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  • Refining Employee Compensation Plans

    Refining Employee Compensation Plans

    Employers and HR professionals alike put a lot of time, research, and energy into developing a strong and attractive employee compensation plan. Stacking benefits like profit–sharing and team-based pay onto basic compensation is commonly done, then that approach is reviewed, researched, and refined over time.

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  • Examining the Adverse Impacts of Layoffs

    Think Before You Fire: Designing an Adverse Impact Analysis

    In our tough economy, laying off employees has become a knee-jerk reaction when budgets get tight. But, what are the true effects of employee layoffs and how might choosing them wreak havoc later on? Losing a skilled, experienced and loyal employee can hurt your bottom line over time.

    In this post we’ll discuss how you can help your managers and the leadership at your company make smart choices about staffing so that the company stays healthy long term.

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  • How to Deal with Employee Emotions

    How to Deal with Employee Emotions in the Workplace

    How do you manage your workforce effectively so that you have the expectation of high performance while demonstrating your genuine compassion for an employee? While you may think that you want a little bit of both at all times – both compassion and pushing the employee - this “sweet spot” is not a balance. Compassion and motivation are not at opposite ends of the same spectrum. One does not need to be sacrificed for the sake of the other.

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  • Writing Creative Job Postings

    Put Your Job Postings to Work for You

    I am always telling people to think outside of the box when working through human resources issues. For some reason, we have gotten ourselves stuck in the box in several area, including job postings, which is no fun and not helpful to our organizations.

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  • Pay-for-Performance Plans Make a Comeback

    Back to Normal: Review Your Pay-for-Peformance Plan Now

    Thinking about merit increases again for the first time in a very long time?

    The evening news reports that the economic recovery is shaky, with steps forward and steps back, but some companies are doing well again. If the annual pay-for-performance plan at your work was put on hold, but you can now consider starting it up again, here are some back-to-basics steps to follow.

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  • Emotional Intelligence in the Business Workplace

    Emotional Intelligence: Two Approaches in the Workplace

    Humans are emotional creatures and emotions can get messy. Is it possible to keep that mess to a minimum at work? Let’s look at whether we, as managers in the workplace, should spend time helping our employees deal with their emotions or if it is best to let the employees work out their emotions on their own. Those two extreme approaches have the pros and cons.

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  • Emotion in the Workplace

    Emotion in the Workplace: How Much Should Managers Focus On It?

    Have you ever been accused of being too “touchy-feely?” Or have you avoided that label as if it were an insult? If the term “touchy-feely” gets used around your office, it probably doesn’t get defined and may mean different things to different people.

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  • 6 Tips for Writing Employee Evaluations

    Writing Effective Employee Evaluations

    Employee evaluations are tools that are often seen in the business world as “necessary evils.” For most part, they are only really pushed by human resource professionals who need paper trails for employees who are performing adequately, or poorly.

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  • The Top HR Changes Due to Healthcare Reform

    Fall Open Enrollment Season: Health Care Reform Starts to Take Effect

    October traditionally marks the beginning of health insurance open enrollment season, during which employees can review and change their health plan benefits. Employers that don’t require an “active” enrollment and/or that have not made substantive plan changes for some time may find that their employees pay scant attention, automatically selecting the plans they had the previous year without looking to see what’s new.

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  • Employee Code of Conduct

    Employee Code of Conduct – Definition and Design

    I would define an employee code of conduct as a general guideline for workplace performance that enforces key work ethics and severely discourages unethical, immoral, or illegal behavior. A code of conduct can be either an introduction to the employee handbook or, in some cases, a completely separate document that is reviewed and signed at the time of hiring.

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  • Writing an Employee Termination Letter

    Writing an Employee Termination Letter: How Much to Include? Q&A

    Find out the pros and cons of putting your termination reasons in a written employee termination letter.

    Q: We want to provide employees who are terminated with a brief employee termination letter explaining our reasoning and informing them about administrative issues like COBRA and returning office keys. How much detail should be included about the reason for termination?

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  • Company-Wide Incentive Programs: Q&A

    Designing Bonus Plans That Cut Business Costs

    What are some smart approaches to designing company-wide incentive programs? Bonus incentives are powerful tools and can both create success or wreak havoc. Careful planning is key. HR expert Stacey Carroll, director of customer service and marketing at PayScale, recently addressed the following questions during a webinar titled Aligning Your Compensation Strategy with Business Priorities:
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  • HR’s Perspective on the Jet Blue Flight Attendant

    A Look at Employee Behavior: The Case of the Jet Blue Flight Attendant

    By now we’ve all heard about the tirade of Jet Blue flight attendant Steve Slater, although the ground swell of support and assignment of cult hero status seems to have shifted some since the story first broke. As an HR professional, it was disconcerting to see the acceptance and praise of his actions. While most people can relate to a time when they’ve been fed up at work, it’s irresponsible and potentially dangerous to reward and encourage the expression of that anger in destructive ways at the workplace.
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  • How Do I Design a Compensation Plan?

    How Do I Design a Compensation Plan That’s Customized to My Organization?

    In a previous post "Customize Your Compensation Plan for Your Organization," we shared the first three of six tips from HR expert Stacey Carroll, MBA, SPHR, on how to design a custom compensation plan so that your organization stays lean and competitive. Here are the final three tips, as explained by Ms. Carroll, which deal with merit increases, budgeting and compensation plan design.

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  • Customize Your Compensation Plan for Your Organization

    Help Your Company Stay Afloat: Customize Your Compensation Plan

    In an era of small budgets and stiff competition how can you, the HR professional, help make sure that your company is thriving, ten and twenty years from now? You need to get very specific and very strategic about your compensation decisions. You can’t just take a cookie cutter approach to your compensation strategy. If you want to beat your competition in business, you need to be different than your competition in your compensation plan. And the best way to do that is to customize your compensation plan to fit your organization.

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  • FLSA Administrative Exemption

    Complying with the FLSA Administrative Exemption Q&A

    Are you in compliance with the FLSA administrative exemption regulations? Find out if your administrative assistants meet these very specific criteria.

    Q: We have an employee whose title is administrative assistant to the CEO. She is essential to the CEO and often works more than 40 hours a week. She is paid overtime as a nonexempt employee, but we are wondering if her job duties meet the criteria for the administrative exemption. What are the criteria?
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  • Myths About Employee Pay Practices

    Not True! 4 Common Myths About Paying Employees

    By Staff Writer

    In HR, as in all professions, there are rules of the road and basic bits of wisdom that most practitioners follow. For human resources professionals, a lot of this wisdom has to do with how people are paid and what motivates them.
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  • Developing a Competitive Compensation Strategy

    Strategic Compensation and Your Position in the Market

    Smart HR leaders regularly ask themselves a key question when planning a human resources compensation strategy, “Have we positioned ourselves well relative to the market?” In order to answer this question, you must first know how competitive you want and need your compensation plan to be. Then, you can build pay ranges in alignment with your competitive compensation strategy.
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  • Employee Dress Code Policy for Summer

    Tank Top Trouble: Tips for Employee Dress During Summer

    As the weather warms up, you may find that more and more people are crossing the line of what’s appropriate to wear in the work place. From low-cut blouses to too-short of shorts, this situation can create a need to talk about a summer dress code and how your organization wants to manage employees who need to either cover up or go home and change.
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  • Integrating General Business Strategy with Compensation

    Decided, Defined, Done: Why You Need a Business and Compensation Strategy Right Now

    I have written lately about the importance of integrating general business strategy with compensation. The fact is that your business strategy is likely more clearly defined right now than your compensation strategy. You might not even have a compensation strategy at all. Do you know where you want to be in the market as an employer, compared to your competition? Are you hiring in a range that you can afford long-term?
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