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2018 Open Enrollment: Developing Your Game Plan

This is the second article in a series about meeting open enrollment challenges. Below, we look at developing open enrollment goals and offer tips for effective communications.
The No. 1 thing employers are doing wrong about open enrollment is a lack of preparation," said Kim Buckey, vice president of compliance communications at Birmingham, Ala.-based DirectPath, an employee engagement and health care compliance firm. "Every year there are some employers for whom open enrollment starts on Oct. 15, and they're making their last benefit decision on Oct. 1—and wondering

Six Tools for Improving Communications with TeamSTEPPS®



As HR professionals, we often challenged by the way people communicate. Developing soft skills in teams is a critical for your team of experts to function as an expert team. In healthcare, >70 of medical errors have a communication component making the challenge even more critical to our customers.

TeamSTEPPS® (Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety) is a training system developed by the Department of Defense and run by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). It is described as an “evidence-based teamwork system to...


3 Tips to Build a Professional HR Network



In 10 year’s leading and working with over 100 global talent acquisition teams I’ve found there is only one thing more powerful than your resume: your professional network.  I’ve playfully dubbed mine my, “council of elders” and naturally one of the first questions I get from professionals at all levels of HR when I speak at conferences is: How do I build my own.   Here’s what I recommend. 

1.       Choose your venting partner wisely

One of my top pieces of advice came from my boss’s boss, an executive of...


Simulation Techniques in Healthcare HR

“Simulation is a technique—not a technology—to replace or amplify real experiences with guided experiences that evoke or replicate substantial aspects of the real world in a fully interactive manner” ~ David Gaba, MD (2004)

In healthcare, there are many reasons for incorporating simulation techniques into our HR practices. Pre-employment screening through assessment centers allow us to evaluate potential candidate skills as well as set the expectations of our candidates. Combining this with area specific onboarding training can significantly reduce our large turnover problem in healthcare. Routine training of staff reduces cognitive decay...


2018 Open Enrollment: Active vs. Passive Benefits Election

There are advantages to active enrollment, but first understand what the process entails
This is the first article in a series on meeting open enrollment challenges. Below, we examine the pros and cons of requiring employees to proactively elect to enroll in health and other benefit plans for the coming year (active enrollment) versus allowing their current benefit selections to automatically roll over unless they elect to change them (passive enrollment).

The consensus view among employee benefit advisors is that active open enrollment is the superior

Florida employers: Wage and Hour Considerations and Hurricane Irma


Just as Texas begins its slow recovery from Hurricane Harvey, Florida braces for Hurricane Irma.  So, we must, again, look at wage and hour rules:

  1. As a result of the FLSA’s salary basis requirement, if as a result of the hurricane, you close for less than a full work week, you must pay an exempt employee for days that you are closed.  However, you generally can require that an exempt employee use PTO during a day in which you close.
  2. If you remain open and an exempt employee does not come
  3. ...

#Nextchat: Crisis Planning and Recovery for HR



As hurricanes Harvey and Irma made landfall in the U.S. over the past two weeks, no one could have imagined the historical nature of their effects. Even the best prepared contingency plans were put to the test. 

What is HR’s role in crisis planning and recovery? 

HR has been, is and will continue to be a focal point for how organizations get back on their feet after a disaster or crisis, no matter the cause. 

Natural disasters like hurricanes are stark reminders that you can never be too prepared. Whether...


SHRM Connect: Gender Pronouns in Email Signature


SHRM Connect is an online community where SHRM members can ask questions and get answers on a variety of HR topics. It’s a great place to network with other HR professionals and share solutions.  

The conversation topics range from “HR Department of One” to Employment Law, are always insightful, and deal with some of the most pressing issues that HR professionals face in the workplace today.

While some of the conversations take on a more serious tone, others will deliver a bit of comic relief -- and on Fridays, I’ll be highlighting a conversation or two in hopes...


HR Technology Q & A with Jazmine Wilkes


The 2017 Human Resource Executive 20th Annual HR Technology Conference takes place October 10-13 in Las Vegas.  As a 2017 HR Technology Conference Insiders Blogger, I interviewed several speakers to get their perspective on how technology and trends are impacting the HR profession.  I also reached out to a few young professionals - the future of HR -- to understand how their views on technology. 


Jazmine Wilkes is an HR Assistant at Valley Pizza, Inc. learning the ways...


DACA: What HR Professionals Should Do



Once again HR professionals find themselves at the center of the national debate over immigration reform.  Earlier this year I wrote about how HR professionals should prepare their organizations to respond to uncertainty created by the travel ban and the Buy American Hire American executive order.  This time HR professionals must help their organizations and employees work through President Trump’s phase out of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program which will end on March 5, 2018 unless Congress passes legislation providing relief.

Almost 800,000 individuals currently have work authorization...