year, it's essential to address changes in staff, benefits, and other HR-related matters. This involves finalizing open enrollment changes for benefits, calculating carryover for any PTO or paid leave programs, and notifying employees of updated limits on HSAs and retirement savings. All of these tasks are critical for ensuring a seamless transition into the new year!  

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Horizon's End-of-Year HR Checklist

Horizon’s experienced team understands the unique challenges HR professionals face around this time of year. Our end-of-year checklist is designed to provide you with the guidance and tools you need to navigate this busy period effectively! Don’t hesitate to contact our team with any questions you may have. 

Employee Benefits Administration

One of the key areas of focus in our checklist is your company’s employee benefits administration. It’s essential to finalize any open enrollment changes for benefits, calculate carryover for any PTO or paid leave programs, and inform or remind employees about limit changes on HSAs and retirement savings in the following year. Horizon has been helping businesses of all kinds with their benefits administration; check out our service page to learn more! 

Finalize Open Enrollment Changes for Benefits

As the new year approaches, it's crucial to complete the open enrollment process for employee benefits, including health, dental, vision, and any other kind of applicable insurance that your full-time employees utilize. If you find yourself needing help, our expert team can aid you through this process, ensuring that all information changes are accurately recorded and communicated to your workforce. 

Calculate Carryover for Any PTO or Paid Leave Program

Managing paid time off (PTO) and paid leave programs can be complex. As an HR professional, you will need to calculate carryover balances accurately for each employee, ensuring that your staff’s leave records and balances are up to date! This can be tedious, as each individual in your company will have a different scenario. Be sure to take the time to accurately assess each employee’s situation to ensure that your business isn’t depriving anyone of their allocated leave time! 

Notify Employees of Limits on HSAs and Retirement Savings

To help your staff make informed financial decisions about their health and future retirement, it's essential to notify them of any limit changes on health savings accounts (HSAs) and retirement savings plans. The IRS periodically updates these savings limits, so be sure to do your research to ensure compliance and accuracy for your employees.  

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HR Compliance

Compliance with legal guidelines is a top priority for any HR professional. Our year-end checklist includes comprehensive guidance below on various compliance-related tasks to help your company stay on the right side of the law! As stated above, reach out to our trusted team at Horizon with any questions you may have during this process!  

Prepare for Potential Audits (Financial, Insurance, Retirement)

Preparing for potential audits is essential for employers to maintain compliance. Ensure proper organization and record-keeping throughout the year in order to ensure that your HR processes and records are audit-ready if need be! 

Review Employee Classifications

Employee classifications are a critical aspect of any HR team’s compliance. Be sure that you review and update employee classifications as they change to minimize the risk of misclassification issues down the line. 

Review Labor Laws and Post Updated Information

Labor laws can change from year to year, and it's essential to stay up to date! As an HR department, it’s crucial to make sure that your team reviews these new employment laws as they come into effect and to post the updated information as needed.

OSHA Annual Reporting

For businesses subject to OSHA regulations, completing and submitting annual OSHA reports to maintain workplace safety compliance is vital. Companies who do not complete the annual reports risk fines, audits, unwanted inspections, and more.  

Retirement Plan Filing

Managing retirement plans requires meticulous record-keeping and filing; things like required 401(k) plan notifications and ensuring that your employees receive their proper retirement benefits throughout the year should be a top priority for HR professionals. These tasks can also include discrimination compliance testing (e.g., Form 5500) when it comes to pensions or welfare benefit plans. 

Distribute Annual Notices to Employees

Annual notices to applicable employees are crucial for transparency and compliance. These notices should include the following: HIPAA Notice of Special Enrollment Rights; Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act (WHCRA); Employer CHIP Notice; Uniform Summary of Benefits Coverage (SBC); Medicare Part D Creditable/Non-Creditable Coverage Notice; Newborns and Mothers Health Protection Act. Our professional team can help you ensure that these notices are distributed efficiently – reach out today for more information. 

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Other HR Housekeeping Tasks

In addition to the myriad of benefits and compliance tasks, it’s paramount to cover various other HR housekeeping tasks that are essential for a well-organized HR department at year’s end. 

Review Hiring, Onboarding, and Timekeeping Procedures

Efficient hiring, onboarding, and timekeeping procedures are vital for efficient workforce management throughout the year. It’s important to meet with upper management in order to review your current processes and ensure that they will continue to work for your business in the future. 

Note Any Future Staffing Needs

Anticipating future staffing needs is a proactive approach to HR and workforce management in the coming year. Communicate with different departments to help identify and plan for any staffing requirements in the future! 

Review Employee Handbooks and Policies

Employee handbooks and policies should be regularly reviewed and updated as the years roll by. It’s always best to ensure your policies are current and aligned with best practices in your given industry. 

Prepare a Calendar for the New Year

Planning for the new year is crucial for HR professionals; build a calendar template to help you organize key HR and business activities throughout the coming year. 

Stay Vigilant with Data and Security

Data security is paramount for any business in the 21st century. HR professionals should always stay vigilant in maintaining the security of sensitive employee data; the turn of the year is typically a great time to review these security measures! 

Discard or Destroy Appropriate Files

In a similar vein to data security, proper file management is essential for business compliance with sensitive personal information. Our HR experts advise businesses to organize the disposal or destruction of the necessary files each year in order to maintain robust data security and compliance with laws and best practices. 

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Horizon is a Trusted Partner for HR Processes and Compliance

At Horizon, we understand the complexities of HR processes and compliance. For over two decades, our top-rated team has provided solutions that are designed to meet the unique needs of businesses across the country. Learn more about our trusted HR solutions here! 

Top-Rated Solutions for Businesses of All Kinds

Horizon proudly offers professional HR and payroll solutions that cater to businesses of various sizes and industries. Whether you're a small startup or a larger corporation, we have the expertise and tools to streamline your HR processes and ensure compliance year after year. 

Contact Us Today for More Information

If you're looking for a trusted partner to help you navigate HR tasks at year’s end, don't hesitate to reach out to us today! Our team is ready to provide you with more information and support to meet your company’s HR needs. 

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