Compensation and Benefits

Compensation and benefits topics – whether it’s minimum wage, workers’ compensation laws, or employee pay – if properly handled, can help you retain workers and recruit new ones.

Use our advice to craft independent contractor agreements that keep independent contractors – and your bosses – happy.

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Starting next year, employer-provided health insurance plans will have to offer a variety of women's preventive services—such as well-woman visits, breastfeeding support, domestic violence screening, and contraception—without charging co-pays, co-insurance fees or deductibles. Find out what the new rules cover and when your health plan must comply.
Worried that new mothers may not return to work following maternity leave? Increase the odds by building flexibility into your work culture. Offering options for when and where work gets done is one of the best ways to encourage women to come back—and stay—after they give birth.
The Chinese fast-food chain Panda Express faces a national overtime lawsuit after a federal district court judge in New York ruled the case could move forward as a class action.
Only big companies can offer generous benefits, right? Wrong! SHRM and the Families and Work Institute have uncovered dozens of examples of small organizations—those with staffs of 20 or fewer—that think big when it comes to employee benefits. See how many of these ideas might be right for your small business.
Think carefully about taking on increased responsibilities if a raise isn’t in the offing, advises Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. Consider requesting a compensation review in six months or discussing other perks. Hosking identifies five beyond-pay incentives:
HR pros spend a lot of their time ensuring that their companies comply with the law so they don’t wind up in court and lose big bucks to a jury verdict. But more and more, they find themselves defending not their employers’ bottom lines, but their own bank accounts. How big is the risk? Try six figures—or more.
The DOL has requested public comment on its proposed pay-and-benefit database for federal contractors. The database would show what pay and benefits federal contractors offered to employees with an eye toward spotting potential pay disparities that may discriminate against women and minority employees.
Q. We operate a fitness club and employ many fitness class instructors. They have time between classes that ranges from 15 minutes to several hours. They are free to spend that time anyway they want, on or off premises. Do we have to pay them for the time between classes?
While salary budgets are up this year—merit raises are running near 3.0% compared with 2.7% in 2010—some still-skittish employers are more likely to dole out title raises rather than extra cash. The danger: Organizations may give gratuitous no-pay promotions instead of using the practice as a selective ­reward and retention strategy.
For the first time since 1980, the rate of U.S. inflation (3.2% for the 12 months ending in April) is running higher than the average salary budget increase (2.8% average salary budget increase in 2011).
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