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  • Can the nuclear family survive on minimum wage – even it if goes up?

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    There is a lot of talk about the Federal Minimum Wage and how raising it to $10.10 per hour across the nation could help many more working Americans make ends meet. The question is, if the minimum wage is raised over the next 2 years, will this make a difference to the average nuclear family (Mom, Dad, and 2 kids)?

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  • EEOC releases FY 2013 enforcement and litigation data

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR

    The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has released FY 2013 data showing that the agency obtained the highest monetary recovery in its history through its administrative process, increasing by $6.7 million to $372.1 million. Of these awards, $39 million benefited victims of unlawful discrimination.

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  • Overcoming mobbing: An interview with Maureen Duffy, PhD

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    Crystal Spraggins

    According to a survey by the Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI), 35% of American workers have experienced bullying directly. An additional 15% have witnessed it.

    Maureen Duffy, PhD, has seen first-hand the damaging effects of workplace bullying and mobbing. Duffy is a family therapist and co-author (along with Len Sperry) of Overcoming Mobbing: A Recovery Guide for Workplace Aggression and Bullying.

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  • States Raise Minimum Wages in 2014 - Are they Fair?

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    A hot topic on the minds of people around the USA right now are the states that have raised their minimum wages to meet with the cost of living demands in multiple regions. As of January 1st of 2014 (New York December 31, 2013), fourteen states made the minimum wage increase official. This comes as part of proposed salary legislation up for consideration in the House and Senate to increase the federal minimum wage in 2014, as included in the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2012. Things are looking up for millions of workers who are in jobs that pay minimum wage in the states that have decided to move forward and increase the wage now.

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  • Exempt vs. nonexempt: What’s the big deal?

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    Crystal Spraggins, SPHR

    In a 2013 study, NERA Economic Consulting reported that U.S. employers paid $467 million in settlements as a result of wage and hour violations. NERA classified the violations in the following categories:

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  • Payroll oops! FLSA mistakes managers make when calculating overtime

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    As if calculating overtime pay wasn’t challenging enough at times, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) can throw even a seasoned payroll manager into a tailspin at 300 miles per hour. Why do FLSA mistakes cause so many issues for payroll overtime processing? In this article, we will look at some ways you can avoid the common issues with managing overtime payments in regards to FLSA guidelines.

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  • Is the federal minimum wage fair compensation?

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    The question of whether or not the federal minimum wage is fair is one that has been tossed around quite a bit in the last several years. The resurgence of this question has largely been due to political scenes heating up and major layoffs leading more people to obtain minimum wage jobs but it’s a topic that has been debated since the first minimum wage was put into place in 1938, guaranteeing workers 25 cents per hour. Though the federal minimum wage has increased significantly over the years to the $7.25 per hour rate it is now, the hard questions about minimum wage still remain. Chief among them is whether or not the $7.25 per hour employers are required to pay their employees is actually fair.

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  • Paving the way to a healthy workplace with corporate wellness incentives

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    As Obamacare officially launched across America this year, new requirements forced employers to look for ways to boost their compensation and benefit programs without raising healthcare premium costs. The new law permits employers to use as much as 30 percent of each worker’s health care premium on wellness incentive programs (up from 20 percent last year). The challenge to find cost-effective ways to maintain the well-being and productivity of workers is on.

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  • The Death of DOMA: What Does It Mean For HR?

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    Evan Rodd, PayScale

    2013 is shaping up to be a big year for healthcare benefits in the US, and Human Resources professionals are starting to ask: What do these changes mean for my company’s benefits program?

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  • Employing Teen Interns this Summer? What You Need to Know About FLSA

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    Tess C. Taylor, PHR

    Now that the summer months are underway, millions of American teens will be looking for jobs to save up for cars and earn college credits. That factor, coupled with President Obama’s Youth Jobs + campaign that encourages businesses to give young people a chance to learn through meaningful employment and on-the-job training programs, means there will be many teens available for seasonal and part time assignments. However, before you hang the “Help Wanted” sign up on your door, there has been a recent change to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that you should know about.

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  • 4 ways to reduce your workers’ compensation costs

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Workers’ compensation costs seem to be growing year by year, and depending on which state you’re in, your costs could continue to rise. Recent legislation and modifications to workers’ compensation laws have affected many areas of the country, making workers’ comp costs a major concern for many employers.

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  • How Much Vacation Time Do We Really Need to Provide?

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    Evan Rodd, PayScale

    According to a new report by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, the United States is the only advanced economy in the world where all workers are not guaranteed paid vacation. While some workers enjoy paid time off provided by employers, this is not an option for all, especially those that may have struggled with unemployment or partial employment during the recession. The report notes that the gap between the US and the rest of the world increases when paid holidays are added to the equation. Currently, there are no laws requiring paid holiday leave in the US, while many other countries offer 5 or more days per year. Austria and Portugal top the list, offering employees the most paid holiday leave.

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  • 5 Essential Employer Deadlines for Obamacare

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    You may have heard about this little thing called Obamacare that’s headed our way. It’s made up of about 1200 pages of law, will affect millions of people and is estimated to raise costs for employees by as much as 73 percent. So really, this is clearly minor, unless you are an employer, an employee or oh, an American.

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  • 8 New FMLA Changes You Need to Know

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Several new changes to the Family Medical Leave Act went into effect last week on March 8. The most pertinent is the requirement to post the updated FMLA poster, which informs employees of the updated FMLA rules. There are also several forms that have been updated and are available on the Department of Labor website. 

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  • Offering Guidance to Federal Contractors, Post Rescission

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    Mykkah Herner, MA, CCP, Compensation Consultant PayScale

    Stephanie R Thomas ends her blog post, “Gone With The Wind (Your Guidance, That Is),” with a challenge: “How will you prepare?” She aptly points out that the rescission of the “Compensation Standards” and “Voluntary Guidelines” by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) leaves federal contractors with less guidance about how to comply with non-discrimination requirements outlined in Title VII. I’d like to take a moment to offer some suggestions.

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  • Four Ergonomic Tips to Keep Employees and Workers' Comp Budgets Healthy

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell

    Providing an impressive benefit package to employees is expensive and sometimes isn’t in fact what sets your organization apart from the rest. Most of us won’t argue that benefits aren't worth the cost, but as any employer or HR professional can tell you, the expense is huge. In addition to the obvious benefit costs employees see, such as healthcare and retirement contributions, there’s a major benefit lurking in the dark going unnoticed by employees: workers’ compensation insurance.

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  • New Guidelines for Restrictive Covenants in Canada

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    Amy Knapp

    Implications of recent decision Martin v. ConCreate USL Limited Partnership

    Restrictive covenants are a tricky business. While fundamentally important in some circumstances, they’re notoriously ineffective in others. With the recent rulings on enforcement of restrictive covenants, it's becoming even more apparent that Canadian companies need to develop more compelling strategies to keep talent from going to the competitors.

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  • 5 For Friday: HR Going Global

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    Laleh Hassibi, PayScale

    Effectively managing human capital is of concern to companies across the globe. Many of those human resource issues are becoming less siloed to particular countries as outsourcing becomes more commonplace in business. This week, we take a look at some of the top news and issues surrounding human capital management and compensation across the world.

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  • Legally Destroying The Gender Gap

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    Jessica Miller-Merrell, blogging4jobs

    Despite tremendous growth in select sectors, women are still only paid 77 percent of what their male counterparts make according to the American Association of University Women. Women earn less for numerous reasons including field of study, occupation, and the number of hours they work during the work week. The Paycheck Fairness Act is now being introduced for the third time in four years in the United States Senate.

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  • Was the Lilly Ledbetter Act Enough?

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    Laleh Hassibi, PayScale

    “Our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers, and
    daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts.”
    -President Obama's Inauguration Speech, 2013

    Today marks the fourth anniversary of President Obama's signing of the Lilly Ledbetter Act. Though it may not have been enough to close the gender gap, other important advances, like data-driven software, have helped the cause tremendously. Let's first take a look back at highlights of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act:

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