Monthly Archives

November 2018


The Multi-Gen Workforce and Why It’s Critical to Your Business

By | Blog | No Comments

When gauging the direction and growth of your company, consider also evaluating the staff you’ve charged with steering the ‘ship.’ The experience, motivation, and loyalty of your employees will determine the pace of your company growth. Each generation of workers presents variable facets and strengths that you could be leveraging. Today we’re discussing how to take a closer look at what your current teams are bringing to table and why it’s essential to incorporate multi-generational staff into your growth plan.

The Baby Boomers Can Still Bring the ‘Boom!’

The only generation officially recognized by the US Census Bureau, Baby Boomers are a force to be reckoned with in the workplace. Born between 1946 and mid-1964, this group has been a driving force of change over the last 40 years. This group is the largest of the generations meaning they also represent a large portion of the buyers market. Who better to reach these mature buyers than Baby Boomers themselves!

If your staff includes this responsible and mature segment of the market, you have a team of loyal, hard-working individuals who can help you reach others like them in the marketplace. Tap into their knowledge to best connect with your Baby Boomer buyers. These workers are also ideal leaders and will often be your best assets when it comes to establishing processes, structure and setting the work pace for the generation of workers who come in after them. They are wise and have proven successful in former, non-digital times through the present. They offer work lessons, business lessons and can often be the best trainers and mentors in your business. While this generation may be approaching retirement soon, make sure you allow them to pass along their knowledge and expertise to the upcoming generations.

Generation Y = Yes We Can!

The Gen Y group is unique in that it represents the group of individuals who were brought up prior to the digital age, but also have been able to ride the wave of new inventions and technology into existence. Change is their middle name and embracing transition and change comes as second nature. Charge your Gen Y-ers with facilitating your company upgrades and changes and watch as they bring a level of enthusiasm and leadership in company-wide engagement. They work hard and can be the best resource for establishing best practices as they will take notes from their wise predecessors and help shepherd growth, connecting with their younger, Millennial counterparts.

The Millennial and Gen-Z Movement

This passionate group of new idea masters often gets a bad rap, publicly. Don’t believe everything you hear about unmotivated Millennials or Gen-Z employees. In fact, this is where you may find your best workforce. Driven by personal growth and contribution, this generation of workers will inspire your other generational staff with a sense of purpose and change inefficiency. As a company, you can leverage the knowledge of this group to help tap into your Millennial buyers as well. If you’re not talking to your Millennial staff about how best to manage your company’s social platforms and brand, you could be missing out on reaching a pivotal group of customers and buyers. Big ideas and critical enhancements will come from these employees. Make sure you’re listening and have fostered an environment of suggestions to keep the latest ideas fresh in your company growth strategy.

Regardless of your business platform, product or service offering, staffing your team with a multi-generation workforce can be the advantage you need. Learning from the veterans, empowering the doers and implementing the latest, most relevant efficiencies are just a few of the benefits of cross-generational learning.

Harbor America is Here to Help Your Business Grow

Take a look at your company direction and make sure you’re maximizing the talent you have on board. Consider the generational additions to augment existing staff and build the dream team that will help your business grow today and into the next twenty years. If you need help with creating your multi-generational dream team, contact us today!


4 Huge Signs Your Business Could Really Benefit from Partnering with a PEO

By | Blog | No Comments


Here are four of the biggest signs that you may need the services of a PEO, along with a few considerations to keep in mind:

Spending Too Many Hours of Your Workday Resolving HR Problems

Spending too much time resolving HR problems is a huge sign that it’s time to outsource and begin to get your time back. Stop and consider how many daily tasks relate to HR, including managing employee benefits, handling payroll and navigating employee conflict. Creating an internal HR department is very costly. Not only can PEOs offer more expertise and experience in HR, but they also save you money since you only pay for the time and services you actually need.

Feeling Overwhelmed by Government Regulations 

Running a business today is much more complex than it used to be since there are always new regulations. Most business managers find staying current and complying with the various new regulations and rules to be overwhelming or even impossible. Failing to be compliant with government regulations can even lead to being fined. Consider how a PEO is an expert in both state and federal employment regulations and knows how to comply with them. Removing this stressful task from your plate can give you immense peace of mind. 

A Lack of Good Employee Benefits

Are your competitors trying to attract your employees with five-star employee benefits packages? If so, this can be another “red light” it’s time to hire a PEO. One of the foremost concerns many employees have is getting high-quality health insurance and benefits.

Often, business managers aren’t as aware as they should be as to what their competitors are offering, regarding employee benefits. When you partner with a PEO, your business is more likely to receive the best employee benefits, including quality health and dental insurance as well as 401(k) benefits. PEOs are on the cutting edge when it comes to comparing benefit packages, knowing how to compete with other competitors and exactly which benefits attract the best candidates.

Payroll Taking Too Much Time

How much time are you spending on payroll? What’s more, are you sure that the figures you report on your payroll tax form are correct? What about 401(k) deductions for your employees? Are you reporting them on time, and are they calculated accurately? When you’re forced to devote too much time making sure payroll is done properly or you must correct errors, you don’t have much time left for running your business. On the other hand, taking shortcuts on this important aspect of your business can lead to serious consequences, including fines.

Not Having the Time Needed to Monitor Employees

When you don’t have enough time to keep tabs on how well your employees are performing, it’s easy for mistakes to occur. Usually, this becomes obvious when customers complain. When this happens, you can easily become irritated with your employees, diminishing staff morale. Even worse, you can lose employees and clients. This doesn’t have to be a problem when you have a PEO to help implement best practices that create a positive and productive workplace.

Other Considerations and Warnings

  • Consider how low morale in the workplace can be contagious. Unhappy employees usually don’t keep their feelings to themselves but are prone to spreading their grievances to co-workers. This can lead to other employees quitting with some not even giving you enough notice. When this occurs, it can be a sign that it’s time to use a PEO.
  • Hiring new employees who come from other states can be tricky when you don’t know about applying state-specific policies.
  • If new employees fail to enroll for benefits they (and their dependents) will go without medical insurance until it’s time for open enrollment. Moreover, they may not fully know about all their different choices when it comes to benefits. With a PEO on your team, you can hand over the job of explaining benefits and ensuring that everyone signs up on time.
  • In addition to helping you devise and use more effective HR methods for your business at its current size, PEOs provide solutions for your company as your business continues to expand and grow.

Get a Free Consultation From Harbor America

Why not join the growing number of employers who are teaming up with a PEO? Please contact us for a free consultation and learn how you can find more hours in your workday.


Should Your Company Offer Bereavement Leave?

By | Blog | No Comments

Benefits packages often highlight health insurance, parental leave, and retirement options. These are important, but bereavement leave is an often overlooked benefit that can boost employee morale and, ultimately, improve your company’s productivity.

Bereavement leave gives your employees the opportunity to take time away from work to grieve the loss of a loved one without being forced to use vacation time—or, worse, come to work despite their grief.

Benefits of Bereavement Leave

The death of a parent, grandparent, spouse, friend, or child comes as a shock, even if the loved one was sick leading up to his or her passing. It is a difficult time for your employee and work may be the last thing on their mind. Without bereavement leave, some of those employees may have no choice but to come to work anyway, fighting through grief to do their jobs in a half-hearted manner.

Bereavement leave boosts morale, not only for the grieving employee but for co-workers as well. It’s not easy for anyone to figure out what to say or do when someone is grieving the loss of a loved one.

The implication here is obvious: when employee morale is better, your company does better. A grieving employee won’t be able to do their best work, and may even develop feelings of resentment for being at work instead of with family. This is a slippery slope that could lead to decreased productivity long after the employee’s grief has subsided. It may even result in the employee ultimately leaving the company.

Perhaps most importantly, bereavement leave is another way to show how much you value your employees and understand they have priorities outside the workplace. That sort of acknowledgment and appreciation is how an employee develops loyalty to a company. Respecting their work-life balance is an affordable way for you to help keep your employees happy.

Making Your Plan

In the 2016 Paid Leave in the Workplace survey, the Society for Human Resource Management found that an average of four days of bereavement leave was given to employees following the death of a spouse or child. No time off was generally given following the death of an employee’s friend or colleague.

This article starts with the story of a CEO who gave his employees three days off to deal with grief—until his own daughter died and he realized the process of recovering can take months. He now gives employees as much time as they need. The article goes on to say that grief can cost companies in the United States billions of dollars in lost productivity, while, “Paradoxically, offering employees more time to deal with their grief—through longer bereavement leave, reduced hours and flexible schedules—could wind up costing organizations less….”

A PEO like Harbor America can help you create a benefits package that includes bereavement leave. Our HR solutions may also help you put a plan in place to keep your organization running smoothly when an employee takes time off after a loved one’s death.

How to Help Your Grieving Employee

Mayo Clinic recognizes the complexity of normal grief, which can last a few months after the loss, as well as complicated grief, “…an ongoing, heightened state of mourning that keeps you from healing.” Symptoms are generally the same for both types of grief, which means most of your employees who deal with loss will experience some or all of the following for at least a few weeks or even months:

  • Intense pain and rumination
  • Inability to focus on anything but the loved one’s death
  • Numbness and detachment
  • Lack of trust in others
  • Difficulty accepting the death

Everyone grieves differently, and even after a few days or weeks away from work, your grieving employee may still struggle. Here are a few ways to help your employees—the grieving employee as well as co-workers—in this situation:

  • Ask what is needed: Some employees might want to get back to their full workload; others may prefer to ease in slowly.
  • Teach co-workers what to say: Many people are uncomfortable with other people’s grief because they don’t know what to say. In a quick meeting or email, ask your other employees not to say well-meaning but ultimately unhelpful phrases like, “He’s in a better place” or “Everything happens for a reason.” Instead, give specific offers: “If you’d like to talk about her, I’d be happy to listen over lunch today.” Watch and listen to the griever for cues on what he or she needs from you: space or connection, conversation or quiet.
  • Recognize the symptoms of grief: When you understand the employee is struggling, you’re better able to help her.

Get Help From Harbor America

If you have questions about bereavement leave benefits, contact us. The team at Harbor America is happy to help you understand the importance of this benefit and work with you to make it a part of your employee benefits package.