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Michigan Governor Issues Order Protecting LGBTQ State Employees: What it Means for Small Business Owners

by Philip GarbaczFebruary 18, 2019 8:00 AM

As a small business owner, you’re in control of your business. However, things that you can’t control can impact your business as well. 

Certain laws and executive orders can potentially require you to change certain processes and policies to protect your company. It’s important to keep an eye out for any news that can lead you to review current practices and make changes, such as when Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive order to increase protections that prohibit anti-LGBTQ discrimination in January of 2019. Whether your business is in Michigan or not, it’s a good time to consider how orders like these can impact your day-to-day operations.

A job applicant being interviewed by a small business following non-discrimatory hiring practices. 

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Human Resources

Does Your Small Business Need a PEO?

by Brice DelphFebruary 5, 2019 8:00 AM

Running a business comes with more responsibility than most people realize. The administrative requirements to stay compliant while growing a successful business can overwhelm most. Some business owners will hire office managers, an HR generalist, interns, etc., but some completely put off the HR needs of their company. This can cause major issues down the line with compliance issues, payroll dilemmas, job description disputes, and the list goes on.

The Professional Employer Organization (PEO) industry exists to help business owners outsource their back-office functions to focus on the real reason they developed their company, which is to generate revenue. 

A happy small business owner who outsources key business functions to a PEO. 

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Human Resources

How Can a Small Business Compete with Huge Competitors?

by Andrew SzczesniakJanuary 28, 2019 8:00 AM

In the 12 years that I’ve been working for GMS, I’ve met with thousands of business owners in hundreds of industries. While every company has their unique problems and issues, some issues tend to be universal.  In the 26 years that GMS has been in business, we have found that most business owners… 

  • Think they’re paying too much in worker’s compensation premiums and not getting enough in return for it.
  • Want to offer their employees great health insurance, but don’t want to pay the ridiculous premiums being charged.
  • Don’t fight their unemployment claims because “it’s just not worth it and they’re going to get it anyway.”
  • Hate the stupid bureaucratic paperwork they have to go through, keeping them from more important tasks.
  • Have trouble finding good employees.
  • Have a hard time keeping them when they do find them because they’re losing them to other companies with better wages and benefits.

Did I miss anything?

A small business growing with the help of a PEO serving as an outsourced HR department. 

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Human Resources

You’re Violating Federal Regulations

by Andrew SzczesniakDecember 21, 2018 8:00 AM

Probably. Maybe. Maybe not. Who knows? Do you know?

As a Sales Rep for a Professional Employer Organization (PEO), I talk with small to medium-sized business owners on a day-to-day basis. I never cease to be amazed at how well they know their company, their employees, their business, their industry, and their competition. When you spend 80 hours a week working on your business, you become an expert.

Yet, these same business owners will often tell me, “I don’t know what I don’t know. And even if I knew what I didn’t know, I don’t always know how to find out what I need to fix, remedy, or comply with the situation.” Of course, they don’t. They’re devoting all their time to making a better product and/or a better company.

If you’re new to the game or haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about this, you might be wondering what regulations I’m speaking of in the title of this post. After all, those are geared towards large companies, not small, independent businesses, right?

Compliance chalkboard for small businesses. 

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Human Resources

Compensation Philosophy: What It Is and Why Every Organization Needs It

by Tim AustinDecember 17, 2018 1:18 PM

Ever wonder the reasoning behind a paycheck? As in, why does one employee make a certain amount, while another earns more or less? It all comes down to an organization’s compensation philosophy. 

Does your organization have a compensation philosophy? A WorldatWork survey found that more than nine in 10 companies have a compensation philosophy; however, that doesn’t mean their compensation philosophies are any good. Nearly one in three compensation philosophies aren’t in writing, while about half of employees don’t even know or understand them. This presents a huge missed opportunity for companies, as there are many benefits to pay transparency. 

Intrigued? Read on to learn what compensation philosophy is and how your organization can benefit from having a good compensation strategy in place.

 A small business owner handing out a paycheck that was based in compensation philosophy.

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Human Resources

How to Resolve Workplace Conflict

by Tim AustinDecember 4, 2018 1:22 PM

Let’s face it; you’re not going to get along with every person you meet—and that includes the people you work with.

Conflict in the workplace happens at every organization and ignoring it can be costly. A study by professional training and coaching company CPP, Inc. found that 85 percent of employees experience conflict in the workplace. When it’s fight or flight, it’s easy to want to avoid conflict at all costs; however, your organization will surely pay the price by avoiding conflict management altogether. CPP’s research found that workplace conflict wastes nearly three hours per week, costing $359 billion in paid hours.

Because every employee possesses a unique set of attitudes, visions, and values that may differ from that of their co-workers, these differences can sometimes lead to conflicts in the office. We put together some conflict management tips to help you understand what can spark a conflict in the workplace and how you can put out the flames for even the hottest office tempers.

Two employees with clashing personalities, egos and opinions get into a conflict at work.

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Human Resources

How to Prevent Job Burnout

by Tim AustinNovember 19, 2018 2:58 PM

Going to work shouldn’t feel like, well, going to work.

Sadly, that’s how most workers feel. A Gallup study found that two-thirds of full-time workers experience burnout on the job. Yet, only 23 percent of companies offer burnout prevention programs, according to a 2017 Statista survey. It’s a huge issue for many companies and a major reason why talented workers leave for better opportunities.

However, employee burnout doesn’t have to be part of the job. Learning how to spot job burnout and understanding its effects can help employers not only reduce burnout and job stress, but also increase productivity and revenue. We put together some tips to learn more about what job burnout is, how job burnout is affecting your company and ways you can prevent (and even reverse) job burnout at your organization.

An employee shows signs of job burnout when they are unmotivated, overworked, cynical and frustrated.

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Human Resources

The Differences Between Employees and Independent Contractors

by Tim AustinNovember 6, 2018 3:00 PM

Employees and independent contractors all play important parts for small businesses across the country. While they can both work for the same company, there are key differences between the two.

Why does proper employment status matter? There are important legal differences between employees and independent contractors that affect payment, protections, and other key HR matters. In addition, improper employee classification can lead to serious penalties from the IRS. Here’s a breakdown on what differentiates independent contractors and employees and how it can impact a small business.

A collection of employees and independent contractors for a small business. 

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Human Resources

Background Checks: What Small Business Owners Need to Consider

by Tim AustinOctober 19, 2018 2:17 PM

A good background check is a protective measure for any small company that allows employers to make a fully-informed decision on a job candidate. For example, an applicant with a past misdemeanor could have learned from his or her mistake and be a great fit for your company. However, that red flag could be a major point of concern if you’re hiring for a position of trust. The point is that a background check will help you know about these potential issues up front instead of having them be nasty surprises for the future.

There are several components to a good background check. Each of these parts provide different bits of information to help employers gain a better understanding of who an applicant is and if there are any issues. However, you also need to make sure that you’re following legal guidelines while you investigate candidates’ backgrounds as well. Here’s what you need to know to stay compliant and what you should include in your next background check.

Background check for a new job applicant. 

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Human Resources

Back-to-School: Employee Training and Performance Management Tips

by Tim AustinOctober 12, 2018 8:00 AM

You don’t need to be in school to learn a few tricks. Employees play a huge part in the success of your business. Retaining and developing a good group of employees can set your business up for bigger things in the future, especially when you consider that replacing an employee can cost up to 50 percent of that employee’s salary.

Employee training and performance management are key HR functions that can help you shape your employees into an even more successful group. Here are some back-to-school tips to help you make sure that your business is on the right path when it comes to training and performance management.

A small business owner going through a performance management review with a happy employee.

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