Published by: Sharon McReynolds
Small Business Owners
I recently attended a workshop put on by the Texas Workforce Commission that was referenced as Texas Workforce Solutions. Upon departure from the workshop I had a 363 page workbook that was prepared for all employers in Texas. The attendance included folks from all types of businesses and from all sizes. While our business is geared to help employers handle almost everything highlighted in the workshop my mind kept wandering to the small business owner sitting in the room. I had to think that most were totally overwhelmed with all the information covered in just one day. I wondered how many left thinking, “why on earth am I in business if I have to keep up with all discussed today, and when do I have time to actually run the business that I intended to get into business to run?”
How A Professional Employer Organization Can Help
It became increasingly apparent to me just how valuable a PEO business model is to employers of all sizes, in all states. To that end, this post begins a series that highlights some of the many responsibilities you have as an employer, some of which you may or may not be aware of.
The beginning of the journey starts with the TWC top ten tips:
- Hire for fit- train for skills- promote, transfer, discipline or fire for documented cause.
- Do yourself a favor- do not try to avoid payroll taxes, new hire paperwork, or unemployment claims by classifying temporary workers as “contract labor”. That will be a tax audit waiting to happen.
- Get as many company documents and required forms signed by employees at the time of hire as you can. It only gets harder after that and report all new hires and rehires to the Attorney General’s New hire reporting office within 20 days of hiring.
- Maintain a safe and healthy workplace in compliance with OSHA rules, and whether hiring, evaluating, promoting, transferring, disciplining, or discharging an employee, keep everything as fair, job – related, and consistent as possible, and never retaliate against an employee for reporting safety hazards, workplace discrimination, or other potential employment law compliance issues.
- Have specific, written wage agreements with each employee, and get specific written authorization for any wage deductions that are not ordered by a court or required or specifically authorized by a law.
- Unless an employee is clearly, absolutely, and undoubtedly in an overtime exemption category, do not pay on a salary basis, rather pay an hourly or performance based rate.
- Never loan or advance money to an employee without getting a signed, written receipt and repayment agreement from the employee.
- Give as much advance written notice as possible of pay and benefit changes.
- In order to minimize the shock and disappointment factor that so often leads to unnecessary claims and lawsuits, treat employees fairly and consistently according to known, job-related rules and standards, follow stated policies as closely as possible, and avoid exceptions whenever possible.
- In handling unemployment claims, file timely claim responses and appeals, present testimony from firsthand witnesses, and present clear documentation of warnings, policies, and other relevant facts.
In case you wondering how many of the above tips we help with by being your Professional Employer Organization – the short answer is we can help with all of them, contact us to find out more.