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  Are Your Employees Spreading Ideas – or Germs?
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Jan, 2013
‘Tis the season: flu season. You’re coughing, sniffling, achy, and feverish. While climbing back into bed with the box of tissues by your side sounds like a great idea, do you do it? Or do you drag yourself to work? If you are one of the estimated 40% of American workers who have no paid sick days, it’s likely that you will dose up on some over the counter medication and head to work. Under current U.S. labor law, empl...
 
  My Conversation with OFCCP Director Shiu about “Good Jobs For Everyone”
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Jul, 2012
Secretary Hilda Solis' vision of "Good Jobs For Everyone" was articulated in the Department of Labor's Strategic Plan for the years 2011 to 2016. All of the agencies within the DOL are working to achieve that goal, and OFCCP is no exception. I recently had the opportunity to talk one-on-one with OFCCP Director Patricia Shiu about how her agency is fulfilling that vision. On June 21, 2012 Director Shiu appeared as a guest on...
 
  OFCCP Proposes Utilization Goal for Disabled Individuals
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Feb, 2012
Do you have a handle on the number of disabled employees in your workforce? Under a new rule, you may have to set a utilization goal for individuals with disabilities. The OFCCP has proposed some revisions to Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act, and some experts are calling these proposed revisions "game changers." One of the proposed changes would establish a goal of 7% workforce utilization for individuals with disa...
 
  How the OFCCP’s Thirst for Data Will Impact You
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Dec, 2011
The OFCCP wants more data. The agency’s current proposal for all of this additional data has been described by some as both “burdensome” and “stealthy”. McGuire Woods, a 900-person law firm based in Richmond, Virginia, went so far as to say that the OFCCP “does not understand the private sector or have any apparent concern about the burdens and confidentiality issues these proposals place on contractors.” In fact, the OFCCP i...
 
  Minimizing Risk of Retaliation Claims Is As Easy As A B C
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Nov, 2010
In last week’s #EEOChat, the issue of retaliation came up. How much do you know about retaliation claims? Retaliation claims are on the rise. Among all charges filed with the EEOC in 2009, 36% included a claim of retaliation; this represents an increase of approximately 70% over the last decade. In her May 3, 2010 article on retaliation, Karen Gieselman, an attorney in the Columbia office of Fisher & Phillips, states: G...
 
  10 Tips For Top-Notch Telecommuting
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Jul, 2010
Telecommuting is becoming more commonplace. It’s not unusual to see people working in coffee shops and cafes, parks, at the beach, and from their kitchen tables. Many employers are offering their employees the opportunity to work remotely. I have a telecommuting arrangment with my firm; in fact, I’m writing this post from my home office. The flexibility of telecommuting is great for employees. Telecommuting also benefits em...
 
  Does Your Firm Suffer From OCD?
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Jul, 2010
Are you performing proactive statistical analyses of your employment decisions? If you don’t perform these analyses, is it because you are afraid of what those analyses might show? If so, your firm may suffer from Organizational OCD. You won’t find Organizational OCD in the DSM-IV, and it’s not an official medical diagnosis. But it’s a problem I see all too often. OCD is an anxiety disorder in which a person has an unreason...
 
  What You Can – And Cannot – Ask In Job Interviews
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Jun, 2010
You would think that with last week’s verdicts in Velez v. Novartis – compensatory damages estimated at $1 billion, and $250 million in punitive damages – gender discrimination would be in the forefront of minds across the country. Apparently this is not so. My friend Holly is in the job market, and had an interview yesterday. Last night she gave me the post-mortem on the interview, and I have another real-life example of h...
 
  Are Poor Project Management and Recruiting Practices Contributing to Gender Discrimination?
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Mar, 2010
Are poor project management and recruiting practices contributing to gender discrimination at high-tech firms? Ellen Messmer, of Network World, thinks so. In her post Gender Discrimination Linked to Poor Project Management, she states that 'tech firms rely excessively on a 'hero mindset' to save runaway coding projects that are poorly organized, and employees with family responsibilities -- often women -- are sacrificed as a r...
 
  Planning and Executing a Reduction in Force: A 10-Point Inspection
by Stephanie Thomas, Ph.D. - Feb, 2010
According to the Mass Layoff Statistics program (Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics), there were 28,030 mass layoff events and 2,796,456 initial claims during 2009. These are recorded program highs. The unemployment rate closed out the year at 10 percent, up more than three and a half percentage points from the previous year. Given the current economic conditions, many businesses are struggling and may need to...
 
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