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HR and the Latest Legislative Changes

U.S. Supreme Court Building

“Employers that are considering offering abortion-related benefits, such as out-of-state travel to a jurisdiction where abortion laws are more accommodating, should keep in mind compliance and liability considerations, benefits advisors point out,” reported the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) after Roe was overturned. “Employers that operate in multiple states will also need to navigate a patchwork of different rules affecting abortion coverage, depending on where covered employees and dependents live, work and receive health care.”

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HR: One of the Many Hats Small Business Owners Must Wear

Multiple Hats

It’s no secret that small business owners must wear many hats from CEO to sales to marketing to HR and all the way down the line to being the warehouse and logistics honcho who knows where the extra toilet paper is stashed.

Sartorial success, however, is often hard to pull off with not every hat a comfortable fit – Texans understand this every time they get a glimpse of any “dollar store cowboy” in an oversized 10-gallon hat.

“It’s a reality that we all deal with as we work to grow our businesses. We have to perform several different functions as effectively as possible. One day you might be working on your marketing plan. The next day, you might be negotiating with vendors. After that, you might find yourself being your own accountant,” Jeff Charles shared in Startup Advice.

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What is Quiet Quitting and How Can You Prevent It?

Old punch clock

Move over “Great Resignation” … meet “Quiet Quitting” the latest labor force zeitgeist that is trending on TikTok and across virtual water coolers this summer.

“In the wake of the Great Resignation, we now have quiet quitting,” reported Houston’s KHOU (channel 11).  

While the much publicized Great Resignation continues with 4 million-plus U.S. workers voluntarily leaving their jobs each month for the past 13 consecutive months, quiet quitting is not actually quitting one’s job but the antithesis of the “hustle culture.”

“As explained in one viral clip, it involves “not outright quitting your job, but … quitting the idea of going above and beyond,” reported (ironically, enough) The Hustle.

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Win-Win: PEOs Benefit Both Employers and Employees

HR = Human Resources

Many small and mid-size business (SMB) employers and their employees could use a win these days after more than two years of uncertainty that has included the COVID-19 pandemic, the highest inflation in 40 years, and political and social tumult.

Fortunately for these SMBs there is a win-win solution that is growing exponentially: the outsourcing of HR services to professional employer organizations (PEOs).

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What Businesses Need to Do to Prepare for a Recession

Recession Graph

Businesses that are not preparing for the possibility of a recession within the next year are gambling because experts put the odds of an economic downturn as a true coinflip.

“The median probability of a recession over the next 12 months is 47.5 percent, up from 30 percent in June, according to a Bloomberg survey of economists completed last week,” reported CNBC on July 20, 2022.

In March, those odds were just 20 percent. The latest survey was conducted July 8-14, with 34 economists responding about the chances of recession.

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Job Openings Continue to Fall, but “The Quits Keep on Coming”

I quit

There were mixed signals with the release of the June JOLTS report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as job openings fell by over 600,000 to 10.7 million, but for the 13th consecutive month more than 4 million workers voluntarily left their jobs.

“The drop in job openings marks the third month in a row of declines, indicating that labor shortages are beginning to ease, although levels remain nearly twice as high as the pre-pandemic norm,” wrote Roy Maurer for the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary (JOLTS) for June 2022 released on August 2, 2022, showed that, while down slightly, “the number of quits was little changed at 4.2 million.”

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Assembling Your Team: Utilizing Talent Assessment to Hire A & B Players

Business people working together on their laptop in cozy meeting room

In a perfect world your hiring managers would only select top talent to join your organization.

These are not perfect times, however, as HR teams must navigate one of the tightest labor markets in memory while being buffeted by external factors such as the pandemic and rising inflation which have changed both workplace and salary expectations.

In this challenging environment, assembling your team with “A” and “B” players is harder than ever. While business leaders never want to see their positions go unfulfilled, settling for less-than-stellar hires can be a costly move.

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Employer Flexible Named a 2022 Best Places to Work by the San Antonio Business Journal

Best Places to Work - San Antonio

Employer Flexible has been named one the Best Places to Work 2022 by the San Antonio Business Journal.

“We are excited to be recognized as one of the best places to work in San Antonio. As a PEO, we understand how important employee engagement and first-rate benefits are to the recruitment and retention of talent that allows smaller businesses to grow and thrive,” said Employer Flexible San Antonio Market Manager John Seybold. “This award demonstrates that at Employer Flexible we practice what we preach to our clients.”

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Gritty Approach for Bobcats Translates to Business for Rider

Mikey Rider picture

Employer Flexible opened their first office in the state Montana earlier this year.

We are excited to help companies based in Montana reach their full potential by assisting with all of their HR needs. Below is an article we shared recently about one of our our team members in Montana - Mikey Rider. You can find more about the Montana team here.

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“Screening In” Gains Ground vs. “Screening Out” in Tight Labor Market

Lady interviewing a job candidate

Much of the HR playbook has been rewritten, if not completely run through the shredder, since the COVID-19 pandemic started, and talent acquisition is certainly no exception.

Hiring experts at the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) recent Talent Conference & Expo 2022 highlighted a shift in HR tactics during a historically tight labor market.

“The experts on the panel agreed that the typical recruitment practice of screening out—or eliminating candidates because they don't meet all criteria—is not workable in the present environment,” wrote SHRM’s Roy Maurer. “Instead, talent acquisition teams should practice more “screening in” or hiring for competencies and training on the particular role.”

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Minimum Wage Boost & Social Security COLA Bump Could Help Fight Inflation

empty wallet

Americans at all ends of the spectrum are looking for ways to get more cash in their wallets to fight the effects of the highest inflation since 1981.

For some low wage earners, minimum wage rate increases in some states and jurisdictions that went into effect July 1, 2022, will provide some immediate relief.

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How Business Leaders Handle Employee Compensation in Inflationary Times

Depressed businessman sitting under question marks

Small business owners can be forgiven if they hear the echoes of carnival barkers during these inflationary times:

“Around and around, it goes, where it stops, nobody knows!”

Unlike a “Wheel of Fortune”, however, the current economic climate is more like a “Wheel of Mis-Fortune” for small businesses as rising costs across the board have them in a vice grip with higher prices for goods, raw materials, rent and transportation on one side and escalating salary and benefit demands by employees on the other.

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Going for the Green: Iverson Brothers’ Passion and Focus Translates to Business

golf ball in a course with striking colors

Employer Flexible has opened their first office in the state Montana in 2022.

We are excited to help companies based in Montana reach their full potential by assisting with all of their HR needs. Below is an article we wrote and distributed recently about two of our team members in Montana - Larry and Logan Iverson.

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Keep the Door Open: Consider Former Employees to Tackle Worker Shortage

lady in business suit with laptop

The Great Resignation, far from abating, hit historic levels in March as a record 4.5 Americans quit their job while employers posted a record 11.5 million job openings.

“A gap between the number of job openings and of people unemployed but seeking work has persisted since last spring. In February, there were 1.79 job openings for every unemployed person, according to Labor Department data,” reported the Wall Street Journal.

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The “Great Regret” is as Real as the “Great Resignation”

Man with laptop and box of office supplies

For almost a year now Americans have channeled their inner Johnny Paycheck, telling employers to “Take This Job and Shove It” as more than 4 million workers a month since June 2021 have voluntarily left their jobs.

“The pandemic-era trend known as the “Great Resignation” remains a prominent feature of the labor market, as favorable conditions lead workers to quit their jobs at near-record levels in search of better (and ample) opportunities,” reported CNBC.

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Accentuate the Positive: How Stay Interviews Stave Off Exit Interviews

businesswoman smiling in front of team talking at water cooler

Businesses might want to toss the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mentality into the dustbin when it comes to your employees and how they feel about their jobs.

Why? Because waiting until an employee departs – which is happening in record numbers during the current “Great Resignation” – leaves companies conducting exit interviews, which can lead to valuable insight but are delivered too late to retain the talent.

Instead, employers can conduct “stay interviews” with current employees, which can improve employee retention and stave off unwanted exit interviews.

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Understanding the Shifting Federal “Independent Contractor” Rules

Pretty young woman making a decision with arrows and question mark above her head

Businesses can be forgiven if there is confusion surrounding guidelines concerning the classification of workers as independent contractors vs. employees, and that’s because the rules on the federal level are constantly shifting.

In just 15 months, the Trump Department of Labor (DOL) issued a Final Rule that adopted an “economic realities test”, then the Biden DOL scuttled the Final Rule, and now a Texas federal judge has reinstated that former Final Rule.

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Keep Calm and Carry On: Organizational Stability in an Uncertain World

Business plan image with collage hand drawings

Businesses in 2022 could use a good dose of the “Keep Calm and Carry On” spirit and leadership which led the British people through the darkest days of World War II.

While the world is not at war, per se, there are enough global challenges – COVID-19 pandemic, rampant inflation, supply chain woes, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – to test even the steeliest company’s resolve.

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Workplace Guidelines: Handling Employee Grievances

Unhappy employee giving two thumbs down

It is unrealistic to expect that your employees will never have any complaints about their jobs or workplace conditions.

It is realistic, however, for your company to have policies and procedures in place to handle employee grievances in a timely and professional manner, which can go a long way to bolstering your employee retention and workplace culture.

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8 Urgent Steps Businesses Should Take to Protect Against Cyberattacks

Cyber Security

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the response by the United States and other Western allies has prompted fears of a massive cyberwar with American businesses as potential targets.

“The Russian-Ukraine conflict could trigger a massive cyberwar, "New Scientist" surmised. An unprecedented cyberwar is likely, Senator Marco Rubio warned,” wrote The Atlantic in February. “Cyberwar sounds bad – and it is.”

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Importance of Continuous Learning on Employee Wellness, Career Advancement

Keep Learning written on rural road

Employers and employees both agree that continuous learning can have a positive impact on employee wellness and career advancement, as well as improving workplace culture and, best of all, your business's bottom line.

“The vast majority of U.S. workers say that new skills and training may hold the key to their future job success,” according to a Pew Research Center survey.

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Inflation Balancing Act: Businesses Must Move Wages & Revenue in Tandem

Image of a businessman workplace with papers

Business owners are facing an issue many have not experienced in their lifetime as inflation reached its highest level since 1982 with consumer prices jumping 7 percent last year.

“The last time inflation was this high, Ronald Reagan was in the White House, Olivia Newton-John was all over the radio, and the cool new computer was the Commodore 64, named for its 64 kilobytes of memory. Oh, and there was a new soft drink about to hit the shelves,” NPR’s Kelsey Snell said of a time before Diet Coke was an option.

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The Importance of Teamwork in Today’s Work Environment

Group of young colleagues using laptop at office

Part of the enigma of U.S. history is the apparently opposing dynamic forces of American “Rugged Individualism” vs. teamwork.

The authors of “Rugged Individualism: Dead or Alive?” wrote, “Reaching back to the founding, rugged individualism has defined American character and uniqueness. It has been described as the “master assumption” of American political and economic thought. The combination of individual liberty in America’s founding and the frontier spirit provided the rich soil in which it has grown and developed.”

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We Need to Have a Chat: Importance of Constructive Feedback

two men sitting at a desk talking about business

If you have spent any time in a workplace you probably have experienced various levels of feedback from your employer.

Those sit-downs, both formally in scheduled performance reviews and informally when the boss asks you to step into their office, come in all varieties.

Sometimes the feedback can come off as superfluous with an uncaring supervisor quickly checking generic boxes that provide no real insight or help to sharpen your role with the company.

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Business Owners Challenge: Embracing Change in the Face of Uncertainty

Businessman finding the solution of a maze

Has there ever been a harder time for business owners to make decisions than right now?

That can certainly be the perception from Wall Street to Main Street with a confluence of factors leading to decision paralysis including:

“2022 is shaping up to be one of the hardest years ever to run a company – even harder than 2020, when the pandemic first hit, corporate leaders and analysts tell us,” wrote Emily Peck and Erica Pandey, this month, in Axios.

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Improve Workplace Culture to Combat Resignation, Boost Productivity

workers high fiving

Nearly two years of a global pandemic has wrought economic and emotional turmoil on the average employee, but businesses that focus on improving their workplace culture can counter “The Great Resignation” while boosting overall productivity.

“Corporate culture may be the most important aspect of employee satisfaction. A strong corporate culture can be the differentiator in helping a company barely survive to actively thrive, especially in challenging times.” Matthew Rolnick, vice president of sales at Yaymaker, wrote in Forbes.

And these have been some of the most challenging times for managers in memory with an average of four million Americans resigning each month last year in what has been called “The Great Resignation”.

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How “The Great Resignation” Will Affect Businesses in 2022

The word EXIT with people running toward the word

It is incredibly hard to envision just how historic “The Great Resignation” has been with a record number of American workers voluntarily quitting their jobs month after month.

Consider this: the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has been tracking the number of U.S. workers who quit their jobs each month, and prior to last year, the record for quits in a single month was 3.6 million in July 2019.

Last year, nearly 4 million U.S. workers quit their jobs in April and the number of quits stayed above that 3.6 million high-water mark for each of the next eight months.

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Pandemic Pressures Make Employee Burnout, Mental Health a Priority

Businessman being depressed by accounting in his office

Employers are increasingly prioritizing employee burnout and their mental health as the COVID-19 pandemic trudges toward the 2-year mark.

“This is a historic time; we’ve never been through anything like this. Our mental health and our physical health are really being taxed,” Darcy Gruttadaro, director of the American Psychiatric Association Foundation’s Center for Workplace Mental Health, told ABC News this summer. “If there was ever a time to raise these issues, it’s now. If you’re experiencing burnout and you’re trying to ignore it, that will eventually catch up with you.”

CNBC reported in September that “how to deal with burnout – and prevent future burnout – is a challenge all businesses are now tasked with as many workers hit 19 months of working from home.”

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Law Changes Texas Employers Should Be Aware Of

lawyer in the law library at a university

The 87th Texas Legislature met from January to May and then again in three more special sessions from July to October, giving lawmakers many opportunities to pass new bills in the Lonestar State.

There were a whopping 9,999 bills introduced in the regular session alone with 3,803 passed.

While many of the bills passed are ceremonial there are several new laws that affect Texas employers.

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HR Compliance Checklist

Magnifying glass showing compliance word on grey background

Compliance is a bit like flossing … you may not see immediate consequences from letting it slide, but the long-term repercussions ultimately reveal themselves.

Lax compliance protocols increase the risk that your small-to-medium size business runs afoul of local, state, and/or federal regulations.

For most business owners, compliance violations are more painful than the sound of any dentist’s drill.

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Supply Chain and Staffing: Managing Your Workforce in Uncertain Times

Trade boat carrying containers and arriving at the port

Employee engagement, which surged in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, is being put to the test as employers look to stem the tide of the “Great Resignation” while battling a tight labor market and worldwide supply chain bottlenecks.

“As the world stumbles toward a COVID-19 recovery, experts warn of a surge of voluntary employee departures, dubbed the “Great Resignation.” For instance, one study estimates that 55 percent of people in the workforce in August 2021 intend to look for a new job in the next 12 months,” reports the Harvard Business Review. “To counteract the incoming wave of employee turnover, organizations — more than ever — need to focus on cultivating employee engagement.”

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What is the Workplace “New Normal” for Texas Small Businesses?

Young woman working at home with a laptop computer

In a world turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic, Texas small businesses are finding their way towards a workplace “new normal” as the coronavirus crisis nears two years.

And whether it is a return to office, work from home (WFH), or hybrid model that combines in-person and remote work, one thing for certain is that there is no going “back to normal”.

“Too many are asking whether we will go back to normal. To me, the problematic word is “back.” There is no going back to pre-COVID times. There is only forward—to a new and uncertain future that is currently presenting us with an opportunity for thoughtful design,” said Amy C Edmondson, Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management at the Harvard Business School.

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Can Your Business Take Advantage of the “Great Resignation”?

Businessman leaving his company while he is holding a box

The “Great Resignation”, “Turnover Tsunami'', or “Quit-ageddon” … whatever you call the current phenomenon of workers leaving their jobs in droves, it is happening.

“In April, the number of workers who quit their job in a single month broke an all-time U.S. record. Economists called it the “Great Resignation.” But America’s quittin’ spirit was just getting started,” Derek Thompson wrote in The Atlantic is October 2021. “In July, even more people left their jobs. In August, quitters set yet another record. That Great Resignation? It just keeps getting greater.”

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Important Tasks that SMB Business Owners Should Outsource

Outsourcing - Business Background. Blue Arrow with

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMB) are the backbone of America, providing more than half of all private-sector jobs. Most SMB owners are forced to wear many hats as they lack the vast resources of large companies.

“Small business retailers are among the hardest working people in America, often keeping long hours, overcoming numerous challenges and making repeated sacrifices to pursue their dream and make their business successful,” said a 2016 National Retail Federation (NRF) survey.

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Hiring and Retention: Benefits that Employees Appreciate the Most

Employer Flexible Hiring and Retention: Benefits that Employees Appreciate the Most

A record number of workers are quitting their jobs at record pace across America making it difficult for employers to hire and retain employees during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Department of Labor Job Openings and Labor Turnover summary released Oct. 12, 2021, showed that nearly 3 percent of the labor force, some 4.3 million employees, quit their jobs in August.

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PEO Clients Positioned for Success as Industry Navigates Pandemic

Employer Flexible PEO Clients Positioned for Success as Industry Navigates Pandemic Empty Office Conference Room

Professional employer organizations (PEOs) clients, like most companies across the U.S. economy, have faced their share of hurdles during the COVID-19 pandemic, but a new industry white paper argues their alliances have them positioned for long-term success.

“PEO Clients in the COVID-19 Pandemic: Follow-Up Analysis”, a white paper published last month by The National Association of Professional Employer Organizations (NAPEO), is a deep dive by Laurie Bassi and Dan McMurrer of McBassi & Company into the effects of the pandemic on PEO clients.

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Talent Review Best Practices

Employer Flexible Talent Review Best Practices Man Shaking Hands with Business Person

Employees are one of your businesses’ greatest assets, so it is important to maximize their potential and increase your company’s chance of success with strategic planning.

“Loyal customers, visionary leaders and quality goods and services all influence success, but usually a company’s best asset is its employees,” says the Indeed.com Editorial Team.

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Making a List and Checking it Twice: Year-End 2021 HR Checklist

Employer Flexible Making a List and Checking it Twice: Year End 2021 HR Checklist December Calendar

In a perfect world, December would be at least six weeks long as the month can roll by in a blur with business often buttonholed between holiday parties and ringing in the New Year festivities.

December can be a tricky month to navigate for small and medium-sized business owners with one survey finding that 68 percent of employees were “less productive throughout the entire month of December compared to other months.”

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Wellness Programs Can Help You Survive “The Great Resignation”

Employer Flexible Corporate Wellness Programs Can Help You Stand Out Mental Health Scrabble Tiles

If the COVID-19 pandemic, rising inflation, supply chain shortages, and tight labor market were not enough obstacles for America’s businesses, now comes “The Great Resignation”.

According to Forbes, the term “The Great Resignation” was coined by Texas A&M professor Anthony Klotz to describe a potential tidal wave of people leaving their jobs post-pandemic vs. returning to the “old normal”.

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What Pfizer’s FDA COVID-19 Vaccine Approval Means for Employers

Employer Flexible What Pfizer's COVID-19 Vaccine Approval Means for Employers Person Getting Vaccine

With the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granting full approval to Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine on Aug. 23, the pressure is on businesses to mandate their employees receive a coronavirus shot.

Fox Business reported that President Joe Biden said after the approval: “Today I’m calling on more companies … in the private sector to step up the vaccine requirements that will reach millions more people. If you’re a business leader, a non-profit leader, a state or local leader, who has been waiting for full FDA approval to require vaccinations, I call on you now to do that … do what I did last month, requiring employees to get vaccinated or face strict requirements.”

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Texas Business Owners Keep an Eye on Inflation as Economy Heats Up

Employer Flexible Texas Business Owners Keep an Eye on Inflation Woman Looking at Paper Shocked Orange Background

The U.S. economy continued its strong recovery with an Aug. 6 report that showed almost one million jobs added in July and unemployment falling to 5.4 percent, but inflation fears linger for businesses who face the prospect of rising wages.

U.S. inflation rates, as calculated by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) published monthly by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), have risen for five straight months, hitting 5.4 percent in June, the highest levels recorded since the summer of 2008.

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Delta Blues: COVID-19 Variant Forces Tough Business Policy Choices

Employer Flexible Delta Blues COVID-19 Variant Forces Tough Business Policy Choices Man at Home Office

Any hope that the COVID-19 pandemic would be fading this summer, allowing for a return to “business as usual” in the fall, has been dealt a severe blow by the highly transmissible Delta variant and rising coronavirus cases in all 50 states.

What some are calling a fourth wave of COVID-19 infections may have business owners feeling like they are on an emotional rollercoaster they wish they could get off of as they are confronted with tough choices on vaccine mandates and return to office policies.

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Texas (Finally!) Sets Employer 2021 Unemployment Tax Rates

Employer Flexible Texas Sets Employer 2021 Unemployment Tax Rate Man Using Calculator Balls of Paper

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) set the 2021 employer’s unemployment insurance (UI) tax rate in mid-June after a four-month delay as the state waited to see how the economic recovery progressed before setting Texas State Unemployment Tax Act (SUTA) Rates. The rate set is retroactive to January 1 for all employers in the state.

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Improving the Candidate Hiring Experience

Employer Flexible Improving the Candidate Hiring Experience Two People Conducting an Interview

When software engineer Mike Conley posted a rant on LinkedIn recently about a broken hiring process where he was being asked to do nine rounds of interviews, it hit a nerve with job seekers everywhere.

His viral post racked up nearly two million views, 40,000 “likes”, and a whopping 4,000 comments, almost all supportive.

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How to Recognize Employee Burnout

Employer Flexible How to Recognize Employee Burnout

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, employee burnout was a growing problem for American businesses with Deloitte finding in a survey that 77 percent of U.S. corporate professionals had experienced burnout at their current job.

Since the coronavirus crisis, employee productivity has been sabotaged by burnout, not just at the executive level, but on all rungs of the company ladder.

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How a PEO Could Benefit Your Startup

Employer Flexible A PEO Could Benefit Your Startup Clock Ticking Startup

Even amid the COVID-19 pandemic Americans embrace their entrepreneurial spirit with a half million new business applications taken out in May 2021.

The reality is that many of these startup ideas will never get off the drawing board with less than 10 percent of those applications resulting in businesses with paid employees.

“The Census Bureau is projecting that 35,578 new business startups with payroll tax liabilities will form within four quarters of application from all the business applications filed during May 2021,” says the U.S. Census Bureau Business Formation Statistics, May 2021, release.

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America Behaves Badly: Civility Lacking as We Return From the Pandemic

Employer Flexible Civility Lacking as we Return from the Pandemic Business Man Frowning Two Thumbs Down

For more than a year the COVID-19 pandemic seemed to break all the old rules from government and public responses to medical treatment and vaccinations.

Now that vaccination rates are rising -- 56 percent of the U.S. with at least one dose and 48 percent fully vaccinated -- American’s are returning to public spaces, but it seems some have forgotten the “Golden Rule”.

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Digital Divide: How to Handle Conflicts in a Remote Work Environment

woman yelling at mobile phone

The thing about inventing the wheel or discovering fire, is that you are in uncharted territory when it comes to your first flat tire or when a spark starts a wildfire.

The COVID-19 pandemic ushered in an entirely new remote workplace culture, and it appears that it is not going away, even as the vaccine rate increases around the world, as many companies are embracing a hybrid model going forward that will feature some WFH (work from home) component.

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One-to-One Meetings are Critical for Employee, Team & Business Success

two employees going over a review

One-to-one meetings are more important than ever as many companies continue to guide a workforce that is remote or transitioning to a hybrid model with limited time in the office.

“Distance creates a new set of challenges that leaders must acknowledge and conquer so they can connect with and inspire their people. Maintaining relationships with your people—and strengthening relationships among your people—needs to be a primary objective,” writes William Arruda in Forbes.

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Post-Pandemic Storm Warning! Turnover Tsunami Predicted

Employer Flexible Job Turnover Tsunami

After a year of navigating the uncertain waters of the COVID-19 pandemic, business owners can be forgiven for wanting some clear sailing, but workplace experts are predicting a turnover tsunami in 2021.

“Employers were experiencing high rates of turnover prior to the economic shutdown triggered by the pandemic last spring, but since then, quit rates reached their lowest level in nine years,” wrote Roy Maurer in March for the Society for Human Resource Management. “Retention and turnover experts now predict voluntary job-leaving will increase significantly in 2021 as employees resume job searches they put off for the past year.”

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PEO Partnership Can Help Your Company Attract, Retain Top Talent

Employer Flexible Partner PEO Happy Employee

In a U.S. economy with record job openings and workplace experts predicting a post-pandemic turnover tsunami, partnering with a Professional Employer Organization (PEO) can help your company attract and retain top talent.

PEOs can help businesses, especially SMBs, in hiring and retention thanks to their ability to allow their employees access to benefits such as 401(k) plans; health, dental, life, and other insurance; dependent care; and other benefits typically provided by large companies.

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May Jobs Report: Hiring Picks Up but Labor Market Lags Overall Economy

We Are Hiring Sign

On the heels of a disappointing April jobs report, the U.S. Department of Labor released a much-anticipated May jobs report on June 4 that showed an uptick in hiring, but overall numbers signify that the labor market is still lagging a heated-up economy.

CNBC said, “Job creation accelerated in May but is still below lofty expectations”, while the Wall Street Journal termed the news as, “Hiring picked up in May but lagged behind broader recovery”.

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PEO Employment Growth Outpaces the Rest of the U.S. Economy

Image of Benefits Folder

New economic analysis shows that the professional employer organization (PEO) industry has outpaced the U.S. economy since 2013 with employment growth 16 times above average.

"The numbers in this study reinforce the dynamism and growth in the PEO industry. More and more businesses are realizing the true value proposition of using a PEO, particularly during the pandemic, when PEOs proved to be invaluable in helping their clients navigate through the challenges of the PPP loan process, COVID legislation, remote work, and return-to-office protocols," said National Association of Professional Employer Organizations (NAPEO) President & CEO Pat Cleary.

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Challenges Companies Face with Blended Workforce Approach

Decades from now when we look back at the evolution of the workplace, we will likely talk about events in terms of B.C. (Before COVID-19) and A.P. (After Pandemic).

The coronavirus crisis has been a defining moment in how we accomplish work, with most now agreeing that what comes after the pandemic for the workforce and workplace will not be the same as before COVID-19 swept the world by surprise.

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Do You Have the Leadership Traits to Move Beyond Middle Management?

There are a multitude of competent employees in managerial roles in today’s business world but only a select few seemingly have the leadership traits that can propel them to the next level in their careers.

Employees would rather follow a leader than a manager with a recent Cornell University-led study finding that “leaders” tend to be valued – and loved – more than “managers”.

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Transitioning Your Business to a Post-Pandemic Hybrid Work Model

image of a home office

The American economy proved in 2020 that certain sectors could operate on a “Work from Home (WFH)” basis for an extended period, but neither management nor employees were keen to continue the experiment permanently.

With COVID-19 vaccines now open to Americans of all ages, many companies are contemplating or transitioning their workforce to the office, but a return to a pre-pandemic status quo workday is not likely.

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Significant Workforce Events: From Industrial Revolution to COVID

futuristic worker looking in future

The American workforce has evolved over the past 200+ years, reshaping itself in response to economic, technological, and world events. All these factors came into play in the past year as the COVID-19 pandemic forced a sudden shift to remote work for large segments of the workforce.

Many businesses were able to weather the coronavirus crisis with a Work from Home (WFH) strategy that would not have been possible without the Digital Revolution, often called The Third Industrial Revolution, which transformed the workforce the past 30 years.

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Tumultuous Times Call for “People First” Disaster Recovery Strategy

organizational chart drawing

Every business generation has its own unique challenges, some epoch-defining such as the Great Depression, World War II and the turbulent ‘60s, but today’s owners are faced with a multitude of threats from the COVID-19 pandemic to extreme weather to civil unrest to workplace violence.

When a crisis does strike, your business must be prepared to launch a “people first” disaster recovery strategy that puts your employees ahead of all other considerations.

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Diversity and Inclusion Can Help Drive Business Success

Workplace Diversity

Diversity and inclusion efforts in the workplace are becoming increasingly less about a box that HR can check off, and more about how it can help drive business success.

“A diverse and inclusive workforce is necessary to drive innovation, foster creativity, and guide business strategies,” concluded a Forbes Insights survey of 332 senior executives. “Multiple voices lead to new ideas, new services, and new products, and encourage out-of-the-box thinking.

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Why Your Small Business Can Benefit from Compensation Studies

HR Graphs and Reports

Compensation studies are important tools that help businesses of all sizes, from Main Street to Wall Street, in the fierce competition for talent in an employee-centric market.

“Salary surveys are important enough that a full 80 percent of human resource professionals said they were consulting them in their business,” according to an article from Study.com.

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Federal Minimum Wage Rate Increase Debated in Washington

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The federal minimum wage rate has not been raised in 12 years, the longest stretch of status quo since the legislation was created in 1938, but Washington is currently debating more than doubling the $7.25 per hour rate by 2025.

The Raise the Wage Act of 2021 was introduced as identical legislation in January as H.R. 603 in the House and S. 53 in the Senate, and has been referred to the House Committee on Education and Labor and the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

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Keeping Track of New Administration’s Workplace Policies and Programs

White_House

Employers know that when a new administration moves into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue that HR changes soon follow so they are keeping a close eye on President Biden’s workplace policies and programs.

With the Democrats in control of the White House for just two months, some major legislation has already taken place with the signing March 11, 2021 of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act, but other changes are still on the drawing board.

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What the Workplace of the Future Will Look Like

Employer Flexible Working From Home Covid

A year into the COVID-19 crisis and it is increasingly clear that any expectations of returning to “normal” pre-pandemic workplace conditions are not realistic.

There will be a return to the workplace, buoyed by COVID-19 vaccinations rolling out, but the “new normal” workplace will include a continued reliance on remote work or a hybrid model that combines in-office with work from home.

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Employee Retention Tax Credit Extended and Increased for 2021

Employer Flexible Small Business ERTC

The Internal Revenue Service is urging employers to take advantage of the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC), a refundable tax credit, which has been extended and increased through the first six months of 2021.

The credit, designed to aid employers that choose to keep employees on the payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic, was part of the CARES Act and originally set to expire at the end of 2020.

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Establishing Company Goals in Uncertain Times

Words on white background - GOAL - Grab, Opportunity, And, Live

During these uncertain times of the COVID-19 pandemic we are reminded of former United States Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld’s “known knowns” quote which is popular in corporate strategic planning.

Rumsfeld said: “[A]s we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”

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How AI is Transforming The Way We Do Business

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Artificial Intelligence or AI may conjure up images of Steven Spielberg’s 2001 science fiction film where advanced-thinking robots and humans uneasily coexist in the future, but the reality is that AI is here today, and the disruptive technology is changing the way we do business.

Most of us interact with different forms of AI on a routine basis without even realizing it and those interactions are only going to increase as the COVID-19 pandemic has sped up digital transformation in all sectors, including AI.

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PPP Small Business Loan Program Re-Opens, More Help Could Be Coming

Employer Flexible PPP Loans Stimulus

The U.S. Small Business Administration re-opened the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) earlier this month, making nearly $300 billion in forgivable loans available to those small businesses that did not receive a PPP loan last year, as well as a second draw for certain existing PPP borrowers.

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Rethinking HR: Remote Recruiting & Onboarding to Remain Post-Pandemic

man sitting at desk with laptop

Those smoke signals coming from your HR department in 2020 might have been a cry for help during the COVID-19 pandemic or the staff simply burning the company HR handbook. Rest assured your HR handbook is still needed, maybe more than ever in uncertain times, but since March the coronavirus crisis has made a mockery out of “by the book”.

The best HR policies in 2020 were likely found on digital whiteboards and not in binders, because overnight HR had to embrace a new normal which included remote recruiting and onboarding for almost all nonessential workers.

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New Year’s Resolution: Make Sure Data is Secure Even With Remote Work

woman standing at her desk  using her tablet

On the top of every HR department’s 2021 New Year’s Resolution list should be a data security review among its remote workforce.

A year ago, for many companies, data security and remote work was not a major issue, but in the last nine months the COVID-19 pandemic fundamentally shifted where office work is being done.

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What You Need to Know About the SolarWinds Hack

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It's only been a few weeks since news broke on the SolarWinds hack, but it could take months, and even years, to fully understand the damage done by the sophisticated nation-state cyber attack on the federal government and private companies.
 
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) said the malicious activity poses a grave risk to the federal government.

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Key Information for Employers Regarding the COVID-19 Vaccine

vials of covid-19 vaccine

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently granted emergency use authorization for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. The government expects an initial 2.9 million doses of the vaccine to be distributed in the coming weeks, and projections suggest that there will be enough vaccine to reach the vast majority of Americans who want to take it by April 2021.

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Hybrid Work Model Could be the New Normal in 2021

Employer Flexible HR Services Houston TX

Despite COVID-19 vaccines shipping around the country, 2021 will start with many employees working remotely as pandemic cases and hospitalizations continue to rise.

As the calendar turns in 2021, however, there is hope that American businesses can enter a post pandemic phase and employers are envisioning what “new normal” working conditions will look like.

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Will COVID-19 Play the Grinch and Ruin Workplace Holiday Gatherings?

employees-enjoying-party

COVID-19 has fundamentally altered traditional events in 2020 from cancelled Memorial Day picnics to postponed Fourth of July parades to Halloween touchless trick-or-treating.

With new cases in the United States breaking the 100,000-per day mark and infection rates on the rise across all corners of the country, it appears that the pandemic is ready to play Ebenezer Scrooge next month and say “bah humbug!” to the annual workplace holiday gathering.

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Texas 2021 Labor Laws: Proposed New Independent Contractor Rules

man in library reviewing law textbooks

2020 has certainly been a year of upheaval for business owners, but there is some status quo, especially when it comes to Texas labor laws where there are no new significant changes planned on the state level for 2021.

That means the major components we highlighted for labor laws for Texas in 2020 will still hold true next year, including a minimum wage of $7.25 hour, and compliance by businesses with the Texas Payday Law, which requires exempt employees be paid at least once a month and non-exempt employees receive a minimum of two paychecks per month.

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PEOs Offer Businesses Insurance Lifeline With Master Health Plans

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When it comes to the beneficial services professional employer organizations (PEO) can offer your small and medium-sized business, outsourcing tasks like payroll management, tax reporting, and employee relations naturally comes to mind.

PEOs are also offering business owners an insurance lifeline by providing cost-effective and comprehensive healthcare coverage solutions through the offering of Master Health Plans.

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Good News: SBA Simplifies Forgiveness for PPP Loans Under $50K

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America’s small business owners will find it easier to have Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans forgiven under new rules issued by the Small Business Administration and Treasury Department on Oct. 8, 2020.

The PPP was created under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) on March 27, 2020, with a goal to help businesses maintain payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Remote Work and COVID-19: Making Sure Your Company’s PTO Policy Works

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The COVID-19 pandemic has touched every phase of the way we do business in 2020 and that includes issues such as your company’s PTO policy.

PTO (“Paid Time Off” or “Planned Time Off” or “Personal Time Off”) is a key benefit companies offer to employees to help with recruitment and retention.

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Choosing Your 2021 Insurance Benefits During Open Enrollment

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In the best of times Open Enrollment can feel a bit like doing your taxes. You know it is an important task that needs to be completed, but it can be confusing, frustrating, and time-consuming.

Of course, 2020 is far from the best of times with the COVID-19 pandemic, so it may be harder than ever for people to focus on Open Enrollment. It is crucial that companies let their employees know how and when Open Enrollment will take place.

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Scorecards & Measuring Performance are Important for Company Success

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It is no secret that professional football is big business, but some people would be surprised how much NFL teams have in common with big companies such as Google and Amazon when it comes to measuring performances and using scorecards to target success.

Take the NFL 2020 season opener between defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans, for example.

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Hosting an Effective Virtual Company Meeting

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Most people have a love-hate relationship with meetings. They love productive meetings, but hate time spent away from their desks.

Then there is humorist Dave Barry, who has a hate-hate relationship with meetings, saying: “If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be ‘meetings’.” With apologies to Barry, meetings are not going away any time soon.

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How Will Employee Recognition Look in a COVID-19 Remote Work World

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As the coronavirus pandemic enters its sixth month, more companies are embracing remote work as a necessary reality in the post COVID-19 economic landscape.

Outdoor company REI even announced Aug. 12 that it was going to sell its newly constructed 8-acre corporate campus before the first employees ever reported to work at the Bellevue, Wash. location.

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Employer Flexible is Named a San Antonio Best Places to Work

Employer Flexible PEO San Antonio Small Business

For nearly 20 years, the San Antonio Business Journal (SABJ) has been honoring employers in San Antonio that have a strong commitment to creating positive work environments that foster respect, comfort and engagement of its employees. To be eligible, a company or organization, must have at least 10 full-time employees based in Bexar, Bandera, Comal, Guadalupe, Wilson, Atascosa, Bandera or Kendall county.

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School Reopening: What Employers Should Know

Houston Human Resources PEO Covid 19 Employer Flexible

As school reopening conversations become more widespread, many employers and their employees are wondering what that means for their childcare? Various school districts are taking different approaches with regards to how schools will reopen in the fall. Either students will be full-time remote learning, in-person learning with the option to be remote or a hybrid with a combination of remote learning and in-person.

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COVID-19 Forces Texas to Pause on Work-Search Unemployment Requirement

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) has hit the pause button on its decision to reinstate the work-search requirement for out of work Texans seeking unemployment benefits.

With COVID-19 daily new cases surging and a steady rise during June of patients hospitalized with coronavirus, the TWC announced on June 30 that it was pausing the planned work-search requirement reinstatement.

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New Texas Law Helps Protect Consumers from Surprise Medical Billing

Some Texans are receiving fewer surprise medical bills this year thanks to a new law that prevents the health care industry practice known as balance billing.

SB1264, which passed the Texas House of Representatives with a unanimous 146-0 vote and went into effect on Jan. 1, 2020, forces health care providers and insurance companies to work out emergency care bills in an arbitration process without sending consumers surprise medical bills.

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Workplace Safety is a Top Priority as You Return to Work

Safety Tips for Returning to Work

Businesses started reopening this month in Texas, but with a vaccine for COVID-19 still on the horizon, it will not be “business as usual” for the foreseeable future.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott in announcing another phase of business reopening’s on May 18 said: “Our focus is to keep you safe, while also restoring your ability to get back to work, to open your businesses, to pay your bills, to put food on your tables.”

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‘Return to Work Guidelines’ is a Playbook for Texas Businesses Reopening

For most Texas businesses there is nothing like that first day that you throw open your doors to the world. A fast start for your new business generates momentum and begins building customer loyalty.

In these trying times of the COVID-19 pandemic many Lone Star State businesses are faced with the task of reopening after a partial or full shutdown, and that “reopening day” may be as important as the first day they opened.

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PPP Loan Forgiveness Application

Forbes posted an excellent article that delved deeper into the PPP loan and the parameters that must be met in order to be "forgiven" by a lender. The article provides a breakdown of the application and a deeper understanding of what the PPP can really be used for; good information to know for those that have already received their funds as well as for those that are just applying.

The article highlights several challenges, including

The application confirms (with one small exception) that only those expenses paid within the 8-week period after receiving the loan are eligible for forgiveness. Many borrowers, however, are already half-way through that 8-week period, meaning even if this most recent guidance were complete – and it is far from it – it would still be entirely too late.

 

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PPP Loan Forgiveness: Calculator and FAQs

As of May 6, more than 2.4 million loans worth more than $183 billion have been approved as part of the second round of funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Whether you have already received funding following your application for the PPP, or are still waiting to hear back regarding approval for a loan, you may have questions about loan forgiveness. Below are responses to frequently asked questions on this issue.

We are also including a link to download a helpful PPP Loan Forgiveness Estimator Tool to help you better understand what part of your PPP loan may be forgiven. Just enter your loan information into the boxes beginning with cell B29 of the spreadsheet to get started.

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Tax Pitfall - PPP Loan

As a follow-up to our PPP Loan Forgiveness: Calculator and FAQs post, below is more information on a tax pitfall small businesses who received the PPP may encounter.

A recent IRS Notice will have the effect of a tax on small businesses that have their PPP loan forgiven. The CARES Act itself states that a forgiven PPP loan will not be considered taxable income to the small business. In essence, when you are forgiven debt by a bank or other party, the lender will typically issue the borrower a 1099-C for the amount forgiven, and the business or its owner will end up having to include that 1099 on their tax return and will have to pay tax on the amount forgiven as if it was income. Congress didn’t want this outcome, and as a result the CARES Act clearly states that forgiven loan amounts will not be considered forgiveness of debt income.

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Favorable SBA Guidance - PPP Loan

As a follow-up to our PPP Loan Forgiveness: Calculator and FAQs post, below is more information from the SBA on re-hiring employees.

The SBA recently issued favorable guidance addressing problems small-business owners have faced in bringing back workers. The guidance, issued last week, states that if a small business makes a written offer to re-hire a worker and that worker chooses not to accept, then the employee will not be counted against the small business for purposes of the FTE forgiveness-reduction rule.

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Corona Virus Special Update - Paycheck Protection Program: How to Utilize Your Funds

Payment Protection Program

The Paycheck Protection Program, a first-come, first-served fund of $349 billion approved by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump in March, was designed to assuage some of the financial burden for the nation’s small business owners. Due to high demand, the program reached capacity quickly and the Small Business Administration announced today that it is unable to accept new applications. It is unclear at this time whether Congress will authorize additional funding.

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Coronavirus Special Update - Families First Coronavirus Response Act

As news quickly evolves, Employer Flexible will be providing brief updates on coronavirus (COVID-19) related news and its impact on employers. On March 18, the Senate passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and it was quickly signed into law by President Trump. The law’s new provisions on leave will go into effect on April 2.
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Sick Leave Laws in Texas May Be Changing- Here Is What You Need to Know

In the cities of Dallas, San Antonio and Austin, Texas, city ordinances passed in the years 2018 and 2019 that require employers who employee employees within these cities to start providing their employees with earned paid sick time, also known as the earned paid sick time ordinance. These sick days must be provided in addition to any company vacation days that are currently provided. If an employee gets sick or has a doctors' appointment, and they miss time from work, they can lose out on money that they need to support their family. These ordinances help to ensure an employee does not lose out on money from a paycheck because they were ill. 

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Coronavirus Plan for Businesses

Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to COVID-19

As the evolving Coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic affects the workplace, we begin to realize there are a multitude of factors that need to be considered when formulating an appropriate response plan. These factors include, but are not limited to, the nature of the epidemic, size of the business, the specific industry, the demographics of the workforce, and operational needs.

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The Different Types of Hats That a Small Business Owner Has to Wear

As a small business owner, you have to wear many hats, or work a variety of different positions, in order to run and operate your business efficiently. Being a small business owner is a lot of work and requires a lot of your time. Here are just some of the many hats that a typical small business owner has to wear when they are working to get their business off of the ground. 

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Overtime Pay and Overtime Exemptions in Texas

As an employer in Texas, it is important that you understand overtime pay and overtime exemptions. If you fail to properly pay your employees, you could be violating federal law and state law. You may face fines and may have to pay your employees what they were legally owed plus penalties and interest. Unfortunately, not every employer fully understands overtime pay and overtime exemptions in the state of Texas, and the laws regarding exemptions recently changed at the start of 2020. Here is more information about overtime pay and overtime exemptions in Texas. 

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How to Support Employees’ Mental Health

Mental health is just as important as physical health. Yet, every day, millions of employees suffer with some form of mental challenges without getting the help they so desperately need. Lack of mental health care can lead to a variety of negative consequences; some of them even fatal. At least some of the responsibility for mental health lies on the shoulders of employers. It’s not hard to support employees’ mental health, but many employers don’t know the first place to start. Here are some ideas to support your employees’ mental health.

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Workplace Bullying

Bullying isn’t something that’s only relegated to the playground. Unfortunately, even as people grow up, some of them simply grow into bigger bullies. Workplace bullying is real and it’s a problem that many people have to deal with. If you’re contending with a workplace bully, you don’t have to just take it. There are actionable steps you can take that will protect you and your job.

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How to Prepare Your Business for Flu Season

Flu season is here. Unfortunately, far too few businesses have invested heavily in combating the flu season as part of their risk management plans. One case of the flu where an employee comes to work while infected can spread through your entire staff like wildfire — eradicating productivity and making your office look like a ghost of Christmas past.

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Set Goals, NOT Resolutions for Your Business

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If you are a regular at your local gym, you'll know that January is the worst. Throngs of people either sign up or remember their forgotten membership as they vow to make this year the year they finally get in shape. Once you have lived through a few years of the January influx, you learn to grin and bear the New Year's Resolution crowd, knowing 80 percent of resolutions fail, most by mid-February. The question then becomes, why do we think resolutions for our businesses will be any different?

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New Labor Laws for Texas in 2020

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Like all states, the state of Texas requires employers and employees to abide by certain labor laws, which govern issues such as minimum wage, overtime payments, meals and breaks, harassment, child labor and discrimination. In addition, employers in the state of Texas are also subject to all federal labor laws. In order to ensure ongoing compliance with these laws, Texas employers need to be aware of all current state and federal regulations, as well as any changes going into effect in the future. Below is some information about Texas labor laws in 2020. 

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2020 HR Trends

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Like every aspect of the business world, human resources is a field that's always evolving. For this reason, it is important to keep up with the trends in this field. As 2020 approaches, it’s a good idea for businesses to think about what the coming year will bring with regard to HR. Below are some of the top trends you can expect to see in the field of HR next year. 

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How to Prepare your Business for the Holidays

Happy family exchanging theirs Christmas gifts

The holiday months are coming up very soon. While the rest of the world is preparing to celebrate, your business needs to prepare for the holidays in a different way. The holidays typically bring in more business, but they also herald some complications that need to be addressed sooner rather than later. Gift yourself by preparing your business for the holidays with these proactive steps:

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How to Handle Political Differences in the Workplace

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Every individual has his or her own political beliefs. However, because political topics are so controversial and emotionally charged, discussions about different political beliefs can become heated quickly. For this reason, it is important for business owners and managers to know how they should react when political differences arise. Below are some tips to help you prepare for these potentially explosive situations. 

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How to React to a Cyberattack

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A cyberattack can happen to any business, large or small. When you become a victim of this type of crime, the results can be devastating. To minimize the damage when a cyberattack occurs, you need to be ready to respond immediately. If your business is concerned about the possibility of a cyberattack, following the steps below will help you limit the impact and protect your company's future. 

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Is Your Career What You Went to College For?

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In a recent study, participants were asked about how their current career relates to what they studied in college. It’s an interesting question because college is a big financial investment. The whole idea behind attending college is to get education related to a field in which you want to work. It’s fair to say that college graduates fully expect to enjoy a thriving career in the area of their college major. But is that what ultimately ends up happening? The results of this study about how current careers related to what participants studied in college may surprise you. 

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How PEOs Help With a Business Exit Strategy

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Every business owner knows they should have an exit strategy, because buying and/or selling a business can get pretty complicated, and they may be relying on a successful exit to retire or start their next venture. The thing is, keeping your business up and running, getting your work done AND ensuring you have a smooth, functioning exit strategy isn't easy. Usually business owners will develop their own organizational structure and internal office practices, and then hire employees to run them a specific way. This specific way is not usually the “right” way, but the way that the business owner has always done it and is afraid or overwhelmed by the thought of changing it.

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Pending Recession? Invest in HR!

Rear View of Young Office Workers in Casual Outfits Listening to a Top Manager Explaining Something Using Illustrations.

The natural response to a recession is to stop spending on human resources (HR) entirely. However, such a unilateral decision only harms your chances of weathering a downturn in the economy. A better approach is to understand your spending limitations and use the resources you do have to obtain the greatest benefit for your company. The strategy for investing in HR during a recession should include hiring, training and retention.

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Understanding the Importance of the HR Compliance Audit

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To ensure long-term success, companies need to become as efficient and productive as possible, while still retaining the integrity of the company values. Since every organization is comprised of its workers, it only stands to reason that the HR department is the backbone of success. It’s the HR department’s job to not only help bring on engaged staff, but to quickly resolve issues as they develop. That role includes making sure that the HR department is in compliance.

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Generational Differences in Work Styles

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There are now five generations in the workforce. The top four (in terms of population numbers) are the Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials and Generation Z. It’s worth noting right now that there are more Millennials than there ever were Baby Boomers. The Baby Boomers and Millennials also represent the widest differences in work styles.

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5 Small-Business HR Issues You Need to Avoid

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Running a small business is no cake walk, even if you own a bakery. Even though you have fewer employees to manage, you will still experience large human resource issues that could put your operations at risk. One HR issue can damage your reputation, cause you to hire inexperienced workers, or hamper business productivity. Knowing the main HR issues that you may encounter will allow you to take the appropriate actions to re-mediate the problems.

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The Future of Medical Care

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The future of medical care has already arrived. Today, a combination of Millennials and technology are changing the landscape of medical care from both the perspectives of patients and their doctors. Medical care is becoming better, more accessible and more efficient. These improvements are changing outcomes, saving money and serving as catalysts for even more transformative changes to come in the distant future.

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Is Your Business HR-compliant?

Human hand pointing with finger at tick

There is something magical about hiring your first employee. Armed with the optimism of running a small- to medium-sized business (SMB), it is easy to get swept up in the romance of expansion while ignoring the hundreds of state and federal guidelines that govern hiring and onboarding a new employee. Still, ignorance is not bliss when it comes to the law; making HR compliance a necessary part of operations in an SMB. But where do you start to create a compliant organization? And more importantly, how do you maintain that compliance in the long run?

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Benefits of Using a Recruiting Service

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Recruitment best practices take time to master. The newest trends in recruitment encompass a whole array of marketing strategies that require full-time attention. Does your company really have the time and energy needed to devote to recruiting for new hires? The costs of not doing it correctly are high. Bad hires cost companies thousands of dollars in training expense and lost hours. When your company needs to make sure that new hires are the right hires, consider using a quality recruiting service you can depend upon. Following is just a small look into the entire recruitment process that you won’t have to do when you hire a recruiting service.

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What is Telemedicine?

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Telemedicine is a way of providing diagnosis and treatment to patients over distance. This methodology utilizes telecommunications software to deliver real-time healthcare to doctors’ patients instead of in-person healthcare. Telemedicine isn’t as new as some people may think. In fact, telemedicine has been practiced for about 50 years. In its infancy, telemedicine was used on an experimental basis by a few hospitals that needed to provide healthcare to patients who lived in remote areas. Having proved its efficacy, telemedicine is now being more broadly used to treat patients remotely for the purposes of convenience and expediency.

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Small Businesses Are Buying HR Tech (But Not Using It)

HR-Tech

HR technology can help a small business reward employees, structure better offers for new hires, and keep track of vendor contracts. But small businesses are finding it difficult to integrate that technology into their daily business, and owners are ultimately leaving money on the table when they pay for features they can't use. If you own a small business, learn how you can avoid this fate so you can get more from your investment. 

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6 Benefits Of Capitalism & Why We Love It

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Capitalism is often compared to other forms of governance, especially when the benefits of capitalism are discussed. The reason is that other forms have tried — and failed — to produce the kinds of economic and social success that capitalism brings. So capitalism isn’t just a “better” alternative to things like communism, socialism or even feudalism; it’s the “best” alternative. Here’s why.

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7 Benefits of a Wellness Program

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Wellness programs have become increasingly popular. In the past, only a handful of large companies gave out employee perks such as gym memberships. Now, wellness programs have proliferated into companies of all sizes. In fact, it’s more common than not to find some kind of wellness program included as part of a company’s benefits package.

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When Should I Hire a PEO?

HR-PEO

Employers often assume that they should make the switch to a PEO on January 1st. However, employers can successfully transfer human resources to a PEO any time of the year. It's really more a function of business need versus a specific date on the calendar. It’s more important to focus on hiring a PEO that provides the HR, employee benefits and recruitment services your company needs rather than worry about having to wait until the first of the year to make the move. Here are the times when it makes the most sense to outsource your human resources needs.

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Small Business and the Low Unemployment Rate

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In March 2018, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that unemployment remained at 4.1 percent for the fifth consecutive month. This percentage equates to a total of 6.7 million Americans over age 16 involuntarily out of work. The 4.1 percent unemployment rate is less than half of the 10 percent rate of October 2009. Fortunately for American workers, the number has steadily declined to its current rate over the past nine years.

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Supreme Court strikes down ACA — what effect does this have on small business?

Closeup portrait female health care professional, doctor, nurse with stethoscope holding piggy bank, dollar bill, isolated red background. Medical insurance, medicare reimbursement, reform concept

After years of talk and speculation, District Judge Reed O’Connor of Texas may have just struck down the Affordable Care Act (ACA) with a single decision. As a small-business owner, you are undoubtedly wondering how this will impact your company and its bottom line as a result. With the potential for appeals and delays in applying the ruling if it sticks, there is nothing to worry about quite yet. To prepare for any upcoming changes, however, it makes sense to explore this ruling and its potential impacts on small businesses.

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8 Occupations That Are Growing The Fastest The Next 10 Years

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For many, it’s ideal if you can plan your career before you invest thousands of dollars in education. Although, that's not possible for all. If possible, you should focus on leveraging up-and-coming industries in conjunction with an increased demand of certain jobs as you plan for your future. If you’re looking for job security, here are the top 10 occupations that are projected to grow the fastest in the next 10 years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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The ACA Remains in Place After Being Struck Down by Federal Court

ACA-Bulletin

On Dec. 14, 2018, a federal judge ruled in Texas v. United States that the entire Affordable Care Act (ACA) is invalid due to the elimination of the individual mandate penalty in 2019. The decision was not stayed, but the White House announced that the ACA will remain in place pending appeal. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) also confirmed that it will continue administering and enforcing all aspects of the ACA.

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Generation Z

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It might seem far-fetched to think about children currently only eight years old entering the workforce, but those born in 2010 are at the tail end of Generation Z. This generation, which starts with those born in 1996, is made up of young Americans who have never known a time without cellphones or the Internet. Those at the younger end have never known a smartphone-free world. It is safe to say that this generation takes Wi-Fi for granted.

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Is Your Business Prepared For 2019?

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Each year there are new advances that seem to change the game for businesses, small and large. Whether the latest trends surface in social media, the marketing department, or in new regulations for the finance department to wrestle, success in the new year means being prepared for the upcoming trends.

In 2019 we'll see some evolution that is completely new. You'll also notice that some of the things you've already started to master will continue to be important in the upcoming year. Here are some of the trends to keep your eyes on.

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How to Manage the Growth of a PEO’s Business

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With the complexities of the PEO sales business, VP Sales John Orth recently wrote a bylined entry for NAPEO’s PEO Insider Issue on how to manage the growth of a PEO’s business. In the write-up, Orth explains the complexities of appropriate growth for PEOs of various sizes and how to identify issues that business owners and sales team leaders may come across over time. 

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Creating More Effective Managers [case study]

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SUMMARY

Many business owners think of a Professional Employer Organization (PEO) as strictly an outsourced HR and payroll partner, but they can add much more value even on top of these core services. At Employer Flexible, our offering reaches far beyond the day-to-day HR and payroll functions and can even directly impact Management’s operations and communication.

Employer Flexible’s broad range of clientele doesn’t translate into a “one-size-fits-all” approach. In fact, it’s the opposite! With a wide array of industries and job functions represented, clients’ needs are met with custom solutions from consultants with all types of different experience.

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Too Close for Comfort [case study]

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SUMMARY

As a Professional Employer Organization, Employer Flexible provides a variety of services to businesses of all sizes. From payroll to human resources, the experts at Employer Flexible are experienced in many facets of owning and running a business in order to properly serve their clients.

When a sexual harassment allegation surfaced in 2017 with a Technology Firm, Employer Flexible took the lead in investigating and resolving the situation. As soon as allegations of this nature are reported from any client, strict measures are taken to ensure a fair investigation and a proper resolution.

In this particular event, an employee reported an invasion of her personal space by her manager.

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6 Big Advantages of Dependent Care FSA Accounts

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There are many advantages of a dependent care flexible spending account (FSA) for working caregivers. If you have someone who resides in your home whom you are able to claim as a dependent on your tax return, you may be able to utilize the benefits of an FSA to save money. Here are six big advantages of operating an FSA through your employer.

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Benefits in the Palm of Your Hand

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Having immediate access to important information is a must nowadays. We live in an on-demand society, and if your customer cannot get what they need “right now”, they will find it elsewhere. That’s why Employer Flexible launched myHR– a mobile application to save its customers time and decrease stress. And who couldn’t use a little more time and a little less stress in their life? With the Employer Flexible myHR app, employees have 24/7 access to critical benefits, payroll and policy information for themselves and covered family members.

When Employer Flexible first launched the app in 2015, demand for digitized employee HR records and benefits information was on the rise. Today, it’s a necessity. This year, worldwide app downloads rose to over 200 billion, with no signs of slowing down.  

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Promoting a Healthy Work-Life Balance in the Workplace

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As a business owner, productivity is always a priority, but an employee’s health and satisfaction should also be taken into consideration. Running a successful business has become synonymous with maintaining a group of happy and healthy employees who are engaged in their work on a daily basis. However, many companies fail to promote a culture of work-life balance.

There is no longer one solution for accomplishing a healthy work-life balance, nor is it a “nice-to-have” for a business.

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