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Top 5 New Year’s Resolutions for HR

Five, four, three, two, one: Happy New Year! It’s nearly time to usher in 2016. How is your human resources department preparing? Do you have a plan to make this the “best year yet” for your employees? Are you scheming to win big in the recruiting game? Do you resolve to take control of issues like health coverage and compensation? Do you plan to fix the growing leadership issues that have been lurking in the deep, dark corners of your organization?

If you’re not sure where to start on making 2016 great, allow us to help. Here are five key New Year’s resolutions that can help give HR and hiring managers a leg up moving forward.

  1. Get a Handle on Health Coverage: As of January 1, 2016, all companies with an average of 50 or more full-time employees will be subject to the full Affordable Care Act (ACA) healthcare mandate. If you do provide at least minimum essential coverage, don’t forget to report it to the IRS. Certain forms are due to employees by February 1 and others to the IRS by February 29 (if filing by mail) or March 31 (if filing electronically). Employers of all sizes—whether required to provide coverage or not—should also research applicable tax credits or incentives for participation. This guide from GE Capital is a great overview of deadlines and key facts.
  2. Speed Up Your Hiring Process: You’d think that with so many resources at hand, hiring processes are becoming more efficient. But that’s not the case. Talent Solutions Architect Jean Martin reports the average time to fill an open position is 63 business days— 21 more days than it was five years ago. Chances are you missed out on hiring a few key job candidates this past year by subjecting them to an overly cumbersome hiring process. Don’t make the same mistake in 2016. Enlist the help of a staffing partner that can help you recruit more intelligently and efficiently for the talent you want (not just the talent that sticks around until the offer is made).
  3. Reconfigure Your Idea of Compensation: Salary budgets are expected to increase at an average pace of about 2.7 percent across the U.S., which spells good news for employers. However, while your employees may not be in the market for larger paychecks, they may have other, more creative benefits on their wish lists. SHRM’s Stephen Miller reports that HR practitioners are rolling out new, creative and customized voluntary benefits like student loan assistance in order to retain top talent.
  4. Stay Ahead of Overtime Law Changes: Earlier this year we reported on a potential new salary threshold for overtime pay. Very basically, certain employees with a salary up to $50,440 may qualify for overtime if the law passes. That’s double the current threshold of $23,660. The new regulation is currently delayed, with U.S. Solicitor of Labor Patricia Smith citing nearly 300,000 complaints as the reason. But it is still expected to pass sometime in 2016. HR practitioners should prepare now by determining which employees may be affected.
  5. Change How You Reward Leaders: According to CEB research, most leaders (70 percent) respond to challenges by retreating inward and focusing narrowly on performance within their direct span of control (a sort of “circle the wagons” response). The research indicates this behavior can be damaging. Those with a broader, more collaborative mindset that’s focused on the best interest of the overall enterprise are much more impactful.  In fact, this mindset can result in a 12 percent increase in revenue, 23 percent increase in innovation, 20 percent increase in customer satisfaction, and 30 percent increase in engagement. How collaborative are your leaders? Do they have the right motivations and are they leading with the right intentions? Make 2016 the year you sort it all out.

What are your HR New Year’s resolutions? What do you plan to accomplish in 2016 that will help your organization recruit, retain and succeed? Share in the comments below—and let’s discuss!

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