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get the most bang for your hr education buck

​best-selling author martin yate, a career coach and former hr professional, takes your questions each week about how to further your career in hr. contact him at the e-mail address at the end of this column.i just graduated in may and began working as an office administrator. i've taken on management responsibilities, as my boss would like to focus on other things (we are a small team). i spoke with my employer, and he would like me to educate myself on the additional responsibilities, which include managing all hr duties. i am trying to decide how to do that. there are so many options, from taking a fundamentals course to working toward a master's degree. can you suggest how i can get the education i need for the best value, whether it ...




for open enrollment, communications get social

this is the second in a series of articles on meeting fall 2018 open-enrollment challenges for 2019 benefits. the first article in this series was online platforms transform open enrollment. now that most of the u.s. population owns a smartphone, hr benefits managers have a new, direct way to get in touch with employees during open enrollment: social media and text messaging."employers need to send creative messaging to meet the employees where they are," said shelly mclean, a principal atbenefits tech consultancy firm onedigital health and benefits. she advises employers to "evolve their benefits communication plan to keep up with the times."social media"social media presents an opportunity to reach your employees, their depende...




for open enrollment, communications get social

this is the second in a series of articles on meeting fall 2018 open-enrollment challenges for 2019 benefits. the first article in this series was online platforms transform open enrollment. now that most of the u.s. population owns a smartphone, hr benefits managers have a new, direct way to get in touch with employees during open enrollment: social media and text messaging."employers need to send creative messaging to meet the employees where they are," said shelly mclean, a principal atbenefits tech consultancy firm onedigital health and benefits. she advises employers to "evolve their benefits communication plan to keep up with the times."social media"social media presents an opportunity to reach your employees, their depende...




for open enrollment, communications get social

this is the second in a series of articles on meeting fall 2018 open-enrollment challenges for 2019 benefits. the first article in this series was online platforms transform open enrollment. now that most of the u.s. population owns a smartphone, hr benefits managers have a new, direct way to get in touch with employees during open enrollment:  social media and text messaging."employers need to send creative messaging to meet the employees where they are," said shelly mclean, a principal atbenefits tech consultancy firm onedigital health and benefits. she advises employers to "evolve their benefits communication plan to keep up with the times."social media"social media presents an opportunity to reach your employees, their depen...




full-time attendance is not necessarily an essential job function

​a human resource representative who was diagnosed with postpartum depression and separation anxiety and was fired after she could not return to full-time office attendance stated valid discrimination claims, the 6th u.s. circuit court of appeals ruled.the plaintiff was hired as an hr generalist by the college of wooster in late summer 2013. she was hired while she was four months pregnant and was told by wooster that her pregnancy would be accommodated. wooster's policy was to allow new employees 12 weeks' unpaid maternity leave under the family and medical leave act (fmla), even if they did not qualify for leave under the law.the plaintiff started her maternity leave at the beginning of february 2014 and took her full 12 weeks, which ex...




vague doctor’s note did not prove the need for extra lunchtime

​a former employee who submitted a vague doctor's note and then resigned during the interactive accommodation process could not establish that her former employer failed to provide her with a reasonable accommodation pursuant to the americans with disabilities act (ada).the plaintiff, a receptionist for uaw-gm center for human resources (chr), was born with crouzon syndrome, a genetic disorder for which she had undergone multiple surgeries over the years. for each surgery, chr granted her time away from work. chr allowed employees to select a 30- or 60-minute lunch break, effective for the year. employees who selected a 30-minute break were allowed two additional 15-minute breaks, but under normal circumstances these breaks were not to be...




for open enrollment, communications get social

this is the second in a series of articles on meeting fall 2018 open-enrollment challenges for 2019 benefits. the first article in this series was online platforms transform open enrollment. now that most of the u.s. population owns a smartphone, hr benefits managers have a new, direct way to get in touch with employees during open enrollment:  social media and text messaging."employers need to send creative messaging to meet the employees where they are," said shelly mclean, a principal atbenefits tech consultancy firm onedigital health and benefits. she advises employers to "evolve their benefits communication plan to keep up with the times."social media"social media presents an opportunity to reach your employees, their depen...




dol focuses on compliance-based programs

employers may get a little more help from the u.s. department of labor (dol) through its office of compliance initiatives (oci). the new office will assist employers in preventing workplace violations and protecting employees' wages, benefits and other rights under federal labor laws."oci appears to be a promising program that has the potential to help both employers and employees alike," said james plunkett, an attorney with ogletree deakins in washington, d.c. small businesses and employees don't generally have the time or resources to navigate the constantly changing interpretations of all the laws that fall under the dol's purview, he said. "oci is intended to provide these stakeholders with straightforward answers to the questions ...




employee discipline for the new workplace

progressive discipline, as practiced in most organizations, is legally defensible … and flawed in its logic. it is rooted in the decades-old mindset that treating people progressively worse will cause them to improve, or at least it will protect the organization from liability when they don't. lawrence stessin, a management professor at hofstra university from 1958 to 1973, wrote this in his 1960 book employee discipline (bna inc.): "on a broader canvas, employee discipline is a process of control. it is a method for the maintenance of authority by management. … a reprimand, a layoff, or a discharge are the prerogatives which management uses as a control to keep (its) objectives in focus." does that sound like a comment from one of...




what are an applicant’s tattoos telling potential employers?

​the job candidate sitting in front of you has tattoos covering most of her left arm. fair or not, you may conclude that the markings paint her as a renegade and, possibly, even as irresponsible or unreliable. yet a different manager sitting across from the very same woman might see her tattoos as a sign that she's progressive, creative and able to relate to younger customers. that is how differently today's employers view body art when they consider how well-equipped candidates are for the jobs they're trying to fill. in fact, the research findings on how tattoos affect a job candidate's hiring prospects differ widely. on the one hand, a study published in august by professors at the university of miami and the university of weste...




what are an applicant’s tattoos telling potential employers?

​the job candidate sitting in front of you has tattoos covering most of her left arm. fair or not, you may conclude that the markings paint her as a renegade, and possibly irresponsible and unreliable. yet another manager sitting across from the very same woman might see her tattoos as a sign that she's progressive, creative and able to relate to younger customers. that is how differently today's employers view body art when they consider how well-equipped candidates are for the jobs they're trying to fill. in fact, the research findings on how tattoos affect a job candidate's hiring prospects differ widely. on the one hand, a study published in august by professors at the university of miami and the university of western australia fou...




putting humanity into hr compliance: try executive coaching

​editor's note: today we launch a new twice-monthly column: "putting humanity into hr compliance." author jathan janove will offer insights on how hr professionals can combine compassion, understanding and empathy with employment law compliance and claim prevention. drawing on the knowledge of experts and accomplished hr professionals, as well as his own expertise, janove will share specific examples of how to work more humanity into discipline, discharge, harassment investigations, performance reviews, health benefits, family and medical leave act and americans with disabilities act administration, and a host of other compliance areas for which hr typically has responsibility.if you have questions or suggestions for topics, pleas...




how to reduce employee turnover through robust retention strategies

​shrm has partnered with security management magazine to bring you relevant articles on key hr topics and strategies.  roughly 42 million u.s. employees, or more than one in four workers, will leave their jobs this year to go work for another company, according to the recently released 2018 retention report: truth and trends in turnover. it doesn't have to be this way. "more than three in four employees (77 percent) who quit could have been retained by employers," write the authors of the study, which was conducted by the tennessee-based work institute using data from more than 234,000 exit interviews.turnover trends such as these are compelling many companies and managers to up their games when it comes to their employee retentio...




maryland’s sexual-harassment disclosure law takes effect soon

maryland's "disclosing sexual harassment in the workplace act of 2018" takes effect on oct. 1. the act prohibits certain waivers related to an employee's future sexual-harassment claims and future retaliation claims for making a sexual-harassment claim. it also requires employers with at least 50 employees to complete a survey disclosing the number of sexual-harassment settlements in which the employer has entered.the act passed the maryland general assembly nearly unanimously and was signed into law by gov. larry hogan in may.restrictions on agreementsthe act specifies that, effective oct. 1:except as prohibited by federal law, any provision in an employment contract, policy or agreement that waives any "substantive or procedural right ...




paid leave is coming to a michigan workplace near you

on sept. 5, the michigan senate and house of representatives adopted a citizen-initiated paid leave ballot proposal that was supposed to be put to a vote in the november 2018 general elections.unlike the ballot initiative, which would have had immediate effect, the adopted proposal will not go into effect until 90 days after the end of the current legislative session, on or about april 1, 2019. without immediate effect, the legislature will have an opportunity to amend the proposal after the general election in what is commonly known as the lame duck session. the advantage to employers is that the legislature and gov. rick snyder have the ability to rewrite the adopted proposal with a simple majority rather than a supermajority of 75 percent...




dol focuses on compliance-based programs

employers may get a little more help from the u.s. department of labor (dol) through its office of compliance initiatives (oci). the new office will assist employers in preventing workplace violations and to protect employees' wages, benefits and other rights under federal labor laws."oci appears to be a promising program that has the potential to help both employers and employees alike," said james plunkett, an attorney with ogletree deakins in washington, d.c. small businesses and employees don't generally have the time or resources to navigate the constantly changing interpretations of all the laws that fall under the dol's purview, he said. "oci is intended to provide these stakeholders with straightforward answers to the questions ...




get the most bang for your hr education buck

​best-selling author martin yate, a career coach and former hr professional, takes your questions each week about how to further your career in hr. contact him at the e-mail address at the end of this column.i just graduated in may and began working as an office administrator. i've taken on management responsibilities, as my boss would like to focus on other things (we are a small team). i spoke with my employer, and he would like me to educate myself on the additional responsibilities, which include managing all hr duties. i am trying to decide how to do that. there are so many options, from taking a fundamentals course to working toward a master's degree. can you suggest how i can get the education i need for the best value, whether it ...




employee discipline for the new workplace

"progressive discipline," as practiced in most organizations, is legally defensible … and flawed in its logic. it is rooted in the decades-old mindset that treating people progressively worse will cause them to improve, or at least it will protect the organization from liability when they don't. lawrence stessin, a management professor at hofstra university from 1958 to 1973, wrote this in his 1960 book employee discipline (bna incorporated): "on a broader canvas, employee discipline is a process of control. it is a method for the maintenance of authority by management. … a reprimand, a layoff, or a discharge are the prerogatives which management uses as a control to keep (its) objectives in focus." does that sound like a comment f...




what are an applicant’s tattoos telling potential employers?

​the job candidate sitting in front of you has tattoos covering most of her left arm. fair or not, you may conclude that the markings paint her as a renegade, and possibly irresponsible and unreliable. yet another manager sitting across from the very same woman might see her tattoos as a sign that she's progressive, creative and able to relate to younger customers. that is how differently today's employers view body art when they consider how well-equipped candidates are for the jobs they're trying to fill. in fact, the research findings on how tattoos affect a job candidate's hiring prospects differ widely. on the one hand, a study published in august by professors at the university of miami and the university of western australia fou...




promotion criteria should be the same for men and women

​women should not have to meet higher standards than men to be promoted, a recent equal employment opportunity commission (eeoc) lawsuit suggested. employees instead should be evaluated for promotion by objective criteria applied equally to all workers.those criteria might include job performance, tenure with the company and skills, noted kofi semenya, an attorney with isaac wiles in columbus, ohio.intangibles may be factored in as well, such as how employees considered for promotion get along with others, noted myrna maysonet, an attorney with greenspoon marder in orlando, fla. but she said that if employers hope to win cases challenging denials of promotion, they must use the same objective criteria with everyone. "you want to try and g...