HR & Compliance

Add SBAM offers a full spectrum of human resources services to keep you compliant and help your business run more efficiently and profitably....


Human Resources Solutions

ASE LogoLooking for help with tough HR issues? 

SBAM partner ASE has the answers about hiring, firing, FMLA, ADA and more! Get access to a FREE HR hotline, affordable and cost-effective research consultation services, discounted employee handbooks and workplace posters, and more.


Section 125 Plan, FSA, HSA & HRA Administration

 

KUSHNER & COMPANY LogoLooking for ways to contain health care costs?
With the cost of health insurance continuing to rise, most employers require their employees to contribute to the cost of health insurance premiums. SBAM partner Kushner & Co. can help you put a tax-favored, consumer-directed plan in place that benefits you and your employees.

 


COBRA Administration

Personalized, affordable administration for your business. 

If you have 20 or more employees, your company is required by federal law to offer continued health insurance coverage via COBRA and will face huge fines if it's not administered correctly.  Let SBAM help you stay compliant for only $30 per month. 

Secrets of world class customer service! Today at 10 a.m. on the Business Next free audio seminar

Customer service expert John DiJulius talks with Michael Rogers about implementing world class customer service and using it as a springboard to small business success. Listen today at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page

Get Business Next audio seminars delivered three times a week automatically to your iPhone or other mobile device. Subscribe  in iTunes using this URL

Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeremybrooks/

What are your secrets of customer service success? Leave a comment below.

NSBA Registers Opposition to New EEOC Policy

From SBAM's national affiliate, NSBA:

As NSBA reported last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has come out with a new policy that any employer requiring high school diplomas would be unlawful under the Americans with Disabilities Act unless the employer can demonstrate that the diploma requirement is job related and consistent with business necessity. This new policy was informally discussed starting in November 2011, but more recently was adopted in January 2012 under the radar and with little- to no notification to employers.

NSBA has submitted a detailed letter opposing this move as it will lead to needless, expensive and damaging litigation, have an adverse impact on small businesses and employment levels as well as discourage young people from pursing educational attainment. In the letter, NSBA questions the evidence prompting the policy change and states the policy would stymie job growth and employment.

Please click here to view the full letter.

Workers' Compensation: Four Mistakes Employers Can Make

Originally published by SBAM partner AdvanceHR.

Many employers look at Workers' Compensation as just another unavoidable cost of doing business. It's usually one of those out-of-sight, out-of-mind issues when rates are low. It's not until employers are hit with rate hikes that they really start to give some thought to it.

Employers need to look at Workers' Compensation as a tool to improve the bottom line, and they certainly need to make an effort to keep their rates low over the long-term so they can take advantage of some significant savings.

Here are four mistakes made by employers that can deter their Workers' Compensation savings:

    1. Don't assume that lower rates equate to lower costs.

Don't make the faulty assumption that your cost will automatically go down just because your rates have been reduced. Workers' Compensation insurers use an experience modification factor to examine the actual losses incurred by the insured company to establish cost. The actual losses are compared to other industry-alike companies. If the insured company's past losses are below average, then the insurer gives the company a credit rating lowering their premium, but an added surcharge is applied to the premium if the insured company's past losses are above average.

    2. Don't believe employers have little control when it comes to the expense of Workers' Compensation.

Employers know they must have Workers' Compensation insurance. However, this acknowledgment shouldn't lend to an employer thinking they've got to pay excessively for it. Cost reduction starts with the hiring process. Initiate effective interview techniques and background checks to help ensure the right people are hired for the right jobs. That said, there's no way to completely eliminate the possibility of injuries in a workplace.

Therefore, it's equally important to have an effective return-to-work program in place to simultaneously assist injured workers return to work as soon as possible and reduce the cost of their claims.

    3. Don't neglect or de-emphasize cost containment and injury management during low rate periods.

Safety should be an unyielding focus at all times. This will not only help a company reduce their claim numbers, but also keep their rates low over the long-term. Employers need to keep an eye on the issues that frequently impact the costs of claims, such as medical care costs and lost wages. Also, remember that open claims mean escalating costs and negative impacts to the company's modification factor. Of course, this causes an increased cost for coverage.

    4. Don't ignore the association between cost containment and worker retention.

Studies have shown that fewer accidents occur among skilled workforces, but even skilled workers can have an accident. A large factor in whether or not an injured skilled employee returns to work is based on how the employer responds to the individual during and after recovery.

An important part of an employer's response is having a return-to-work program that includes maintaining constant contact with injured workers and their health care providers to monitor how they're recovering and when and how they can get back to work as soon as possible. Skilled employees are more likely to return if they are kept in the loop with a return-to-work program's periodic phone calls about workplace changes that might be occurring in their absence. On the other hand, skilled employees that feel forgotten, undervalued, and disconnected are less likely to return.

SBAM members have access to a Wor

New survey shows rising optimism by nation's small business owners -- details on today's Business Next free audio seminar

Michael Rogers talks with Todd McCrackin, president of the National Small Business Association (SBAM's national affiliate) about the Year-End Economic Report. Listen at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. today on the Michigan Business Network. Listen to archived programs anytime at your convenience on your PC or mobile device by going to the Business Next show page.

(photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/djbiesack/)

The 3 R’s of Handling Customer Complaints

Guest article by business consultant Tom Borg

Every organization receives complaints. The key is turning a complaint into win-win situation. Too often employees and managers take the customer’s complaint personally and get defensive. It would be better if they took the complaint professionally and look at the complaint as an opportunity to fix what went wrong and if possible keep the customer. The second reason is to take an action that would prevent that sort of problem from reoccurring in the future with other customers.

The first R in my formula stands for the word RESPECT. It is critical that you show respect to the customer. You can do this by listening and letting the customer vent their feelings and frustration. The longer you are able to listen, the better. Use cushion statements to ease the frustration level of the customer. A cushion statement is anything you say or do that shows the customer you empathize with their concern. Some examples would be: “You are right to feel concerned” or “That must be frustrating”.

The next R stands for the word RAPPORT. You can develop rapport with the person by sincerely apologizing for any trouble that was caused by the person who experienced the problem. One way you could say this is: “Mr. Jones, I want apologize for any trouble this has caused you”. Then thank them for bringing this concern to their attention.

The third R stands for RESOLVE. Here is where you resolve the situation to the best of your ability. One question you could ask is: “What action would you like us to take?” Many times the complaining person’s idea of a resolution is much less than you would think. The key here is to take action and if possible, resolve the problem. 

By following this three step process you will be able to use your customer’s complaints to strengthen and grow your business.

Tom Borg owns Tom Borg Consulting LLC.

(How do you handle customer complaints? Leave a comment below.)
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