Friday, November 23, 2007

“How to Prevent Employment Law Problems”

The article “A Checklist For Preventing Human Resources Problems”, posted February 2007 identifies the common employment law pitfalls committed by management. To prevent lawsuits and employment troubles, a company must have a comprehensive policy that will serve as guidelines for employees. An experienced employment lawyer can help management draft the policy that should also include the employees’ manual. In California, which has a big percentage of employee turnover, employment problems are likely to occur more often.
Here is the checklist for preventing human resources problems:
  • Knowledge of human resources principles – Every member of the organization must be aware of the company policy and human resources principles. It is the responsibility of the human resources manager to ensure that every employee knows the concept.
  • Communications – Appropriate communication is the key to a trouble-free workplace. Good communication must start from the top. However, every employee must perform as expected. They should also know how to resolve issues internally. Open-door policy in communication must be encouraged.
  • Sound employment documents – Before hiring, management must have a clear employment application which does not contain provisions that will be questioned later by employees. Misleading promises must also be avoided. Trade secrets must be kept confidential too.
  • Conduct background check on applicants – Before hiring an employee, the management must have a thorough, if not strict, background check on applicants during pre-employment screening.
  • Employees should be required to undergo discrimination, harassment, and retaliation prevention training.
  • Audit wage-hour record – Employers must conduct a wage-hour audit to prevent complaints. In recent years, many California employers were charged with violations of the labor code and wage-hour regulations. To avoid this, employers should make a classification of its workers and make a wage-hour audit, which must be done with the help of a lawyer.
  • Manage and supervise the leaves of absence and disabilities of employees
  • Make sure that all employee benefit plans comply with the federal Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).
  • Urge employees to sign a mandatory arbitration agreement.
These are the important points discussed in the article, which I believe, can help both employers and their workers find industrial peace and harmony.