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  • How to Determine New Employees' Annual Bonuses

    When to Give an Annual Bonus to a New Employee

    Chances are, you have recently been tasked with the job of determining (or at least helping to determine) what your employees’ end-of-year bonuses should be. With your long-term employees, you've have had some historical practices, as well as a, hopefully, comprehensive performance review to rely on to help you. But what do you do with employees who haven’t been with the company for a full year, including those who may have joined very recently? While there are no hard and fast rules, here are some approaches for you to ponder.

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  • Salary Negotiation Tips for Employers

    How to Respond to a Request for a Raise

    It’s that time of year again: the annual salary budget has been set, performance evaluations are done, and suddenly managers are hiding behind closed doors, anxiously dreading “the talk.” The annual compensation conversation doesn’t need to be a daunting, mysterious process, either for managers or the staff they supervise.

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  • Wages Trend Up to Finish 2011 Ahead

    Rising Wages Signal Shift in Q4 2011

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    PayScale released its results for The PayScale Index for Q4 of 2011 and you may be surprised to find out where workers' wages went in 2011. They are up across the board for the first time in a long time. While certain skills sets were in higher demand and some cities stayed in a slump, in general, earnings grew somewhat for the majority of workers by year-end 2011.

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  • Best Stories of the Year

    A Look Back: Top Stories of 2011

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    As we head into 2012, HR leaders and business owners can take heart in the more positive unemployment news and the (spoiler alert) optimistic, soon-to-be-released Q4 2011 results for The PayScale Index. The economy made forward progress in 2011. What was on our readers' minds and what were the favorite stories and topics here on Compensation Today? The following list highlights the hottest, not-to-be-missed posts of 2011.

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  • FLSA Child Labor Laws

    FLSA Series Part 3: Child Labor Laws

    This is the third of a series of articles explaining the Fair Labor Standards Act, FLSA, or the Wage and Hour Law. This article will discuss the child labor laws under the FLSA. Be aware that to be in full compliance, you should also check to see if your state has additional regulations. I know my state of California does.

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  • Rules on Pay After a Resignation

    Do Voluntary Resignations Require Advance Notice?

    When you’re watching your labor costs, it is important to know how to handle an employee resignation, compensation-wise. If you require employees to provide two weeks’ notice of their resignation, you may have to pay them for that full period even if you release them earlier. But, even if you only request the advance notice, it still may be better employee relations to pay for that full two-week period.

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  • Listen Up, Mr. Scrooge! PayScale Compensation Plan Advice

    What We Would Teach Ebeneezer Scrooge About Compensation

    Image001“Bah, humbug! Why should I pay my people another dime?”

    Beware, Managers, don't follow Scrooge’s miserly ways when it comes to compensation. As the classic tale goes, through various ghostly visits, our friend Mr. Scrooge learns to get into the holiday spirit and finally rewards his hardworking employee, Bob Cratchit, with a raise and a "discussion of his affairs." How would PayScale advise Scrooge to adjust his compensation philosophy for long-term success?

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  • What Small Companies Really Need from HR

    Large and In Charge: The Strategic Role of HR at Small Companies and Non-Profits

    4320245924_b8f945a7f8_bWith the buzz around talent management, organizational development, and management circles, the role of HR is becoming more sophisticated in larger organizations . But, in smaller companies and non-profits, HR professionals often still fill more traditional roles in areas like recruitment, benefits, payroll, and evaluation processes – not to mention being the on-staff therapist. It’s time for small organization HR professionals to dig out from under the heavy lifting and get into more strategic positions in the company. The company needs them to do so, and here is why.

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  • Handle Questions About Your Comp Decisions

    Are You Ready to Explain Each Employee’s Pay?

    How well can you explain your compensation plan to your employees? What if you were asked detailed questions by a valued employee about their pay? Would you be ready to respond?

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  • Small Company CEOs Work Hard and Earn Less

    Less Pay for Small Company CEOs

    5489061293_a9b463ae1fThanks to bank bailouts, Occupy Wall Street and other news, there is a lot of attention on CEO pay right now, especially as it compares to the average wages of employees. Whether you agree or disagree with a CEO making high wages at Fortune 1000 companies, it’s hard to argue that CEOs and other C-suite employees at small organizations are being overpaid.

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  • Do Attractive People Get More Jobs and Money?

    Good Looks Ensure More Jobs and Better Pay

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Nervous job interviewees may review their answers to common questions, shine their shoes and reapply their lipstick, but there are certain job interview success factors they cannot control, like their height and facial symmetry.

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  • FLSA Compliance - "11 Main Test" for Independent Contractors

    FLSA Series Part 2: Independent Contractor or Employee?

    5357085004_5906faca53_bThis is the second of a series of articles explaining the Fair Labor Standards Act, FLSA, or the Wage and Hour Law. Since the FLSA only applies to employees and not independent contractors, it behooves you to know how to make the distinction. I attended a recent continuing education class where the employment lawyer suggested anywhere from 10 percent to 30 percent of independent contractors paid on 1099s should really be classified as employees.

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  • Record Black Friday Sales Signal a Shift

    Hot Holiday Spending Begs Review of Comp Practices

    492893557_e23a26bd7d_oBy Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    You’ve likely heard the news that Black Friday and Cyber Monday spending topped all previous records - ever. “Where did they get that money to spend in a down economy?” you may wonder. “Is it still that far down?” would maybe be a better question. Considering the news, if you’re an employer, it may be time for you to review your current pay strategy and get up to date with the latest hustle and bustle.

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  • Why We're Thankful for HR

    3065338200_3a58e57428_oBy Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Happy Thanksgiving from everyone here at PayScale, and especially the Compensation Today team. When asked why everyone should be thankful for HR, PayScale's Director of Professional Services and Education, Stacey Carroll, said,

    "You are the heart and soul of your organization, you keep everyone in line and you always do it with a smile on your face."

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  • Non-Profit Compensation in a Down Economy

    Reality Check: Why Non-Profits Need to Evaluate Their Pay Practices in Today’s Economy

    The past few years have been tricky for many non-profits. Those that have weathered the recession have done so because they have had great financial advisors or have been really creative. While our private-sector counterparts may be starting to see the light at the end, many non-profits are still struggling.

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  • Holiday Pay for Employees

    Answers to 7 Holiday Pay Questions

    6394869841_b9d954ef90_bDo you have to provide paid holidays? What about for new employees? And do you have to pay overtime to employees who have to work a holiday? We’re officially heading into the holiday season with Thanksgiving coming up next week and Christmas and the New Year just around the corner. If you are like most employers, you may be dealing with holiday pay issues. To help you out, here are the answers to seven common holiday pay questions.

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  • Comp Basic: Mean vs. Median

    The Difference Between Mean and Median

    Midpoint, market ratio, mean, median, merit bonus - I don’t know what it is with “m” words in compensation, but there are a lot of them and it can get confusing. Let’s try to simplify things by breaking down the difference between two commonly confused words: mean and median.

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  • Tips for Entry-Level Recruiting

    Building an Entry-Level Talent Network

    By Brian Heifferon, AfterCollege

    Recruiting can be a thankless business. Recruiters know that the news headlines about historically high unemployment only tell a small part of the story. The fact is, it’s actually harder than ever to find highly qualified candidates in industries like high tech, engineering, accounting, science and healthcare. This shortage of in-demand talent is even more pronounced when you’re trying to identify top college students and recent graduates.

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  • PayScale Compensation Quiz

    Compensation Quiz: Are You a Comp Whiz Kid?

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Becoming a compensation whiz can be an intimidating task, especially with all of the lingo you need to know. How strong is your compensation know-how? This compensation quiz is intended help you test yourself and fill in the gaps in your knowledge.

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  • Take Caution When Terminating Older Employees

    Terminating Older Employees: OWBPA Q&A

    Release agreements can help prevent lawsuits when employees are terminated. But, if you want to protect against age discrimination claims, your release must meet eight specific criteria. The following question and answer transcript covers the basic issues you may run into when terminating older employees.

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