Category Archives: Dealing with Bosses

Consider These Steps when Terminating an Employee

Terminating an employee is never easy. It is a difficult situation for both the employee and the employer. There’s some criteria to consider when terminating an employee. Yet, despite the grounds, legalities, etc., there are certain criteria to consider that can make the process less strenuous for both parties.

1. Get to the Point

Terminating an employee is always disheartening. It’s best to arrange a meeting with the employee as quickly as possible and inform them right away. Employees easily detect bad news and it’s best to be clear and direct as possible. In fact, according to an article in the Harvard Business Review, by announcing the termination immediately, the employer will get the individual’s attention about what’s coming next. Additionally, it’s suggested to inform the employee directly, then state the reasons(s) clearly so they understand it’s a firm decision that has been determined prior to the meeting.

2. Listen to the Employee

As it’s not difficult to predict the reaction of an employee getting terminated, The Harvard Business Review also suggests that by taking time, seeing their reaction, and listening to what they have to say makes it much easier to clarify the reasons of their dismissal. Plus, rushing through the meeting may seem insensitive, callous and may create unnecessary irritated emotions.

3. Be Organized to Avoid Future Repercussions

Always have the proper documents completed, including a written notice of termination (or similar documents) and details on severance (if applicable). Geneviève Desmarais, the Assistant Vice-President of Legal Affairs for The Business Development Bank of Canada suggests that when an employee disputes their termination, it’s due to the lack of back-up documentation to support it. It then “becomes a question of ‘he said, she said’ and the burden lies on the employer to demonstrate the termination was made for a just and sufficient cause, and was properly conducted.”

Some employees may be surprised by being let go, while others may have predicted their termination by realizing their lack of performance or behavior. Regardless, showing courtesy, respect and overall professionalism can help make the process less strenuous and smoother for both the employee and employer.

By signing up with Ninja Gig, companies easily promote openings using online employment applications. Online job applications make it easy for qualified applicants to apply. Sign up now for your free trial and get your online job applications in front of potential candidates now.

Bullying in the Workplace and What Employers Can Do About It

Bullying was at one time just an issue in school yards and classrooms. Yet, in recent years, bullying in the workplace has become a major concern among employees, managers and/or supervisors. While having a tough, demanding boss is one thing, bullying is something different altogether. It can essentially undermine an employees’ performance, greatly affect their overall attitude and cause unnecessary stress.

According to The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries, bullying in the workplace is not illegal in the U.S. unless it involves various forms of illegal harassment. The result of bullying is extensive and can even be the potential source of physical and mental health problems. So, what can employers do about bullying and how can they prevent it in their workplace?

Here are a few actions employers can take to fight against this age-old behavior in efforts to prevent it:

1. Identify Bullying

Unlike the school yard tormentor, bullying in the workplace goes way beyond stealing lunch money. The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries also states that bullying involves many behavioral patterns towards an employee(s) including (but not limited to):

  • Being shouted and sworn at or humiliated.
  • Deliberately excluded or isolated
  • Excessive mentoring and micro-management
  • Deliberately singling out an employee for no apparent reason

 2. Educate Managers, Supervisors and Directors

Employers or human resource professionals may want to implement a zero-tolerance anti-bullying program (or policy) to ensure senior staff is aware of bullying and that they are provided with proper training on how to get involved constructively. In fact, The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries states that bullying will less likely take place if a company takes a strong stand and the tormentor is likely to be accountable for their actions.

 3. Reporting and Investigating Bullying

Employers can also encourage staff to report any incidents. Although no employee wants to be known as a “snitch or a tattle-tale,” reporting about bullying should be handled quietly and confidentially with assurance that there won’t be any further consequences in the workplace.

On a final note, according to the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries, if an employer, supervisor or manager doesn’t take action against bullying in the workplace, then they are accepting a share of the responsibility for future abuses.

By signing up with Ninja Gig, companies easily promote openings using online employment applications. Online job applications make it easy for qualified applicants to apply. Sign up now for your free trial and get your online job applications in front of potential candidates now.

How to Keep Top Talent Happy at Your Work Place

High turn-around among employees is challenging for any business. It’s time consuming, cost intensive and can be potentially unproductive when it comes to meeting company goals. It can also hinder a company’s reputation and the ability to keep or even attract top talent.

There are any number reasons for a having a high turnaround of employees. Yet, when it becomes apparent that the front door to your business is more like “a revolving door,” perhaps take a closer look at your work environment to find the cause.

Outside of salary increases and great benefit programs, which are strong incentives to any employee, no business environment is perfect. There’s always politics, that “one employee who creates a headache for everyone” and of course, the common stress-factor. However, establishing and maintaining a harmonious work environment may offset these challenges. In turn, it may provide a more productive, enjoyable experience for your employees, and the ability to hire and keep favorable ones.

Here are three aspects to make your work environment more enticing:

1. Minimize Stress:  Distribute Work Evenly and “Recognize Weak Links”

There’s a long list of things that can cause stress in the work place and too much work is at the top of that list. Having the luxury of a large department to handle major projects is not always feasible for many businesses. Yet, by dividing responsibilities fairly among a team will alleviate some stress, especially when it comes to meeting deadlines. Plus, realizing all your employee’s strengths and weaknesses during a project and placing them in more appropriate roles can further reduce stress, plus provide a more relaxing atmosphere for “the performers.”

2. Address Employee-to-Employee Issues Immediately

There are several reasons for less-than-desirable relations between co-workers and can be a good reason for any good employee(s) to resign. This is an issue that always needs to be addressed and it’s pertinent to realize that a problem exists, determine the root cause and then find a resolution immediately for both parties. In the end, it may create a more positive atmosphere for everyone involved without the issue escalating into larger problems.

 3. Recognize Achievement Where it’s Due

There’s an old saying that “good work is always rewarded with more work.” This can become a burden for any top performer. It can make them feel they are being taken advantage of or not being properly recognized for achievements and as result, become disgruntled. While many large companies offer attractive bonus structures or other monetary incentives to recognize achievements, sometimes a heartfelt thank-you or other means of recognition is all takes to make an employee feel appreciated. In fact, according to The Young Entrepreneur Council, recognition programs, implement peer-to-peer recognition, or even arranging a small celebration off-site is all that is needed to boost morale. Although some employers just don’t have it in their hearts to acknowledge good, solid work, these are all positive incentives to consider. The results may be surprising.

By signing up with Ninja Gig, companies easily promote openings using online employment applications. Online job applications make it easy for qualified applicants to apply. Sign up now for your free trial and get your online job applications in front of potential candidates now.

5 Qualities Companies Look For When Hiring

Job searching can be a lonely process. Rejections, ignored applications and long days of scrolling online job boards will make you feel like you need a vacation before you’re even hired.

But, job seekers take heed, there are specific qualities all companies look for in their new hires. Maybe you already possess some of them, maybe not, but all can be learned before you land your next opportunity.

Currently Employed
Let’s get this one out of the way first. While it is true that companies prefer to hire candidates currently employed elsewhere, you don’t necessarily need to hold official employment status to demonstrate this quality.

For example, if you’re currently unemployed and on the job hunt, consider taking an unpaid internship or volunteer position with a company. You’ll learn valuable skills and you can list it on your resume just like you would any other job. You’ll find that many hiring companies don’t care if you’re working for free; they may even applaud the go-getter initiative this displays.

Strong Work Ethic
It can be tempting to turn your resume into nothing more than a list of roles you’ve held. But companies want to know what you’ve accomplished, not just what seats you’ve occupied. Make sure you can demonstrate how your hard work has translated into tangible results and success for current/previous employers. If you can’t paint a picture in the employer’s mind of how hard you work, they’ll never know.

Loyal
Are you looking for your next temporary landing spot, or a long and fruitful career? While the modern world has reshaped what is considered an acceptable tenure with an employer (the average person now changes jobs an average of 12 times during his or her career), hiring managers are still on the lookout for someone who wants to grow with the company long-term. Make sure you can demonstrate why you are looking for growth opportunities.

Collaborative
Do you play well with others? There are very few jobs in the world where being a team player is not a prerequisite. When job-seeking, you should demonstrate that any prior success was due in large part to the team around you. Employers want to know that you will not cause any team dysfunction if they are to bring you on board, so do not leave it as an unknown question mark in their minds.

Culturally Balanced
While your strength as a candidate should depend first and foremost on your skill set, employers are also looking for certain cultural qualities to fit their company. Before getting too far along in the application process with any company, do your homework on what the culture is like there. A company’s website and their LinkedIn and Glassdoor pages are a great starting point to do a little reconnaissance. You don’t need to be a social butterfly, but companies want to know what type of person you are as a whole (you’ll be spending a lot of time together should they hire you), so share a little about what hobbies and interests pique your interest outside of work.

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The Latest in HR Trends

Every year seems to have a different focus on the HR industry, so what trends are going to be present throughout 2019? Ninja Gig weighs in with what they are seeing kick off this new year.

Personalization

In the past, many companies have focused on a “one-size-fits-all” approach to standardizing businesses. Employees have different work styles, and some employees work better in a collaborative work environment, while others prefer more isolation and silence. Tailoring specific office design settings to employees’ work styles helps to produce more productive employees and a personalized work environment.

Trust

Trust is a big one. Do people trust the companies that employ them? If not, then it makes it difficult for employees to be loyal and stay with a company long-term. I mean if someone doesn’t trust their employer, why do they still work there? If a company says they’re going to do something, they should try their best to do it. Broken promises and smoke and mirrors all contribute to a poor work environment, which leads to higher turnover rates.

Paternalism

While traditionally companies have been taught that leaders and managers should be good coaches, this isn’t necessarily true. In reality, many managers aren’t good, motivating coaches. It’s essential that managers undergo training to help them understand the process of becoming a good coach. If you invest in helping managers to become good coaches and teach them how to enjoy their jobs more, you’ll have long-term employees that are more productive and happy.

Doing Less

Management needs to make an impact by doing less because it produces more significant results in the workplace. If there are an overwhelming number of rules and regulations, work can feel more like going into court than a positive working environment.

Focusing on People

Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in semantics, but in the end, all employees are people. Sometimes the expectations of the workforce can be too high. Understanding the psychology of people, what motivates them and how they are driven to succeed will significantly help to improve company performance.

By signing up with Ninja Gig, companies easily promote openings using online employment applications. Online job applications make it easy for qualified applicants to apply. Sign up now for your free trial and get your online job applications in front of potential candidates now.

Employee Success: Why Everyone Wants to Work for Chick-Fil-A

Chick-Fil-A is one of the best fast food restaurants to work for according to their dedicated employees. How does a company create an environment that fosters team building and pride in what they produce? Let’s take a glimpse into the success behind Chick-Fil-A.

The Employees

Chick-Fil-A has a good policy to hire polite, intelligent and hard-working employees. When companies focus on recruiting quality talent, they tend to have employees that get along better and work well as a team. This can also foster long-term friendships, in addition to happier employees that enjoy their jobs. It’s about creating a sense of family on the job.

The Food

This one is more obvious. Why does someone want to work at Chick-Fil-A? Well, the food is a big reason! Not only do they give employees food discounts, but their food is really good! Delicious food, great friends – this combination begets a positive culture that attracts good people.

Customers

The company is big on delivering top-notch customer service and promotes kindness towards one another. Additionally, many Chick-Fil-A locations have regular customers, and when employees and customers enjoy the atmosphere, it creates a better, stress-free working environment.

Growth

The one thing about Chick-Fil-A is that they value their employees and want them to grow and succeed. That’s why the restaurant offers many opportunities for employees to test their leadership skills and earn valuable promotions. Whether an employee starts as shy and learns to find their voice as a team leader, or someone offers emotional support to help create a better team environment, the restaurant is all ears and eyes when it comes to fostering growth amongst its employees.

The Day-to-Day Work

While Chick-Fil-A is a very fast-paced environment, staying busy helps the time fly by. Additionally, the restaurant has different positions, which means that monotony and doing the same repetitive tasks day in and day out are eliminated, helping to keep employees interested and engaged in their work.

Sundays Off

Of course, having Sundays off also helps employees. It’s an excellent way to give everyone a break to focus on their homework, studying, church, families or just decompressing and enjoying a day away. And while many of us moan about not being able to get our Sunday Chick-Fil-A craving fix, the company respects their employees, which speaks volumes.

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2019 Workplace Trends

As 2019 gains full speed ahead, some new workplace trends will be popping up in companies across America. We want to highlight a couple of these important trends that will define the workplace over the coming several months.

Centralized Communication

Workplaces need a form of centralized communication to ensure that all employees are on the same page. While some companies have tried instant messaging to help curtail overflowing inboxes, reports show that employees feel pressure to respond to instant messages immediately. This also decreases overall productivity and may lead to employees having difficulty concentrating on tasks. While instant messages and other chat applications will not disappear, we anticipate they will take a backseat, and we will see a shift in overall communication within companies.

Work-Life Balance

With the advent of technology and digital tools, many employees can work remotely and set their schedules. However, the push for work-life balance will be a central theme for employees. Companies need to let their teams know that work-life balance is a priority to them to help boost employee morale. In fact, work-life balance comes in third when employees consider essential job security components, with salary and job security coming in first and second. Companies need to set clear expectations and boundaries, and not expect employees to be readily available for work around the clock to help accomplish this goal.

Fast Paced Environments

Just because employees want a better work-life balance does not mean that the pace at which companies expect their employees to work will slow down. In fact, with today’s collaborative work management platforms, templates, automation and other technology, employees can accomplish more in less time. This year will not be about robots and automation replacing employees, but about how these technological advancements can help improve workflow and increase business productivity.

Mentorships

While we focus so much on technology, the human element of business is not forgotten. Young millennials in the workforce define their success by rapidly growing their careers. However, employees that stay with companies long-term have mentors to help them successfully build their jobs. Businesses that pair up younger employees with experienced workers can help to implement a retention strategy that boosts morale and personal growth.

Gender Equality

A hot button topic last year, gender equality will continue to define workplace culture and personal interactions in 2019. One study conducted by Ernst and Young shows that increasing women in leadership positions by 30% helps to boost company profitability by as much as 15%. We anticipate that 2019 will make more headway implementing requirements and mandates to ensure that gender equality becomes an integral part of company culture.

 

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What to Know When Hiring Teens for Restaurant Jobs

The U.S. Department of Labor has a Wage and Hour Division that provides advice and guidance to employers so they can comply with child labor provisions. Many young adults and teens have part-time jobs, but it’s important that employers comply with federal regulations.

Many teens have part-time restaurant jobs. Here are some questions that restaurants need to consider when hiring young adults under the age of 18. If you answer yes to any of these questions, you may be out of compliance.

  1. Will they operate or clean power-driven meat processing machines and slicers?
  2. Will they clean or operate any power-driven equipment, such as bakery machines or dough mixers?
  3. Will they operate, load or unload any compactors or balers?
  4. Will they drive any type of motor vehicle on the job?

Here are some questions that employers need to consider that relate to hiring minors.

Do any workers 16 and younger do any of the following?

  1. Cook? If yes, 14 and 15-year-olds may not cook over an open flame, but only over an electric or gas grill. They may not use pressurized fryers.
  2. Bake? Minors 16 and younger may not perform any baking duties, including weighing, mixing or assembling ingredients or operating convection or pizza ovens.
  3. Handle hot grease or oil or clean cooking equipment? If yes, 14 and 15-year-olds may do these tasks, but they cannot repair power-driven equipment. They may only perform these cleaning tasks if the equipment or liquids are below 100°F.
  4. Load or unload items from a conveyor or truck? If yes, 14 and 15-year-olds may not load or unload items from trucks, tanks, railroad cars, conveyors, boats, planes or any other types of transportation. They may, however, load into motor vehicles items that are light, non-power-driven and are personal related items, such as jackets for job sites.
  5. Working inside a meat cooler or freezer? 14 and 15-years-olds may not work in meat coolers or freezers, but they may momentarily retrieve items from them.
  6. Operate power-driven equipment? Minors may not operate, adjust, setup, repair or clean any power-driven equipment, which may include bread slicers, bagel slicers, lawnmowers, golf carts, trimmers, weed-whackers, etc. They may operate vacuum cleaners, basic office machinery, and devices that relate to serving food, such as dishwashers, popcorn poppers, toasters, coffee grinders and milkshake blenders.
  7. Work on or from ladders? Minors may not perform any work that requires scaffolds, ladders or window washing that requires working from windowsills.
  8. Work during school hours? Minors cannot work during school hours, which are determined by public schools in the area. Even if the minor is homeschooled or attends private school, they cannot be employed during the times when public school is in session. Outside of school hours is acceptable and is defined as before or after those hours, summer vacations, holidays, Saturdays or Sundays. They however, cannot be employed before 7:00 AM on any day.

The U.S. Department has many more requirements that restaurants must comply with when hiring minors and children under the age of 18 to work part-time. An excellent reference, complete with specific tests and requirements is located at https://www.youthrules.gov/for-employers/compliance/restaurant/

 

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What Every Company Should Do to Prepare for the New Year

December is always a hectic month for companies, but it affords the opportunity to learn from past mistakes and focus on a bright, upcoming New Year.

Here are four ways you can whip your Human Resources department in shape and be prepared to tackle the New Year.

  1. Top Performers – Stay connected and make sure that the company’s top performers and best employees are happy. Connect with employees and see what is working for them, what’s not and what could improve to help make their work environment better. Additionally, see if more lifestyle benefits, such as flexible hours or additional vacation time would ease frustrations. Don’t focus on just gaining feedback during exit interviews, but incorporate regular interviews to guarantee employee satisfaction is high, which can help reduce turnover.
  2. Policy Changes – Many state and federal laws are passed at the end of each year and become effective on January 1. Stay up to date on any upcoming changes and make sure to get everything in place to implement them starting in the New Year to avoid penalties. Your state’s Department of Labor website should list any upcoming regulation changes that may affect your business.
  3. Communicate with Management – Schedule informal meetings with managers and executives to understand the company’s big picture, which will help facilitate making sure that all departments are going in the same direction and share the same long-term goals.
  4. Performance Management – Performance reviews need to be done, and all necessary documentation should be in order. Whether your company does reviews informally on paper or files them electronically, it’s important that managers have personnel files reviewed on an annual basis to make sure nothing is missing.

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How to Create a Dynamic Work Schedule

Movie theaters, restaurants and other hourly positions, need to have management create a dynamic work schedule so that companies run flawlessly and efficiently. Without having open communication, work schedules can easily fall apart, leaving companies scattered, unorganized and scrambling to fill shifts.

Here are some excellent tips for creating a work schedule for hourly shifts.

Advance Scheduling

Employees have schedules outside of work, and it’s hard for people to find out their work schedule just hours or a day or two in advance. That’s why it’s essential to schedule shifts in advance so employees can plan. Emergencies happen, such as illness and deaths, but having a schedule published in advance can help minimize shift cancellations and streamline communication among the team.

Know Your Team

If you have team members that prefer morning shifts and others that prefer late night shifts, try to accommodate team members’ preferences and strengths. Not everyone is suited for the busy morning shift, and the same can be true for the late night hustle and bustle.

Respect Requests

Whether someone has a doctor’s appointment, needs to be at the bus stop by a particular time or prefers not to work on Sundays for religious reasons, it’s important to attempt to accommodate these types of requests when scheduling shifts. Request that employees submit their vacation requests as far in advance as possible to help accommodate any necessary requests. There may be times when employers cannot honor these requests, such as during busy holiday seasons, but it’s important to attempt to try to work around employees’ schedules as much as possible.

Shift Swapping

Having a policy that permits shift swapping is a great way to make sure that shifts are covered in advance and at the last minute. Have a clear process about shift-swapping in place to help avoid confusion, so all shifts are covered in advance. If employers don’t spell out a policy, they likely won’t know when employees change their shift schedules, which can cause abundant confusion and strife.

Busy Times

Customer demands play a central role in how employers schedule employees. Maybe weekends are peak busy times, which means that business may need to schedule extra employees for those shift schedules. When businesses identify busy times, it’s important to relay this to the employees, so they know that all extra shifts during peak hours need coverage.

Ninja Gig offers an excellent solution for businesses looking to use online job applications to attract the best, brightest talent. Many movie theaters and restaurants can advertise online job applications on websites and via social media. Sign up now for your free trial and see how Ninja Gig can help you streamline your online employment application process.