Help! What do all these Employment Laws and Regulations Mean?
How can I stay compliant when there are so many?
Frequently when a business contacts us regarding our services, one of their main concerns is regulatory compliance; rightfully so, as the number of Employment Laws and Regulations continues to grow each year. It is often times hard for a small to mid-sized business to keep up with not only the new regulations and whether or not they are affected, but also with the constant struggle of how to remain compliant and thus avoid heavy penalties and fines. The most notable regulation currently is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; but employers must remember that PPACA is one of many with which they should be concerned.
The following picture shows the trend that we seem to be on, regarding the ever-expanding nature of government regulations and employment law.
Note that the chart was created in 2011, but still gives a great view of how regulations are sky rocketing. According to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Unified Agenda 2012, there are currently 3,503 federal regulations in the pipeline. While not all of these are Employment related, one can guarantee that many will be. In fact, there are currently 739 federal regulations that affect small businesses in some form or another.
That number is astounding, but even more staggering is trying to figure out what they all mean, considering that there are 174,545 total pages in the Code of Federal Regulations (an increase of more than 21% over the last decade), according to the Congressional Research Service; and 13,000 final rules were published in the Federal Register from 200-2012, alone. Large companies may have the capacity to stay on top of the ever-expanding regulations, and keep compliant; but often times small to mid-sized business do not have the time or the resources. It’s a shame as this has resulted in what the U.S. Small Business Administration has cited as “Federal regulations plac(ing) a disproportionate financial burden on entrepreneurs”. A study recently released reports that “per employee, small firms spend $2,380 more than do larger firms on complying with government regulations”, mainly due to more fines from lack of education on the regulations or how to comply with them.
As a Professional Employer Organization, HR Strategies focuses on keeping clients compliant by working as an off-site HR department, with the back-up of legal counsel from our strategic partners, specializing in employment law. As regulations climb and change, our internal staff continues to research the requirements and educate our clients on how to stay in compliance. Each one of our clients is assigned a dedicated HR consultant who understands their industry and employment needs and practices, and once a quarter we hold management seminars to educate and inform our clients of the latest in employment law and regulations. However, where many HR Outsourcing companies will stop at passing the information along, we go above and beyond. Our Client Services department is available to answer any specific questions as they arise, and we are available to assist should the need for an audit arise. Yes, many federal agencies are conducting routine audits, and HR Strategies is proud to be able to stand by our clients and aide them in anyway necessary through an audit process.