313,000 Jobs Added in February, But What Does that Mean for the Average American?

Jobs

Employment trends expert breaks down the numbers from Friday’s jobs report

After a pleasantly shocking jobs report on Friday, employment experts are now saying that the United States is at ‘full employment.’ But, what does this mean for Americans, and are the numbers really as good as they seem?

“February’s jobs report is a solid sign that our economy is getting stronger,” says Rob Wilson, president of Employco USA and employment trends expert. “Not only were 313,000 jobs added in a variety of low, middle, and high-wage industries, but we also saw an influx of hundreds of thousands of people rejoining the job market. This is huge news, as there had been fears that our workforce was depleted and that many Americans were simply opting to not seek employment.”

However, the employment expert explains that some people might be misled by the news that America is now at ‘full employment.’

“Full employment does not mean that every American has a job,” says Wilson. “Full employment is a term that economists use to describe optimal employment, when unemployment is at the lowest possible level without causing an unhealthy rebound of inflation in which employers have to compete too intensely for workers and bump up wages too quickly.”

In other words, our current economy is one that is optimal for both workers and employers.

Wilson says, “2018 is already off to an incredible start. We have added an average of 276,000 jobs a month, compared to 182,000 in 2017, and this growth shows no signs of stopping.”

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

New Study Warns: Young Female Employees Are the Biggest Targets for Workplace Bullies

Human resources expert explains how victims should confront workplace bullying

Workplace bullying is a sadly common issue that many employees face on a regular basis. And, some employees are at higher risk of workplace bullying than others. A recent online study led by James Cook University in Australia found that these risks for bullying include being young as well as being a woman.

“The researchers discovered that female employees are at a higher risk of being bullied, and the same is true for younger employees,” said Rob Wilson, human resources expert and President of Employco USA. “Sadly, simply for the ‘crime’ of being a woman or being young in the workplace can increase your risk of harassment while on the job.”

Other recent research bears out these findings, including a recent study performed by the University of Arizona which showed that female employees are targeted more with rude remarks and unkind behavior than male employees.

So how should employees address these situations and defuse workplace bullying?

“First, you need to change your thinking,” says Wilson, “It’s not your job to make a bully leave you alone. Your only job is to show up and perform the duties for which your boss hired you. While being firm and clear about your boundaries can help stop a bully, ultimately, some people are going to behave badly no matter what you do.”

So, Wilson says, go to H.R.—if you are fortunate enough to work for a company which is large enough to have one. “If that’s not a possibility, then go to someone in management whom you trust, whether it’s your company president or the person who helped mentor you when you first joined the firm.”

Some companies, such as those companies for which Employco offers support, have a firm which helps to handle H.R. issues, and in these cases there might be a 1-800 number which you can call.

“I find that our clients’ employees feel much more comfortable coming to us about bullying and other office harassment, instead of speaking to someone in their own company,” says Wilson. “They feel safer and the conversation feels more private and less biased. Creating a safe atmosphere for people to come forward is one of the best ways to help prevent workplace bullying.”

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

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.

Promotions

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.

30 Days into Trump’s Tax Reform: What’s the Verdict?

Employment trends expert discusses the stats

Tax ReformIt’s a month since President Trump’s tax reform went into effect. So how have these changes impacted the average American worker?

“One thing for sure is that the market loves it,” says Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA and employment trends expert. “We hit the 26,000 mark for the first-time ever, and it’s also the first time we have ever seen such a fast 1,000 point rise.”

Wilson also points out that companies like Walmart, Disney, Starbucks, Apple and Verizon have already rolled out bonuses, raises and other incentives to their employees. However, some lawmakers don’t see the value of these bonuses, such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi who scoffed at these “crumbs.”

“When you look at someone working at Walmart who is making $10 an hour or $20,000 a year, a $1,000 check is far from peanuts. It’s a 5 to 10 percent bonus,” says Wilson, who also points out that Walmart is increasing their wages from $13.85 to $14.50. “These wages will no doubt be matched by other companies like McDonalds among others as they try to stay desirable in the hiring market.”

The tax law is having other important changes on the economy.

“Apple has more offshore earnings than any other U.S. company, but now, as a direct result of President Trump’s tax reform, they are going to pay repatriation tax payments of approximately $38 billion to bring that money back home. They are also going to spend tens of billions on domestic jobs, manufacturing and data centers in the future,” says Wilson.

Also, starting in 2019, individual people will not be penalized for not having insurance. “The employer mandate for those companies with over 50 full-time employees is still in place, however, this removes the burden from the average American who does not want to be forced into buying costly insurance that they don’t need.”

“The bottom line is the tax plan is working,” says Wilson. “Middle America is directly benefiting from the tax reform, and I expect that unemployment and underemployment numbers will continue to decrease.”

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