Your personnel help you achieve your business goals. In a small company, three main issues bedevil many business owners.
First, employee expectations. Though not required, a written agreement or statement of employment conditions sets out what an employee can expect. A well-written contract minimizes the risks of dashed expectations or even disputes later.
Second, wage and hour laws. The US system of exempt versus non-exempt – that is, who must be paid overtime and who does not have to be, or even what overtime is – is confusing at best and a trap for the unwary. We look at your business and help you resolve many of these issues and avoid disputes with the Department of Labor down the road.
Third, if you use independent contractors, you can face issues on both their expectations and whether the government will even recognize your personnel as independent contractors rather than employees.
Other issues can arise as well, such as potential discrimination on prohibited grounds and whether particular employee conduct is concerted activity that is protected from employer retaliation.
Don’t make a mistake. The cost of finding out your options and acting accordingly is low compared to the potential damage if these issues are not properly handled.
On another front, emails, social media, and business correspondence can present huge challenges to a business. You know it is important to be discreet when discussing internal issues, such as whether certain conduct is lawful or whether a disgruntled customer might have a basis for dispute. You also know that emails, texts, and any digital media are forever.
But, do your employees know these things? It is so easy for an employee to get carried away when discussing sensitive issues by email or text or even social media. The normal thought is either that emails are informal or that the text would never be seen by someone else.
Wrong. A poorly worded email, text, or social media post can be used by an opponent to extract a settlement on unfavorable terms, or even to expose the company to the potential of criminal liability.
We can help you avoid this by short training sessions designed to cover these issues – and more – with your personnel and to avoid nasty consequences.