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Safety Training: Construction

Safety Training: Construction This training guide will help construction workers and those in manual labor jobs understand how to enhance their safety while on the job. By understanding and identifying the Focus Four, a worker can be better ensure their safety on the job site. The Focus Four refers to the four leading causes of fatalities in this industry, including: Fall: common hazards include roofs, wall opening/unfinished walls, holes in the floor, scaffolds with incomplete planking, ladders, and aerial platforms. By using fall protection like railings, harnesses, lanyards or anchorages can drastically improve your safety. Fall protection is required when working 6 feet or higher. Though fall protection helps, any height when working is dangerous. Death or serious injury could still occur at low heights. Stuck-by: common hazards include flying objects, falling objects, power tools falling, earthmoving equipment, and swinging objects. Preventions involve wearing high-visibility clot
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Using Data & Analytics to Drive HR Decisions

Using Data & Analytics to Drive HR Decisions Data is becoming more prevalent in our everyday life than ever before. 2021 is no exception to that and promises to be the biggest year for businesses using data to drive their decisions to date. While HR companies begin to implement data for employee and employer decision-making, it is important they use the right metrics to gain an accurate representation of what they plan to assess. This article from ADP lists the six biggest HR data trends for 2021: Creating metrics of consequence  Bring data to life with storytelling Combine HR expertise with analytics Understand and identify bias in data Proper translation of data is vital  Get granular with skills data  The combination of these data practices will prove to be the measuring stick for usage in HR and business practices for years to come. For HR professionals, the sooner data becomes infused in your decisions, the sooner employees and businesses w

Building critical skills for employee development through HR practices

Building critical skills for employee development through HR practices  In 2021, companies are beginning to better assess the manner in which they select and develop their employees and practices. According to an article from gartner.com, the top priority for HR professionals this year should be building skills and developing their employees. This should come as no surprise considering the skills required for jobs are changing rapidly. Gartner’s research tells them that the skills needed in 2017 for a position, will not be needed in 2021. Such a rapid change in the workplace and skill development further demonstrates the need for HR professionals to aid the development of employee skills. One barrier in the way of skill development is teaching skills that employees will never use. As the fast-paced changing of skills will only increase, how will companies and HR professionals successfully implement professional development? Gartner was

Face Masks and Other Pandemic Necessities are Eligible as Deductible Medical Expenses

Face Masks and Other Pandemic Necessities are Eligible as Deductible Medical Expenses While there has been much debate about mandating masks in businesses and restaurants, one thing no one will debate is receiving money back from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  With the issue of Announcement 2021-7 , personal protective equipment (PPE) such as hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes, and masks are deductible medical expenses since they are primarily used for combating the spread of COVID-19. Any amount paid for these items that are not covered by insurance is eligible for deductibles as long as the taxpayer’s total medical expenses exceed 7.5% of adjusted gross income. Under tax-favored accounts, the amounts paid for COVID-19 PPE can also be eligible to be reimbursed under: · Health flexible spending arrangements (FSAs) · Archer medical savings accounts (Archer MSAs) · Health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) · Health savings accounts (HSAs) If an amount is reimbursed

Positive Impacts of Diversity & Inclusion in the Workplace

Positive Impacts of Diversity & Inclusion in the Workplace Addressing diversity and inclusion in the workplace is becoming more and more important. Through current events, we are seeing how critical it is that we address diversity and inclusion in our workplaces.     According to research from Catalyst.org, diversity and inclusion in the workplace increase talent, innovation, group performance, financial performance, and reputation. When you have a multitude of different mindsets, talent and innovation naturally increase from varying viewpoints. It is imperative to have a plethora of different perspectives when creating ideas or solutions in the workplace. As talent and innovation increase, group and financial performance tend to trend in the same direction. Instead of the employees being a cog in the wheel, they become the wheel. So as diversity and innovation progress, the companies’ performance does as well.  For reputation to truly be enhanced from diversity, inclusion must a

COVID-19 National Emphasis Plan

COVID-19 National Emphasis Plan  The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) launched a National Emphasis Program (NEP) to help fight the ongoing pandemic.  A NEP comes into play when OSHA identifies specific hazards and high-hazard industries that require a focus of their resources. For this NEP, OSHA plans to use a three-step approach aimed at reducing worker exposure to COVID-19:  Targeted on-site inspections Employer outreach Compliance assistance One of the main factors leading to this NEP was the need to performs on-site inspections again when necessary. During this NEP, OSHA plans to complete 1,600 inspections; the majority will be conducted in the general industry sector.  The main goal of these inspections is to identify and eliminate any COVID-19 hazards. Those workplaces that have had COVID-19 violations, cases, or deaths are likely to receive follow-up inspections to further eliminate these hazards.  For employer outreach, OSHA will distribute newsletter/releas

Workers Memorial Day 2021

Workers Memorial Day 2021  Each year on April 28th, the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) recognizes Workers Memorial Day in honor of those who lost their lives in the workplace.  2021’s celebration marks the 50th year of OSHA and their mission has not changed since 1971. OSHA has fought since its existence to provide workers with safety and ultimately, a voice. With the COVID-19 pandemic, OSHA worked tirelessly to assure all workers had a voice in how they would feel safe in their work environment and that employers took all the steps towards ensuring workers safety.  This year, OSHA plans to celebrate and celebrate all workers who have put their lives on the line during the COVID-19 pandemic. OSHA will hold events around the country; starting on Sunday, April 25th, and running through Saturday, May 1st. Please join us and OSHA in remembering those who have lost their lives in the workplace and those who put their lives on the line every day in these unprecedented times. V

Live Well, Work Well

Alcohol Awareness Month Alcohol Awareness Month takes place each April to help those who are battling an alcohol addiction, as well as those who are recovering from one. With the COVID-19 pandemic, we all have been forced inside one way or another. For those who are battling addiction, staying inside could very well enhance their addiction or cause relapse. During April, Integrity HRM wants our employees or whoever may need a helping hand to know that we are here for them to aid in whatever way possible. Alcohol sales have grown 30% in the last year, which leads to many people knowingly or unknowingly abusing alcohol. Here are warning signs to keep in my mind if you are concerned about yourself or a loved one possibly misusing alcohol: Feeling irritable or experiencing mood swings Having poor coordination Showing signs of slurred speech Experiencing blackouts or short-term memory loss Isolating from friends and family Failing to complete responsibilities and obligations at home or work

American Rescue Plan Act RESETS hours for Paid Sick Leave

As some of you may know, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was passed last month. Previously we thought that the paid sick leave was just continued. In fact, the time was reset effective 4/1. Anyone who uses time after April 1, 2021 through September 30, 2021 will have 80 hours to use, regardless of whether or not they used the previous 80 hours that was available from March 2020 through March 2021. In addition, they have added some reasons to use the paid sick leave: The worker is getting a COVID-19 vaccine The employee is recovering from complications due to receiving the vaccine The worker is awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test or diagnosis for coronavirus Please read the attached article from Society for Human Resource Management for more details here . For additional clarification from JDSupra you can click here .

Unemployment Fraud for the Texas Workforce Commission

Unemployment fraud is becoming a larger issue for Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). Even though most clients’ unemployment claims should now be filed through Integrity, we would recommend that you also monitor your company’s unemployment account. If you have not signed up for the UBS account (electronic access to your unemployment account), you should still receive notifications via mail. However, those who have signed up for electronic transmission of these documents should be regularly checking to ensure that you are not receiving fraudulent notices as well. If you have any fraudulent cases filed on your company’s unemployment account, please feel free to forward them to the Integrity HR Department to respond. You can email hr@integrityhrm.com .  Please be assured that we are diligently watching our account and disputing any fraudulent cases that we find. When we have a fraudulent claim, we will notify the employee impacted as well as the HR contact.  If you have any questions,

Women in the Workplace

SHRM Releases Research on  Women in the Workplace  In light of International Women's Day and Women's History Month, SHRM collected data on women's experiences in the workplace, including the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on female caregivers. The survey found that nearly 1/3 of female employed Americans personally know a woman who has voluntarily left the workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic due to caregiving responsibilities, and 44 percent of employed Americans agree that being successful in the workplace is more challenging for women with caregiving responsibilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. SHRM is working to create workplaces where employees and employers can thrive together. Learn more about SHRM’s advocacy efforts to build equitable and inclusive workplaces.

American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

  American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) into law on Thursday afternoon. This $1.9 trillion stimulus package contains extensions to unemployment, direct stimulus payments, provisions for small businesses, state and local aid, as well as funding for K-12 schools. Employee Retention Credit (ERC) Last year, the CARES Act introduced an Employee Retention Credit, a refundable credit against employment taxes paid by employers experiencing full or partial government-mandated shutdowns or a significant reduction in revenue. It was expanded under the Consolidated Appropriations Act and scheduled to expire at the end of the second quarter of 2021. ARPA has extended this credit through the end of 2021. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) The last day to apply for PPP funding is March 31, 2021.  The PPP is expanded to additional nonprofit organizations and creates a category of "additional covered nonprofit entity." While there a

FACT SHEET: Biden-Harris Administration Increases Lending to Small Businesses in Need, Announces Changes to PPP to Further Promote Equitable Access to Relief

FACT SHEET: Biden-Harris Administration Increases Lending to Small Businesses in Need, Announces Changes to PPP to Further Promote Equitable Access to Relief February 22, 2021 Small businesses account for 44 percent of U.S. GDP, create two-thirds of net new jobs, and employ nearly half of America’s workers. Now, millions of main street small businesses – especially Black- and Brown-owned small businesses – are struggling to make ends meet in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic crisis. The Biden-Harris administration has made delivering equitable relief to hard-hit small businesses a top priority. The latest round of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funding opened just one month ago and it represents a marked improvement on the prior round of the Program last year. Compared to the same point in the Program last year: · The share of funding going to small businesses with fewer than ten employees is up nearly 60 percent · The share of funding going to s

Updated Guidance on COVID-19 Quarantines

The CDC has amended their guidance about quarantining if exposed to COVID-19. Those who received both doses of the vaccine will not be required to quarantine if they meet the time constraints. Individuals who completed the 2nd dose at least 2 weeks prior and no more than 3 months ago will not be required to quarantine if they are exposed and showing no symptoms. To see the changes to the guidance, go to https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/info-by-product/clinical-considerations.html

Employer Groups Seek Clarity on COVID-19 Vaccination Incentives

As the COVID-19 vaccinations become more widespread, companies are considering whether or not they should require their employees to be vaccinated and/or whether they should incentivize them to do so. Before you decide to provide any type of incentive for getting vaccinated, you should read the article just released by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) below. SHRM and coalition partners ask the EEOC about financial rewards By  Stephen Miller, CEBS February 5, 2021 As the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more widely available, there are legal factors employers should bear in mind when deciding whether to offer incentives to encourage vaccination. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is part of a coalition of employer groups asking the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) for guidance. These business leaders are seeking answers about whether incentives of more than minimal value are legal. Answers Sought In a Feb. 1 letter,  SHRM and 41 other business gr