One of the most regulated elements of a business is its workforce. Hundreds of federal, state and local laws and regulations govern nearly every aspect of the employer-employee relationship. The impact, felt before a position is even filled, continues even after the job is vacated and at every stage along the way. Statutory and regulatory interpretations from the federal and state agencies involved, coupled with new court decisions, places employers in a difficult position to be able to comply with the myriad of employment laws.
Questions related to employee classification, wage and hour concerns, accommodations, retaliation and various leaves, along with lingering uncertainty in the traditionally murky waters of discrimination and harassment create an environment fraught with risk and potential liability. For those employers facing additional challenges inherent with an organized workforce, a clear understanding of the actions permitted under the labor laws and their collective bargaining agreement(s) is essential to managing risk.
Regularly training managers, supervisors and executives is a proven approach to promoting a company’s employee relations goals while at the same time minimizing litigation exposure. In conjunction with ongoing training efforts, periodic reviews of existing and proposed policies and the related practices and procedures help to spot potential issues and minimize disruptions. From the way benefit plans are administered and how specific policy language in the employee handbook is written to the way unionized employees are disciplined, a thorough understanding of a company’s approach to administering their workforce is essential to increasing job satisfaction and employee morale, reducing turnover and preventing litigation.
Utilizing onsite programs addressing specific concerns, as well as the firm’s annual Labor & Employment Law Conference, our attorneys are adept at translating the law and applying legal context to business situations. As the law in this area continues to evolve, our attorneys strive to provide valuable insight by publishing client alerts, regularly contributing practical employment law tips to numerous business and trade publications, and have authored the HR Survival Guide, a legal resource utilized by HR professionals throughout the country.
Insight is invaluable. We help clients align their goals with policies and practices designed to avoid litigation and minimize legal exposure.