Compare Free Price Quotes on Payroll Services

No matter how meticulous and experienced you are, handling payroll can be a headache. Add in the stress of potentially stiff penalties for tax filing omissions, and you’re left with a financially-induced migraine. In fact, every year approximately 40% of all small businesses pay an average fine of $845 (including penalties and interest) to the IRS. Hiring a qualified payroll service provider can help you increase efficiency and save both time and hassle. Let BuyerZone give you the solid working knowledge you need to evaluate payroll service providers. Then, we can put you in touch with several qualified providers for competitive price quotes – all at no cost to you.

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For more HR News, please visit: Compare Free Price Quotes on Payroll Services

Source: News from HR Morning

Compare Free Price Quotes on Time and Attendance Systems

Whether due to overwhelming paperwork, rapid growth, or new efficiency initiatives, companies are turning to time tracking systems in record numbers. Highly-competitive vendors are responding to this demand with products designed for a variety of technical requirements and niche industries. As a result, time and attendance packages can now help your company automate not only the morning roll call but also your labor forecasting and management activities. BuyerZone can help you evaluate and choose the system that is best suited to your needs. We’ll also send you free price quotes from reputable local dealers so you can compare offers.

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For more HR News, please visit: Compare Free Price Quotes on Time and Attendance Systems

Source: News from HR Morning

HR exec gets last laugh at f-bomb dropping commuter

HR exec gets last laugh at f-bomb dropping commuter

hiring, interviewing

Apparently karma does exist … and she’s got a sense of humor.  

Meet HR executive Matt Buckland of the investment firm Forward Partners in London.

He recently had an … umm … interesting experience exiting a London subway train during rush hour while on his way to work.

Buckland had an interview scheduled for later that day with someone applying for a position at his firm.

The subway was packed that morning, and as Buckland and the other passengers were preparing to depart, he moved to the side to let a woman off. But as he did, he stepped in front of a man whom Buckland opted not to identify in his account of the morning’s commute, as told by the U.K.’s Daily Mail.

The man became agitated with Buckland and, as the two departed the train, Buckland alleges the man turned to him and suggested he go “f*** himself.”

Buckland told the Daily Mail the man apparently thought Buckland was deliberately standing in his way.

What happened next is priceless.

Remember me?

The unidentified man was apparently on his way to a job interview at none other than Forward Partners.

And when he sat down for his interview, he found himself across from … you guessed it … Buckland.

The man didn’t recognize Buckland, but Buckland toyed with the candidate nonetheless.

Buckland says he asked the man a series of subway related questions until it became clear to the candidate just who he was.

Buckland says the two had a good laugh about the incident, but the interview carried on despite the earlier vulgar jab.

Buckland said he didn’t hold the encounter over the man.

He told the Daily Mail:

When you interview you are looking for a read of skills but also to know if that person is a real human being, it’s about that connection. By the end of the interview we laughed it off and were both happy.

As generous as that seems of Buckland, he still didn’t offer the man the job. Apparently, he wasn’t right for the role.

Ya think?

For more HR News, please visit: HR exec gets last laugh at f-bomb dropping commuter

Source: News from HR Morning

This time the NLRB may have gone too far protecting workers’ speech rights

If you’ve been following along on HR Morning, you know the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has made some pretty controversial rulings lately in an attempt to protect workers Section 7 speech rights under the National Labor Relations Act. But this time, it may have gone too far. 

Section 7 gives workers at any company (unionized or not) the right to participate in “concerted activity” aimed at improving of their working conditions.

In a nutshell, the rule says employees must be able to freely discuss their working conditions publicly — including topics like pay, managerial treatment, work duties/assignments, the work environment in general, unionizing, etc.

Lately, the NLRB has been on a scorched-earth crusade to find and block any employer action or policy it believes might stymie employees’ Section 7 rights.

But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit just threw a cold, wet blanket on a recent NLRB decision that was bound to have employers throwing their hands up in disgrace.

Company’s hat policy challenged

The case involves a World Color Corp. printing facility in Nevada. The company had a safety policy that required any hair that hung past a worker’s collar to be secured to the person’s head in production areas.

To do this, the company allowed employees to wear a baseball cap with the company’s logo on it. No other type of baseball cap was allowed.

A labor union took issue with this rule. It wanted employees to be able to wear the union’s hats. So the union filed an unfair labor practice charge with the NLRB. It said World Color’s hat policy was overly restrictive and infringed upon worker’s Section 7 rights to discuss unionizing.

An administrative law judge for the NLRB ruled in favor of the union, and the NLRB later backed up the judge’s ruling.

The NLRB said it was:

“undisputed that the policy on its face prohibits employees from engaging in the protected activity of wearing caps bearing union insignia.”

The company then appealed the decision in the D.C. district court, which sent the case back to the NLRB for reconsideration.

A win for uniform policies

The court side the case wasn’t as one-sided as the NLRB made it seem.

It’s reasoning: While it acknowledged World Color did have a policy limiting employees hat options to just the one hat, the company’s uniform policy didn’t prohibit employees from accessorizing their uniforms — hats included — with the union’s insignia.

As a result, the court said there was a dispute over whether the company’s policy was overly broad and facially prohibited the wearing of the union insignia.

It ruled:

“[a]though the hat policy restricts the type of hat that may be worn, it does not say anything about whether union insignia may be attached to the hat.”

The district court’s ruling is a win for employer uniform policies everywhere in that it put the NLRB in check when it comes to its broad interpretation of Section 7. It said the NLRB had to do more digging to determine whether the policy was overly restrictive.

What this case doesn’t do, however, is give employers the green light to enforce strict uniform policies.

World Color’s policy, for example, still needs to pass another test, which the NLRB is likely to put it through now. The test will ask three questions of the policy:

  1. Was it put in place due to union activity?
  2. Was it created to restrict union activity?
  3. Would employees interpret the policy as being one meant to restrict union activity?

If the NLRB finds any of these to be the case, it will likely deem the policy illegal.

Cite: World Color Corp. v. NLRB

For more HR News, please visit: This time the NLRB may have gone too far protecting workers’ speech rights

Source: News from HR Morning

4 ways managers can build trust with their team members

You’re probably sick of hearing it: “Employees don’t leave companies, they leave bad bosses.” But it’s true. And the reason people leave bad managers? A lack of trust.  

Here’s what Carolyn O’Hara, writing on the Harvard Business Review blog, identifies as four ways managers can prove their trustworthiness in their charges’ eyes.

Trustworthy Trait 1: Be transparent

Of course, there are certain things a manager can’t disclose, like salary data. And staffers have to understand that. But on most other things, managers want to be as transparent as possible.

That means being honest about company goals, performance metrics and overall performance.

Not only does that increase trust between the supervisor and staffers, but there’s an added bonus: It keeps the rumor mill under control. When staffers know they can count on a straight answer from their immediate boss, there’s a lot less room for speculation and those productivity-damaging rumors.

Tip: Managers might also try to offer some of this information up before staffers ask. It shows employees their boss’s level of trust.

Trustworthy Trait 2: Encourage, rather than command

Yes, the manager’s the one in charge. But the most trustworthy bosses are secure enough in that that they know that doesn’t mean bossing people around.

The best leaders function more like coaches. So rather than telling staffers the way exactly how a specific task must be done, sometimes it pays to give them the freedom come up with the most efficient approach.

Managers just need to be sure they make expectations clear so folks have a framework to work within.

Trustworthy Trait 3: Admit mistakes

This can be the toughest one, no matter who you are. No one wants to admit they were wrong or handled something improperly.

But managers can build up a lot of credibility with their team if they own up to a mistake.

You know how many people who say they often think more favorably of a company that made a mistake and corrected it than the company that never made a mistake at all? That’s what happens when a manager admits a mistake.

It serves as a bonding opportunity, yes. So when a boss makes a mistake, it’s crucial he/she owns  up to it right away.

But it can be used as a teaching opportunity, too. When a staffer makes a misstep, the manager  might consider sharing a time when he faltered. It shows empathy and helps build stronger team bonds.

Trustworthy Trait 4: Never badmouth anyone

This is an urge managers need to resist at all cost. Even when they’re attempting to commiserate with a staffer, they should never badmouth someone else.

The underlying message is: If you’ll say something behind James’ back, you’ll probably won’t hesitate to say something negative about me the minute my back is turned.

For more HR News, please visit: 4 ways managers can build trust with their team members

Source: News from HR Morning

ADA accommodation? But we haven’t even hired her yet

ADA accommodation? But we haven’t even hired her yet

disability discrimination, ada, lawsuit

This is a federal employment law pill some employers have a tough time swallowing. 

The ADA covers more than just current employees. Its protections also extend to probationary employees, new hires and job applicants — yes, even applicants.

The case of Laura Jones is a prime example of just how expansive the ADA’s worker protections are.

Jones applied for an evening sales associate job at a Walmart store in Cockeysville, MD. She was offered a job contingent upon her passing a urinalysis screening for illegal drugs.

The problem was Jones couldn’t produce a urine sample because she has end-stage renal disease. So she requested that she be allowed to take an alternative drug test — like a blood test.

But Walmart refused to order an alternative drug test and denied Jones employment for failing to complete the urinalysis test within 24 hours.

Jones then took her case to the EEOC, which sued on her behalf, claiming Walmart discriminated against her on the basis of her disability.

The EEOC claimed that Walmart failed to explore reasonable accommodations — like a blood test — that would’ve allowed Jones to complete the drug screening portion of the hiring process.

Failing to explore whether or not providing such accommodations to help disabled individuals perform essential duties amounts to disability discrimination under the ADA. The EEOC has been pushing this message for a while now.

EEOC Regional Attorney Debra M. Lawrence had this to say in an EEOC release about Jones’ case:

 This is the fourth EEOC lawsuit alleging the employer failed to provide a reasonable accommodation and refused to hire a qualified applicant when the solution-to provide a blood drug test during the drug screening process-was simple. We are pleased that Wal-Mart East is providing targeted training and disseminating a memorandum on its drug screen policy, and hope that this settlement encourages all employers to review their hiring and post-offer drug screening procedures to ensure that qualified applicants are provided with needed reasonable accommodations.

As you can guess from that statement, Walmart decided to settle the case. As part of the settlement, it’s handing over $72,500 in monetary relief to Jones and revising its drug screening form to inform applicants that alternative drug screens will be available to applicants whose physical conditions prevent them from producing urine samples.

The fact that this case didn’t make it to trial is inconsequential. The lawsuit itself shows that the EEOC will apply the ADA’s protections to individuals regardless of their employment status.

EEOC: Probationary employee discriminated against

Another resent EEOC lawsuit that HR Morning broke down a few weeks ago proves the point even further.

In that case, the agency sued pipe fittings manufacturer EZEFLOW on behalf of Adam Brant, a former U.S. Marine who began suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during his 90-day probationary period with the company.

Due to his PTSD, Brant’s doctor recommended he take six weeks off from work. Brant then requested unpaid medical leave, but EZEFLOW denied his request. It said he wasn’t yet qualified for medical leave because he was still a probationary employee.

The EEOC’s comments on Brant’s case:

The ADA also requires employers to provide a reasonable accommodation, including granting unpaid medical leave, to an employee with a disability unless the company can show it would be an undue hardship to do so.

Just like Walmart, EZEFLOW decided to avoid further legal wrestling and settled the suit for $65,000.

Bottom line: The best way to stay out of a costly legal predicament is to engage in the interactive process to explore the possibility of providing reasonable accommodations to applicants, new hires, probationary employees and current staffers when a disability interferes with their abilities to perform an essential function of their jobs or the hiring process.

For more HR News, please visit: ADA accommodation? But we haven’t even hired her yet

Source: News from HR Morning

LinkedIn: Maybe not the serious, all-business forum you thought it was

C’mon, tell the truth: What are you really doing on LinkedIn?  

That what technology analyst Brian Hanley wanted to find out. “Most people would consider me an active LinkedIn user,” he wrote on the Huffington Post. “Still, I don’t have the faintest idea what I’m doing on LinkedIn.”

We can certainly relate. But Hanley really wanted to explore exactly what people were doing on the business/social site. So he embarked on a little research expedition, surveying “hundreds” of LinkedIn users.

Here are the results:

What do you say you do on LinkedIn?

No real surprises in the responses to this question:

  • Build my professional network.
  • Document my work experiences.
  • Showcase my technical capabilities.
  • Promote my personal brand.
  • Discover new career opportunities.
  • Share my expertise.

What do you actually do on LinkedIn?

Here’s where the fun begins. See if any of these responses match your private LinkedIn activities:

  • Admire my own profile.
  • Debut a headshot that looks like my younger, better-looking sibling.
  • Edit my headline and summary ad nauseam.
  • Examine my credentials from the POV of my client/hiring manager.
  • Discover who my top stalkers are.
  • Neutralize their creepiness by stalking them back.
  • View a hottie’s profile in the hopes that he or she reciprocates.
  • Connect with attractive people for no other reason than they’re fun to stare at.
  • Request to connect with my crush from college who I never met in person.
  • Develop a sense of intimacy with Sheryl Sandberg, Mark Cuban, and other famous businesspeople who I’m following.
  • Rub my accomplishments unapologetically in the faces of those who doubted me.
  • Endorse borderline strangers whose skills I know nothing about, with the expectation of receiving endorsements in exchange.

Hanley’s reaction? “What astonished me was the distinction between their front stage and back stage behavior,” he said.

We’re not.

Anybody else got a guilty LinkedIn secret to share? Write it in the comments section below.

For more HR News, please visit: LinkedIn: Maybe not the serious, all-business forum you thought it was

Source: News from HR Morning

Must love penguins, hate showering: Is this job worth $20K a year?

Here is one of the more unusual job postings you’ll see this year: 

Port Lockroy, a British historic base on Goudier Island off the Antarctic Peninsula, is looking for an “assistant.”

This person will be asked, among other things, to:

  • Operate the Port’s post office, which takes in about 70,000 pieces of mail during the period hires will be stationed there (about five months — November into March).
  • Monitor penguins and wildlife on behalf of the British Antarctic Survey (the island is home to about 2,000 penguins).
  • Operate the port’s shop (about 18,000 visitors arrive by ship during the season).
  • Perform maintenance tasks on the island’s facilities.
  • Manage merchandise and day-to-day operating supplies.

The position requires five days of training in the United Kingdom, after which new hires will be flown to South America. From there, they’ll board an expedition ship to Port Lockroy.

Truth be told, none of that sounds too bad. Some of you with job-searching college grads living in your basement may even be thinking: This could be a way for little Johnny to get out, see the world and gain some valuable real-life experience.

Not so fast. We haven’t gotten to the real gems of this job posting yet.

The bad, the ugly and the smelly

Here’s what else the job posting on the Antarctic Heritage Trust’s website says applicants must be willing to do:

  • Carry a big heavy box over slippery rocks and slushy snow whilst dodging penguins.
  • Be happy not showering for up to a month.
  • Live in close proximity to three people and 2,000 smelly penguins for five months.
  • Be enthusiastic around visitors event when it’s well below freezing outside and a blizzard is blowing through.
  • Cook supper cheerfully after a long, cold day and very little sleep.
  • Be on-call and smiling for all waking hours, seven days a week.
  • Be happy while confined to a small island with no prospect of climbing the surrounding peaks.

That takes the shine off the job a little bit, doesn’t it? That last bullet is particularly troubling. Have past hires actually contemplated climbing the surrounding peaks just to get away from the port?

So what’s the pay, you ask? About 1,100 pounds (or $1,700 U.S. dollars) per month. What works out to about $8,500 for the five-month stint or $20,000 a year (if the job lasted that long).

For more HR News, please visit: Must love penguins, hate showering: Is this job worth K a year?

Source: News from HR Morning

Alert: Same sex-spouses now covered under FMLA in all states

HR pros should review their firms’ FMLA policies — as well as any other related materials — ASAP.  

That’s because the DOL just updated the definition of “spouse” for FMLA purposes to reflect the Supreme Court’s ruling in United States. v. Windsor.

As HR pros likely know extremely well at this point, the High Court’s ruling essentially struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) that limited the definition of marriage for federal purposes as an institution between members of the opposite sex.

Since that ruling, a majority of states have passed legislation of their own to legalize same-sex marriage.

‘Place of celebration’ provision

Now, with the DOL’s rule change, any eligible employee who is in a legal same-sex marriage will be able to take federal FMLA leave to care for his or her spouse regardless of the state in which that employee resides.

In other words, FMLA eligibility is based on the state where the same-sex couple entered into the marriage and not where that couple currently resides.

In the DOL’s press release, the agency referred to the rule change as the “place of celebration” provision under the FMLA.

This is important because, before the change, the definition of “spouse” for FMLA purposes did not include same-sex spouses that currently resided in a state that didn’t recognize same-sex marriage.

So even if an employee entered into a legal same-sex marriage, that employee couldn’t take advantage of FMLA protections to care for his or her spouse unless he or she lived in one of the states that recognized same-sex marriage.

This had been referred to as the “state of residence” rule.

‘Same rights and protections’

In the feds announcement, DOL Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez reiterated some of the same talking points he first delivered when he unveiled a proposal to change the rule last summer by stating: “The basic promise of the FMLA is that no one should have to choose between the job and income they need, and care for a loved one.”

Perez went on to say that:

“With our action today, we extend that promise so that no matter who you love, you will receive the same rights and protections as everyone else. All eligible employees in legal same-sex marriages, regardless of where they live, can now deal with a serious medical and family situation like all families — without the threat of job loss.”

For more HR News, please visit: Alert: Same sex-spouses now covered under FMLA in all states

Source: News from HR Morning

Top Insights for the World’s Leading HR Executives

In CEB’s Top Insights Report, discover five critical trends that are shaping the business, and how the best companies are addressing key functional challenges to drive performance. All of these changes have significant implications for executives managing their functions. Many executives often recognize change too late or misunderstand the implications of those changes for their teams. Unfortunately, those misses cost organizations greatly in terms of direct, indirect, and opportunity costs.

Click here to learn more!  

For more HR News, please visit: Top Insights for the World’s Leading HR Executives

Source: News from HR Morning