Top 10 Ways To Stay Off Of Santa’s Naughty (HR) List: Part 2

by | Dec 20, 2012 | Blog

  • Amy Letke

    Amy Newbanks Letke, SPHR, GPHR, is the Founder of Integrity HR, Inc. Amy provides workplace solutions to improve performance, reduce liability and increase profits. She is passionate about helping other entrepreneurs and business owners achieve success. Contact us for more insights - 502-753-0970 or

We are now less than a week away from Christmas and you are running out of time to show Santa that your company deserves to be on the nice list.

Last week, we gave you the first five of ten ways to stay off of Santa’s Naughty HR List (and out of trouble with the EEOC and DOL). In case you missed it, you can read ways 1-5 here.

Without further ado, let’s get right down to way 6-10.

Part 2: Top 10 Ways To Stay Off Of Santa’s Naughty HR List (and out of trouble with the EEOC and DOL)

6. Review your Recruitment and Hiring Process

We hear it’s pretty tough to become one of Santa’s elves. I mean even Will Ferrell couldn’t make the cut. So how do you get a staff just like Santa’s that loves what they do so much so that they’ll work for candy canes?

Well, first you need to review your recruitment and hiring process to make sure you aren’t committing one of these all too common illegal hiring related decisions:

  • Refusing to hire an applicant because she is pregnant;
  • Refusing to provide an accommodation to an applicant with a disability that would enable him/her to perform the job
  • Refusing to hire a Latino worker because he/she speaks with an accent;
  • Forcing an employee to retire when he/she reaches age 65; and
  • Refusing to hire an applicant because he/she is a member of the Teamsters Union.

Also, you need to make sure that you avoid these words in your job advertisements:

  • Young
  • Retiree preferred
  • Healthy
  • Salesman
  • Christian
  • Single
  • Fluent in English

Lastly, remember to complete all the necessary testing and background checks to make sure you are hiring the right person, not Jack Frost trying to pass as an elf. (Download our free whitepaper about finding the “Devil in Disguise” through background checks here).

Just remember this when you are hiring an employee:

  • 56% of working people admit they lied to their supervisors
  • 41% say they falsified records
  • 64% use the Internet for personal issues
  • 31% admit to abusing drugs or alcohol
  • 80% of computer crime is committed by insiders – totaling over $100 million

Of course, elves would never do such things!

7. Assess Your Compensation Plans

Now, we all can’t pay our employees in candy canes and sugar cookies. If only life were that simple.

In the world outside of the North Pole, you need a competitive compensation plan that attracts the right talent to your organization. A properly administered compensation strategy can not only reduce payroll costs, but also can dramatically increase the productivity of a workplace, enhance the company culture, and overall increase the company bottom line.

Here are the Top 5 Employer Mistakes Under the Fair labor Standards Act (FLSA)

  • Believing that salaried employees are automatically exempt from overtime
  • Misclassifying assistant managers
  • Taking automatic deductions for meal breaks
  • Not paying for overtime that has not been approved in advance
  • Allowing employees to “waive” their right to overtime

To find out if your compensation plan needs to be updated, download our free compensation plan analysis toolkit here.

8. Conduct Ongoing Training

With all the new toys that come out every year, elves are always going to Toy Making Training. You also need to conduct training at your organization in order to remain on Santa’s Nice List.

Here are some instances that require ongoing training:

  • Newly promoted/hired supervisors
  • New/amended policies and procedures
  • Changes in the organization
  • Changes to federal and state regulations
  • New systems

To see a list of critical employee training programs, click here.

9. Determine How You Will Measure Success

December is not the only month you should be concerned with whether or not you are making it on Santa’s Nice list. Your company needs to develop core metrics so that you can measure your success throughout the year.

No more of this waiting until the last minute thing, okay? Okay!

Here are some key statistics that your company should identify/benchmark and keep track of throughout the year in order to stay out of trouble with the EEOC and DOL.

  • Numbers of applications within a given period
  • Number of new hires
  • Length of time a position remains open
  • EEO-1 reports, where applicable, and other workforce statistics
  • Turnover data broken down by avoidable, unavoidable, and voluntary terminations
  • Absenteeism data
  • Percentage of timely performance reviews
  • Number of days of training for both staff and management
  • Frequency, timing and dispositions of lawsuits and grievances
  • Cost savings achieved through the use of an internal process versus an arbitrator or legal fees
  • Types of benefit programs offered
  • Eligibility for benefit programs
  • Benefit program cost sharing
  • Incidence of workplace accidents
  • Safety violations
  • Infraction of other work rules
  • Participation (or lack of) in employee events
  • Number of “suggestions” made by staff for improvement or change

Whew! That’s quite a list. But if you stay on top of these items, your company will definitely be on the Nice List next year.

10. Prepare An External Audit Procedure

Just because you’ve done things the same way for 30 years, doesn’t mean you are doing it the right way. Times have changed! I’m sure Santa adjusts his flying route every year to find the most efficient path that will let him get to everyone’s house in one night. (Have we stretched your imagination too far? Sorry, we got a little carried away!)

Anyways, here’s the deal. Human Resource issues have become more complex over the years, due in part to new and ever changing federal and state employment regulations. How would you fair if the EEOC showed up at your door tomorrow?

You need to prepare a Government Inquiry/External Audit Procedure. Some things to consider:

When you receive a notice, what steps do you take?

  • Evaluate what’s being asked
  • Determine who needs to be involved
  • Determine response/timing
  • Address next steps and communications

When someone shows up at your door, what do you do?

  • Who should be notified?
  • Should the Government official be allowed in the building? If so, where?
  • What actions should you take?
  • What tools and supplies should you have available

In order to avoid a messy and expensive investigation, you need to evaluate and update you human resources processes and procedures. Are you using up-to-date forms that comply with all of the new legislation? Are you unintentionally discriminating against a protected class? The list of questions goes on and on.

Many times, companies need to evaluate their HR programs and practices by conducting a comprehensive, confidential audit of all their HR practices, procedures and policies.

Having an objective third party examine your processes helps you see what you are doing right, but more importantly, what you need to correct.

So what are you waiting for? You can download our Free HR Compliance Review here to get one step closer to reducing your company’s risk, increasing productivity and gaining a peace of mind.

And that’s a wrap for our Part 2: Top 10 Ways To Stay Off Of Santa’s Naughty HR List (and out of trouble with the EEOC and DOL). We hope these tips helped you get on the Nice List this year. And if you do receive coal this year, well there is always next year!

Remember if you have an HR headache, Keep Calm and Call Integrity HR! We’ll see you in 2013!

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