Employment expert discusses pending family leave proposals
Many large employers are starting to consider offering their employees paid family leave, but currently only 17% of workers have access to paid leave. Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) is seeking to ease this burden on American families by co-sponsoring a bill which would allow new parents to borrow from their Social Security benefits in order to take time off work.
“Paid family leave has stalled in Congress for years, despite the fact that surveys show that most Americans widely support paid family leave for mothers and even fathers,” says Rob Wilson, employment expert and President of Employco USA, a national employment-solutions firm with clients across the country.
Rubio’s bill would allow new moms and dads to borrow against their Social Security for up to 3 months of retirement benefits, whether they adopted or birthed a child.
“Rubio’s plan would not put any additional burden on taxpayers, and it has received support from both sides of the aisle,” says Wilson, “But it has not gone without criticism. Since the Social Security system is already so overburdened, many Americans fear that this is a plan that will fall apart quickly.”
President Trump has also stated that he supports paid family leave, and promised his 2020 fiscal plan would include up to 6 weeks of paid leave for new parents as well as improved childcare programs.
Employment solutions expert explains how employers can prepare for these changes
Important changes are afoot for the Employer Information Report EEO-1 (EEO-1 Report). Employers with 100 employees or more must file this report each year, but this year the EEO-1 will be more complicated than in the past.
“The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has required employers to provide information about each of their employees such as their gender and ethnicity,” says Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA and employment expert. “But now that is going to be just one part of the puzzle.”
Along with this information, Wilson explains that employers will now have to provide information on employee wages. Providing this pay data is in part the result of advocacy groups like the National Women’s Law Center and the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement who believe pay data transparency will help to bridge the gender pay gap.
“President Trump has been vocal against these proposed additions to the EEOC-1 report, but now despite his hopes to the contrary, pay data is once again required reporting for companies with 100 employees or more,” says Wilson.
Sadly, many won’t be prepared.
Phishing crimes are on the rise – here is what employers need to know
Phishing scams cost the United States half a billion dollars each year. From direct deposit scams to fraudulent PDF files, there has been a shocking rise in these email phishing scams. Indeed, Microsoft’s Security team reports that these malicious phishing emails have increased by a whopping 250 percent.
So, what do employers and employees need to know in order to protect themselves from these scams?
First, it’s crucial that you educate everyone on your team about phishing scams and how to make safer choices online.
“It’s important to understand that it is not enough to simply be aware and cautious when it comes to your own online behavior,” says Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA and human resources expert. “Your entire company can be negatively impacted across the board if just one employee gives up access to your Office 365 account or similar program. Once the phisher has that foothold, they have access to an entire wealth of information, and they can then use this position of power to gain access to more info and phish other people on your team.”
Second, talk to your human resources and payroll team about how they should never make changes to an employee’s direct deposit paycheck or other benefits without every appropriate form being submitted and verifying the person’s identity.
Rob, Scott, and Jason discuss succession planning; from workforce planning and identifying key roles to providing successors with skills, facilitating training opportunities, coordinating hands-on experience, providing continuous feedback, and more.
Succession planning is the process of identifying high-potential employees, evaluating and honing their skills and abilities, and preparing them for advancement into positions that are key to the success of business operations and objectives.
Losing a key employee can be a devastating interruption to business operations. Succession planning can help ensure the smooth transition of staff into the vacant position with minimal interruption to the business.
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Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA, recently joined Jim Wurm of the EACA (Exhibitor Appointed Contractor Association) for a webinar on “Controlling Workers’ Comp Costs.”
Check out the recorded webcast to learn “how to control your insurance costs and potentially save money through features like: Workers’ Compensation cost reduction through a bulk buying approach, direct access to a best-in-class experience MOD, paying premiums on a per-payroll basis to free up cash flow, and developing a safety and loss control program.”
Human resources expert shares effective, actionable tips for how you can start succession planning
Research shows that most business owners are not as concerned with succession planning as they should be. Only a small minority of businesses have a succession plan for when their CEOs retire or switch companies, and this can be a very costly mistake.
“Scrambling for a CEO has been shown to cost upwards of $1.8 billion in shareholder value for public companies,” says Rob Wilson, employment trends expert and President of Employco USA, a national employment solutions firm. “Another issue with lack of preparedness around successions is that companies end up hiring ineffective CEOs, which again harms a company’s bottom line and employee performance. Indeed, 27 percent of companies have been negatively impacted by poor succession planning.”
Wilson also points out that C-level employees are not the only ones who pose a serious loss to the company when they leave. “Whether it’s a key person in your I.T. department or your marketing department, losing long-term, highly-skilled and experienced staff is going to be a blow to your company.”
So, what should employers do to ensure that these successions are as smooth and seamless as possible?
“First, look at your key personnel on every level of your staff,” says Wilson. “How deep is your bench? Don’t presume that just because an employee is young and not near retirement that you don’t need to worry about their successor at some point. Be prepared for all possible scenarios, including family emergencies, health crises and leaving the state for spouse’s employment changes or other reasons.”
Employment expert Rob Wilson explains what companies should do instead
A recent survey found that two-thirds of organizations feel that their performance reviews are not effective. Described as ‘subjective and highly ambiguous,’ performance reviews can be a very impactful tool when used appropriately, but as this research shows, most companies say that they are falling short of the mark.
Employment trends expert Rob Wilson, says, “Although some employers are eliminating the annual performance review, we don’t see that as a good solution for the vast majority of companies. Without an annual review (even if it’s just a compilation of more frequent ones), it’s very difficult for employers to work on merit pay increases.”
Wilson, who is the President of the national employment solutions firm Employco USA, says that instead of ditching performance reviews entirely, companies need to rethink the way they approach this measuring stick and bring performance reviews into the modern era.
“Modern performance reviews are largely based on the merit system used by the military in World War I – a system that has not grown adequately to suit the needs of today’s corporate structures. The original idea was that workers were so plentiful that poor performers needed to be identified from efficient workers so the former could be replaced and the latter promoted. This mentality is slowly dying as the labor market tightens up. Employers are now more concerned with coaching poor performers instead of replacing them immediately. Annual reviews are less effective in this regard, since their primary purpose is to hold employees up to a (typically) quantitative standard, not to assess granular performance and insert coaching opportunities. That’s where frequent check-ins come in,” says Wilson.
What is a frequent check-in? Think of frequent check-ins as microscopic evaluations. In this process, managers evaluate employee performance periodically throughout the year, not just at its end. Managers are checking in on employee performance as it happens, not giving a rating months later.
Human resources expert explains the impact of the Fair Chance Act on employers outside the gov. realm
Last week the House Oversight and Reform Committee passed a bill which would effectively “ban the box” that would keep federal agencies and contractors from asking potential employees’ about their past criminal history, until after these applicants had been offered a conditional employment offer.
Known as the “Fair Chance Act,” the measure is meant to help previously incarcerated individuals increase their ability to rebuild their life post-conviction.
But what does this mean for employers?
“Currently, this legislation only prohibits federal agencies from including a criminal history box on their application and from asking these questions in interviews before a conditional job offer is made,” says Rob Wilson, President of Employco USA and human resources expert. “However, ten states (and the District of Columbia) have ban-the-box laws that apply to private employers— including California, Illinois, Hawaii, and New Jersey, and other companies such as Target have banned the box across state lines at all of their locations.”
Wilson says this number will likely continue to grow, but he explains that banning the box doesn’t mean that employers have no rights when it comes to establishing a person’s character and mental health.
Employment expert explains what companies should know regarding ‘mobile device policies’ and keeping sensitive data safe
Two-thirds of Americans have smartphones, and nearly half of us use our phones for work purposes. That number is only continuing to increase, and 95 percent of organizations allow employees to use their phones for business tasks.
However, employment expert Rob Wilson says that some companies could be opening themselves up to lawsuits by not having a strict mobile device policy in their handbooks.
“If you enter a workplace in America, you are likely going to find most employees with their cell phone on their desk beside them,” says Wilson, who is President of Employco USA, a national employment-solutions firm with locations across the country. “And, when they go home at night or on the weekend, many of them will be performing work tasks via their phones, even if it is just to quickly check their work email.”
Wilson says while many employers view this as a win-win, there are some considerations that should be taken into account.
“Yes, when an employee uses their own phone for work purposes, you are going to save money,” agrees Wilson. “You won’t have to pay for multiple phones, and you won’t have to deal with the burden of fixing broken phones or replacing stolen phones. However, even if your name isn’t on the bill, you could still be paying a price.”
Here, Wilson outlines the concerns which could crop up when employees BYOD:
Rob, Scott, and Jason discuss using a personal device in the workplace; from employer cost savings and increased functionality to mobile device policies, protecting client sensitive information, removing data due to theft or termination, and more.
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