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2014 SHRM Recap: Finding the Right Vendor is Tough

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If you weren’t at #SHRM14 this past weekend, then you missed out. A torrent of thought-provoking insights on leadership, developing a smarter workforce, advancing technologies and other HR initiatives were buzzing on the conference floors and Twitter as well. With all of the excitement surrounding these new HR strategies and offerings comes a number of questions and concerns. If you found yourself overwhelmed by the amount of information you received at SHRM and you’re not sure how to navigate through it all, hopefully this post will help you to iron a few things out, specifically when it comes to switching providers.

As the industry changes and evolves, HR professionals are looking for the right solution to meet all their needs, from welcoming new hires to managing turnover and everything in-between. Human capital management should be more than timesheets and employee reviews. The wrong solution could cost you in data security, top performing employees and penalties. With these seven tips you should be able to make a confident buying decision that will help you to drive organizational performance.

Tip 1: Look for the total package in one application

Find a solution that has it all without adding it all. Let me explain. Human capital management technology should cover every aspect of the employee life cycle including Talent Acquisition, Time and Labor Management, Payroll, HR Management, Talent Management and Benefits Administration. However, packaging is everything. A single-source solution and a single-application solution are not the same thing. Typically a vendor who offers a single-source solution provides a product set that has multiple programs that require integration; whereas with a single-application solution your workflow is seamless. Users only have to enter in data one time which updates throughout the platform in real-time.

Tip 2:  Search for attributes that will have a positive impact on your business

HR software should be a one for all, including supervisors, IT, employees and executive, not just your HR staff. The best human capital technology will impact all positively and improve efficiency, produce insightful analytics, empower employees and reduce exposure. To determine if and how the proposed software can have a positive impact on your business, ask the following questions:

  • How does it improve efficiency?
  • What are the reporting capabilities for producing insightful analytics?
  • What tools are available to empower supervisors and employees to self-manage certain transactions?
  • What processes does the system offer to reduce exposure to compliance violations?

Tip 3: Do your due diligence

Before handing your sensitive records over to a complete stranger do your research. Look into their financials and long history of profitability. How are they funded: are they privately held, publicly traded or venture capital-funded? What’s their geological footprint? Are their quality management processes ISO 9001-certified? The more financially stable the vendor is and the more control they have over their product, the more dependable they will be.

Tip 4: Ask for security assurance

With advances to technology, more and more businesses are making the move to the cloud. While the cloud offers more security and a more efficient alternative to hosting internal software, internet breaches still occur, so don’t assume your data will be protected. We recommend you review the following with your IT department:

  • Is the vendor ISO 27001-certified?
  • How long has the vendor been providing its software in the cloud?
  • Request documentation on the security of its technology infrastructure.
  • What are its data storage and handling procedures?
  • What is its business continuity plan?
  • What are its information-sharing and staff training procedures?
  • Are there data protection features within its online software, e.g., multilevel log-ins, audit trails, and custom user access?

Tip 5: Set your standards for support

Your new HR technology provider should be your partner, offering direct communication and immediate support. Don’t get trapped in an automated phone system while you’re trying to solve issues on your own. Be sure you partner with the best fit, a provider dedicated to customer service. Set you standards for support early and don’t settle for less.

Tip 6: Search for a vendor committed to improvement

In our tech savvy world, new implementations and software updates are a regular occurrence. Make sure your next vendor is dedicated to constant improvement with the agility to withstand the changing needs of the industry. Keep these few questions in mind:

  • When was your last software update?
  • How many software updates were released in the past year?
  • How quickly are you able to implement sudden compliance-driven updates?
  • Do all customers operate in the same software version?
  • Do you take development requests from customers?

Tip 7: Find out up what happens if you need to change or cancel your agreement

Even the best-laid plans can change. Make sure you find out up-front what the off-boarding process is like just to cover all your bases. Here are a few questions to consider:

  • Do I have to sign a contract for any specific time period?
  • If I grow rapidly, or am faced with a large layoff, will I have to change or upgrade my software?
  • Could I face penalties for cancelling the contract?
  • Who owns the data, including any candidate databases?
  • What is the process for obtaining my data when a contract is cancelled?
  • Do you provide off-boarding support when a contract is cancelled?

Selecting your HR technology vendor can be overwhelming, but a critical component to taking your organization to the next level. Hopefully these tips help you #SHRM14 attendees narrow down your options and help navigate you through the mounds of information to pair you with the right vendor.

If you are still searching for the right vendor click on this link to download the full whitepaper: Top 7 Tips to Consider When Switching HR and Payroll Companies


Bonny Blackmon

by Bonny Blackmon


Author Bio: As Paycom’s recruitment marketing strategist, Bonny Blackmon writes about such topics as human capital management, company culture, talent acquisition and career advice. Her brand-awareness efforts at Paycom have included launching Paycom Careers’ blog and social media channels, and producing several recruiting videos, all to help attract top talent nationwide. Outside of work, Bonny enjoys reading, fishing and spending time with family.

IRS Continues to Enforce Affordable Care Act

IRS Continues to Enforce Affordable Care Act

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The IRS recently released an information letter indicating that the IRS continues to enforce the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Dated June 30, Letter 2017-0010 was sent to a member of Congress who reached out to the IRS at the request of a constituent, a tax-exempt entity concerned it may owe an employer shared responsibility payment (ESRP) because it did not comply with the ACA rules on offering health insurance to its employees, for both financial and religious reasons.

The letter first provides a brief summary of the circumstances that might lead to a large employer owing an ESRP, and notes that there is no provision in the ACA that provides for the waiver of an ESRP.

The letter then addresses the effect of the president’s Jan. 20 executive order on the enforcement of the ACA. Titled “Minimizing the Economic Burden of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Pending Repeal,” the order directed federal agencies to exercise discretion permitted to them by law to reduce potential burdens imposed by the ACA.

However, it did not change the health care law. The legislative provisions of the ACA are still in force until changed by Congress; therefore, taxpayers remain required to follow the law and pay what they may owe.

For more information on the executive order and the current tax filing season, visit https://www.irs.gov/tax-professionals/aca-information-center-for-tax-professionals.

What This Means for Employers

Since Congress has not yet passed a bill that would repeal the ACA, and Republicans have struggled to draft a bill that would receive majority support, employers should use caution and plan to comply with the law’s requirements unless and until the ACA is repealed and any new law’s provisions actually go into effect. Continued compliance may be required for a transition period, following passage of an ACA repeal bill, depending on the language of that legislation.

 

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Posted in ACA, Blog, Featured

Erin Maxwell

by Erin Maxwell


Author Bio: As a compliance attorney for Paycom, Erin Maxwell monitors legal and regulatory changes at the state and federal level, focusing on health and employee benefits laws, to ensure the Paycom system is updated accordingly. She previously served as assistant general counsel at Asset Servicing Group in Oklahoma City. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma and a J.D. from the University of Oklahoma. Outside of work, Maxwell enjoys politics, historical mysteries and spending time with her family.

Missouri minimum wage

Missouri Minimum Wage to Decrease from $10 to $7.70

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An overwhelming trend in the U.S. is cities and states increasing the minimum wage employers must pay their employees. However, St. Louis, Missouri is bucking this trend – although not willingly – by decreasing its minimum wage from $10 to $7.70, effective Aug. 28.

Court Battle

In 2015, St. Louis passed an ordinance raising its minimum wage to $10, with an automatic increase to $11 scheduled for January 2018. This prompted the Missouri legislature to pass legislation to pre-empt the ordinance from taking effect. The legislation was quickly enjoined in a lawsuit that went all the way to the Missouri Supreme Court.

In May of this year, St. Louis prevailed in the lawsuit and the minimum wage increased to $10. However, three months after the $10 minimum wage was implemented, the Missouri legislature passed another law disallowing any city in the state from having a higher minimum wage than the state, which is currently $7.70, this forcing St. Louis to reverse.

States vs. Cities

State governments dictating cities’ minimum wages is not altogether uncommon. In 2016, Alabama’s legislature shut down the Birmingham City Council’s efforts to raise its minimum wage. Similar efforts were undertaken by Ohio to block the City of Cleveland.

Other states have preemptively prohibited localities from passing minimum-wage ordinances – even before cities have commenced such efforts. Some of these states include:

  • Colorado
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Michigan
  • North Carolina
  • Oklahoma
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Wisconsin

 

Although the St. Louis minimum wage decrease runs counter to the national trend, state legislatures prohibiting local increases is not uncommon. As more cities begin to adopt higher minimum wages, expect some state legislatures to push back.

Disclaimer: This blog includes general information about legal issues and developments in the law. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and must not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You need to contact a lawyer licensed in your jurisdiction for advice on specific legal problems.

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Posted in Blog, Featured, Payroll

Jason Hines

by Jason Hines


Author Bio: Jason Hines is a Paycom compliance attorney. With more than five years’ experience in the legal field, he monitors developments in human resource laws, rules and regulations to ensure any changes are promptly updated in Paycom’s system for our clients. Previously, he was an attorney at the Oklahoma City law firm Elias, Books, Brown & Nelson. Hines earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Oklahoma and his juris doctor degree from the Oklahoma City University School of Law, where he graduated cum laude. A fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Hines also enjoys exploring the great outdoors with his wife and daughter.

WOTC Tax Credits

What Tax Credits Are You Leaving on the Table?

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Federal tax credits for businesses are far from easy if you aren’t familiar with the program, and business leaders may find themselves in unfamiliar territory when it comes to their company’s eligibility for tax credits. As a leading provider of comprehensive human capital management software, we have found that the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) is one Federal tax credit many leaders underutilize, meaning that they are leaving money on the table when it comes time to do their taxes.

In fact, one Paycom client in the fast-food industry found $447,000 in government-appropriated funds available once they took full advantage of the tax credits available to them. Read more about this client’s experience in our recent case study.

Is your organization is leaving money on the table?

The Purpose of WOTC

WOTC was designed to encourage employers to hire people from segments of the general population who have “consistently faced barriers to employment.”

On average, one in eight new hires potentially qualifies for the WOTC, and that number increases when it comes to the fast-food industry, in which one in four new hires is potentially eligible for the credit.

What WOTC Means for Your Company

Depending on which target group your new hire represents, the number of hours they work and the wages they earn determine the amount of the credit, you can receive up to $9,600 for each eligible new hire.

Like the client in our case study, you may find, that many of the people in your hiring pool are already eligible for the tax credit. They received an average of $1,128 per certified employee.

Who You Can Hire

Qualifying new hires can be full- or part-time workers. They must belong to specific “target groups” designated by the U.S. Department of Labor. These target groups are populations of people who are able and willing to work, but have found barriers to employment for a variety of reasons. Target groups include:

  • veterans
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families recipients
  • SNAP recipients
  • designated community residents (living in empowerment zones or rural renewal counties)
  • summer youth employees living in designated communities
  • long-term unemployed

 

 How You Can Receive These Tax Credits

To receive these tax credits, 8850 and 9061 forms must be completed on or before the job offer and sent to your state employment agency within 28 days of the employee’s first day of work. The client in our case study was able to save 75 hours (nearly two weeks of work!) by working with Paycom to process their available tax credits.

If you’re intimidated by or unaware of Work Opportunity Tax Credits, you’re not alone. But you might be missing out by leaving money on the table. Paycom clients using its tax credits service pay nothing for the search if they are found to have eligible employees. Want to learn more about WOTC? Sign up for our August 3 webinar “What’s New With WOTC” to learn the most up-to-date information on WOTC and ask questions specific to your business.

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Posted in Blog, Compliance, Featured, Franchises, Hospitality, Restaurant

Rich Stupansky

by Rich Stupansky


Author Bio: Rich came to Paycom in January of 2010 from Cleveland Ohio and is the Director of Tax Credits at Paycom. Rich was instrumental in developing and creating our tax credits program. Rich has more than 12 years’ experience with federal tax credits and an extensive background in working with companies of all sizes to maximize their full tax credit potential.

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