Archive for the ‘Employment’ Category

Preparing for Older Employees in the Workplace

September 12th, 2013

portrait of mature aged attractive senior womanIf you haven’t noticed, people are living much longer these days! According to the Social Security Administration, a woman turning age 65 today can expect to live, on average, until age 86 (for men, the average age is 84). We stress the word “average” because about 1 in every 4 65-year olds today will live past the age of 90!

We’ve seen a trend in the past decade or so… professional men and women are continuing to work well into their 60’s and beyond. And it’s not necessarily because they have financial obligations. Some do, but for most it’s because they’ve worked hard to get where they are today, they’re healthy, and they want to keep their jobs.

Yet, some employers seem concerned. How will they perform up against the young and determined workforce? Am I making the right decision by keeping them on, or are they costing my business money? Here are a few tips for catering to older employees in the workplace.

  • Provide training for those that wish to acquire new skills.
  • Provide retraining, as needed, for those who may need to polish up their skills.
  • If someone isn’t performing up to par due to health or personal issues, first consider part-time options, or transitions into retirement, which will promote a much more positive working environment.  The employee may actually contribute much more and perform much better if transitioned into a part-time position that isn’t quite as demanding.
  • Offer mentorship opportunities or programs within the workplace. New employees will certainly have something to learn from these veterans of the workplace!
  • Make sure you have a safe workplace that is accommodating to older employees. What you may not consider a hazard or discomfort, may certainly be one to an older individual. This includes anything and everything from comfortable office furniture to safely secured wires that are tucked away from foot traffic!
  • And last but not least, don’t forget to talk to your PEO about questions or concerns regarding older employees. PEOs not only assist with compliance, but also with training, benefits, best practices and more.

By following the aforementioned tips, you can celebrate diversity at your workforce and take advantage of older employee’s contributions and experience. For questions regarding your PEO relationship (or if you’re looking to establish a new PEO relationship) contact our team today!

Who is the EEOC?

March 8th, 2013

The EEOCWho is the EEOC? is the federal agency that enforces the laws against job discrimination and harassment. Each year, they process about 80,000 job discrimination complaints having to do with race, sex, disability, age, national origin, pregnancy or religion.

The Commission was first established in the 1960s, when it was given the power to file lawsuits against companies with discriminatory practices. A number of laws preventing discrimination in the workplace demand equal pay for equal work, and prevent discrimination on the basis of the aforementioned factors. The EEOC is also responsible for investigating and pursuing companies or employers charged with sexual harassment.

Most employers that have at least 15 employees are covered by EEOC laws and most labor unions and employment agencies are covered as well. The laws cover everything from hiring, firing, wages, benefits, promotions, training and harassment.

It is important for businesses to be aware of the EEOC and its guidelines for the workplace in order to avoid allegations of discrimination. An EEOC complaint can be very damaging to an employer. It can involve time-consuming official requests for information, intrusive investigations, legal bills, negative publicity and, if the complaint is upheld, very expensive damages. It’s crucial to stay abreast of laws and changes in policy so that your business in turn has fair policies in place.

The EEOC, as well as Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs), are very helpful about working to prevent discrimination before it occurs through outreach, education and technical assistance programs. PEOs provide expert help with risk management and compliance including payroll, OSHA, EEOC and more to protect YOU, the employer, from costly fines and lawsuits.

Your PEO benefits are waiting. Call 877-636-9525 or contact us today to find the best Professional Employer Organization for you.

PEOs: The Importance of Reviewing SUTA Rates First

December 2nd, 2012

Last week we provided business owners with a brief introduction to SUTA; this week we are reviewing the importance of understanding and reviewing the State Unemployment Tax Authority regulations and rates BEFORE engaging in a new PEO relationship.

SUTA tax is required in every state and rates are updated annually. Each state mandates its own SUTA regulations, which involves determining the amount of wages subject to SUTA tax and what the minimum and maximum rates are.  Businesses operating within multiple states are required to pay SUTA taxes in each state where they have employees.

For businesses engaging in the PEO relationship, PEO tax laws also vary per state.  Rates are calculated based on actual wages paid to the employees, and the unemployment rate of the company. Although PEOs are considered employers of record with the state through the co-employment relationship, in some states, the government mandates that even under the co-employment relationship, the rate must be based on the client’s rate (not the PEOs). In other states,
clients engaged in a PEO relationship must pay the PEO’s rate, regardless of whether or not it is higher than the client’s existing rate. And, some states
permit you to choose which rate you would like to take advantage of, reducing your overall tax liability by selecting the best option.

Why is this important?

When shopping for a PEO, you may not have time to conduct all of this research (This involves reviewing the PEO’s advantages, the pricing on various HR services, the state laws surrounding the PEO relationship/SUTA liability in each state you have employees and the PEO’s existing SUTA rates. Then, you’ll have to compare all of that information against what an alternative PEO’s options are.)

How is SUTA calculated? Who is responsible for paying SUTA? Does the PEO present an opportunity for savings?  Selecting the RIGHT PEO for your business requires industry knowledge and adequate time for interviewing all the candidates. Not taking the appropriate amount of time to review a PEO’s details as specific as SUTA compliance could result in losing a substantial amount of potential savings each year.

At PEO Advantage, we are real business partners, focused on selecting the RIGHT PEO for you, though our systematic yet personal approach.  From the
in-depth evaluation and independent references to translating complex PEO quotes into easy-to-read comparisons complete with cost and savings details, we
manage it all. Plus, we monitor results and conduct annual reviews so your HR solutions deliver value year-after-year (even as SUTA rates and regulations
change).

Additional Resources: SUTA Tax Rates by State

Somebody Help Me With SUTA!

November 19th, 2012

Are you a business owner in over your head when it comes to the State Unemployment Tax Authority (SUTA)? In the past few years, millions of jobs have been lost due to layoffs, company closures, and downsizing. When people who are without work seek unemployment benefits, the money must come from somewhere – It does, most often from the state’s unemployment insurance program. Each state requires employers to pay a SUTA tax – and for small businesses, these taxes can be painful to say the least!

On top of the increasing SUTA rates found in many states, business owners additionally need to watch out for added expenses surrounding SUTA that can quickly add up and in extreme cases, destroy a business: the risk of costly fines, interest on untimely payments, the expenses associated with hiring a professional accountant, and more.

PEOs assist business owners by significantly decreasing the chances of facing unexpected expenditures surrounding unemployment.

How?

Through the co-employment relationship the PEO assumes many employee-management responsibilities – one of them being payroll. With payroll experts (PEO professionals) managing clients’ payroll tax payments and reporting, business owners rest assured knowing their taxes are filed correctly and on time. Because employees are documented as employees of the PEO and not the client for tax filing purposes, the PEO is responsible for SUTA taxes, and it is in their mutual best interest to continually work to keep SUTA rates down.

Additionally, PEOs help clients win unemployment claims by keeping appropriate documentation and ensuring workplace compliance. Through frequent audits they can also help identify and protest erroneous charges or claims tied to SUTA.

Sick and tired of interfacing with the state unemployment agency? Trust us, we know that a few administrative hours here and there results in lost productivity and income – especially when SUTA rates change on an annual basis, requiring you to start from scratch and relearn the lay of the land. PEOs significantly decrease the amount of administrative function for the business owner.

If you’re interested in SUTA support solutions that won’t break the bank and will help further protect your workplace (and money), call 877-636-9525 or fill out an application today.

If you are currently shopping for a PEO, be sure to tune back in next week. PEO Advantage will be diving further into SUTA regulations and rates, detailing how they vary per state. We will also be explaining the importance of reviewing certain SUTA details before engaging in a new PEO partnership.

Employment Trends for 2012

January 4th, 2012

Global leader in human capital solutions, CareerBuilder, recently announced that the year ahead will remain cautiously optimistic, according to their annual job forecast. Similar to 2011, nearly one-in-four hiring managers and human resources professionals plan to hire full-time employees in 2012. Small businesses particularly are expected to show much improvement over last year.

The four employment trends to watch for in 2012, as identified by CareerBuilder are as follows:

  • Compensation getting more competitive for skilled positions, increasing for both current employees and prospects.
  • Increased turnover: 30 percent of employers said they lost top performers in 2011 and 43 percent stated they are concerned top talent may leave their organization in the New Year.
  • More training: There is an increasing number of areas where the demand for skilled positions is outnumbering the supply. This will prompt employers in 2012 to conduct training– 38 percent plan to train either existing employees or new hires that do not currently have enough relevant experience.
  • More diversity: Diversity can bring a number of benefits to an organization, and 29 percent of employers said they will be focusing on recruiting a diverse workforce in 2012.

With exception of increased turnover, the 2012 trends are quite exciting for both employers and the workforce– certainly great news for both, and a lot to look forward to. But, as a hiring manager, human resources professional, or business owner, how do you stay compliant within all of these areas? With business moving so quickly, we’re certain you’ll have more important revenue-generating items to manage in 2012. A PEO lets you grow your business, by handling all of the suspected trends above.

Changing salaries? Putting together more competitive packages?  A PEO will handle payroll, claims, benefits and employee management.

Worried about increased turnover? PEOs help attract and retain top employees—Comprehensive benefits packages and recruiting assistance makes sure the right talent is hired AND stays put.

What about training? Certainly employees will need training, but does your HR staff or executive team have the time for that? PEOs typically provide professionally written employee handbooks and policies, which translate into clear expectations and peak performance. Many PEOs also deliver a wide array of online or instructor-led classes for employee development, workplace safety, functional skills, and improving computer, software and internet skills.

And, with more than 60 employment-related governmental regulations, compliance alone will be a full-time job when looking to diversify your workforce. If you are not prepared to manage and obtain your hiring goals this year, you’ll need a PEO to protect your business!

For more information on PEOs, or for help in selecting the right PEO for your organization, contact PEO Advantage today. Best of luck this year!