Archive for the ‘Wages’ Category

Different Types of Salary Increases

November 12th, 2013

Different Types of Salary IncreasesEarlier in the year, PEO Advantage shared some tips for determining workplace salary grades (How Do I Determine What To Pay a New Employee?) But, once you’ve determined what to pay a new employee, that’s only half of the battle. Assuming you want to retain employees, you’ve got to provide them with something to look forward to or work towards – promotions and raises!

The following are standard types of increases and adjustments.

Merit Increase: A merit increase is a salary increase based on performance. Employees must meet or exceed preset business goals or performance criteria in order to receive an increase in pay.

Promotion: A promotion takes an existing employee and promotes them to a different position within the Company that often pays a higher salary and/or provides better benefits and perks.

Market Adjustments: Market adjustments do not have to do with performance but instead have to do with external conditions – market conditions to be precise. If an employer sees that Vice Presidents of Sales in similar companies make on average about $10,000 more each year than what they are paying their current employee, OR, the market is improving and the company is currently making more money than it has in the past, employers may increase the VP of Sales’ salary. This helps to strengthen employee satisfaction and retention.

One-time Incentive: A one-time incentive is a lump sum payment granted to recognize individual and/or department productivity. These can be given at any time and at any frequency over the course of a year.

Now, keep in mind that you can create a really competitive incentives program that combines two or more of the abovementioned salary increase opportunities. If you currently work with a PEO, be sure to run your ideas by them; PEOs are experts in attracting and retaining top talent – they help make sure the right talent is hired and stays put.

For more information on pay grades, payroll, or PEOs, contact PEO Advantage today.

Minimum Wage Increases for 2013

June 4th, 2013

We’re well into 2013, but if you’re just now hiring someone in the middle of the year, you may not know that a few states had minimum wage increases in 2013. 10 of them – to be exact!Minimum Wage Increases for 2013

Let’s review:

  • Arizona – $7.80
  • Colorado – $7.78
  • Florida – $7.79
  • Missouri – $7.35
  • Montana – $7.80
  • Ohio – $7.85
  • Oregon – $8.95
  • Rhode Island – $7.75
  • Vermont – $8.60
  • Washington – $9.19

Federal minimum wage remains at $7.25/hour, although that may change in the near future.  President Obama has proposed indexing the minimum wage to inflation so that it increases each time the cost of living increases. The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 has been introduced in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives and if passed would raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour by the year 2015. The minimum wage would then be adjusted each year after that to keep up with the rising cost of living.

Currently, the federal minimum wage of $7.25/hour supersedes state minimum wage laws where the federal minimum wage is greater than the state minimum wage. In states where the state minimum wage is greater than the federal minimum wage, the state minimum wage takes precedence.

Need help sorting through minimum wage laws? Ask your PEO! If you are not currently working with a PEO or payroll service provider, contact PEO Advantage today to learn more. Wage and hour laws can be complex – but you don’t have to face them alone!

What Do I Do If I’ve Accidentally Overpaid An Employee?

May 17th, 2013

Overpaying an EmployeePart-time sales rep Mike typically works 30 hours a week, but this past week his schedule was slightly different because of a family obligation that required him to take a few days off. He only worked 14 hours and you just accidentally paid him for 30. Uh-oh.

Now what? If you’re not “buddies” with Mike, confronting him about the situation can be awkward, to say the least! Will he recognize that he’s been overpaid and come to you? Should you wait to see what happens?

The answer is no; don’t wait. The first step in handling this situation is to confront your employee. You’ll likely want or need to recover the overpayment and there’s actually several state laws surrounding payment errors, which means you’ve got to go about this the right way.

Always make sure that your payroll records are intact. You can’t make a claim unless you have the documentation and evidence to back it up. If you don’t have significant documentation, the state may not actually allow you to “take back” money from your employee, and you could end up in a sticky lawsuit.

Now, how do we actually recover the funds? Laws vary from state to state. In some states you can deduct money from your employee’s future paycheck(s) until the balance is recovered, but not if that deduction results in your employee’s paycheck being less than minimum wage in the upcoming weeks. In other states, you can demand full repayment via personal check from your employee if the overpayment was within a certain percentage of the person’s regular payroll.

Small overpayments are a little bit easier to manage. If you need to recover a large sum, it may very well need to happen over a series of paychecks for the next month or so. What a headache!

A PEO Can Help

Employment law is complex, especially everything that falls within the Wage and Hour Division (WHD).  As an employer, you have to abide by federal and state laws – which can be difficult to do at times when you’ve run into a situation as such.  Some of us tend to panic, and forget the protocol – if we even knew it in the first place!

Alongside payroll processing services, PEOs offer a lot of support. They know state laws and federal laws inside and out and can even handle this “awkward” situation on your behalf, as your payroll processor/service provider.  PEOs reduce the number of hats you need to wear as a business owner, which by the way is a GOOD thing! Fewer miscalculations and clerical errors results in less stress, and allows you to focus on your company’s core competencies while the PEO focuses on theirs.

To learn more about PEOs and avoiding or managing payroll errors like this, contact PEO Advantage today.

Minimum Wage Increases for 2012

December 14th, 2011

The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) is responsible for enforcing some of our nation’s most comprehensive federal labor laws, including the minimum wage for people working within theUnited States. While minimum wage will remain unchanged at $7.25/hour, for 2012, that hasn’t stopped states from increasing their minimum wage policies for 2012.

States increasing their minimum wage are as follows:

States Increasing Minimum Wage

Florida: The Department of Economic Opportunity announced a $0.36 per hour increase, from $7.31 to $7.67 per hour, effective January 1, 2012.  Tipped employees must be paid at least $4.65 per hour.

Washington: The Department of Labor & Industries announced a $0.37 per hour increase, from to $8.67 to $9.04 per hour, effective January 1, 2012.

Arizona: The Industrial Commission announced a $0.30 per hour increase, from $7.35 to $7.65 per hour. An employer can pay a tipped employee a wage up to $3.00 per hour less than the minimum wage – $4.65 per hour.

Montana: The Department of Labor and Industry announced a $0.30 per hour increase, from $7.35 to $7.65 per hour, effective January 2012.

Ohio: The Department of Commerce announced a $0.30 per hour increase, from $7.40 to $7.70 per hour. However, effective January 2012, the minimum wage for tipped employees will be decreasing $0.15 per hour, from $3.85 to $3.70 per hour.

Oregon: The Bureau of Labor & Industries announced a $0.30 per hour increase, from $8.50 to $8.80 per hour.

Additionally, several states still have pending announcements. It is recommended that all employers turn to their states’ regulations and policies surrounding minimum wage for 2012. If working with a PEO, you can further rely on them for updates and expert help with risk management and compliance including payroll, OSHA, EEOC and more, which can protect you from making a simple (but costly) mistake! If looking to partner up with a PEO in 2012, contact PEO Advantage.