EverythingPeople This Week!

23

May

2017

What is in the American Health Care Act that Impacts Employers?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

Health reform is back in the news for multiple reasons. The U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA) (H.R. 1628) by a vote of 217 to 213.  This law was prepared specifically to avoid a filibuster in the Senate by using the same budget reconciliation methodology used to pass the ACA.  In this way, a simple majority in the Senate can pass the law.   

23

May

2017

The Impact of Motherhood on Pay

Author: Michael Burns

Gender pay disparity and the many reasons for it, continues to be studied by researchers.  A new study by researchers at Wellesley, Harvard, Boston College and the Institute for Social Research in Oslo, Sweden identifies motherhood as a big impediment to equal pay as women’s careers progress. 

23

May

2017

AI in HR

Author: Heather Nezich

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of the newest trends in HR and talent acquisition.  According to a recent CareerBuilder survey, more than 1 in 10 HR managers (13%) are seeing AI become a regular part of HR.  55% say they expect it to play a large role within the next five years.

23

May

2017

Can Drug Tests Be Multiple Choice?

Author: Chance,Susan

Kurt Rambis, former NBA champion and coach, is quoted as saying, “I’m in favor of drug tests, just so long as they are multiple choice.” There are many different types of drug tests available for screening applicants and employees for drug use, but can they be multiple choice? In a way they can. How? Well I’m so glad you asked.

23

May

2017

Quick Hits - May 24, 2017

Author: Heather Nezich

More than one in 25 U.S. workers fail their employer’s drug tests: More U.S. workers are testing positive for illicit drugs than at any time in the last 12 years, according to data from Quest Diagnostics Inc.  

23

May

2017

Summer Vacation is Rapidly Approaching – Do You Know the Guidelines for Employing Minors?

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

As the summer rapidly approaches, many employers will supplement their seasonal workforce with minors under the age of 18.  While this is a great opportunity to give a youth the ability to learn work skills, employers need to be aware of the special requirements and their obligations for employing a minor.

16

May

2017

Quick Hits - May 17, 2017

Author: ASE Staff

Two republican attorneys to be nominated to NLRB:  Attorneys Marvin Kaplan and William Emanuel will be nominated by President Trump to fill the two openings on the five-member National Labor Relations Board. 

16

May

2017

Michigan Appeals Court Looks to Handbook Language to Settle Compensation Claim

Author: Michael Burns

A recent Michigan Appeals Court decision (unpublished) again affirms that courts regularly and purposely use employee handbook policy language to determine what the employer means when a dispute arises about payment of wages or fringe benefits. In the case of Robert E. Heine v. Mack 1 Global Services, Inc. (No.328964) 4/25/2017, the issue for the court was whether the organization’s incentive plan was properly followed in the payment of monies allegedly earned under the employer’s...

16

May

2017

Retention Begins with Good Recruitment

Author: Dan Van Slambrook

There is an old recruiting joke that describes a man who passes away, and as he arrives at the “pearly gates,” is given the option of touring both Heaven and Hell before he decides where to spend all eternity. To his surprise, in Hell he is greeted by the jubilant sounds of celebration, with everyone laughing and appearing to have a grand time.  By contrast, Heaven, with its harp music and gently floating angels, seems bland and boring.  The next day he professes his...

16

May

2017

Why Aren't More Women in the Workforce?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

According to US Census statistics, 57% of women work outside the home, compared with 69.2% of men. Fed Chairperson Janet Yellen stated that “[o]ne recent study estimates that increasing the female participation rate to that of men would raise our gross domestic product by 5%.”  So why aren’t more women in the workforce?

16

May

2017

Bullying Doesn’t Just Happen on the Playground

Author: Heather Nezich

School bullying is now a household term recognized widely, but what about workplace bullying?  Workplace bullying has affected 27% of workers according to a survey by the Workplace Bullying Institute.  The majority of workplace bullies are bosses, and 72% of employers deny, discount, defend, or rationalize the bullying.  61% of victims wind up losing their jobs as a result.

9

May

2017

Where’s the Beef – or the Wage Growth?

Author: Kevin Marrs

There has been a spate of good economic news recently.  Notably, April’s job report was strong, soundly beating analyst estimates.  To be specific, the U.S. economy added 211,000 jobs in April, and the unemployment rate, now at 4.4%, fell to its lowest level since 2007.  In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported recently that unemployment rates were lower in March than a year earlier in 336 of the 388 metropolitan areas it measures.  And, in a promising turn,...

9

May

2017

Stay Interviews Help to Avoid Exit Interviews

Author: Heather Nezich

Stay interviews are the best defense against employee attrition.  While exit interviews can have value, you are finding out the information too late.  By conducting regular stay interviews, you’ll discover exactly what employees like and don’t like about their job and the workplace.  This allows you to make changes before employees leave, resulting in reduced employee turnover.

9

May

2017

Quick Hits - May 10, 2017

Author: ASE Staff

Spending bill reduces DOL budget:  The bill would provide a total of $12.1 billion for the DOL - $83 million below the FY 2016 enacted level and $710 million below the previous administration’s budget request.

9

May

2017

Defending Equal Pay Act Claims Becoming More Difficult

Author: Anthony Kaylin

Under the Equal Pay Act (EPA), courts have generally allowed employers to prove that some “factor other than sex” justified the pay differentials.  However, a recent Federal 8th Circuit of Appeals case narrowed the parameters that employers can use to defend EPA lawsuits and allowed broadening of testimony to show the employer is committing systemic discrimination.

9

May

2017

Sixth Circuit Recognizes “Cat’s Paw” Theory Application in FMLA Retaliation Suit

Author: Michael Burns

The intriguingly named “cat’s paw” theory of discrimination looks at whether an adverse employment action, in this case a retaliatory discharge, that was initiated by “ultimate decision makers” was in fact being influenced by lower level supervisors with discriminatory intent. This theory is relatively new but has been successfully used by plaintiffs in a broad range of other equal employment opportunity cases. The case at hand, Gloria Marshall v. The Rawlings...

9

May

2017

Best Practices for Auditing I-9 Forms

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Immigration issues are high priority for the current administration, and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) has indicated that it will be increasing their enforcement activities this year.   As a result of this intensified focus on immigration compliance, employers should be wary of potential ICE inspections of employer I-9 Employment Authorization Verification records.  In 2016, employer penalties for I-9 form infractions and paperwork errors increased...

2

May

2017

Quick Hits - May 3, 2017

Author: ASE Staff

Alexander Acosta is now the Secretary of Labor: President Donald J. Trump nominated R. Alexander Acosta to be the 27th United States Secretary of Labor. He was sworn in on April 28, 2017. 

2

May

2017

Is it Legal to Pay a Woman Less if Based on Salary History?

Author: Heather Nezich

Solely based on Federal law…yes.  A federal court ruled last week that it is legal to pay female employees less than men if it is based on past salary history.  This decision by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturns a previous ruling that stated that pay differences solely on past salary history were discriminatory, based on the Equal Pay Act.

2

May

2017

Will Your Applicants or Employees Kick You in the Teeth?

Author: Chance,Susan

According to Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones, who is as well known for his drug use as he is for his song writing and guitar skills, “if you’re going to kick authority in the teeth, you may as well use two feet.” If you don’t want to be kicked in the teeth because of drug use by your employees or applicants, then you should consider your company’s drug testing program and policy prohibiting drug use, or the lack thereof, and how you can best protect your...

2

May

2017

Does Title IX Apply to Co-ops and Interns?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

Summer is approaching and many employers hire co-ops, interns and work study students during that time period.  When employing a student and the student is the object of harassment, the question is whether the student can seek relief under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act (Act), Title IX of the Act, or both.  A recent case from the federal Third Circuit Court of Appeals answered affirmatively that both could apply.  

2

May

2017

Federal Compensatory Time Off Legislation Introduced

Author: Michael Burns

One of the more frequent questions ASE receives from private employers is about how to practice compensatory time off. Compensatory time off is the practice of “paying” overtime worked through paid time off at some later time. ASE frequently advises that most compensatory time practices are illegal. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires payment to non-exempt employees (hourly and salaried) of time worked over 40 hours in a week at time and one-half pay. Therefore, if an...

25

Apr

2017

Increase in Infertility Coverage Latest in Family Friendly Benefit Offerings

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

In the ongoing war for talent, many companies are looking to broaden their benefits coverage and make them more family friendly.  One benefit that is garnering more attention and is on the rise is coverage for infertility treatments such as fertility drugs, in vitro fertilization (IVF), and fertility concierge services.  For employees facing difficulties conceiving, the financial cost of pursuing such options on their own can be out of reach.  The American Society for...

25

Apr

2017

Do’s and Don’ts of Employee Appreciation

Author: Heather Nezich

Employee appreciation is a key element to achieving high levels of employee engagement and retention.  Employees that feel appreciated have increased productivity and tend to feel better about their work.  But if approached the wrong way, it could backfire.

25

Apr

2017

The Alfred E. Newman Approach to Employee Relations

Author: Anthony Kaylin

Although Alfred E. Newman is a fictional character from Mad Magazine, his approach of “What, me worry?” is one that HR professionals should emulate.  Although employers and employees do some of the darnedest things, regardless of the advice and counsel of HR, there is no need to stress out over this stuff.  That is…as long as some common sense is applied...

 

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