Why March Madness Costs Companies Billions Due to Employee Distraction and Poor Productivity

Employment trends expert explains these findings and suggests staff management techniques

March MadnessRecent statistics reveal that March Madness has become more popular than ever before, thanks in large part to the worldwide betting that takes place. Over 60 million people are expected to fill out brackets this year, with an estimated $10 million being put on the table. However, there is another cost which people may not expect: A downturn in employee productivity.

“March Madness can be a drain on a company’s time and resources,” says Rob Wilson, employment trends expert and President of Employco USA. “With millions of Americans filling out brackets and managing their bets, you can bet that employee productivity takes a hit during this time of year.”

In fact, research shows that lost wages caused by employee distraction and poor productivity during March Madness could amount to losses of up to $1.9 billion!

Wilson says, “Between filling out brackets, researching picks, watching the games and then calling in sick or skipping work due to game days or hangovers, you are looking at a sharp downturn in employee performance. Luckily there are some ways you can manage this common nationwide issue.”

Offer computers for personal use. “Make sure that you are keeping a close eye on your employees’ internet usage,” says Wilson. “Any time employees have free, unfettered access to the Web, you are going to be looking at a decrease in employee productivity. Here’s an alternative: Offer your employees 1-2 computers for personal use during their breaks. Make sure the computers are in a public area and have a sign-in sheet to ensure that everyone will get a fair chance to use the computers and that people do not use them for extended periods of time. That way, if anyone needs to check their personal email or use the Internet on their lunch break, they don’t need to use their official work computers.”

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Why Americans Quit Dressing up for Work

Employment trends expert explains why every day is now Casual Friday

Casual DressA recent U.K. study found that only 1 in 10 people now wear a business suit to work. Meanwhile, 3 out of 4 workers say that they ‘dress down’ every day.  And, 69% of the surveyed employees say that they are more concerned with dressing comfortably rather than dressing for success. Other recent studies on American sartorial choices also show that we are very guilty of eschewing suits and heels and instead reaching for yoga pants and comfy shoes when we dress for the office.

Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA and employment trends expert says, “I have seen this time and time again in my line of work. Casual Friday is no longer just a once-a-week affair…now it’s more common to see men wearing button down shirts and chinos rather than business suits, and women in leggings and tunics instead of blouses and skirts.”

What’s the reasoning behind this new casual dress trend, and should employers be concerned about this new lax style of dress?

“I think we can blame people like Steve Jobs and other tech moguls for the new casual dress trend. They proved that you don’t have to wear a business suit to make millions…you can wear jeans and a T-shirt and still be a CEO,” explains the employment solutions expert. “Additionally, the new remote-employee trend means that many workers are now Skyping into meetings or working half-days, so they are less likely to put on that power suit and instead just show up in their jeans and tee.”

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Why the New Tax Code Could Lead to a Big Boost in the Gig Economy

Employment expert explains why more workers are freelancing…but is it a good idea?

The amount of people relying on freelance gigs for their sole salary has increased steadily in recent years. By 2021, over 9 million Americans are expected to be part of the country’s ‘gig economy,’ in which workers cut ties with companies and work for themselves. And, President Trump’s new tax reform could hasten and increase this growth, but what impact could that have on workers and company growth?

“There is a provision in Trump’s tax law which will allow sole proprietors (including freelancers like Uber drivers, graphic designers, consultants, etc.) to deduct 20 percent of their revenue from their taxable income,” explains Rob Wilson, employment trends expert and President of Employco USA, an employment-solutions firm based in Chicago, IL.

Wilson explains that this tax provision could add up to thousands of dollars in savings each year. “In addition, this tax provision will be beneficial for bosses who are looking to save on payroll costs. By switching workers from salaried employees to contracted freelancers, they can save big…and workers will have less reason to complain, as they can earn more money under the new provision as well.”

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Employco USA Hires a Human Resources Business Partner

A human resource and employment solutions firm, Employco USA is pleased to announce the growing expansion of its staff.

Heather KoranEmployco’s newest team member:

Heather Koran, Human Resources Business Partner – in this new position, Heather will provide human resources services to high-value clients. Her areas of focus will include: employee relations, HR compliance, benefits administration, organizational design, training and development.

“I am so excited to be part of a new position for Employco and look forward to providing my expertise and experience around overall HR practices and help to support our clients in those areas.” -Heather Koran

For more on this topic, please contact Rob Wilson at rwilson@thewilsoncompanies.com.

Podcast: Workplace Bullying

Rob, Scott, and Jason discuss bullying in the workplace; from its negative effect on a target to how you can respond as an employee or manager. They also provide some helpful tips employers can implement to aid in prevention.

This topic was selected from a listener’s suggestion on social media, thank you for the feedback!

Contact us with any questions you may have, we’re here to help: hr@employco.com

Is America Too Fat to Work?

New Study Says Poor Health is Partially to Blame for America’s Unemployment

HealthEmployment numbers have been very encouraging lately, but a brand-new Gallup survey for the Center for Advancing Opportunity is cause for alarm. The survey found that the people who most need steady jobs (such as those living in impoverished neighborhoods) are actually still greatly behind the rest of the nation when it comes to employment. And, it turns out that poor health could be to blame.

“Low-income areas have an unemployment rate of about 10 percent, compared to our current national rate of unemployment, which is about 4 percent,” says Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA, and employment trends expert. “While we tend to blame factors like lack of job growth in these areas, this new Gallup survey has pinpointed a very surprising culprit: Chronic health issues and overall poor health. This can include things like diabetes, obesity, back problems, and cardiac concerns.”

According to the survey, about 30 percent of job-seekers in these areas say that they can’t find work or maintain employment due to their health issues.

Wilson says that this survey is important because it highlights where our country’s focus needs to be in order to help improve job numbers.

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Employco USA Promotes Three Team Members and Hires a New Employee

A human resource and employment solutions firm, Employco USA is pleased to announce the promotion of three of its staff members.


In January of this year, Employco promoted:

  • Michael E. Dougala to Chief Financial Officer – Mike has been with the company for 17 years, and most recently moved up from the title of Controller.
  • Lauren Baldwin to Payroll Supervisor – Lauren has been with the company for over 11 years, as of last October, and was previously a Payroll Technician.
  • Brittany Wilkey to HR Generalist – Brittany is coming up on her 2nd year with the company, and is moving up from her prior role as an HR Coordinator.

Employco also recently welcomed a new member to the team:

  • Chrissie O’Connell, Payroll Technician – Chrissie will be responsible for processing payroll for Employco client accounts.

“I am truly looking forward to my first day at Employco and starting on this new adventure. I feel very fortunate for the opportunity that Employco is giving me.” – Chrissie O’Connell

For more on this topic, please contact Rob Wilson at rwilson@thewilsoncompanies.com.