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A Guide to Drug Testing and Drug-Free Workplaces in the Era of “Legal” Marijuana

With medical and recreational marijuana use becoming legal in more states nationwide, you may be wondering what kind of drug-testing policy your business should have. The answer to that question depends on several factors: the types of jobs that are done and the degree to which they’re safety-sensitive, legal requirements that may apply to your business, and your company culture. In this article, we’ll give you a general overview of these considerations so you can determine what policy is right for your organization. Prohibiting Drug Use Many employers opt for a no tolerance or other very strict policy to help ensure a workplace free of drugs. Employers who choose or are required t

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Sexual Orientation Protected in Employment, According to Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals

Yesterday the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals became the first federal Appellate Court to rule that under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, sex includes sexual orientation. The Court’s ruling creates law only in Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin. Every other Circuit Court of Appeals, except for the Ninth Circuit, has ruled that the term sex in Title VII does not include sexual orientation; these rulings were issued between 1979 and 2012. Federal Courts of Appeal often try to align their rulings with the decisions of the other Circuits. However, the Seventh Circuit decided that it was time to take a fresh look at this question in light of the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision in O

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Use Your HCM To Empower Employees

Empower HR Self-Service: Try These Three Simple Steps Using a human capital management (HCM) system can have a major impact throughout your human resource department. An innovative HCM program instantly empowers your employees to manage a host of specific HR functions, such as benefits and compensation. Additionally, your HCM streamlines the dreaded paperwork bottleneck as well as saves company money throughout its use. Why Employees Resist Using HCM Functionality With so many benefits, it may be hard to understand why more companies aren't adopting an HCM model within their organization. One major deterrent is change. Employees, comfortable with the way "things have always been done,

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Partner With 401K Providers For Retirement Savings

401K Management: What To Know About Passive And Active Management Saving for retirement is a major goal for everyone. Experienced 401K providers understand that the choices we make today with our investments can have a significant impact on our tomorrow, especially since the retirement age continues to increase. While some firms opt for keeping their strategies "status quo," leading 401K providers are constantly trying to innovate their service capabilities to achieve the best results possible for their clients, while maintaining, or even reducing, costs. As a result, passive and active management strategies have surfaced as a reliable plan option for investors in a wide range of industries

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Looking for an Enticing Benefit to Offer?

Businesses looking to attract new employees must distinguish themselves from the competition, especially if they’re unable to pay salaries above the market value. Creative benefits often do the trick, particularly if they address specific needs. With more and more college graduates entering the workforce and more and more of them graduating with substantial debt, some companies are enticing prospective employees with a student loan repayment benefit. The benefit is a rare, sought-after gem. Over 70% of college graduates have student loan debt, 76% of respondents to a 2015 American Student Assistance survey said the benefit would be a contributing factor to their accepting a job, and

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Healthcare Reform Update

Efforts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have so far been unsuccessful. The House Republicans' “repeal and replace” bill – the American Health Care Act – was intensely debated but withdrawn on March 24 because it did not have sufficient support. President Trump has indicated that a new healthcare reform bill will not be coming soon. However, this does not mean another effort could not be initiated by legislators. As we reported in January, President Trump’s first Executive Order signaled the administration’s agenda with respect to healthcare. That Order directed agencies to ease the economic burden of the ACA by not applying penalties when doing so was at the discret

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HR Tip of the Month

If you don’t already have a policy on employee cell phone use at work, you might want to consider it. Even a very simple policy can be a useful tool when dealing with employees who are more involved with their phones during the day than you would like. Text such as this could do the trick: “Personal cell phone use should be held to a reasonable limit. Reasonableness will be determined by management.” More elaborate or restrictive policies may be implemented as well, but be sure not to run afoul of the National Labor Relations Act (see Q&A). As with any policy, you’ll want to make sure your managers are able and prepared to enforce it consistently and fairly and set a good exam

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Benefits Of Human Resources Outsourcing

Human Resource Outsourcing Vs. Professional Employer Organization: Which One Is Right For You? Struggling with how to best operate your internal human resources department? The solution may actually reside outside of your company walls. Many executives, grappling with the same challenge, find themselves faced with two unique HR outsourcing options: a human resource outsourcing company or a professional employer organization. Each solution has components specifically designed to minimize an employer's HR burden as well as empower employees to manage several key tasks independently. Most importantly, each system can free up invaluable time for other critical tasks. While there are some sig

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Use Workforce Management Software To Coordinate Onboarding

Workforce Management Software Delivers Effective Onboarding For Early Productivity Business owners in every industry want their new hires to hit the ground running. Entrepreneurs manning the help of companies of every size recognize that success with early productivity begins with new employee onboarding. An efficient and effective onboarding process can truly set the tone for the overall experience an employee will have at your company. In an effort to ensure successful onboarding and increase early productivity rates, many organizations are implementing a workforce management software system as well as other resources to arm new hires with the information they will need for high productiv

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Accommodating Pregnant Employees

Let’s imagine a situation. Wendy, who’s been on the job for only four months, informs her employer that she’s pregnant. She requests light duty and asks if temporary leave is an option. Instead of accommodating Wendy, the employer terminates her employment, explaining to her that her employment is at-will and that they don’t have the staff to modify her duties or cover her responsibilities while she’s away on leave. They remind her that during her job interview, they asked if she had plans to become pregnant and she had said no. Then her manager makes a point of highlighting instances in which her job performance was less than satisfactory – an assessment they had not, up t

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