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Author Archives: Michelle Hicks

It pays to understand why employees don’t show up

Do you know how much employee absences are costing you? In the U.S., the average employer cost is 8.7 percent of payroll. This is the second-highest benefit cost to employers after medical benefits. If workers don’t show up, you can’t ...

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Pet health care costs are rising, too

While four-legged companions may not qualify as an actual dependent under an ERISA plan, millions of Americans view their pets as actual family members. And, Americans are spending a fortune to keep them healthy. According to the American Pet Products ...

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Crowdsourcing: the new temporary worker model (access required)

The Society for Human Resource Professionals Foundation just released its latest report on global workforce trends. While key findings address issues from the challenges of demographic shifts to the disconnect between educational standards and employer demands, tucked into page 26 ...

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Could more female leaders resolve the gender pay gap? (access required)

Some exciting news on the gender pay gap came out in December. A Pew Research Center survey found women in the Millennial generation, ages 25 to 34, earned just 93 percent of what their male counterparts brought in in 2012. ...

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Obama’s myRA retirement accounts (access required)

During President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address Jan. 28, he announced a new type of “starter” retirement savings account, myRA. This will be a new savings opportunity of up to $15,000 for Americans whose employer doesn’t offer a ...

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HSAs drive greater employee health engagement (access required)

Happy belated birthday, health savings accounts! On Dec. 8, 2003, President George W. Bush signed the Medicare Modernization Act into law, which included not only the expansion of Medicare Part D for prescription drugs, but also the introduction of health ...

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Balancing wellness programs and employee privacy (access required)

Whenever I work with an employer to promote its wellness offerings, one of the first topics we discuss is employee privacy. This is because the most purposeful programs ask employees to share information that is so personal they may not ...

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Hiring will be hot in 2014 – don’t lose your talent (access required)

The most recent Employment Outlook Survey by Manpower Group shows hiring will be hot across the United States in 2014. In the first quarter of the year, 13 percent of U.S. employers expect to add to their workforce next year ...

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Now is the time to prepare for retirement (access required)

It is so easy to put off saving for retirement. It’s one of those things we all think we’ll get to tomorrow when there are so many urgent needs today. The problem is, tomorrow will be here before we know ...

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The opportunity cost of decision fatigue (access required)

A relatively new book by Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney called Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength takes a look an ailment affecting all of us, including our employees: decision fatigue. The book essentially proves what Joe Albertson knew ...

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