Battle for the American Worker | Rewards of Tax Reform | Keeping Employees | End to ADA Abuse?

In StaffLink’s Small Business Week this week we look at how businesses are responding to a shrinking labor market and corporate America’s response to the new tax landscape. Plus, businesses may get a break from frivolous lawsuits if a pending ADA law passes. We also look at the latest healthcare trends, today’s hot jobs, tips for a happy life, and more.

Americans are beginning to see pay increases due to tax reform.  

Smuckers has now joined the ranks of the hundreds of companies granting bonuses to employees in response to the tax reform bill. For a full list plus all you need to know about tax reform and corporate America, see the Fox Business report, Tax reform and windfall: These companies are hiking pay, delivering bonuses by Thomas Barrabi.

Lowe’s launches Track to the Trades program to attract talent.

Addressing both the tight labor market and a skills gap in construction and other skilled trades, Lowe’s announced the launch of its Track to the Trades program this week. Partnering with Guild Education, Lowe’s will support qualified employees’ pursuits of a trade to the tune of $2,500 each. CNBC’s Lauren Thomas shares the details in  Lowe’s takes another step to win workers in a tight labor market.

To keep the employees you have, be open to change.

When unemployment is low and competition for talent is high, keeping your current workforce happy and engaged becomes a top priority. Inc.’s Young Entrepreneur Council offers some tips to do just that in 5 Strategies to Keep Employees Engaged in 2018.

Businesses may get some relief from “Drive by” Lawsuits.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the ADA Education and Reform Act this week and the legislation will now move to the Senate. This bill would require those seeking to sue a business for ADA accommodation failures to provide notice and take other steps before taking matters to court.

The bill is aimed at thwarting plaintiffs who engage in so-called drive-by lawsuits and have no real connection to the business they are pursuing.  If the legislation passes, one of Florida’s biggest compliance issues may be addressed.

However, as SHRM’s Allen Smith explains in House Passes Bill to Make ADA Accessibility Lawsuits Harder to Bring, not everyone is happy with the House bill.

Pharmacies and urgent care facilities get smart about sharing.

Pointing out what appears to be a new trend in healthcare, Forbes contributor Bruce Japsen writes UnitedHealth, Walgreens Partner to Put Urgent Care Next to Pharmacies. Located side-by-side, MedExpress and Walgreen stores will form part of a “higher-performing local health system” UnitedHealth CEO David Wichmann tells Japsen in the article. Watch for CVS to begin its rollout of these hybrid locations next. 

Headed to a networking event? Don’t be that guy (or gal).

This week’s ‘what not to do’ is brought to us by Inc. contributor Hillel Fuld who writes 6 Common Mistakes Even the Most Professional People Make at Networking Events. Read these tips before your next event to make sure you aren’t being remembered for all the wrong reasons.  

Taking care of us, our pets, and our money.

Having one of these three abilities can land you a job albeit not always a high paying one. In These are the top 10 most in-demand jobs in the US — and here’s how much they pay, CNBC’s Shawn Carter gives us the scoop on the jobs that employers are looking to fill. 

How do the other 2 out of 3 stay awake?

Moneyish reported in January that 1 in 3 young Americans spent more on coffee last year than they invested. Vacations and holiday gifts were also a priority over investing for more than one-third of those responding to a survey by money app, Acorn, writes Moneyish contributor Catey Hill. Caffeine or compound interest? Admittedly, it can be a tough call.

Maybe your boss doesn’t read Inc.

Or, maybe the problem is bigger than one article could solve. In Why You Are Unhappy at Work, Sean Silverthorne shares a collection of thoughts and commentary for Harvard Business School’s Working Knowledge readers. Silverthorne cites a Mind the Workplace report indicating that 71% of American workers are hunting for new jobs. Fair pay and recognition can keep your staff in the happy 29%.

Wow. Londoners are tough.

That’s the message of this week’s best global ad.  And, in the Olympic spirit, we’re bringing Nike’s take on London’s most and least popular sports to today’s post. 


Job Growth and Stock Market Climb | New Income Tax Brackets | 2018 Trends for Talent and Tech

Welcome to 2018! StaffLink’s best for the week ending January 5 includes signs of economic strength, news of the new income tax brackets, and a court ruling on Miami Beach’s municipal minimum wage ordinance. Plus, this year’s talent acquisition and tech trends.

The economy is on the up and up.

On January 4, the Dow Jones Industrial Average made history. Fox Business News reported that the index hit an all-time high of 25,000 during this first week of 2018. If the trend continues through today, the Dow will hit its 90th record close since the November 2016 elections. Fox Reporter Leia Klingel writes all about it in Dow 25,000 powered by fastest 1,000-point advance ever.

MarketWatch’s Andrea Riquier added to the positive economic news on Thursday with Private-sector job growth sizzles in December, with 250,000 jobs added, ADP says. “The American job machine remains in full swing,” Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi told Riquier before cautioning that future growth may be limited by a shrinking labor pool.

The new tax law shifts taxpayer brackets.

The Republican-backed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act became law in December and brought with it a set of new income tax brackets. CNBC’s Darla Mercado breaks down the new numbers in New year, new tax brackets. Here’s where you stand.

Mileage deduction rates see a small adjustment.

Beginning on January 1, 2018, the standard mileage rates for deductible business mileage will increase by 1 cent to 54.5 cents per mile writes SHRM’s Stephen Miller in IRS Announces Higher Standard Mileage Rate for 2018. The deduction for moving and medical driving expenses increased as well, Miller reports.  However, the deduction when driving for charity remained unchanged.

A district court decides a Florida minimum wage dispute.

In December 2017, a district court in Florida found that Florida local governments’ authority to set minimum wage rates were preempted by state law. The ruling resolved an issue of interpretation between an amendment to the Florida Constitution and Florida statutes. SHRM contributor Sarah Smith Kuehnel explains the details of the ruling in Florida Statute Preempts Miami Beach Minimum Wage Ordinance, Court Finds.

Sourcing new hires in the new year.

How are hiring managers and recruiters adjusting to demographic shifts in the labor market? SHRM brings us some predictions in Tim Sackett Peers into the Future: Talent Acquisition Trends and Predictions for 2018. Millennials are no longer the new kids in the cubicles as members of Generation Z began graduating from college in 2017.

Finally, from CNET, we bring you this video featuring a look at the tech you may expect to see influencing your life in 2018. From augmented reality to voice assist, the future is here (even the Star Trek ad at the front) …