Power Tools & Tips For Workplace Leaders
HR's 6 Worst Legal Mistakes:
Are you at risk?
Employee lawsuits have skyrocketed in the past decade and one small misstep can cost an organization dearly in time, energy, and money. Here are the most important legal mistakes that HR needs to protect against.
#1 Using the Wrong Words in Interviews and Job Ads

Make sure anyone who talks to candidates knows to avoid topics that could generate hiring-bias lawsuits such as age, race, religion, disability, etc. All questions should focus solely on this question: How well can this person perform the job? Also, avoid the taboo topics when advertising the job.
#2 Wage-and-Hour Mistakes

Employee pay lawsuits have spiked in the past decade. Make sure employees are classified correctly (exempt vs. nonexempt). Set a policy on unauthorized overtime. Use progressive discipline for employees who work off-the-clock, but pay them for all time worked whether it was approved or not. Properly calculate overtime pay.
#3 Rough Take-Offs and Landings

The beginning and end of an employee's tenure are the most legally risky. Submit timely New Hire Reports to your state. Avoid making legally binding promises to new staff. Make sure terminated employees cannot point to a discriminatory reason for their firing such as race, sex, disability, religion, age (over 40) or retaliation for voicing a legal complaint. Keep terminations private and dignified. Employees should never be surprised by firings. Give them enough feedback ahead of time.

#4 Allowing an Expectation of Electronic Privacy

Make sure employees know that their computer usage can and will be monitored. Also, guard employees' data closely.
#5 Failing To Accommodate

You have a legal duty to offer "reasonable accommodations" when an employee has a disability, is pregnant, is called to military duty or wants to attend a religious event. Make sure managers know their duties.

#6 Failing to Train Supervisors

You need to go beyond, "Here is your handbook." Make sure managers know their legal limits in interviews, hiring, day-to-day management and terminations. Big mistake: Overly rosy job reviews that become legal evidence when the person is later fired for poor performance.
Information provided by The HR Specialist
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Congratulations to Karen DeLange for achieving her D.I.S.C. certification!