Happy Labor Day!



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Labor Day – How Will You Celebrate?

According to the U.S. Department of Labor – Labor Day History

The form that the observance and celebration of Labor Day should take was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday — a street parade to exhibit to the public “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations” of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families.”

The first proposal, mentioned above, was written well over a hundred years ago in the late 1800’s, and yet the form of observances still resemble how many of America’s workers continue to celebrate the holiday. Parades are still held, and festivals continue; however, much of America’s work force simply see the day as a time to celebrate their hard work by having a day off to enjoy with family and friends at barbeques, picnics, and pool parties. So, we wonder, how will YOU celebrate Labor Day? However you choose to celebrate, remember that the day constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”

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Mobile Applications for Your HR Needs

Mobile App Technology for smart phones is no longer the wave of the future, but commonplace and necessary in every aspect of today’s world. This day and age demands information on the go and for everything to be accessible on a “smart” mobile device; the world of Human Resources is no different.

Our HRIS system offers Web Access for clients and worksite employees, and what’s more, there are apps for a few of the items, such as check stubs. How nice is it to go completely paperless? I.e. an employee has direct deposit – no check stub needs to be printed at all, if the company chooses. The employee can simply pull up their check stub right on their smart phone using an app!

HR Strategies Time Tracker Plus enables you to track your employee’s time, but you can also keep track of Paid Time Off Accruals and requests, and employee scheduling. What’s more, Time Tracker allows your mobile workforce to do the key essentials of the system right from their smart phone using an app! Not sure about the security of tracking time on a smart phone? No worries, if you choose to do so, GPS coordinates can be captured as to where the employee is when they punch in!

As mobile application technology continues to grow in the general population, you can be sure that it will continue to grow in the HR world. We at HR Strategies are continually striving to keep pace with the needs and wants of our employers in bringing that mobile application technology to all of our clients. As we do so, we will always continue our in depth customer service and client satisfaction. After all, any form of technology is only as good as the people bringing it to you and servicing it on a daily basis.


Refusing Health Care Coverage? Be Prepared to Pay

The Internal Revenue Service has recently released the maximum fine amounts for those persons who forego health care coverage.The-Health-Care-Reform-and-Medicare-resized-600.jpg

Individuals earning below the tax filing threshold of $10,150 will not pay a penalty. Others earning above $10,150 will pay based on earnings over the tax threshold of $10,150.

For taxes filed for the year 2014:

  • Individuals earning between $10,150 and $19650, there is a flat penalty fee of $95 per adult (47.50 per child under 18). Thus, a single adult making $19,000 would pay $95 (1×95); a family of two adults at $19,000 would pay $190 (2×95); and a family of one adult and one child at $19,000 would pay $142.50 (95+47.50). The maximum penalty per family with a household income below $19,650 is $285.
  • Individuals earning above $19,650, will be required to pay a penalty equal to 1% of their annual income. For example, a single adult employee earning $40,000 per year would be required to pay $400 (40,000×1%). Whereas, a family of six with two adults each making $50,000, the total income would be $100,000. Therefore the family would pay $1,000 (100,000×1%).

The maximum penalty for 2014 is $2,448 per individual annually, which is 1% of a yearly income of $244.800. Earnings above that for individuals are capped at the individual maximum penalty.

The maximum family penalty issued by the IRS was $12,240 for a five-member family, and will only impact households with a combined yearly income of $1.2 million or more.

*Remember these penalty rates are only for the year 2014, and will increase in 2015 and beyond. The 2015 penalties will be the greater of $325 per person or 2% of total income. 2016 Rates will rise further to the greater of $695 per person or 2.5% of total income. The years following 2016, the penalty rates will be adjusted according to inflation.

Call HR Strategies today for assistance! 770-339-0000 or visit our website at www.hr-strategies.com.

Remembering A Legend: Robin Williams

robin willams eap“Studies show that 20% of employees have mental health or substance abuse problems at any given time.”

We at HR Strategies, like the rest of the world, are greatly saddened with the tragic loss of Actor & Comedian Robin Williams earlier this week. We feel that in light of this tragedy and the forthcoming discussions regarding mental health, depression, and suicide; it is imperative that we remind our clients that HR Strategies is proud to offer the Employee Assistance Programs of EAP Consultants for free to all of our Client Employee’s and their immediate family members.

What is an EAP (Employee Assistance Program)?

An Employee Assistance Program is a program designed to identify and assist employees, through a variety of services, in resolving personal problems (e.g., marital, financial or emotional problems; family issues; substance/alcohol abuse) that may be adversely affecting the employee’s performance. Services may include:

Counseling Services Face-to-face assessment, short term counseling, referral and follow-up for alcohol and drug problems, work related difficulties, marriage and family issues, and emotional and psychological problems * counseling offices located conveniently to your employees * 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, toll-free telephone access to mental health professionals * case management that includes coordinating referrals to resources beyond the EAP, when needed.

To learn more about EAP Consultants you may contact one of our benefit specialists at 770-339-0000, or by visiting their website directly at www.eapconsultants.com

It’s the First Day of School

It’s the first day of school in Duluth, where the HR Strategies office is located! Students, good luck this year!! Parents, do you have a small business? Call HR Strategies today!



Happy 4th of July from HR Strategies!


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