The HR Specialist

Issue: Personality tests are the first line of hiring defense at many organizations. Nearly 30 percent of employers use such tests.
Risk: A poorly designed test can open you up …

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Don’t make different bathroom-break rules for the different sexes. Case in point: A manufacturer’s new factory had only one restroom, which was designed for men. Female employees could use that restroom …

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Many insurers offer free services that can cut your costs or make your business safer. Examples: Some offer free safety inspections and risk-management analysis. Others provide free classes or training materials …

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Workplace drug testing’s popularity has gradually fallen since peaking in 1996, when 81 percent of employers surveyed by the American Management Association (AMA) said they tested. By 2004, that percentage had …

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Issue: How to stop employees from disclosing confidential data, or jumping to a competitor and stealing your employees.
Benefit: You can stop defectors from raiding your business, but only if …

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The IRS announced last month that you can give employees an extra 21/2 months to spend money they’ve set aside in their flexible spending accounts (FSAs) for health care and dependent …

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As temperatures rise, so do two additional risks: 1. Safety. Summer months are traditionally the worst months for on-the-job accidents. That’s because the heat can impair employees’ judgment and more employees …

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Issue: How to play a key role in shaping changes in your organization.
Benefit: You can better anticipate future HR needs and position yourself as a “thinker” not just a …

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Issue: Supervisors tend to be quicker in disciplining employees that have given them trouble in the past.
Risk: Singling out certain “troublemakers” for discipline can spur a retaliation lawsuit.

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Issue: How deeply do you want to get involved with employees’ personal lives?
Risk: Becoming a sounding board for every personal problem will eat up your workday (and drain you …

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