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Symmetry Video Series


Motivating Employees: HR tips for getting employees motivated and engaged with your company.

Unlimited Vacation Policies - Good Idea or License to Slack?

Employers have long used paid vacation policies as a compensation benefit and a means of enhancing employee productivity. To keep pace in a competitive hiring market, many start-ups offer employees the right to take “unlimited” paid vacation. While “unlimited vacation” policies do offer certain benefits, the law on such policies is currently undeveloped, and employers must pay careful attention to implementation and administration to minimize legal risks.

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Challenging Unemployment Insurance Benefits

No business is immune from employee turnover. Losing an employee, whether the separation is voluntarily or not, can be costly in claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits. The financial impact may not be felt right away because an unemployment benefit is not money that an employer pays directly out of pocket (except for a non-profit organization). But rather, employers must pay both state and federal unemployment taxes that are deposited into the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund from which benefits are awarded and those rates can be affected.

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What Should Employers Keep in an Employee Personnel File?

It's a good idea for an employer to maintain a personnel file for each employee. Documentation of employment history, records of contribution and achievement, disciplinary notices, promotions, performance development plans, and much more, belong in a personnel file. Smart employers keep more than one personnel file, too. The employer has good reasons to keep several personnel files - some legal and some for employment best practices purposes. Documentation is needed so the employer has an accurate view of an employee's employment history. Documentation supports the employer's decisions and may protect the employer in a lawsuit - preserved correctly.

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Documents, documents, documents: What to keep, what to shred

The hiring process has a way of creating a lot of paperwork. A single job opening can bring a flood of resumes, cover letters, and applications from a horde of hopefuls. Once the decision has been made, the question becomes what to do with the pile of documents the hiring process generates.

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Job Descriptions are More than Legal Documents

The task of writing and revising job descriptions may sound dull, but at the same time be daunting. With so much to consider—essential versus nonessential functions, varied job responsibilities, experience and education requirements, etc.—the job can be mind-numbing. Then throw in the legal issues to consider, including things like how to prevent discrimination and wage and hour claims, and the job can get overwhelming.

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Performance Evaluation Pitfalls

The end of the year is a time that’s both hectic and reflective, and it’s that reflective thinking that’s put to use in evaluating employee performance. Whether evaluations are done at the end of the year, the beginning of a new year, or at various times, it’s important to keep the basics of legally sound evaluations in mind.

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Holiday Office Party Alternatives

Those of us over a certain age remember those lavish parties our past employers may have showered us with, but as a small business where money may be tight, you may want to show your staff you care but you don’t have the energy, time? You are not alone! "Only 79% of organizations are holding an office party for the holidays, according to Joel Stein, writing in International executive search firm Amrop Battalia Winston says it's the lowest percentage in the 30 years that the company has conducted its poll.

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Wage and Hour Update

Federally, wage and hour laws are governed by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This law sets out minimum wage and overtime provisions---two issues that frequently arise. Virtually all employers are covered by the FLSA. In additional to federal wage and hour laws, states, and even localities, set forth their own provisions. As an employer, it is important to know which state and local wage and hour laws apply to you and your business.

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Application of the Fair Labor Standards Act to Domestic Service

There are some new changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by the Department of Labor (DOL). Read how this can affect your business.

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Call of the Day: New I-9 Photo Requirements?

Someone told me that the photo requirements for the new I-9 have changed. What are they?

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