Compensation

Compensation, Legal Issues

Labor Department Going After More Wage and Hour Laws Violations

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Employees in New York and California are being cheated out of millions in wages by their employers, a new study reveals, and the U.S. Department of Labor wants to find more employers who are skirting the law.

The wage study was conducted by the Eastern Research Group and commissioned by the Labor Department to measure the possible socio-economic impacts of minimum wage violations in California and New York. These two states were selected for the study because of their large workforce. Read more…

Compensation, Rewards & Recognition

Believe It or Not, Promotions Are Also Viewed as Workplace Rewards

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Promotions are a form of reward, even though they don’t always jingle like direct cash.

A jump in title status alone is sometimes enough to be strong motivation for greater employee engagement. Psychic income, whether intrinsic or extrinsic in origin, should count as compensation, anyway, since it is part of the employee value proposition.

Movement into a higher pay classification generally means more aggressive raises, too. And when a promotional increase accompanies hierarchical advancement, the positive consequences are even greater. There are also situations when promotions are used as rewards in place of any formal pay for performance program. Read more…

Compensation, HR News & Trends

Voter Actions Undercut Federal Push for $10.10 Minimum Wage

minimum wage

By John E. Thompson

Earlier this month, several states and localities voted in favor of increasing their minimum wage.

Right on cue, many (including U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez) seized upon these results as ostensibly supporting an increase in the federal Fair Labor Standards Act‘s rate to $10.10 per hour.

On the contrary, the developments emphasize that no such nationwide action is either wise or warranted. Read more…

Compensation, HR News & Trends

Are Wages For Workers Starting — Finally! — to Show Some Growth?

compensation

A news story about optimistic pay trends claims to find signs of an impending upsurge in base hourly rates.

Conceding that this is not the consensus opinion among experts (“Government data show wages rising at only about 2 percent per year, which is roughly the same as inflation, meaning typical workers aren’t really getting ahead”), the article gives links to the study that offers a more positive view. Read more…

Compensation, HR News & Trends

Here’s Why Women (and Men) Really Do Need to Ask For a Raise

From istockphoto.com

Last week, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella gave some spectacularly bad advice to a group of women at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing conference in Phoenix.

He said:

It’s not really about asking for the raise but knowing and having faith that the system will actually give you the right raises as you go along,”

I was originally supposed to be at this event, and it’s probably a good thing that my plans changed because I think I would have had to be physically restrained to not run up on the stage and shout, “He’s wrong! Please don’t do this!Read more…

Benefits, Compensation, HR Management

Is it Really Time to Say Goodbye to the Merit Matrix?

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Bill Kutik hates the merit matrix and I suspect he is not alone.

The merit matrix is not dead — not yet, with recent WorldatWork research confirming that about three-quarters of surveyed member organizations (which tend to be larger, more well-established employers) have a merit matrix in place. But should it be? Will it be?

In his recent HR Technology column at HREOnline, Death to the Merit-Pay-Increase Matrix, Kutik (co-chair emeritus of the annual HR Technology Conference and Exhibition that is going on this week in Las Vegas), shared his issues with the matrix: Read more…

Compensation, Talent Management

Pay and Performance, or What Withholding an Increase Can Do

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More pay might not change behavior, but withholding an increase sometimes will.

“That’s the last straw! I’m going to fire him,” said the irate mayor as he hung up the phone after mollifying a furious resident.

His city’s veteran long-service street superintendent had once again rudely blown off another citizen with a legitimate gripe. The mayor was tired of cleaning up such messes and being forced to calm down upset voters antagonized by the impolite official. Read more…

Compensation, HR Insights

Should You “Out” Employees and Make Public What They’re Paid?

Transparency

In a few weeks, I am going to talk with a local compensation association about pay transparency.

As I’ve been writing over the last few months, I think there’s a cultural shift underway, with pressure building from various angles to “out” employee pay.

It’s natural that employers in Silicon Valley are feeling the most pressure. Many of its company cultures strive to live up to open communications standards like “don’t be evil.” The rest scramble to lure talent away from these companies, even though their own devotion to core values is not as obvious to employees. Read more…

Compensation, Rewards & Recognition

The Problem When Managers Get Too Fond of Discretionary Rewards

© Dawn Hudson - Fotolia.com

Ah, management discretion.

Leaders often have a great fondness for discretionary rewards, particularly in bonus and incentive plans.

And why not? Discretionary rewards keep all the power and control with them. Wild card in hand, they are free until the moment the reward decision is made to do whatever feels right, based on their personal judgment call. Read more…

Compensation, Rewards & Recognition

Retention and Reward: Struggling With the Consequences

Illustration by Dreamstime

Employee retention is a double-edged sword.

According to Merriam Webster, in addition to being a sword with two sharp edges, this is defined as something that can have both favorable and unfavorable consequences.

That’s about right. Read more…