Archive for Hiring and Firing

Why Shouldn’t Small Business Owners Use Annual Performance Reviews to Manage Employee Performance?

You might be thinking, “Wait, isn’t that what a performance review is for?” Unfortunately, performance management – or, as it has also been called, “performance review” has long had a negative connotation attached to it, when, really, it should be a positive and constructive experience. In fact, through my years of HR experience, I have seen how powerful and profitable a good performance management strategy can be for small businesses. (more…)

Posted in: Hiring and Firing, Human Resources, Policies and Procedures, Staffing

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What are the Benefits of Job Descriptions?

As you can see, at the Payroll Department we focus on the key fundamentals in HR services. And the topic of job descriptions is definitely a key fundamental in HR matters for both employees and employers. There are three basic core benefits when it comes to creating a solid job description. (more…)

Posted in: Hiring and Firing, Human Resources, Policies and Procedures, Staffing

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What Is ‘At Will’ Employment?

As a small business owner, you’ve probably heard that Indiana and other states are at will employment states. But do you really understand what that means you are allowed to do or not do when it comes to terminating employees? Even in this area of your payroll process, The Payroll Department can help with information you need.

Small business employers need to understand the rules of 'at will' employment - and termination.Basically, at will employment means you can terminate an employee with or without cause, at any time, without adverse legal consequences. However, you cannot terminate an employee for illegal reasons. Additionally, you don’t have to provide advance notice of termination. For example, at-will employers can:

  • Promote and demote employees.
  • Make unannounced pay and benefits cuts. As long as the pay cut doesn’t take the employee’s wage below applicable federal or state minimum wage.
  • Reduce paid time off.
  • Change work schedules – limiting hours or requiring on-call work.
  • Set your own policies.

Alternatively, employees can leave a job at any time, with or without a reason, without legal recriminations, too.

However, there are state and federal exceptions to this law. You cannot terminate employment for any of the following reasons:

  • Discrimination or harassment based on race, gender, national origin, religion, age (40 and older) and disability. This discrimination may occur before, during or at the end of employee’s
  • Retaliation against employees who complain about discrimination or harassment toward themselves or others, or within the company, or who participate in an agency or court proceeding concerning discrimination or harassment.
  • Jury duty attendance.
  • Filing or threatening to file a worker’s compensation claim or claim for unpaid wages.
  • Refusing to perform an illegal act, such as refusing to drive a truck that exceeds legal weight limits, or reporting illegal activity.

Additionally, you cannot terminate an employee at will if:

  • The employee has an employment contract which states the employee is employed for a set time period, or outlines specific situations or employee actions that may lead to termination for cause. Reasons for-cause termination may include poor employee performance, employee misconduct or economic necessity.
  • The employee is covered by a collective bargaining agreement that specifies the employee can only be terminated for cause.
  • The employee gave up job protected status with their former employer to work for you.

As a small business owner, you’re probably more knowledgeable in the actual running of your company rather than every local, state and federal law concerning employment, payroll and taxes. Therefore, to avoid errors that can lead to substantial fines and penalties, consider hiring The Payroll Department. As an experienced payroll services provider, we can handle your payroll and payroll taxes for you, so you can get back to managing your business.

-Ariane of The Payroll Department blog team

Posted in: Hiring and Firing, HR Rules, Regulations and Laws, Human Resources, Operating a Small Business, Payroll, Payroll Processing

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Severance Package Points Employers Should Know

As a small business owner, you know a couple of life lessons. One lesson is that the pressure is definitely on, as in every day, all day long. And the second lesson is about employees, keeping track of them, training them, keeping them happy. That responsibility alone can feel about as easy as herding cats. (more…)

Posted in: Benefits and Health Care, Hiring and Firing, Human Resources, Payroll, Payroll Processing

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Worried About Hiring Workers?

One of the most difficult decisions for a small business owner is hiring employees. It’s not just finding the right person for the position or wondering if the company is financially ready.

No, one of the biggest fears is the knowledge that the company has to follow federal, state and local labor laws; unemployment insurance (SUTA), social security and Medicare (FICA) and the income taxes and all the rules around that. It’s a scary proposition, that’s for sure. (more…)

Posted in: Hiring and Firing, Operating a Small Business, Payroll, Payroll Processing, Rules, Regulations and Laws

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