Investing in Employee Wellbeing

By Staff
Monday, August 24, 2015 2:38 PM NEW YORK—During the early 1980s, while I headed the Human Resources team at SOLA Optical, we implemented an employee Health and Wellness program called Healthways. Our goals in creating the program were simple, yet profound.

How to Be a Better Benefits Buyer

By Staff
Tuesday, August 11, 2015 10:05 AM NEW YORK—Employers spend thousands per employee on health insurance plans each year. Yet not all companies check the quality of their plan before buying.

Rights of Employees When it Comes to Religious Wear at Work

By By Hedley Lawson, Jr.
Monday, July 27, 2015 7:00 AM NEW YORK—With increasing frequency, I am called by a client company or a prospective client to ask about the rights of employees to wear religious articles at work. After a brief discussion, I inform them that employers cannot generally enforce a policy prohibiting employees from wearing articles of religious importance at work.

Small Firms Not Among the Growing Self-Insurance Movement

By By Hedley Lawson, Jr.
Monday, July 20, 2015 1:26 PM NEW YORK—U.S. small businesses have not followed the same path of bigger firms by starting to self-insure their medical benefits to avoid the costs of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), according to recent research findings by the nonprofit Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI).

The Continuing Questions Under the Affordable Care Act Health Care Reform

By Staff
Wednesday, July 15, 2015 10:05 AM NEW YORK—The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been in effect for almost five years now with no expectation of significant changes to the law. Pieces of the law will continue to be rolled out through 2020, so there still are several important issues for employers to consider going forward.

Widespread Deficiencies in Benefit Plan Audits Reported by DOL

By Staff
Tuesday, June 30, 2015 10:00 AM NEW YORK—A May 2015 report by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Assessing the Quality of Employee Benefit Plan Audits, warns of serious issues with the quality of benefit plan audits performed by certified public accountants (CPAs).

Employers’ Health Care Costs Projected to Rise 6.5 Percent for 2016

By Staff
Friday, June 26, 2015 11:52 AM NEW YORK—Medical costs for employers in the U.S. will increase an estimated 6.5 percent for 2016, according to Pricewaterhouse Coopers’ Health Research Institute (HRI), a rate that is slightly lower than the 6.8 percent projected by HRI for calendar year 2015.

Tips for Hiring Managers on Avoiding Improper Job Interview Questions

By Staff
Wednesday, June 17, 2015 4:02 PM A recent survey of more than 2,100 hiring and human resource managers throughout the U.S. who responded to a survey sponsored by CareerBuilder and conducted by Harris Poll Online, found that approximately 20 percent of hiring managers reported that they have asked an interview question only to find out later that the question possibly violated the law.

Establishing Contemporary LBGT Policies in the Workplace

By Staff
Monday, June 8, 2015 3:59 PM NEW YORK—Now more than ever, employees are embracing their sexual identities, both in and out of the workplace. And their peers are embracing them and their identity, at work and outside of work.

Proven Ways You Can Improve Office Morale and Productivity

By Staff
Monday, April 20, 2015 4:11 PM NEW YORK—With some frequency, I’m often approached or called by a client company to discuss an awkward topic: office morale and team productivity. It is awkward because to some business owners, "office morale" seems like a term invented by employees who simply want to have more fun at work, rather than work.

Bona Fide Service Animals Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

By Staff
Monday, April 13, 2015 12:26 PM NEW YORK—Under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), private businesses that are publicly accessible must permit the use of a service animal by an individual with a disability. The Department of Justice (DOJ) defines a service animal as a dog that is individually trained to work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual or other mental disability.

Impact of New Immigration Initiatives on the Workforce

By Staff
Monday, February 2, 2015 10:44 AM NEW YORK—On Nov. 20, 2014, President Obama unilaterally announced a series of executive immigration initiatives that will impact millions of individuals already in the U.S. and their current or future employers.

As Economic Outlook Brightens, Health Care Premiums Increase for 2015

By Staff
Wednesday, January 14, 2015 10:31 AM NEW YORK—U.S. companies saw a relatively modest uptick in health plan costs in 2014, but premiums will see a sharper increase this year, according to new research released in November 2014 by Aon Hewitt.

Unions Are Advocating 'E-Mail at Work' to the National Labor Relations Board

By Staff
Monday, January 5, 2015 11:30 AM NEW YORK—The National Labor Relations Board http://nlrb.gov/ (NLRB) is considering reversing a seven-year-old ruling that currently prohibits employees from using the company e-mail systems to communicate about ways to work together to improve wages and working conditions.
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