• Employee Benefits Plans Communication

    Responsibility Rests on Both Sides in Health Benefits Communication

    A May 2011 case before the U.S. Supreme Court, Cigna v. Amara, centered on whether critical information about Cigna’s pension benefits were properly communicated in the company’s Summary Plan Description (SPD), a federally required summary of plan benefits that must be distributed to employees, retirees and beneficiaries. At the heart of the case is the employees’ contention that Cigna failed to fully and clearly disclose a change in its pension plan which, if employees had understood it, might have spurred them to retire or take another job.

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  • Human Resources Managers Know

    The Honor of Working in Human Resources

    For the last three years, I have had the privilege of talking to many Human Resources professionals in the United States and Canada. There is a border between some of us, and we are in a multitude of industries, yet one thing remains constant: we know what is really going on with pay in our companies.

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  • Canadian Pay Trends

    Welcome, Canada, to The PayScale Index!

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Last week, PayScale released the most recent results for The PayScale Index, covering Q2 of 2011. And, for the first time ever, The PayScale Index included information about Canadian national pay trends. Guess what? Wages in Canada are growing overall, unlike the US where wages are flat, nationally. Canadian employers, you’d better be have a plan to benchmark positions against current data and work to retain your top performers. Your labor market is heating up.

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  • SHRM 2011 – Aligning Comp with Business Goals

    SHRM 2011: “Stupid Things” We Do in Compensation

    I learned a very important lesson during my first speaking engagement at the SHRM national conference: Be careful what you say. During my conference break-out session titled “Aligning Your Compensation Strategy with Business Priorities” I said, “I’m on a mission to eliminate the stupid things we do in compensation.” A writer from the SHRM newsletter was listening. Guess which quote led his article? Yep, you guessed it.

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  • Top Performers: Key to Business Success

    Top Performers Boost Your Bottom Line

    As many of you are well aware, your top performers can be the difference between a company that is successful and a company that is not. But, you may not be able to convince your leadership that you need compensation policies that account for this fact. Hopefully, the following information will help.

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  • How to Avoid EEOC Complaints in Hiring

    Employing The Right Way

    Many employers these days have countless ways they conduct the recruitment and hiring processes. And, I’m willing to bet many of those employers have forgotten that they are bound by Federal law on discriminatory practices, starting at the very beginning…recruitment. Discrimination is a very costly mistake that can bring an employer both financial penalties, as well as a poor public image. The following are some important things to remember when it comes to recruitment and hiring practices.

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  • How to Avoid Pay Compression

    Pay Compression: Our Nightmare in the World of Compensation

    Compression is the ugliest issue compensation professionals face. It tends to be a no-win, lose-lose situation, and the ways to deal with it are limited.

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  • SHRM Conference 2011 Las Vegas – Tweets

    SHRM Conference 2011 – Tweets from Vegas

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Did you make it to the 2011 National SHRM Conference in Las Vegas and see Arianna Huffington and Michael J. Fox present? If not, no worries. We were there, and we sent our director of professional services and education, Stacey Carroll, CCP, SPHR, to tweet about what she heard from the keynote speakers.

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  • Summer Dress Code at Work

    Is Your Dress Code Ready for Summer?

    It is summertime, and you know what that means – it is the season when your employees bare arms, legs, and maybe more than you want to see. Find out five tips you can you use to get everyone to dress appropriately in the warm weather.

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  • HR View of “Horrible Bosses”

    How to Handle “Horrible Bosses”

    You may have seen the trailer for the upcoming big movie release “Horrible Bosses.” It features quite an all-star cast - Jennifer Aniston, Colin Farrell, Jason Bateman, Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, and the list goes on - for a topic that hits home for many the average Joe. The movie takes things to an extreme – a plot to kill these so-called horrible bosses, but the frustration and dissatisfaction are feelings that all too many people can understand. As HR professionals, isn’t it our dream to live in a world where way less people can relate to this movie?

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  • Walmart Lawsuit Sends Employers a Warning

    Watch Out for Trouble: Walmart’s Legal Battle Over Pay

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Walmart is in hot legal water. Though a nationwide sexual discrimination lawsuit was just settled in their favor by the Supreme Court, it looks like they have similar, though smaller, suits on the way – possibly a lot of them. What do we know about Walmart and what can we learn from this cautionary tale for employers?

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  • Good Management Skills for Earning More

    HR Knows: Managers Who Set Pay Are Paid More

    See if the following fact surprises you: PayScale data shows the management responsibility that most improves salaries is the responsibility to set pay for employees. Shocked, doubtful or nodding your head and thinking, “I already knew that”?

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  • Hiring News: Jobs for College Grads

    Trends in Hiring College Students and Recent Graduates

    Today’s talent pool of college students and recent grads is more resourceful, strategic, and determined than ever to find the best fit in launching their career. They are sophisticated in their job search, utilizing technology and information to target companies like yours. These findings are reported in AfterCollege.com’s annual student insight survey, 2011 Entry-Level Job Search Report: Insights on Recruiting the Next Generation of Talent.

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  • FLSA on High School Summer Interns and Volunteers

    Paying Summer Interns Less Than (or No) Minimum Wage

    It’s summer intern season, and you may be tempted to hire a high school or college student who will work for less than the minimum wage or even for “free.” But, the Department of Labor (DOL) has very specific requirements for unpaid interns and volunteers, and allows only certain employees to be paid a subminimum wage.

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  • Google’s HR Practices Explained

    What Would Google Do?

    I was able to attend the World@Work conference in San Diego recently. This event is always a wonderful opportunity to get away from the daily grind and spend some time on my professional development. I enjoyed great sessions, met some nice people and even managed to fit in some work at our booth in the exhibit hall. Like my experience at most conferences, there are usually one or two sessions that really stick with me, and this time it was a presentation by the compensation team at Google.

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  • Bonus Plan for Executives

    Executive Bonus Planning: An Overview of Short-Term Incentives

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    Executive pay planning can be an intimidating process, even for seasoned HR professionals. In the upcoming series of posts on the topic, we hope to enlighten you on the basics of executive pay, as well as get into the details on topics like restricted stock grants and deferred compensation. We’ll start with this up-close look at short-term incentives, or a bonus plan.

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  • Practical Performance Evaluation Tips

    Performance Evaluation Tips: How to Motivate Management to Complete the Process

    How do you get supervisors to get those performance appraisals done? Here are some ideas that may help.

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  • Beware Employer: References Online Tell All

    Your Secrets Are Out: Employees Share Online

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    More and more, these days, employees are spilling the beans about their employers online. While Facebook isn’t the most intelligent place to comment on an employer, career websites, blogs, job listing sites and more are seeking the inside scoop from current and former employees of organizations. PayScale has covered one angle of this trend for many years, salary data. But, now we’re branching out and making more of an effort to reveal employees’ answers to the question, “What’s it like to work there?”

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  • Co-Worker Quirks and Perks

    Learning to Appreciate Quirky Co-Workers

    I was taking a class one summer when the professor gave us an assignment and said those dreaded words, “This assignment will be a group project.” I balked, and his response to my eye roll was simple: “Life is a group project. There are contributors and there are slackers and that is something you just have to get used to.” That is when I realized that I have been participating in “group projects” my entire life, especially at work.

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  • How to Identify Low Performance - Management Tips

    Underwhelming: Sure Signs of Low Performance

    How do you know if an employee isn’t reaching their goals, pulling their weight or just plain getting the job done? Identifying low performance can be tricky. And, training managers to do it is often challenging since every manager has their own personality and way of relating to their team. How can you simplify the task of identifying low performance and training others to do it well?

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