The Year Ahead: What Employers Need to Know

Cindi Filer, CEO of Innovative Outsourcing shares a helpful reference from her legal labor resource who offers this concise reference for the year ahead.

When my legal resource, Eric Magnus, Jackson Lewis, P.C, provided me with this very inclusive reference to the year ahead for employers, I knew that you would benefit from this information, too!  CLICK HERE to read the report.

Employers can expect sweeping changes in the year ahead. Here is of our exclusive outlook, “2017: The Year Ahead for Employers,” an executive summary of key developments in the past year and what employers can expect in the coming months. It is a quick read and ideal for senior management and those responsible for Human Resources.
— Eric Magnus

If you have a need for further legal advice on HR topics, please contact Eric Magnus at Jackson Lewis, P.C.  He can be reached at 404-525-8200.

So Dec 1 is the new April Fools' Day for the Dept. of Labor

CPR 1201.jpg

Cindi Filer, CEO of Innovative Outsourcing updates you on a new court ruling that may affect you.

Over the past few months, we have been keeping you up-to-date on the December 1 implementation of the Department of Labor’s White Collar Overtime Exemption, raising the minimum annual wage (salaried or hourly) for overtime exemption to $47,400.  

But it is 2016, and in keeping with the year’s theme of “expect the unexpected,” last week a federal judge blocked the rule, siding with 21 states and an organized business group, siting that the “rule is unlawful and granted their motion for a nationwide injunction,” according to Reutters.

This means that this regulation has been delayed, as the Department of Labor now files an appeal.  In light of the changing political climate, even a successful appeal could be “Trumped” by new legislation, or the incoming Department of Labor may withdraw it all together.

What does this mean for you?

The December 1, 2016 implementation is no longer required, and at this moment, no one really knows what will happen.

What do we recommend?

If you have procrastinated and done nothing, this is one time that you might actually be reaping the reward. Keep an eye open for a new date and possible implementation, but this may never happen.

If you have made pay changes already in anticipation of this, you will need to make a decision to pull back or continue.  Again, we have no way of knowing when (or if) this will be enacted.

Plans for tracking and reporting hours

I know that many of you have put in place a method to report hours for all employees due to this implementation.  My recommendation is to keep this in place. For many reasons, it would be a good idea to have all employees report hours.  It is a safeguard for you in this litigious climate.  And it is also a prudent practice for your employees to view the hours they spend in an ongoing self-evaluation of their time management.

The bottom line

For many businesses like yours, this means you may have earmarked money for overtime that now can be channeled into staff expansion instead.  Consider hiring a part-time employee to help ease the work load of your full-time staff. We have great talent waiting for an opportunity to bring their highly professional skills to work for you part time.  Just give me a call, and we can talk about your specific needs.

So the calendar says December 1, but when it comes to raising the overtime exemption minimum compensation, it feels more like April Fools' Day instead!

Plan now to retain your best talent

Cindi Filer, CEO of Innovative Outsourcing, offers her advice.

Are you worried that your best employee will hand you their resignation? 

If you are, then you are one step ahead of the curve.  A current survey finds that one in three employees in the US is currently looking for a new job.  That’s 1/3 of your workforce and mine. "Not MY employees," you say.  But what if we consider that this may be a reality brewing right under your nose.  And then, let’s figure out what you can do now to retain your best employees.  Over the next few weeks, I'll be sharing some suggestions for retaining your top talent.

IDENTIFY THE CREAM OF THE CROP: The first step is to determine exactly who are your best employees.  Create a three-sheet reference like this: 

  1. EXCELLENT EMPLOYEES - This list should be the top 15% of your work force.  These are the people that you would cry or throw something if they turned in their resignation notice.  They might be the COO or the janitor, but they are good at what they do, and they are great to have around.
  2. WORST EMPLOYEES - This list includes the people that, if they resigned, you would cheer and have a party.  You get rid of them, and you don’t have to pay unemployment!  Hopefully, this list is very small, and your goal is to have no one on this list.  Anyone landing on this list should either be trained, become valuable, and make it off the list, or should be let go (after trying training and with great documentation). 
  3. EVERYONE IN BETWEEN - The majority of your team will land on this list.  These are good employees who get the job done.  You would be sad if they left, but you could likely replace them. 

This week, let's focus on Sheet One. These are your stars. You need to protect them.  Do you have any idea how close they are to leaving?  Evaluate every person named on this sheet, assigning them on a 1 to 10 scale the probability that they will be leaving the company soon.  Next to their leaving-probability rating, write what you perceive that each person values the most, (time off, money, autonomy, encouraging words, etc.)  

Next week, we will start to create a plan for each person. We call these retention plans, a strategy that you make to keep your best employees in this “Candidate-oriented” job market.

In the meantime, please reach out to me with specific staffing issues you need help addressing immediately. I'm here to help!

Plan now for the new overtime regulation

Are you aware that because of new regulations, all hourly and salaried employees earning less than $47,476 per year must be paid overtime for work exceeding 40 hours per week?  The Department of Labor estimates that when this new rule goes into effect December 1, 4.2 million additional employees will be eligible for time-and-a-half when they work over a 40-hour week. The Department of Labor believes this will create an increase in compliance.  Others fear that this will mean an increase in litigation. You can read more about that here.

So how does this affect your company? You must decide how your business will comply.  To help you plan now, I've called upon Eric Magnus, Jackson Lewis, P.C, to provide us with his excellent legal advice.  He outlines three options you must consider now so that by December 1, your business is prepared for compensation adjustments and equipped with time-tracking measures.  Here's Eric's advice: