3 Guidelines When Terminating an Employee

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Unfortunately, some employees don't work out - their behavior or poor performance escalates and they eventually need to be terminated. Many organizations have questions about properly carrying out terminations, including what to do to address the problem, when it's appropriate to terminate an employee, and how they facilitate the termination itself. Here are 3 guidelines when terminating an employee.

1. Address the behavior or performance problem.

Directly address the problem before you terminate an employee, whether it be a behavioral issue such as attendance, tardiness, conduct, attitude, or inappropriate behavior; or poor performance. Approach termination with fairness by bringing the problem to the employee's attention, counseling or coaching them on understanding the problem and disciplinary consequences if they do not change, and providing the necessary training and support for improvement.
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The Power of Social Media in the Workplace

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As social media expands into every aspect of our lives, including the workplace, striking a balance between leveraging social media as a business tool and managing it’s use by individual employees across your organization and can be a challenging balancing act. In an effort to help shed light on how Northeast Ohio employers are handling this difficult issue, ERC recently released the 2012 Social Media in the Workplace Survey report.

Policies

The 2012 survey reports that slightly less than half (47%) of all organizations currently have a social media policy in place. Several organizations indicate that although they do not have a formal social media policy, they do address issues regarding social media use under the larger umbrella of “electronic communications” or “IT” policies. These policies, in whatever form, are most commonly communicated to employees via their employee handbook or through some other form of internal communication (e.g. email, intranet).
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Communicating in Times of Crisis: HR's Role

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On behalf of everyone at ERC, our thoughts are with all those affected both nationally and locally by 2012's Hurricane Sandy.

The events following Hurricane Sandy an unfortunate reminder to all HR professionals and business leaders that natural disasters, power outages, and issues with transportation systems can emerge at any time and have implications on the workplace. In such circumstances, HR plays two pivotal roles as 1) policy developers and communicators and 2) crisis planners and managers.

Policy Development & Communication

In HR, you must set and communicate the policies for your business, in collaboration with your business leaders and line managers, regarding how to handle crises and threats to your employees' safety and normal business operations, like inclement weather. In our research, however, we find that only some organizations (39%) have a specific policy covering inclement or adverse weather.
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4 Employer Guidelines for Election Day

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Election Day is approaching and employers should be aware of certain guidelines with regard to providing time off for employees to vote, communicating voting time policies, influencing employees' vote, and mitigating political discussions in the workplace.

 4 Employer Guidelines for Election Day

1. Check state laws before announcing your voting policy.

Each state has different laws that employers have to follow in regards to employees voting. Some states require employers to allow employees time off, paid or unpaid, to vote. Some states only require time-off if the employee doesn't have a sufficient amount of time to vote before or after working hours. Be sure to check your state's laws to ensure you are communicating a lawful policy.

The state of Ohio requires that all employers allow employees "sufficient time off to vote." The law does not specify the exact amount of voting time required, but indicates that employers that discharge or threaten employees for taking voting time leave can be fined $50-$500. Under Ohio law, employers are not required to pay employees for time missed at work due to voting (Sources: Ohio Elections Commission, Ohio.gov).
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OSHA's Top 10 Safety Violations for 2012

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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently announced the top 10 most frequently cited workplace safety violations for  2012. The list includes the following:

  1. Fall Protection – General Requirements (1926.501) Total violations: 7,250
  2. Hazard Communication (1910.1200) Total violations: 4,696
  3. Scaffolding (1926.451) Total violations: 3,814
  4. Respiratory Protection (1910.134) Total violations: 2,371
  5. Ladders (1926.1053) Total violations: 2,310
  6. Machine Guarding (1910.212) Total violations: 2,097
  7. Powered Industrial Trucks (1910.178) Total violations: 1,993
  8. Electrical – Wiring Methods (1910.305) Total violations: 1,744
  9. Lockout/Tagout (1910.147) Total violations: 1,572
  10. Electrical – General Requirements (1910.303) Total violations: 1,332

Additional Safety Training

ERC offers the following Safety Training solutions:

  • OSHA 10 and 30 hour voluntary compliance
  • Lockout/Tagout
  • Hazard Communications
  • Electrical Awareness
  • Bloodborne Pathogens
  • Permit Required Confined Space Entry
  • Fall Protection
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Forklift Operator Training
  • HAZwoper

For more information on safety training, contact Pete Bednar at 440-947-1293 or pbednar@yourERC.com.

Free Training Planning Worksheet

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Planning and organizing employee training for an entire year can be a challenge. That's why we're providing you with a simple worksheet to help you chart and organize the types of training classes that will be offered in a given year, the individuals who will attend those classes, their perceived skill level, and the timing of when they will attend training throughout the year.

Download Worksheet (Excel)

 

Instructions

Here are some simple instructions:

  1. Chart the individuals in your organization under the column "Name" and their corresponding department or position in the second column.
  2. List the classes that your organization plans to offer during the upcoming year at the top of the chart.
  3. Color code the cells for each individual based on the degree to which each employee needs training in a specific topic area or skill.
  4. Within each cell, insert the timing (month or month and day) of when you plan to offer this class or when each employee will attend this class.
  5. Insert any relevant comments around the individual.

Budgeting Assistance

Need quotes for particular training programs? Contact Chris Kutsko at (440)947-1286 or ckutsko@yourerc.com. You can also view ERC's full catalog of employee training courses online.

Non-Profits Offering Paid-Time-Off Banks

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According to the 2012 ERC Non-Profit Benefits Survey, the non-profit sector in Northeast Ohio appears to be a bit ahead of the curve in terms structuring the paid time off offered to employees. The more flexible, all inclusive, “paid-time-off” or “PTO” banks are being used by 45% of the non-profit respondents, while other ERC surveys from earlier in 2012 have reported numbers closer to 30% or even lower. Although there is some variability in the samples from year to year, the Non-Profit Benefits survey shows a clear trend with the use of PTO banks hovering just under the 50% mark from 2009-2012.
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A Step-by-Step Guide to On-Boarding New-Hires

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Many organizations struggle to on-board and engage new employees effectively which poses challenges in setting them up for success in their new roles. As a result, we've compiled a step-by-step guide to help you successfully on-board and engage your new-hires.

Step 1: Communicate with the new-hire.

On-going communication with the new-hire is essential for effective on-boarding. The new-hire's immediate supervisor and HR liaison should not only call or email new-hires at least once to answer questions and welcome them prior to their first day, but also send them information such as:
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