Thursday, August 25, 2016

Conference Insider - What to Expect

Amy R. Dillman
Your ILSHRM Communications Director
and ILSHRM16 attendee

Here we are in the last month of August! Can you believe it? The summer vacations are coming to an end, schools are back in session and Christmas advertising is starting to pop up. Ok, maybe that last one is a stretch, but it will be coming soon enough.

I love Fall. It is my favorite season and this year it just might be the best yet as ILSHRM16 is on the calendar in September! Have you registered? Still thinking of registering? Here are a few insider details for what you can expect.

1. Learning Opportunities. The conference is jam packed with sessions that are broken down into tracks. You can sharpen your skills by staying in a particular track or you can broaden your knowledge base by attending a session in each.  The tracks are.Business Acumen & HR Strategy, Talent Acquisition & Workforce Planning, Personal and Leadership Development, Total Rewards (Compensation & Benefits, Employee & Labor Relations and Compliance. More information can be found at track descriptions.

2. Networking. You hear it all the time. This event or that offers networking opportunities, but at ILSHRM16 it can really happen! That said, networking says 'work' and it takes a little work to network. We provide the platform, but it's up to you to say hi, introduce yourself, sit next to someone in a session or at lunch that you don't know. If you don't know where to start, seek out and say hello to an ILSHRM board member. We love to talk and would gladly help you meet other HR professionals.

3. Location, Location, Location. ILSHRM16 is back at Drury Lane in Oakbrook, Illinois. If you haven't been, access is easy, parking is easy, and here are no buses or mile-long hikes from your room. All the sessions are under one roof which makes #1 and #2 of this list easy! Breakfast and lunch are included Monday and Tuesday as well as the Monday night after hours event, but there are plenty of restaurants nearby to catch a bite or a beverage with those new colleagues you met while networking. While networking, did you find other shopaholics? Oakbrook Mall is practically next door - just shop 'til you drop after conference hours.

Got a question? Need some more advice? Hashtag #ILSHRM16 on Twitter or post a comment on our Facebook page.  We hope to see you there!

You can still register at ILSHRM16.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

At Least They Gave Us a Little Time

Amy Dillman
Your ILSHRM Communications Director
and attendee of ILSHRM16!

When the Department of Labor released new regulations regarding the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) on May 18th, the HR World felt the shockwaves.  The changes were significant, staring with the new salary threshold of $47,476.  If any of you were like me, we began producing reports, counting the numbers of impacted, exempt employees under the salary threshold and determining effect of budgets, overtime, and considering potential wage increases. We jump into action because before I can even finish my Excel formulas, I have directors at my door, on my email and ringing my phone.

SHRM was ready too. Did you search their site for information, articles and webinars? I did. They were a great source of information! They explained in their May 18th government affairs update the key elements to the new regulation:

1.    Salary Threshold Changed to $913/week ($47,476 per Year)
This threshold doubles the current salary threshold level. While this level is slightly lower than the threshold in the proposed rule, it still encompasses many employees that are currently classified as exempt. SHRM was disappointed that DOL did not offer a more reasonable increase and set the threshold, as it has in the past, at a level designed to encompass those employees that are clearly not engaged in exempt-type work.

2.    Automatic Salary Threshold Increases Every 3 Years (Not Annually) to Maintain Level at 40th Percentile in Lowest-Wage Census Region
DOL reduced the frequency of the automatic increases in response to concerns raised by SHRM and others. Instead of annual increases, the threshold will be adjusted every 3 years to maintain the level at the 40th percentile of full-time salaried workers in the lowest-wage Census region. Automatically updating the salary threshold, however, does not allow the government to take into account changing economic conditions, specific impact on certain industries, or regional differences. It also denies the public the ability to have input on the threshold as required by the regulatory process.

3.    Duties Test is Unchanged
The absence of a duties test change is a significant win for the thousands of SHRM members who expressed concern in this area. DOL did not make changes to the standard duties test.

4.    Effective Date is December 1, 2016.
SHRM advocated for a longer implementation period than the standard 60 days and the final rule provides additional time for employers to prepare. With the rule going into effect on December 1, 2016, HR professionals should review their current workforce immediately to determine which employees are affected, whether to re-classify those employees, and execute a communications strategy. HR should keep in mind the periodic adjustments and set a regular review process.

5.    Highly Compensated Employee (HCE) Exemption Is Now $134,004 Per Year
The final rule retains the methodology in the proposed rule setting the threshold at the 90th percentile of full-time salaried workers nationally.

I, and I hope you, have a firm understanding of the new requirements. Now, the work begins. New training on time sheets, new data management tools to track financial impact for future adjustments, developing an educational pipeline to managers and employees, writing new internal policies and changing payroll records and codes, leading efforts to minimize cultural and morale damage, and more.

At least the DOL gave us a little time - and we can discuss it together at #ILSHRM16 in related sessions!

See you at the conference and when I come up for air on December 2.

Are you prepared for the FLSA changes? Make sure you aren’t missing anything by attending #ILSHRM16. Register today at ILSHRM16

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

ILSHRM CIC-SHRM Legislative Conference

So having attended Capitol Hill day several times in Washington DC, I thought that our ILSHRM efforts for this year were a bust. We had more people than ever go to the Illinois Statehouse and the count was 24.  But then I thought about that for a moment and thought things need to be proportional.    The last time I went to Capitol Hill there were 400+ members who went - impressive! We sent 24 to our statehouse.   Wait though let’s do the math.  On the last trip to Capitol Hill 400 of the 280,000 members attended or 0.0014 % the membership.   Now looking at our Illinois delegation, 24 of the 12,300 members attended or 0.0019% of our state membership; BAM #ILSHMR wins!

While I have not attended all of the Legislative Conferences, I have made a number of them. I still enjoy being around a bunch of like minded #HR pros, it just gets me stoked.  Yesterday’s version was no different.    We heard from Jonathan Segal, who is an accomplished – often quoted labor lawyer. He shared his brand of HR Law which often brought levity to the whole matter.

This was followed up by ILSHRM Lobbyist Jay Dee Shadduck.  Jay brought us three state agency directors, a state senator and one state representative. These folks all had interesting prospective on what was going on in state government and why we should care, and /or feel good about it.  Some of them did a better job articulating this point than others. I will leave the final decision as to who was who, to the others that attended.

After lunch we heard from Kelly Hastings, a member of the SHRM Legislative Affairs team.  And while Kelly touched on a number of subjects that had already been kicked around, she provided some hard facts and legislative insight that could only come from a true insider.   We thank Kelly for an early out in DC and a late night back in.  (The new rules on exempt employees will be here very soon!)

Then it was off to the Illinois Statehouse.  While the Senate was not in session when we arrived, they were doing committee hearings, the House was in session.  The consensus was it is easy to see why we don’t have a budget.  What we saw from our brief visit there was organized confusion at best.  There was no real debate going on and only a vote or two took place.  There were a lot of people in the Capitol but I am not sure what they were all doing.  Although from my vantage point I so no one talking or worrying about a budget.  Hmm, I guess government just works different that private sector business.

Tomorrow is Day two of the conference; we will see what that holds for us.  See you there!

     Dave Ryan – ISC SHRM Director Elect