Are You Misclassifying Employees?

The Supreme Court recently agreed to hear a case that could have a big impact on the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the classification of employees as exempt versus non-exempt. The case of Hewitt v. Helix Energy Sols. Grp., Inc. involves a highly compensated oil rig worker who was paid a weekly “salary” and upon his termination sued Helix for unpaid overtime on the basis that he was not paid an annual salary and therefore was not an exempt employee. The outcome of this case could impact employers who pay a daily or weekly “salary” as well as those

1099’s – The Cost of Misclassification

In the last few weeks, I have come across multiple cases of employers hiring individuals as independent contractors in violation of the IRS guidelines. Some have done so because they aren’t aware of or don’t understand the IRS guidelines and/or state regulations and some have done so knowingly. Either way, none are aware of the potential risk of misclassifying workers as independent contractors and just how costly such a mistake can be to their organization.  The IRS has a 20-Factor Test to help organizations determine if a worker meets the requirements to be an independent contractor. You can read more

Is Your Organization In the Learning Zone?

Over the past few years, I’ve spoken with a lot of organizations about the importance of psychological safety. A 2012 study by Google showed that psychological safety is far and away the most important factor of a team’s success, yet many organizations lack the psychological safety required to be successful.  A few years ago, I worked with a client that was going through some major changes and employee morale was at rock bottom. As I began speaking with employees one theme stood out, employees didn’t feel safe speaking up. There were a number of reasons for this, including the fact

Are Your Company Policies Holding You Back?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my almost 20-year career in HR it’s that the world of HR is ever-changing. And while sometimes we all sit back and take a big sigh and think “not again”, it’s a good thing. Change allows us to grow and adapt. But are there policies that we are holding on to because we’ve always done it that way or everyone else is doing it that way?  In this time of the “Great Resignation”, I find myself thinking about what could be changed to make the biggest impact. Not only in the short-term to

Employment Law Update

2021 was a roller coaster ride when it came to labor and employment law. So what can we expect in 2022? Now that the Supreme Court has ruled against the OSHA ETS on vaccine mandates, we will see a shift back to more standard labor and employment law issues this year. The mid-term elections later in the year may impact the direction of labor and employment law as well. Political analysts are keeping a close eye on a number of states that they anticipate may flip with this election. Republicans only need one seat in the Senate and five in

Navigating the Vaccine Mandate

For many of us right now, our focus is on the OSHA vaccine mandate that was issued on November 5, 2021, and goes into full effect on January 4, 2022. Many employers have been struggling to decipher the mandate requirements, keep up with the latest news, and implement policies that are compliant before the deadline. But as with most things in HR, this is no easy task and it’s ever-changing. Let’s talk about what we know, what we might expect, and how employers can successfully navigate what might come.  Deciphering the mandate: The mandate was published on November 5, 2021,

Show Compassion, Save Your Empathy

“What the world needs more than empathy is compassion. Empathy is feeling the pain and suffering of others. Compassion is acting to relieve the pain and suffering of others.” – Adam Grant A couple of weeks ago I was listening to Adam Grant’s podcast while driving and the topic was mental health and how organizations can make an impact. At Horizon Point we’ve been having candid conversations about our own mental health in the last few months. As Mary Ila mentioned in her blog post Taking a Walkabout we have all been dealing with health issues as a result of

World Mental Health Day- October 10th, 2021

As World Mental Health Day approaches, let’s help end the stigma around mental health in the workplace.  Did you know?  Pre-Covid, 19% of adults in the US experienced a mental illness, and that number has increased 1.5 million since the start of the pandemic. (MHA) 24% of adults with a mental illness report an unmet need for treatment. This number has not declined since 2011. (MHA) 10.8% of Americans with a mental illness are uninsured. (MHA) 1 in 5 Americans experiences mental illness. (NAMI) Only 45% of American adults with mental illness seek treatment. (NAMI) Mental Health America ranks states

Is it Time to Kill the 40-Hour Workweek?

Americans work an average of 41.5 hours per week, with 11.1% working over 50 hours per week. World Population Review Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers. International Labour Organization   Based on data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, productivity per American worker has increased 400% since 1950. Meaning Americans should be able to accomplish in 10 hours per week what it took 40 hours to accomplish in 1950. Yet, we are still working 40 hours per week. 

Three Steps to Effective Business Writing

How many emails do you get each day? How many pieces of paper pass through your hands in a week?  Written communication is the #1 form of communication used in the workplace. Whether it’s communicating with supervisors, co-workers, clients, or vendors, we are constantly sending written communication back and forth.  The top issue I hear from clients is a lack of effective communication in their organizations. And usually, that includes inadequate written communication. Effective business writing can have a huge impact on an organization’s ability to grow. Look at any job description and you’re likely to find the requirement of