Monthly Archives: April 2018

HR Spring Cleaning

Ever wonder what should and shouldn’t be kept in employee personnel files? Ninja Gig will give you the low-down on how to spring clean your HR department.

What should be in personnel files?

Personnel files should contain objective information that relates to hiring, promotions, demotions, compensation, discipline or employee discharge. Type of documents that should appear in employment files include, but are not limited to:

  • Employment Application
  • Resume
  • Offer letters
  • Performance reviews
  • Disciplinary notices
  • Resignation/Termination letters
  • Compensation and deductions
  • Non-Compete or Confidentiality Agreements
  • Handbook acknowledgements
  • Attendance records
  • Vacation and personal leave
  • Changes in name, address, telephone or contact information
  • Emergency contacts
  • Beneficiaries for insurance policies
  • Training records

What should not be in personnel files?

Subjective information should never be in personnel files. This includes:

  • Notes about the employee during interviews or on their employment applications
  • Letters of recommendation or reference checks
  • Documents about employee criminal investigations
  • Credit reports
  • I-9 Forms
  • Medical files or anything relating to a medical condition
  • Photos of the employee or even copies of his/her driver’s license

Where should employers keep personnel files?

Personnel files should remain with Human Resources departments, but if companies are too small to have an entire department, they should reside with the employee’s manager. Personnel files should always be stored in a locked room or cabinet.

Who has access to personnel files?

Only the immediate supervisor and human resources’ department should have access to employees’ personnel files. While not required, it’s a good idea for companies to have a system in place that tracks every time a personnel file is viewed by whom.

Where should I-9 Forms be stored?

A separate I-9 folder for each employee is not necessary. Many companies have two binders – one for current employees’ I-9 forms and one for past employees. According to the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), employers must retain I-9 forms for a minimum of three (3) years from the date of hire or one (1) year after the employee’s date of employment ends, whichever is later.

How is medical information stored?

Medical information, such as worker’s compensation issues, disability issues, sick leave or FMLA should be stored separately in a locked drawer and have limited access.

Ninja Gig offers customizable online employment applications. These applications are easy to store digitally online, so companies can recall the information when needed, reducing the amount of paper filing. These online job applications also help companies target experienced candidates.  Sign up now for a no-obligation, free trial of our amazing software.

Addressing Sexual Harassment

Right now, our nation is being slammed by daily reports of companies and individuals that are receiving new sexual harassment claims. Thanks to Harvey Weinstein blowing the lid off the top of the entertainment industry’s harassment scandal, victims everywhere are making a stand, demanding to be heard.

Here’s what HR departments can do to help protect companies against harassment claims and to minimize the potential for employees becoming harassment victims.

  1. Hold a Team Meeting – A powerful way to send the message that workplace harassment is not acceptable is to hold a company meeting. Employers need to express that if anyone feels uncomfortable, threatened or demeaned, they need to report this to their supervisor and HR department. Create an open space, so employees know and understand that you have a zero-tolerance policy for harassment and you want it reported immediately. Emphasize that both sexual harassment and assault are criminal offenses and no matter someone’s position in a company, there is no tolerance for this type of criminal behavior.
  2. Shared Definitions – Create definitions of what defines harassment. Many studies show that when harassment is precisely defined, more people will report these criminal incidents. This helps in two ways:
    1. Employees are better able to understand and recognize harassment, which allows them to report any workplace violations.
    2. Employees have greater ownership of the company culture, which makes them feel more positively towards their work environments.
  3. Confidential Reporting System – It’s important to have a confidential reporting system in place so that employees can feel free to report harassment without fear of retaliation. Trauma effects every person differently, which is why it’s essential that a workplace environment offers a confidential reporting system.
  4. Shared Accountability – Every individual in a company needs to be held accountable for their actions, whether it’s the president or a mail clerk. An organization should emphasize a culture where no harassment is tolerated and that all colleagues, managers or executives are called out for their poor behavior.
  5. Cultural Impact – It’s crucial that companies regularly reinforce the zero violence and harassment policy. Here are some practical ways to do this:
    1. Explain – All employees and managers should have a clear understanding of how sexual harassment and assault issues are prioritized by the company, what their roles are in implementing policies and protocols, exactly what accountability for these illegal actions entails and what channels will support victims.
    2. Reinforce – Regularly reinforce a company’s zero harassment policy through newsletters, annual reports, social media, board meetings and one-on-one supervision.
    3. Pulse – Stay up-to-date on what is going on in the office as fear of retaliation can prevent employees from providing feedback. Regularly check-in with employees, conduct performance reviews and send out anonymous culture surveys.

Ninja Gig supports your position to hire the best candidates for your company to help create a zero-tolerance harassment workplace. To attract the best, brightest and most talented candidates for your company, consider using online job applications. These employment applications are easy to customize, which means that HR departments can tailor them to specific job profiles.  Sign up today for a 30-day free trial of this amazing software!

Biggest HR Challenges

Today’s companies face ever-evolving workforce threats – ranging from cyber breaches, workplace violence to mental health issues and employee well-being – today’s HR professionals must comply with a myriad of laws.

Here are some of the top HR challenges that companies face in 2018.

  1. Harassment – Courtesy of Harvey Weinstein, harassment has plagued America in both the entertainment, political and media industries over the last several months. Employers must have zero tolerance harassment policies, which are in print to protect employees.
  2. Drug Testing and Substance Abuse – Opioid addiction dominated the headlines in 2017. Managing and addressing drug use and testing is a challenging issue many employers face. Employers should implement a drug-free workplace, putting policies in effect that prohibits the use of drugs on work premises and during work hours.
  3. Employee Handbooks – An employee handbook should contain workplace policies, the employer’s mission and goals, and information about discrimination, harassment, leave and paid time off and employee benefits. Handbooks should remain up-to-date at all times, being closely monitored for changes to federal, state and local laws.
  4. Well-Being and Mental Health – To ensure that workers are productive and have low absenteeism rates, physical and mental health needs to be addressed by companies. It is important that HR professionals employ sensitivity, as well as FMLA and ADA rules when it comes to dealing with physical or mental ailments. Employers may also wish to add substance abuse services and behavioral health treatments that extend beyond what medical insurance plans may cover.
  5. Workplace Violence – In a day and age where mass shootings, terrorist attacks and bomb threats are becoming all too common, employers should implement a safety plan to help protect the workplace should one of these unfortunate incidents occur. Additionally, consider requiring background checks on applicants, implementing a zero-tolerance workplace violence policy and not allowing weapons on the premises.
  6. Recruiting – Employment numbers are low, which means that it is an employee’s market for job hunting. This is putting the burden on employers to attract and find the best talent for their organizations. Use online job applications to help manage and organize information for candidates. Additionally, companies can easily post their job openings online and on social media outlets, creating personal job applications that match the skill sets of an ideal candidate.
  7. Cyber Breaches – 2017 saw some major data breaches. As cloud-based systems become more popular, companies will need to ensure that private and confidential information is protected in the event a cyber breach occurs.

Ninja Gig offers customizable online job applications. Sign up today for a 30-day free trial and see how much easier your recruitment efforts can be!

Employee Wellness Programs

Employee Wellness Programs can help promote healthy employees, which means that companies experience greater productivity, a reduction in employees’ stress and an increase in morale. Wellness programs can help educate employees to make healthier and smart decisions that reduce health care costs and absenteeism. Studies also show that the costs of implementing this type of program are minimal compared to the significant number of benefits.

What is a wellness program?

A wellness program helps employees become aware of things, and through this learning process teaches them how to make better, more informed and healthy choices. It focuses on keeping bodies running in top condition, helping employees understand the importance of mental, physical and social needs to operate at maximum functionality.

What types of things are covered?

Government studies show that obesity is on the rise among adults and school-age children. Many employees have unhealthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels, as well as a high body mass index. One reason is that many employees spend hours sitting in front of a computer screen every day, creating more mental and physical stress and less physical activity.

Who benefits from these plans?

While employees benefit from having support for losing weight and being healthy, employers benefit from having healthy employees. Studies show that these programs can help boost employees’ self-esteem, self-image and overall well-being.

Additionally, healthy employees have fewer sick days, less work-related injuries and worker’s compensation claims. Creating a more reliable workforce is very beneficial, translating into a cohesive work cycle that produces a better bottom line.

What types of features do these plans offer?

Wellness programs can cover an array of health-related issues, such as nutrition, quit-smoking programs, physical fitness, blood pressure and cholesterol screenings and stress management.

When advertising the benefits and perks of working for your company, remember to include Employee Wellness Programs. It shows that companies and organizations genuinely care about the health of their employees.

Are you looking to simplify your company’s job application process? Consider Ninja Gig’s customizable online job applications that help you attract the best, brightest and most qualified applicants for your organization.  Sign up now for our free trial, and start simplifying hiring immediately!