California Computer Professional Exemption’s Hourly rate of pay requirement declines to $36

Down from the previous $49.77 per hour, the rate-of-pay requirement for a computer professional to be considered ‘exempt’ becomes $36.00 per hour effective January 1, 2008.

Click here for California’ current wage orders.

California Abitration Agreements Becoming More Difficult to Enforce

Employers who have employees sign an arbitration agreement, especially with wage-and-hour class action waivers, are having a tough time enforcing them.

Once again, the California Court of Appeal rejected an agreement as ‘unconscionable and unenforceable’.

Make sure you review any arbitration agreements with your attorney.

Courtesy of Jackson Lewis.

The "Engagement Gap"

Towers Perrin recently published a study of over 86,000 workers around the world showing that only 21% of employees are ‘engaged’ (meaning, they have a total and complete dedication to their job and company).

More and more small businesses are looking for solutions to reduce employee turnover, and the best way do to that is to develop systems to engage your employees.

Today’s article in the Baltimore Sun explains.

Managing Sexual Harassment Complaints

There’s so much gloom and doom among employers when a employee files a harassment complaint. Much of is justified; however, when an employer handles the investigation properly, the results are (usually) justified.

In this case – an example of an employer doing the right thing – an appellate court recognized the Faragher/Ellerth defense of an employer (even though a jury thought differently).

From Ogletree Deakins.

A Democratic Workplace

Wow. Many of the things Traci Fenton is talking about go to the core of today’s modernized management principles, but in a much more global way of thinking.

Here is her article in the Christian Science Monitor.

Something to think about – it’s the ‘really big’ picture.

California Military Spouse Leave Law

Effective immediately, California employers with 25 or more employees must allow employees who have spouses in the military ten days of unpaid leave with that spouse is on leave.

This article, courtesy of Ford & Harrison, explains.

Office Romance and The Employer

I generally advise clients to adopt a ‘bright line’ approach to employee romances; that is, prohibit supervisors from dating direct reports. However, other options are available, with the exception that businesses in California may not prohibit employees from dating (just supervisors dating direct reports).

This article, by Jennifer Brown Shaw of Shaw Valenza, identifies many more pitfalls to an employer if some steps are not taken.

Managing Your Boss

You always need a plan when reporting to a manager. The most successful employees are able to adapt to their boss – thus ensuring their long-term success.

This article, from the Harvard Business Review via Business Week, explains.

Workers’ Compensation Costs plummeting in California

The Workers’ Comp reforms enacted several years ago are beginning to show results, according to the Workers Compensation Research Institute.

Employers can also manage these costs on their own through wellness programs, worker awareness, and health prevention information.