EverythingPeople This Week!

9

Jul

2019

Digital Addiction in the Workplace

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Technology over the past decade has found its way into practically every part of our daily lives.  It has transformed how we communicate, the way we interact through social media, the access we have to information, how we shop, and how we conduct business – just to name a few examples.  You look around anywhere these days, and people are staring at their electronic devices, and many feel helpless without them.  As a result of this heavy dependence on technology, it should...

25

Jun

2019

Employers – Ensure Your Grooming Policies Aren’t Discriminatory

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Most employers have policies that outline requirements regarding dress and appearance.  These can range from business vs. casual dress, if body piercings or visible tattoos are allowed, and some outline grooming standards.  Some employer grooming standards not only require a neat appearance but may also detail whether certain hairstyles or certain hair colors are prohibited or whether male employees must be clean shaven or have short hair.  As employers define their dress code...

11

Jun

2019

JP Morgan Chase Settles for $5 Million in Largest Paternity Leave Lawsuit

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

In May 2019, JP Morgan Chase reached a tentative settlement of $5 million dollars to resolve a class action lawsuit alleging the bank’s parental leave policy was biased against dads.  It is the largest recorded settlement in a U.S. parental leave discrimination complaint. 

28

May

2019

Women are More Productive in Warmer Offices

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

More often than not women complain about feeling cold at much higher rates than men, and there are several scientific reasons behind this fact.  Women typically have a lower metabolic rate that results in being colder at rest.

14

May

2019

Summer Hour Programs on the Rise

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

While the weather recently hasn’t exactly been warm, Memorial Day weekend is right around the corner and it marks the unofficial start of summer.  As the rain will eventually (we hope) start to let up, the attention of many employees will turn to thoughts of getting outdoors, spending more time with family, and having some downtime to unplug and recharge.  One benefit that is dramatically on the rise are employers who have implemented a summer hours program.

30

Apr

2019

Employee Request for Less Stressful Boss Does Not Qualify for ADA

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), an employee must show that they have a physical or mental impairment and that the impairment “substantially limits one or more major life activities” in order to qualify as a disability.   The recent ruling in  Tinsley v. Caterpillar Fin. Servs., Corp., No. 18-5303 (6th Cir. Mar. 20, 2019) by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals (which covers Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee), sends a good reminder to employers...

16

Apr

2019

Trial-by-Jury at Work? Amazon’s New Performance Improvement Process

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Amazon’s culture has certainly made headlines over the years at a minimum as being demanding and at the extreme described as being downright brutal.   In 2015 the New York Times wrote an article about employee life at Amazon and one former human resource director described a facet of the culture as “purposeful Darwinism.”  This is where employees either quit due to the inability to keep up with the demands of the job or there are routine “cullings”...

2

Apr

2019

Using Snapchat as Part of Your Recruiting Strategy

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

When many HR Professionals think of social media tools and platforms that can be used for recruiting, the app Snapchat is probably one that doesn’t come to mind.  For those that are not familiar with Snapchat, it is a mobile messaging application used to share photos, videos of up to 10 seconds, and drawings that are called “snaps”.     

19

Mar

2019

Failure to Stop Workplace Rumor About Employee “Sleeping Way to Top” Can Create Sex Discrimination Liability

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Gossip is a natural part of human behavior and an inevitable temptation in every workplace.  Evolutionary scientists believe that gossip among early humans was a way to communicate social norms and keep bad behavior in check.  A 2012 study conducted at the University of Amsterdam and later published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology found that 90% of office chit-chat is made up of gossip.  But employers should be aware that they have responsibility to investigate and...

5

Mar

2019

EEO-1 Filing Deadline May 31 – Tips for Completing Report

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

As a result of the federal government shut down, employers have two additional months to file their EEO-1 report.  The normal filing due date for the EEO-1 is March 31st, but the 2018 EEO-1 report for employers is due this year by May 31, 2019.  The tool will open up for reporting in two weeks per the EEOC.  Filing instructions will be posted soon on the EEO-1 survey website.

19

Feb

2019

Paid Time off for Parental Leave is on the Rise

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

While Michigan employers are preparing for the new Michigan Paid Sick Leave Act that takes effect on March 29th, another paid leave benefit is on the rise.  Employers offering paid parental leave benefits rose significantly between 2016 and 2018 according to SHRM.  Employers offering paid maternity leave increased from 26% to 35% in 2018, and paid paternity leave increased from 21% to 29% during that same time period.  Paid adoption leave increased from 20% to 28%, foster child...

5

Feb

2019

Record Setting Polar Vortex - What is Your Inclement Weather Policy?

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Many organizations found themselves unprepared for the record cold that gripped the Midwest for days last week.  Inclement weather can have a serious impact on an employer’s productivity, be it managing employees who can’t make it into work due to heavy snowfalls or school closings, or trying to figure out whether to send employees home early due to an approaching blizzard or closing the office and allowing telecommuting due to the bitter cold.

22

Jan

2019

Best Practices of Written Warnings and Performance Documentation

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Creating a solid documentation trail is critical for employers when working with an employee on performance issues.  Documentation creates a written history of the happenings and discussions that occur around specific events.  In a legal proceeding, having documentation about the employee’s past performance is key to obtaining an outcome favorable to the employer.

8

Jan

2019

Help Employees Keep their New Year’s Weight Loss Resolutions by Providing Healthy Snacks

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

The holidays are officially over.  After weeks of abandoning exercise and restraint when it comes to eating, many employees have made New Year’s resolutions to lose weight and get in shape.  For 2019, polls indicate that 38% of Americans have made losing weight and exercising their number one resolution.  Unfortunately, it is no surprise that very few of us actually keep this resolution.  According to statistics, 92% of people don’t keep their New Year’s...

11

Dec

2018

Tis the Season in the #MeToo Era – Fewer U.S. Companies Celebrate with Holiday Parties

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

While the holidays are a wonderful time of the year to let down your hair, blow off some steam, and boost morale within the office, employers must be cautious about legal liability that can result from sexual harassment complaints, drunken driving accidents, and property damage arising out of a holiday party.  According to a recent survey released by consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc., fewer U.S. companies are celebrating with holiday parties this year with only 65% of...

27

Nov

2018

Do Holiday Gifts Motivate Employees?

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

It’s hard to believe that we are already in the midst of the 2018 holiday season.  One question that frequently comes up this time of year is whether employers should consider giving their employees a holiday gift.  Hawk Incentives recently conducted a survey on employee attitudes and preferences toward specific workplace reward programs and how they keep employees engaged at work.   One of the key findings is that the majority of respondents indicated that holiday...

13

Nov

2018

Recruit and Retain Employees with These Top Non-Insurance Related Benefits & Perks

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

It’s that time of year when many employers are deep in the middle of their benefits open enrollment period.  With unemployment at record lows, employee retention and engagement remain the two most pressing issues in HR today.  In order to differentiate themselves from their competitors, many employers are finding it imperative to utilize their benefit packages and employee perks as another tool in their arsenal to help promote loyalty and retention.  Recent data indicates...

29

Oct

2018

Don’t Let Your Office Halloween Party Become a House of Horrors

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Celebrating Halloween in America has become a huge holiday.  In 2018 Halloween retail spending will be $9 billion which is only slightly less than 2017’s all-time record high of $9.1 billion.  Approximately 175 million will celebrate Halloween spending on average $86.79 per person.  As Halloween has become the 2nd biggest commercial holiday in America, Halloween parties at work are also on the rise.  Recent studies have shown that celebrating Halloween is a great...

16

Oct

2018

On Demand Pay Apps – A New Tool to Help with Employee Retention

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

With unemployment hitting record lows and the war for talent only getting more intense, employers are constantly on the hunt for ways to increase employee attraction and retention.  As a way for organizations to set themselves apart from other competitors, some employers have rolled out a new benefit called an “on-demand” pay app.  It allows employees to access a portion of the wages they have already earned without having to wait for payday.  Employers that have...

2

Oct

2018

Tips for Managing Workplace Gossip

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

According to a study from the University of Amsterdam published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 90% of office conversations qualify as gossip. That means we all have probably been guilty at one point or another of either participating in or being an enabler of workplace gossip.  When we think of workplace gossip, most of us imagine hallway or watercooler type conversations, but surprisingly research at the Georgia Institute of Technology concluded that gossip even makes up...

18

Sep

2018

The Opioid Epidemic – What To Do When You Have Reasonable Suspicion

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

Every day, more than 115 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids. The misuse of and addiction to opioids—including prescription pain relievers, heroin, and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl—has become a national crisis that affects public health as well as social and economic welfare. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the total "economic burden" of prescription opioid misuse in the United States is $78.5 billion a year,...

4

Sep

2018

Appeals Court for the 6th Circuit Reminds Employers They Must Be Flexible with Requests for Accommodation

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

A recent decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (which covers the state of Michigan) sends a strong message to employers that they need to be flexible when it comes to requests for accommodation for a disability. 

21

Aug

2018

If You Ask for a Raise, How Likely Are You to Get it?

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

According to a Payscale study of 160,000 employees throughout the country, 37% of employees have asked for raises.  Of those who did, 70% received one.  39% got what they asked for, and 31% got less than what they requested.

7

Aug

2018

Have You Been Ghosted?

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

When most people think of the term “ghosting”, they think of online dating sites.  Ghosting is an expression first connected with dating, and it's when someone suddenly cuts all ties and communication with the person they've been seeing.  The practice of ghosting is now creeping its way into the workplace and is quickly becoming some employers’ biggest recruiting headache. 

24

Jul

2018

Top 10 FMLA Pitfalls Employers Should Avoid

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

It’s hard to believe, but the Family Medical and Leave Act (FMLA) was passed into U.S. law 25 years ago.  Even today it remains one of the most complex employment laws that employers must stay in compliance with – tripping up even the most seasoned of HR professionals.  While the FMLA provides an important leave benefit for employees, administering it can be a very daunting challenge.  Failure to do so properly can exposure employers to legal liability and the...
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