Five Ways to Prevent Workplace Harassment [Video Blog]

Posted on Jul 17, 2019 6:00:00 AM

Every employer should make preventing workplace harassment a top priority Harassment is a form of employment discrimination that may violate federal laws such Title VII of the Civil Rights Act; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act; and the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued a list of best practices for employers to use to prevent harassment in their workplaces. These include:

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Six Steps for Avoiding Rejected Job Offers [Video Blog]

Posted on Jul 3, 2019 5:00:00 AM

A rejected job offer for a key position can cost your organization thousands of dollars in wasted time and expenses. Fortunately, rejected offers are not inevitable. Creating a great job offer requires research and the ability to sell both the position and your organization. Taking a few simple but necessary steps can help get you and your ideal candidate on the same page. Consider the following:

1. Gather information from employees. Survey your new hires to find out why they accepted their jobs. Ask them which parts of the offer were most attractive, which were neutral, and which were negative. While you’re at it, ask these new hires—and even applicants—about your recruitment process. This is the only aspect of your company an applicant will have been exposed to, so he or she may judge the company overall based on impressions formed during this time.

2. Take a close look at your offer letter. Is it effective in describing the job and painting the company in a positive light? Does it include all the perks, benefits, and incentives available to employees? Does it stand out among the competition? You can even ask your new hires if they’d be willing to share offer letters they’ve received from other organizations to assess whether you’re in line with industry norms.

3. Talk to the ones that got away. Reach out to candidates who declined your offer and ask if they’d be willing to complete a survey. Most will initially cite salary as the reason they rejected your organization, but this may not truly be the case. If you contact them three to six months later you are likely to receive a more complete answer. Also consider running focus groups at industry events to learn why people in your field accept or reject offers.

4. Sell the supervisor. A candidate’s perception of his or her direct supervisor is critical. It is always beneficial for the supervisor to interview the candidate. Both parties need to evaluate their potential relationship. Most applicants are concerned with open communication; flexibility; growth and learning opportunities; and control of whom they work with and when their work must take place. Tell applicants what they can expect on a daily basis, both in terms of the relationship with their manager and their role within a team or department.


5. Think about timing. The timing of your offer can make a big difference. If a candidate receives an offer from another company, you should make your offer sooner to compete. If your recruit is not actively job searching, it may be more effective to move slowly. This gives your candidate time to get comfortable with the idea of making a move.

6. Tailor offer to the specific candidate’s needs. During the interview process, ask questions like “What elements of the profession do you want more or less of in your next job?” and “What would be your dream job in terms of location, co-workers, projects, work environment, and manager?” Ask, “What is your worst-case job situation, and why?” Use this feedback to create a job offer letter that speaks to the individual.

In closing, remember that even seemingly ideal job offers get rejected. There are only so many variables you can control. But gathering information, evaluating your process, and being willing to make changes will go a long way toward limiting your number of rejected offers.

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Do's and Don'ts for ADA Reasonable Accommodations [Video Blog]

Posted on May 22, 2019 5:00:00 AM

The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law in 1990 to prevent discrimination against people with disabilities. In 2008, the law was updated to broaden the definition of disability. Among other things, the law requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations for disabled individuals during all phases of employment. Failing to comply can result in costly lawsuits and enforcement actions.

Let’s look at some simple Do’s and Don’ts that can help you avoid common mistakes about reasonable accommodations:

DO begin with the decision to educate yourself. Knowledge of the law will help you prepare, so you can protect your company from liability.

DON’T end the conversation too quickly if you can’t easily identify a reasonable accommodation. These might include working part time, reassigning the employee, or providing an unpaid leave of absence.

DO keep job descriptions up to date, including essential functions. You have a responsibility to reasonably accommodate an employee who can’t perform an essential function. But you are not obligated to eliminate an essential function, such as lifting, standing, or working long hours. Accurate job descriptions can help legally prove which functions are essential and which are not.

DON’T take a manager’s word that a specific function is essential. This can be contested if the issue goes to court. Employers should investigate for themselves and decide whether a function is essential.

DO create and distribute a reasonable accommodation policy to show your commitment to ADA compliance. The policy should direct all reasonable accommodation requests to Human Resources, not supervisors. HR professionals are better equipped to deal with the nuances and legal risks of handling ADA requests.


DON’T overuse the undue hardship provision to deny accommodations. Factors such as cost or other employees’ reactions are generally not acceptable reasons for refusing an accommodation.

DO train supervisors to refer reasonable accommodation requests to HR. In addition, they should know how to handle ADA situations in job interviews and daily work with employees.

DON’T discuss details of an employee’s disability with his or her manager. The manager needs to know only about the accommodation being provided. An exception would be a disability that affects how the manager will interact with the employee, such as a hearing impairment.

DO consider other laws applicable to an employee’s disability. For example, a disability under the ADA often also qualifies as a serious health condition under FMLA, so FMLA provisions might come into play.

DON’T outright reject a request because it seems impractical. Follow the process and work toward a resolution.

DO make sure to properly document all accommodation requests, particularly those that are denied. Careful documentation will help you defend your decision in the event of future litigation.

DON’T be tempted to eliminate essential functions of a job, even for a limited time. This can make it harder to argue later that the function is essential for the current or any future employee.

DO take responsibility. Employers are ultimately responsible for investigating possible accommodations. If an employee doesn’t offer suggestions after a request, do try to find an accommodation for them.

DON’T take performance into account when deciding if an accommodation is reasonable. All workers should be treated the same in this process, whether high performers or underachievers.

In closing, remember that the burden has shifted to employers to provide reasonable accommodations and to show care in handling disability issues in the workplace. Keep your organization in compliance by learning about the ADA and the ADA amendments act. This can help protect you from costly lawsuits and penalties down the line.

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How to Hire Top Talent for Your Business - Part 1 [Video Blog]

Posted on Aug 31, 2017 6:00:00 AM

We all know you need skilled and dedicated employees to build and grow your business. Attracting the right people is essential to positioning your company for growth and success, but establishing your company as a destination for top talent takes effort. 

You've got to lead the competition on two fronts by: (1) offering an attractive compensation and benefits package, and (2) showcasing a corporate brand and culture that both excites and motivates candidates.

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3 Tax Recordkeeping Tips for Employers [Video Blog]

Posted on Jul 20, 2017 6:00:00 AM

You may not give much thought to doing your taxes outside of tax season, but some of the expenses you pay during the year might qualify for money-saving tax credits or deductions come tax time. If you organize your tax records now, you'll make tax filing easier and faster when you do them next year. It also helps reduce the chance that you'll lose a receipt or statement that you need. 

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Do You Need a Cell Phone Policy in Your Workplace? [Video Blog]

Posted on Oct 5, 2016 6:00:00 AM

It's likely that most, if not all, of your employees bring a personal cell phone to the office. Determining when it is acceptable for your employees to use their personal cell phones in the workplace, and when it is not, requires a careful balancing act.

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Are Unpaid Internships Worth the Hassle? [Video Blog]

Posted on Jul 3, 2014 2:05:17 PM

We are going to discuss unpaid internships and whether they're really worth the hassle.

A fact sheet issued by the U.S. Department of Labor outlines six criteria that categorize employment as an internship rather than paid employment:

1. The internship is similar to training which would be given in an educational environmentHELP_UNPAID_INTERNS_800px-1;
2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
4. The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern, and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship. 

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5 Tips on Payroll Outsourcing for Employers

Posted on Aug 1, 2013 7:30:00 AM

Many employers outsource their payroll and related tax duties to third-party payers such as payroll service providers and reporting agents. Reputable third-party payers can help employersOutsourcing Payroll streamline their business operations by collecting and timely depositing payroll taxes on the employer's behalf and filing required payroll tax returns with state and federal authorities.

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Employee Termination: Checklist & Guidelines for Employers

Posted on Jul 26, 2013 7:30:00 AM

Termination is never an easy part of a manager’s job. But the steps you take beforehand can reduce the difficulty and the company’s possible exposure to wrongful termination lawsuits.

HR experts agree that firing an employee shouldn’t come out of the blue. Termination should beTermination the final step in a thorough process of establishing company policy, regular performance evaluations, constructive discipline and dispassionate consideration of the employee’s risk and value to the company.

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The Importance of a Clear Social Media Policy

Posted on Jul 11, 2013 7:30:00 AM

Social media, with its ability to reach millions of potential customers with the click of a mouse, can be a marketing boon to companies. It can also present some serious challenges for employers due to the fluid nature of the boundaries between personal and company social media.

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