Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Ideals On Some Small Biz Perks

Here is a great article form INC.Com n regards to some company perks you can offer as a Small Biz without breaking the bank.  Employees really just want to feel they are appreciated in any way that a business is able to do so.   It does not have to be extravagant to keep employees satisfied.

Check out the article below:

4 Ways Small Biz Can Compete with the Big Business Employee Benefits

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Paid Time Off Challenges for Small Biz

Article by SHRM.org in regards to paid time off and how it affects small business with
recent challenges.

SHRM Article - Paid Time Off

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Integrating Wellness Programs for your Business

Wellness plans are a great benefit that are worth looking into for your small biz.  They can help your employees to help themselves by offering various incentives, and also help an employer to reduce absenteeism as well.

Before you decide to implement any program there are a few things to keep in mind.  Read the following article for some added advice and upcoming rulings by the EEOC.

Wellness rulings: 8 things employers should know

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Hiring New Employees for the Small Office

When hiring new employees for your small-office environment, keep a few of these items in mind….

Personality does matter
When working together in a smaller and tight knit office, employees need to be comfortable around each other and be able to get along well on a day-to-day basis.  You will greatly rely on each other to get the work done and need to know that each of you can be trusted to follow through.  Most small offices are very busy and no one wants to feel like there are personality clashes or someone is always picking up the slack.

Offer competitive total compensation packages
To attract top talent, you need to pay a good salary and offer the benefits employees will be expecting.  Today’s workforce is really expecting a lot out of their employers as well as flexible working arrangements.  When budgeting in salaries, keep these items in the back of your mind and it may mean you have to cut someplace else. 

Describe what a typical day will be in the office and offer the whole picture of what the new employee will be expected to do.
Consider using realistic percentages in your job descriptions of the amount of time for each area of responsibility.  You want to be sure you have the right fit for the position since turnover costs the company much more money in the long run.  Working in a small office may mean people are often performing multiple jobs, working in a fast environment and need to multi-task at a high level.  Not everyone is capable of handling that atmosphere and not everyone will want to. 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Challenges of HR Administration for Small Biz

This article from HR Morning speaks to some of the challenges you may face and the importance of utilizing social media to help with your recruitment efforts.

Difficulty of HR Administration

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Paid Sick Leave Mandates May be Soon On the Way

In Western Washington local leaders have already implemented paid sick leave polices in areas such as Seattle, Tacoma and it is only a matter of time before it becomes mandated for all; talks have already begun regarding a statewide initiative. There has also been much news regarding Obama's latest proposal  and also there seems to be frequent news about other states, or cities who are already passing local bills.

As a small business owner, you will most definitely be impacted and need to plan accordingly. I would anticipate that if it is not already mandatory in your area, then it will be soon, so if you currently do not offer sick pay to all it may be good to have plan for action and budget accordingly.

The proposal is for all employees to get sick pay regardless of being part time, full time and even temporary and the details can be read below

Obama's proposal

Saturday, February 28, 2015

FREE Recruiting Management System Which Looks Worthwhile

The system looks worth checking out and they seem to have all the basic tools you need to manage your recruitment cycle from start to finish.   Best of all it is FREE, forever, from what the website says and they offer webinars to help teach you how to use their program. 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Interesting and Somewhat Disturbing Stats - Engagement and Employee Commitment

Below are some numbers that i have seen tossed around by various surveys and employee engagement seems to be a never ending challenge for many.  It is impossible to please everyone and no matter what, will always have some employees who just do not want to put in the effort.  To help raise the level of employee commitment, which in turn will help increase engagement, they need to feel like their job matters and that they actually have an impact on the overall success of the 
company.  Employees also need to feel they have an equal chance at being considered for promotions and the ability to move up within the ranks if she or he has the motivation.

Research performed by the Corporation Leadership Council shows statistics in regards to how committed employees are to their jobs.  The more committed they are the longer and employee tends to stay and the harder they will work for you.  Below is what they had found:

Those employees, who were highly committed…try 57% harder, perform 20% better and 87% less likely to leave compared to those with low commitment.

Research by SHRM found the following statistics in regards to engagement:

17% actively disengaged (these employees tend to actively show their unhappiness and this in turn undermines what the organization is trying to accomplish)

54% are disengaged (basically sleepwalking through their work day; putting in the time and hours, but not the passion into their work)

29% are engaged (working with passion and feeling connected to the organization)

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

More Evidence Teleworkers Can be a Plus to Your Business

In order to support Teleworkers/Telecommuters in your business, you have to have the right business model and a good system of checks and balances for it to work.  Allowing employees to telecommute or telework a couple days per week, for job functions that make sense, is a great start to feel out how well this flexible perk would work for your business.  Good policies would need to be put into place and the employee would should have the proper software and tools needed to do their job successfully such as: email (no brainer), Skype (if needed), collaboration software for working on projects, instant messaging/chat, social media, eFax, printer, Go to Meeting type of software, and more.

Teleworkers more productive when sick.....

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Workplace Bullying is a Prevalent and Serious Matter

Workplace bullying is a serious matter and unfortunately has now been deemed an epidemic in today's workplaces.  Some interesting and surprising statistics to some is that over 80% of the bullies tend to be woman, compared to just over 70% that are me; the most common target are women and the most common level of employee to be a bully is a supervisor, or manager, followed by one of your peers.

Would you know how to spot a bully in your workplace? There are many different types and some are not so easy to spot and may quietly go unnoticed for a very long time.  One of the scariest types are those that are intelligent, underhanded, manipulative and very dangerous, often have risen into top positions in the company. The main difference between bullying and harassment is that the bully's antics are very repetitive and often over a long period of time. The repercussions to this type of behavior can result in many serious affects to the targeted person such as: psychological, emotional, cause serious health problems, frequent absenteeism and in the most serious cases result in that employee committing suicide.  There are also financial affects to the organization, possibility of lawsuits, and their business reputation being ruined.

Some ideas to stop bullying?   Is to have a very detailed "no tolerance" policy and let employees know what will happen as well as who and how to report this type of behavior. In some cases the employee may just need training in the matter of proper workplace behavior and may not even realize that what they are doing is "bullying" or how it affects others around them.

Click Here for More Detailed Information

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Setting New Employees Up for Success

Great article with some helpful tips on starting your new employees off right.  How am employee news the on boarding process of your company and how comfortable they feel from the first day will usually determine if they will stay for any length of time.

Helping Employees Help Themselves

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Utilizing the E-Verify Process

Verifying if an new hire is authorized to work in the United States is much more simplified by using the E-Verify process. From the date of hire, the employer only has 3 days to process the I-9 and verify  right to work. Roughly, 20 states have made using E-Verify mandatory and most likely more will follow.  Washington State does not make using E-Verify mandatory as of yet, but I would recommend using this FREE online verification process. Using E-Verify will provide peace of mind and help you feel confident the employee you hired is authorized to work.

The verification process is automatic with this system and compares what you input from the I-9 into their database coming back with a message saying the employe is authorized to work. If the system comes back to say they are not authorized to work,and there is a mismatch of information then the E-Verify system will respond back with further instructions on what the employee will need to do to resolve the mismatch and next step in the process. The employee is still allowed to work, but only has 8 Federal working days to resolve the issue.

What is E-Verify?

Video On How to Enroll

Happy Employees Make for a Happy Company

We all know that employees are much more engaged at work if they are happy.  At the same token, it will be impossible to please everyone; in general if employees feel valued and appreciated, they will be much happier at work and want to perform to the best of their ability.  Article below has some great tips to consider if you are looking for ideas.

10 Ways Make Employees Happier

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Flexible Schedule Benefits - Part 2: More Rested Employees

In an earlier post, I spoke about the many benefits that come from flexible working arrangements and how it impacts both sides.  Recent studies have shown that flexible schedules will help employees feel more rested with increased sleep and possibly better health. Adults who are sleep deprived, can suffer from many ailments and lack of engagement, which in turn can greatly inhibit their productive time at work.

Low productivity=higher costs

As an employer, depending on the nature of your business, you have the option to provide more flexibility and your employees will greatly thank you!

Improving Health with Flexible Work Schedules

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Managing Your Social Media Updates

Unless you have all the time in the world, not likely if you are a small business owner, or can pay big bucks for someone to manage this task, you may be interested in reading this post.

Social media is a "must" for any business and a great way to keep your clients or prospective clients abreast on the latest products, services or recruit your next best talent.

18 Minute Social Media Plan

Monday, January 19, 2015

Low Cost Ideas for Recognition - Part 2

Simple award certificates are always a great idea to recognize your employees for various accomplishments.  You can add a small gift card as an extra bonus, and set aside funds to do that on more of a quarterly basis, instead of monthly, to keep costs down.

Some certificate examples are:  Employee of the Quarter, Perfect Attendance, Going Above and Beyond, Best Idea Award, Key Contributor, Most Promising New Employee, Quarterly Safety Advocate, Amazing Team Award (for a group project that went well), etc.

Awards do not have to be costly and there are many more ideas you may not have thought of that cost nothing, or very little:

Front Row Designated Parking Spot  (great for Employee of the Quarter)
Movie Tickets
Free ½ Day Pass
Car Wash
Starbucks Coffee (get list of who likes what so you can surprise an unsuspecting employee for her service)
Extra long lunch
Office Trophy (to be passed around to the next recognized employee – be creative and can even be something that relates to your products or services)
Free lunch on the company

These are a few ideas to get started. Sometimes you just need to be creative or think outside the box.  Get employees involved and have them help come up with other suggestions as well. 


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Creating Employee Policies

The main purpose of creating employee polices are to protect your company against liability and also to set governing standards each employee should abide by, or be aware of.  Creating mew polices can seem overwhelming and daunting, but at least be sure you have polices in place for the basics for a good starting point.  You can add more written polices as time allows and your business grows.

Creating Effective and Legal Policies

Friday, January 16, 2015

10 Tips for Getting High Quality Candidates

This article, on About.Com,  has some great tips that may help you bring quality talent to your small business.  As a small business your funds are limited and you don't have tons of money to advertise.  I have already given you some ideas on using Linkedin to post your openings and there is no need to spend a lot of money to recruit.

To view the article click on the link below...

10 Ways to Attract Quality Employees

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Orientation and Onboarding


Orientation's main focus is to help a new employee get familiar with who your company is, what is your mission, structure/org chart, products & services, important need-to-know upfront policies/procedures (they should read the employee handbook for the rest of the details), benefits you offer and more.

An employee's first day should be comfortable for them and you will want to eliminate as much nervousness as possible. Try to remember how you felt your first day, on a new job, and especially if the orientation was non-existent. If it is in the budget, there are some things you can do to make them feel a bit more welcome such as: provide lunch (either brought in-house, or take them out), give them a "welcome bag" full of small goodies (such as company logo products, $5.00 Starbucks card and more), or other creative ideas you can think of. It is very important to show them around the building and introduce them to those they will work closest with at the very minimum, or the whole office if you are able.


Onboarding is a continuous process over a few weeks or months time frame (depending on your organization) and helps with retention of that new employee.  If possible, part of the process should include a respected and experienced employee who can act as a "mentor" and help the new hire have a "go to" person when they have questions.

What is Onboarding?

"Onboarding is the process by which new hires get adjusted to the social and performance aspects of their jobs quickly and smoothly, and learn the attitudes, knowledge, skills and behaviors required to function effectively within the orientation." 
Quote Source: (www.shrm.org/about/foundation/products/pages/onboardingepg.aspx")

Friday, January 9, 2015

Low Cost Ideas for Recognition - Part 1 "Manager's Tool Kit"

Recognition is one of the key players to keep employees engaged and happy.  We all enjoy hearing that we have “done a great job” or just a simple “thanks” is all it takes to make employees feel valued.   When the days get crazy, it is hard to remember to just take a moment to recognize others for contributions to the company.

Recognition does not have to be expensive.  One inexpensive idea that I like to do is create what I call a Manager’s Toolkit.  This allows a supervisor or manager to  perform “on the spot” appreciation.  

Supplies needed or add your own creation:

Toolbox of sorts (I get a small bucket or plastic tub from the local Dollar Tree that has a handle on it)

Tokens of |Appreciation – can be ordered from Oriental Trading (bag of 144 pieces for $5.25)

Gold Chocolate Coins (can get at Winco in their bulk bin for a few dollars/pound)

Set of Thank You Cards – I buy the blank ones so the managers can write any personalized note they wish.  (Can get a small box of 50 for about $10-$15 at Office Depot)