Article: Exempt vs. Non-Exempt: Common Misclassification Mistakes
    Article: Winning the HR Superbowl: Get Your HR Team to Quit Fighting and Play Fair
   White Paper: 2009 Best Practices in Professional Development and Employee Growth
    HR Humor: Addressing Employee Complaints
    Webcast: Are Your Hiring Practices Identifying Service Stars?
    Podcast: Managing Healthcare Costs: Consumerism, Yes. Cash Opt-Outs... Maybe
    HR 180: The 15 Craziest Candies Ever

  What's New? The Latest in HR Software and Services
    •   Recruitment & Staffing
    •   Compensation & Benefits
    •   Talent Management
    •   Training & Development

Article: Exempt vs. Non-Exempt: Misclassification Mistakes

Source: Michele O'Donnell, M.S., Human Resources Management for MMC, Inc.

In the August edition of the MMC Newsletter, the ever-growing area of litigation regarding the classification of employees versus independent contractors was discussed. In this article we will assume that all persons have been properly classified as employees and the next question to consider is: should the position be considered exempt or non-exempt?




Article: Winning the HR Superbowl: Get Your HR Team to Quit Fighting and Play Fair
Source: Dr. Joni Johnston, CEO of WorkRelationships Inc.

Let's face it. Psychologists get depressed, doctors get sick, and human resource professionals squabble. It doesn't matter if you've got a master's degree in conflict resolution, a better attitude than Pollyanna, and enough policies and procedures to fill a library. When people work together, they're going to get on each other's nerves. However, unlike conflict in most work groups, the potential ramifications of a dissenting human resource team are particularly worrisome. When human resource reps battle, managers and employees are quick to sense the dissension and run for the hills.





White Paper: Optimizing Human Capital: 2009 Best Practices in Professional Development and Employee Growth
Source: Helios HR and Market Connections

Even though the Helios Apollo Awards recognize employee development best practices in companies located only in the Washington Metropolitan area, we feel this white paper is relevant for the bigger whole as the Washington Metropolitan Area is "still one of the most competitive employment markets in the nation," and "these firms often enjoy higher productivity, profit, and performance than their competitors." This report summarizes the employee development strategies used by Helios Apollo Award nominees and describes employee development best practices. A brief registration form is required to download the white paper but it's worth it.



Summit Health - Free White Paper


HR Humor: The Art of Demotivation. Addressing Employee Complaints

In this episode, Dr. E.L. Kersten provides executives and managers with a shockingly effective strategy for responding to the complaints of their subordinates.




Webcast: Are Your Hiring Practices Identifying Service Stars?
Source: Carol Jenkins, PhD and Sarah Glass for Assess Systems

In an environment where customer loyalty is critical to business survival, the emphasis that your organization places on hiring the right service-focused people is as critical as it has ever been. However, identifying the right candidates who possess the "service gene" can be a challenge - especially when the quantity (and not necessarily quality) of your applicant pool is rapidly growing. In this presentation, two case studies from the hospitality industry are highlighted. These case studies are used as a foundation to discuss best practices of selection processes for selecting hourly-level as well as management-level employees. This webcast was approved for 1.0 general re-certification credit through the HR Certification Institute.



Thrive On - Free White Paper


Podcast: Managing Healthcare Costs: Consumerism, Yes. Cash Opt-Outs ... Maybe
Source: Cathy Williams, Manager, Compensation & Benefits of SMART Business Advisory and Consulting, and Employee Benefit News

With every employer eye trained toward health care cost savings, cash opt-outs are "one method that encourages the employee to consider not only how they spend their health care dollars in the coming year but where those dollars will be spent," Cathy Williams, Manager, Compensation & Benefits of SMART Business Advisory and Consulting, tells Associate Editor Kathleen Koster in this 5-minute podcast.. Williams also breaks down the pros and cons of such opt-out initiatives.




HR180: The 15 Craziest Candies Ever
Source: Olivia Putnal,

Halloween is right around the corner, which means one thing: candy! Besides the standard sugary fare (think candy corn and bite-size bars), over the years there has been an onslaught of gross-out candy concepts created for this spooky holiday. WD set out to find the most disturbing of the bunch, from past and present, and discovered the 15 out-of-the-ordinary treats (if we can even call them treats) below. See the grossest of the gross, but beware—they may make you lose your appetite.



Contribute to News for HR!

Want to get published? To submit your article, white paper, webcast or other HR-related content (including interesting non-fiction and non-HR related material for our HR 180 column) for consideration in News for HR, please send an email to with a link to your content.


What's New? The Latest in HR Software and Services

* Please note that the editorial team at News for HR does not recommend or endorse any of the companies or products mentioned in our newsletter. We also cannot support any claims made by the respective companies. These are products and services we have found interesting and are sharing with our readership. If you have any experience with these companies you would like to share with us, we'd love to hear from you!

Recruitment & Staffing:

DBSquared launched a new product, DBDescriptions that allows organizations to create and maintain comprehensive and ADA-compliant job descriptions through an automated system. DBDescriptions will maintain all of the mandated information required by The Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) which in January of 2009 expanded the protections of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to a much larger group of people. More information is available on the company's website: The press release can be found here.

Compensation & Benefits:

HRN Management Group released an online incentive compensation planning and administration solution called Incentive Pro. Incentive Pro is an affordable online application designed to make incentive pay programs more effective at achieving and rewarding desired results. To find out more information about Incentive Pro or to schedule a demonstration, please contact the company at 800-940-7522 or visit

Talent Management:

The HR Chally Group launched Talent Audit 3.0, which provides access to skill comparisons and overall success potentials with predictive accuracy similar to the way a DNA strand identifies genetic makeup of each individual. The Talent Audit 3.0 Program is a comprehensive, progressive tool that includes assessment of employees, an aggregate summary report of all scoring for each profile and by skill to easily determine the team's strengths and developmental areas, individual participant reports and additional assessments, and a refresh of the data for ongoing use. For more information see the press announcement or contact Chally at 937.259.1200 or

Training & Development:

ASCD, an educational leadership organization, introduced PD in Focus, a unique technology tool for expanding professional development in the education field. PD In Focus" is a Web-based multimedia system designed to help deliver interactive, on-demand professional development to ASCD members which include 175,000 principals, teachers, superintendents and professors of education in 119 countries. Visit and for more information.

About "News For HR"

"News for HR" is a monthly newsletter profiling new products and services in the human resource marketplace and timely articles on various HR topics. The newsletter's content is selected by our editorial committee and is not the result of paid advertising.

Most of the content comes from the Human Resources Directory - one of the HR industry's largest and most up-to-date knowledge centers with a library of over 2,000 white papers, webcasts, podcasts, articles and more. Please let us know how we are doing by e-mailing


Newsletter Info:

Publisher: HRmarketer
Editor: JWillaman
Circulation: 70,000+
Distributed: Monthly
Advertising: Details Details

Like Our Newsletter?

Then visit the HR Directory for the Internet's largest collection of complementary white papers, articles, webcasts, podcasts, and more.

Stat of the Day

Managing Talent in India's Outsourcing Industry

Source: Chillibreeze and India Reports

Ever since India was anointed the unofficial outsourcing capital of the world, the spotlights have fallen on HR issues and managing talent in the country's outsourcing industry. Some interesting and strategically significant HR aspects of outsourcing:

• Manpower is the biggest challenge for outsourcing in India due to the problems thrown up by a widening demand-supply gap.

• India meets only 15-20% of the demand for Knowledge Process Outsourcing. By 2009, there will be a shortage of at least 3,000,000 professional in outsourcing in India.

• Attrition is a hurdle at all levels - the industry average is 35-40%, while the rate is around 20% at the higher, sophisticated end of the spectrum (managerial and technical jobs).

• A surprise - the most common reason for attrition is not dissatisfaction with pay, but career ambiguity! The highly volatile nature of the outsourcing industry also prompts many employees to call it quits.

• The typical applicant-to-hire conversion rate for the outsourcing industry is as low as 8% in voice-based BPOs and even lower in KPOs.

For the full story, you can click here.

Quick Tips

12 Quick Tips for Organizing Your Desk

Source: Mark Shead, Productivity 501

1. Get rid of pens and pencils you don't need.

2. Have a place for pocket stuff. Your keys, phone, PDA, wallet, bluetooth earpiece, etc. should have a home. The ideal setup is to keep them in a drawer with wires already run for charging the various items.

3. Proximity based on frequency of use. If you use it every day, it should be closer than something you use only a few times each week.

4. Move electronics out of sight. Your cable modem, wireless router, firewall, battery backup, etc. shouldn't be on your desk. Even if you have enough room it introduces visual clutter.

5. Easy-to-access files. Without moving your chair or getting up, you should be able to grab an unused manila folder, label it and put it in your file cabinet. Easy filing is one cornerstone of good organization. The more effort it requires the more difficult it will be to stay organized.

6. Scanning documents. I have a scanner and I'll turn important documents into PDFs and keep them on my computer. I use OCR so the documents are searchable.

7. Cleaning supplies. If you clean your desk with Windex and a paper towel, make sure you have some nearby. This will help encourage you to wipe down your work surface - which will encourage you to clean it off more often.

8. Scratch notepad. During the course of the day, you will have telephone numbers, names, addresses, order confirmations, flight numbers, etc. If you can keep these all in one place, you'll be far more productive if you need to look something up later.

9. Organize those wires. It is easy to have half your desk covered with wires for various pieces of electronics. Moving some stuff off your desk can help. Some pieces of velcro wrapped around wires can go a long ways toward cleaning things up. Also make sure that you have wires that are long enough to tuck out of the way. If they are too short you won't be able to arrange them neatly. Sometimes wireless is an option.

10. If you don't have enough drawers. My current desk is large, but it is a sheet of glass over a metal frame. While it looks really cool, it doesn't allow much in the way of storage. To compensate, I've brought in a dresser for storage. I also use bookshelves with a bunch of boxes with lids to help give me some more drawer-like storage.

11. Lighting. Make sure you have enough light on your desk. Maybe it is just me, but a bright work area is easier to keep clean than a dark one.

12. Organize as you go. It is more efficient to stay organized as you work instead of trying to do it all at the end. If your desk gets disorganized in the middle of a big project, take small steps. Clear a 1-foot by 1-foot area before you leave for the day.

Making a small effort toward organization may not seem like much, but if you do it everyday, it will keep things headed in the right direction.

Read more here.

Did You Know?

Shrinking Attention Spans Are Damaging Communication Skills

Source: Connie Dieken, founder, onPoint Communication, LLC

It's almost unanimous: 99% of business people agree that attention spans are shorter today than 3 years ago, and this is having a damaging effect on verbal communication skills in the workplace.

According to Connie Dieken's survey of 400 business professionals, the major consequences of shrinking verbal skills are:

- Limited success in winning or increasing business (82%)

- Weak relationships with colleagues and peers (72%)

- Diminished ability to manage and motivate direct reports (69%)

Multi-tasking (such as checking e-mails and voice-mails or texting during face-to-face communications) was selected by 93% of survey respondents as the leading cause of today's declining skills. The second biggest contributor (said 54% of survey takers) is that it's become much more difficult to break through today's overwhelming clutter of information -- a phenomenon which Dieken calls "communiclutter" -- to convey clear messages that don't overload others.

To read the full story, visit here.


PO Box 10 | Capitola, CA 95010 | 831-685-9700 |
© 2009 HRmarketer. All rights reserved. HRmarketer and Fisher Vista are registered trademarks.