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According to a recent CareerBuilder survey, 43% of hiring managers and human resource professionals are concerned top workers will leave their organizations this year.

Workers are leaving companies for other opportunities.  It’s no wonder retention is a concern for many organizations today. 

In addition to retention worries, the inability to fill open positions presents another worry for hiring managers. 

Biggest staffing challenges:

  • Being able to retain top employees (35%)
  • Being able to provide competitive compensation package (35%)
  • Worker burnout (32%)
  • Maintaining productivity levels (29%)
  • Being able to provide upward mobility (26%)
  • Can’t find high-skilled applicants (24%)
  • Don’t have the budget to recruit (13%)

Solutions may include:

  • Good work culture
  • Career advancement opportunities
  • Flexible schedules
  • Communication to employees

Compliance

Employers are required to comply with the following federal legislation;
Immigration Reform and Control Act (Form I-9) (1 or more employees)
Colorado Affirmation form (1 or more employees)
USERRA (1 or more employees)
Fair Labor Standards Act (1 or more employees)
Americans with Disabilities Act (15 or more employees)
Age Discrimination in Employment Act (20 or more employees)
Family and Medical Leave Act (50 or more employees)
EEO-1 Reports (100 or more employees; 50 or more for federal contracts)

Do employer groups allow employees to automatically renew their employee benefits each year?  Surprisingly, 71% surveyed do allow passive enrollments.  But, by passively renewing benefits without considering options the members may end up with coverage that does not meet their needs.

As stated in Benefits Newswire, “Active enrollment requires employees to make a proactive plan choice each open enrollment period.”

It’s important to approach your benefit options with a knowledge of the type of coverage you may need for the coming plan year and to make choices based on plan design and premium dollars out of your pocket.  Sometimes, the cheapest plan is not the best solution!

 

Your member number/ID numbers identifies you, the insured.

Your group number identifies your employer (assuming your coverage comes through your job).

Plan number tells the provider (doctor, hospital) which plan you have through your carrier.

PCP (Primary Care Physician).  The amount next to this indicates the copay fee per visit.  You may see a different copay amount on your card if you see a specialist.

Payer ID tells your doctor’s billing department which insurance company to route your claims to.

Did you know:

22% of employees are expected to respond to work email when they are not at work.

50% of employees check work email on the weekends.

46% check work email on sick days.

34% check work email while on vacation.

In recent cases, non-exempt employees have sued their employers for unpaid overtime compensation because the employer required them to check communication on their smart phone when not on duty.  The cases revolved around the question of whether the act of checking communications constitutes compensable work.

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) governs minimum wage and overtime.  It entitles employees to whom the law applies to receive overtime compensation for “time spent working” beyond the 40-hour workweek.  Both the minimum wage and overtime provisions of FLSA generally do not apply to workers in executive, administrative, professional and outside sales employees who are paid on a salary basis.  Requiring these “exempt” employees to check their smart phone would not subject employers to overtime claims.

As phone records are easily accessible, employees who use them off hours can provide solid evidence for their overtime claims.  To avoid claims for unpaid overtime, employers can limit use of company cell phones to exempt employees only, or limit their use by non-exempt employees to work hours only.

Lawmakers are once again pushing legislation in Congress that would require employers with 15 or more employees to provide workers with at least seven days of paid sick leave each calendar.  With Republicans now controlling the House, odds are strongly against passage of the “Healthy Families Act”.

The Denver Post reports “GettingUsCovered” is signing up a lower-than anticipated number of patients, but is spending a larger-than anticipated amount of money.   $90 million was given by the federal government to run the high-risk pool, expecting at least 4,000 patients to join.  Instead, just over 800 patients have taken the insurance since the program began a year ago.