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  • Develop an Employee Health Survey

    The First Step to Building a Cost-Effective Corporate Wellness Program

    An effective employee health survey is the important first step to developing a cost-effective corporate wellness program in any size company. If HR and/or senior management implement employee wellness program components without staff input, disappointing attendance and poor return on investment (ROI) may have a negative effect on any future health promotion efforts.
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  • Lessons from SHRM San Diego 2010

    Lessons from SHRM San Diego: Do You Know Your Employee Strengths and Weaknesses?

    The annual SHRM national conference was held in San Diego, CA this year from June 27 through 30. The national SHRM conference is a great way to network with other HR professionals from all over the world, and also learn from industry leaders and experts. SHRM announced its new theme which is “HR knows next.” In a future post, I’ll share some of the ideas about how HR can live up to this brand. Today, I’d like to focus on the conference by starting at the end.
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  • Conversations that Change Employee Behavior

    Conversations that Change Employee Behavior

    Whether it’s explaining new medical benefits or why a team isn’t getting raises, HR professionals and business owners have difficult conversations of all kinds with employees. But, probably one of the most difficult is dealing with a behavior issue. Want to tell an employee that their team is frustrated by their attitude? Probably not. Confronting difficult employees is rarely a favorite task of an HR professional.
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  • Designation of FMLA Leave

    Make Medical Certifications Part of Your FMLA Process (Part 2 of 2)

    Medical certifications can help you determine whether FMLA leave is really needed and ensure that employee rights under FMLA leave are understood and their obligations met under the law.
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  • Honoring HR Leader Sharon Koss

    Honoring the Memory of HR Leader Sharon Koss

    By Staff Writer

    Last week, the staff at PayScale learned of the passing of a friend and long-time contributor to its education efforts, Sharon Koss, SPHR, CCP. Sharon had helped build up PayScale’s offering of webcasts on topics around strategic compensation, and had just begun contributing to a regular, bi-monthly column here on Compensation Today titled “Strategic Compensation with Sharon Koss.”
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  • FMLA Guidelines for Employers

    Make Medical Certifications Part of Your FMLA Process (Part 1 of 2)

    If you do not require employees to provide medical certification for FMLA leaves involving serious health conditions, you are missing out on an essential tool to ensure leaves are used properly.

    Are you like the majority of human resource professionals who have trouble determining when an employee has a serious health condition under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)? A recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) found that almost 60 percent of the survey respondents indicated they had trouble determining whether an employee’s illness met the FMLA’s definition of a “serious health condition.” In addition, 39 percent felt they had granted FMLA requests that may not have been legitimate.
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  • Employee Use of Medical Marijuana

    The Dope on Medical Marijuana for Employers

    Employee use of medical marijuana is one of the hot employer topics of the decade. As more states legalize the use of marijuana for medical purposes, more employers will have to decide how they will deal with employee drug use on and off the clock. As of 2007, it was estimated that 300,000 people in the United States were medical marijuana users (estimates based on data from Americans for Safe Access). And the numbers are growing.
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  • Sales Incentive Compensation Plan

    Does Your Sales Compensation Plan Need a Makeover?

    Few topics in compensation cause more debate and confusion than how to create a compensation plan for sales reps. One thing is clear: a sales compensation plan should be re-evaluated regularly, particularly in times of economic uncertainty.
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  • Employee Performance Feedback

    Steps to Giving Effective Employee Performance Feedback

    In a previous post, "Confronting Difficult Employees," we discussed how to work with the managers at your company to ensure that critical employee performance feedback is given to your employees in a consistent and fair manner. Now we’ll review, step-by-step, how to prepare effective employee feedback and then when and where to give it.
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  • Activities to Reduce Employee Stress

    Take a Deep Breath and Start Improving Employee Productivity

    What can companies do that is free, shows quick results, and can have a long term beneficial impact on employee’s mental, physical, and emotional well-being? Simple - teach them breathing techniques and activities to reduce stress.
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  • FLSA Requires Break Times for Nursing Mothers

    Breaks Now Required for Nursing Mothers

    If you are like most employers, you probably have not had time to consider the many new obligations imposed in the 2,000-plus pages of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Most of the provisions that substantially change how health care will be provided in this country do not take effect for several years, beginning in 2014.
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  • Advantages of an Effective Compensation Strategy

    What Is the Advantage of Taking the Time to Develop a Compensation Strategy?

    The biggest mistake an organization makes in setting up a compensation program is to rush into getting the answers without carefully considering the issues. Next to your organization’s strategic planning efforts, dovetailing the compensation philosophy to support the organization’s strategic plan is paramount to success. Not sitting down with your senior management team and clearly discussing the basic strategic decisions around pay can be very costly not only in organization success, but can expose the organization to possible law suits. Because of this, it’s essential for your organization to sit down and discuss how to integrate general business strategy with compensation strategy.
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  • Small Business Compensation Plan

    Developing a Small Business Compensation Plan

    I often get asked, “At what point (how many employees) should a company establish a formal compensation program?” It’s a good question with lots of different answers. Finding the “right” time depends on several factors. Let’s start with a couple of examples.
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  • Strategic Compensation Planning

    Coming in June: Strategic Compensation with Sharon Koss

    By Staff Writer

    How do you push for better compensation planning at your company? How can you analyze your company’s current compensation philosophy, improve it and then communicate those improvements to upper management?

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  • Federal Labor Laws on Unpaid Internships

    Summertime Blues: When Unpaid Internships Turn Into Wage Claims

    Pop Quiz! If you are a “for-profit” employer with unpaid employees called “Summer Interns,” you better make sure the internship passes muster with the Department of Labor lest you be the unwary object of claims for unpaid wages and overtime. Get your No. 2 pencils out for this internship pop quiz:
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  • HR Policies on Hiring Interns

    DOL to Give Intern Pay Practices Closer Look Q&A

    If you are hiring interns to work for you this summer, be aware that the DOL may be scrutinizing your pay practices. So, be sure you either pay them as employees or are able to prove that they meet the criteria for unpaid interns.
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  • Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act

    Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act Tax Incentives to Spur Job Growth

    On March 18, 2010, President Obama signed into law a $17.5 billion dollar jobs bill entitled the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act. This bill includes a number of government incentives for hiring, including tax cuts, business credits and subsidies for state and local construction bonds, and moves an additional $20 billion into the highway trust fund for new spending on highway and transit programs. The HIRE Act is aimed at providing hiring incentives for employers to restore some of the jobs lost during “the great recession.”
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  • Confronting Difficult Employees

    How to Have Tough Conversations with Employees

    Your employee was twenty minutes late to their shift on Monday and now it’s Thursday and it’s 15 minutes after they were supposed to arrive. They’re not around. You like this employee and have enjoyed their contributions. How can you have a conversation with them that will get them back on track and in the company’s good graces? This is a moment where knowing how to communicate effectively with staff and confronting difficult employees can help you get your job done.

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  • An Employer Guide to Healthcare Reform

    An Employer’s View of Health Care Reform and What’s Next

    Governor Schwarzenegger calls it “a good law.”

    Attorneys General from several states claim it’s unconstitutional.

    Whatever you have to say about it, Health Care Reform legislation is changing the face of health care for employers, big and small. The following list will give you a head’s up regarding some of the big changes coming in the next two years, and what you need to know from an employer’s view of healthcare reform. As a general proposition, health care reform will eventually require most individuals to get health insurance or pay a penalty. But what is going to happen this year and the next?
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  • Standard Employment Application Form

    The Case for Using a Standard Employment Application Form

    Do you have a standard employment application form that you require all candidates to fill out? If you do not, you should consider using one.

    Most employers use application forms to solicit information that may be missing from applicants’ resumes and to establish a single, uniform document for all job candidates or groups of candidates. Standardizing the type of hiring information gathered makes it easier to compare job candidates objectively and can help protect you from discrimination claims.
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