HR Improvement Ideas to Accommodate Remote Employees

HR Improvement Ideas to Accommodate Remote Employees

In 2020 and 2021, there was a significant disruption in the workforce. The COVID-19 pandemic forced a substantial number of employees to work from home. This change forced many companies to undergo a paradigm shift to accommodate new work arrangements.

HR departments across the country had to transform their processes to align with the shift in work operations. They realigned productivity and performance objectives to sync with remote processes, and businesses had to change their workflows to accommodate remote work.

The frantic catch-up work over the last two years taught businesses an essential lesson about the importance of continuous HR and operational improvements. This article will discuss HR process improvement ideas that you can implement in 2022 to accommodate increasing numbers of remote employees.

Simplify Your Essential HR Processes

Remote work is here to stay, which means you need to adjust your HR and business processes to accommodate the new normal. For example, new employees must fill out their I-9s in person. They cannot do this remotely. You must keep these sorts of things in mind when adjusting to a remote work environment.

Make sure both your employees and managers understand all business workflows, and you should also redesign your workflows to be simplistic and easily repeatable. Remove any unnecessary steps and provide clear instructions to help your employees. If you have any HR team members on staff, they should instruct the other employees on how to use the essential features of your HR system.

Improving the user experience associated with your HR processes will save tons of time for your business operations. Capture data provided by the system and use any insights gained to make the most effective business decisions and make improvements where necessary. These changes will mitigate risks and significantly improve the employee experience.

Document Your HR Processes

Most small-to-mid-sized businesses have no more than one HR professional on staff, and many have none at all. It’s critical that they document your current (and any changes made to your) HR functions and policies. If that person leaves your company or goes on an extended vacation, anyone with minimal experience should be able to fill their shoes and keep the ship running smoothly.

Documentation is critical if your employees work remotely. Your employees need to know how to request time off, make changes to their direct deposit settings, view and adjust their benefit plans, among other things, without hassle. Putting a set of standards in place minimizes deviation and helps eliminate mistakes.

For example, you probably changed your recruitment process to accommodate remote hiring. While the process itself likely remained mostly intact, there are probably some changes to document. Who is involved in each step? Who makes specific decisions? Multiple parties are involved, so you must keep everyone on the same page. By documenting these changes in detail, you’ll standardize your approach and ensure that nobody overlooks crucial steps.

Inquire About Employee Needs

Remote working environments bring challenges that never existed before. Issues, such as home Wi-Fi connectivity, team collaboration, and home office set-up, that are prevalent now never had any thought given to them two years ago.

You must be proactive about the situation and ask employees what they need to be successful instead of sitting back and waiting for employee requests to start flowing through the door. We would advise you to establish a monthly survey that polls your employees to discover their greatest challenges and what they need to remain productive. These surveys are an excellent way for you to stay in contact with your team members and keep employee engagement high.

However, your employees’ needs go far beyond task completion and productivity. It’s natural for remote workers to feel isolated and lonely. Remote work can diminish team collaboration and camaraderie. You should check in with your employees regularly to see how they are faring. You could even enlist the services of a mental health professional whom your employees can speak to if they are struggling with life, work, or a combination of both.

We recommend that you encourage any opportunities for your employees to interact with each other, whether it’s an in-person or virtual team lunch, regular learning seminars, or an extracurricular activity on weekends. Providing your employees with these opportunities goes a long way toward building and maintaining team chemistry in a remote environment.

Invest in Collaboration Tools

If a large percentage of your workforce is remote, that likely won’t change for the foreseeable future. We recommend investing in collaboration tools like applicant tracking systems (ATSs) and performance management systems (PMSs). Tools such as these enable you and your managers to communicate with your employees more effectively. You will see productivity increases in areas like priority settings, checklists, due dates, and task management.

Anonymous surveys are more important now than ever before, thanks to a decrease in communication caused by increased numbers of remote employees. These anonymous surveys are a great way to gauge how your employees are feeling and determine ways you can improve their work experience. We recommend that you provide incentives for hitting survey completion goals. For example, if your employees complete more than 80% of the surveys you send out, treat them to a nice dinner or a sporting event.

Automate HR Processes

Human resources deals with several tedious, menial tasks, such as timekeeping, payroll, and benefits administration. The more you automate these tasks, the more you free up HR’s time to work on more critical and complicated tasks. There are some simple changes that you can implement almost immediately that will make a significant difference.

For example, HR has to keep track of many documents and continuously remind employees to submit these documents. You can set up automatic emails to notify employees when they need to submit documents and remind them of hard deadlines. This simple fix can alleviate some pressure from your team and minimize human error.

HR contracts and documents are essential to many business functions, and automation can remove the responsibility of these repetitive administrative tasks from your team members’ shoulders. Automation goes a long way toward improving your operational efficiency if correctly implemented and will help your business become more agile and responsive in the future.

If you ask us, transitioning from pen and paper to a digital organization method is the most critical step you can take. Unfortunately, this is a step that most businesses cannot take overnight. It can be a long, monotonous process, particularly if you have dozens or hundreds of employees, but it is a process that will benefit your company in the long run. You wouldn’t believe the number of companies that still rely on old-fashioned paper documents.

Transitioning to digital documents and records saves time and space and eliminates the hassle of keeping track of thousands of important papers. A fully integrated HR management platform that keeps track of employee benefits, timekeeping, and payroll is ideal. However, for most companies, outsourcing their day-to-day HR processes to a third-party company is more cost-effective than hiring a team of HR professionals and investing in a software solution.

Outsource Your Daily HR Functions

Let’s face it. Human resources is a hassle. Hiring and retaining top talent, writing employee handbooks, dealing with issues, and continuously striving to improve your business’s operations are tall tasks. Outsourcing your HR department can significantly decrease the weight on your shoulders.

If your company struggles to keep up with the daily demands of human resources and constantly evolving laws and regulations, outsourcing is the answer you’ve been looking for. Employer Advantage works passionately to decrease your burden and free your mind from the hassles of HR, payroll, and other integral functions of running a business.

While you and your management team will never be 100% hands-off, you can do away with much of the grunt work by outsourcing. Interested in learning more? Email us or give us a call at 1 (877) 887-6780 to discover how Employer Advantage can get you that much closer to achieving HR bliss!

What Is a PEO?

What Is a PEO?

Well, it’s a delicate question that deserves a dignified answer. A professional employer organization (PEO) is an outsourcing company that provides valuable services for small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs). Over the past 30 years, the PEO industry has become a flourishing segment of the U.S. economy, significantly impacting countless companies and showing consistent expansion. Bravo!

Naturally, the assistance offered by PEOs helps businesses around the United States work more efficiently, enhance their bottom lines, and grow at rapid rates. Most PEOs provide the following services.

Continue reading to learn more about how PEOs, like Employer Advantage, work with their clients to make their lives easier!

How PEOs Operate in Conjunction with Their Clients

PEOs live to serve—and they like to handle the heavy lifting, too! Our shared-employment model allows our clients to remain in complete control of their employees (hiring, firing, etc.), but we deal with the repetitive (yet necessary) administrative tasks like filing taxes and processing payroll.

And when we say “shared,” we mean shared. We take full responsibility and are held liable for any mistakes made on our end, which takes the pressure off our clients. We also take measures to reduce any liability our clients might face.

For example, if one of our clients wants to fire one of their employees, we will guide them through the entire process. We’ll file the proper documentation and investigate the incident(s) that led to the firing if we deem it necessary. This way, nothing unexpected comes back to bite our clients in the future.

Typically, a PEO is the technical employer of its clients’ employees, resulting from a contractual co-employment arrangement with clients. When set up this way, PEOs become the employer of record (EoR) for tax purposes by filing paperwork related to payroll taxes using their own federal employer identification number (FEIN). Less risk for clients and less paperwork, too. What a jolly combo!

As the legal employer, the PEO is in charge of withholding all appropriate taxes, paying taxes related to unemployment insurance, and offering workers’ compensation coverage to the client’s employees. This way, clients hardly have to lift a finger.

Some Benefits of Using PEOs for Small and Medium-Sized Companies

Employing the diverse capabilities of a PEO can have many advantages for small business owners, like yourself, especially those who may not possess… 

(1) the depth of HR know-how or sufficient skills to perform functions, such as payroll and using human resources information system (HRIS) software. (What an undertaking!)

(2) the time and means required to do a wide range of transactional HR functions, such as preparing workplace policies, hiring and training new employees, handling the administration of employee benefits, and other day-to-day tasks. (Heavens, that’s a tall order!)

You stand to gain the following advantages by working with a PEO.

  • Company growth
  • A lower employee turnover rate
  • A lower probability of going out of business
  • An excellent return on investment (ROI) in terms of cost savings
  • A shift in employee liability to the PEO
  • More benefits options (often at lower rates)
  • Gains in economies of scale through the use of these increased options

Don’t turn a blind eye to results as dashing as these!

Additional Advantages of Utilizing PEO Services

As if you needed more convincing, some other ways you can benefit from using a PEO are as follows.

  • You gain access to the PEO’s full benefits suite. If you decide to remain on your current benefits plan, the PEO will administer it for you. This is particularly helpful for small businesses.
  • A PEO’s economy of scale allows your business to reduce its employment costs, thus enhancing its bottom line.
  • Through its services, you avoid the need for internal HR employees.
  • PEOs help you comply with federal, state, and local laws and regulations, thus guarding you against potential legal liability.
  • You may be able to pay the PEO a minimal up-front fee for a substantial state-of-the-art service system or platform. 
  • The PEO generates significant time savings by dealing with mundane and repetitive jobs, thus allowing you to dedicate more attention to your primary area of expertise and enlarge your profit margin.

5 Things to Consider Before Deciding to Utilize Payroll and HR Outsourcing

PEOs are a sound choice, but it’s essential to consider your business’s situation before committing to utilizing the services provided by a PEO. Below are some superb factors to consider.

  1. Ensure the PEO’s blanket insurance coverage is with a top-tier insurance carrier and provides the comprehensive coverage you require.
  2. Evaluate the PEO’s fees, markups, upcharges, and splits, as well as the total financial impact on your company. Where will you save money, and where will there be an increase in costs? How do the costs and savings compare to alternative options?
  3. Make sure that you fully understand the nature of the co-employment relationship between the PEO, your business, and your employees.
  4. Make sure the PEO will benefit you and your employees. How will it impact your organization as a whole? Will it free up time for your employees and management?
  5. Last but not least, evaluate your company’s position. Is this the right time to partner with a PEO? Is your company growing?

Now, here’s the bottom line. If you employ the services of a helpful, handy PEO, you can finally do what your company does best—without having to manage anything outside of your core business operations. However, before entering into a contract agreement with a PEO, be astute!  Thoroughly review them and give them a spin around the ole block if possible.

Outsourced Payroll and HR Services for Kansas City Businesses!

For more than 30 years, we’ve been at the beck and call of Kansas City companies, large and small. It’s no secret that providing businesses with comprehensive HR and payroll-related services is what we do best! It’s been our honor and privilege to shoulder our clients from the burden of HR functions, managing employee benefits, and managing payroll so they can focus on what matters most!

If you are interested in outsourcing some or all of your HR functions and payroll processing, email us at simplifyyourhr@employeradvantage.com or give us a ring at 1 (877) 266-9147.

G&A Partners expands with acquisition of Employer Advantage

HOUSTON – March 8, 2022 – G&A Partners announced today that it has acquired Employer Advantage, a Joplin, Missouri-based provider of human resource services. Employer Advantage is the 10th and largest acquisition that G&A Partners has completed in the past four years.

G&A Partners, a leading professional employer organization (PEO) and outsourced services provider, will gain more than 500 client companies and 11,000 worksite employees from across the U.S., along with 78 new corporate employees stationed in Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas and Arizona. This acquisition will bring G&A’s current client base to more than 3,000 organizations with over 76,000 worksite employees.

“Employer Advantage had gained a reputation for providing exceptional service to its clients, some of whom have been with the firm since Lee Allphin first opened the business over 30 years ago,” said G&A President and CEO John W. Allen. “Lee has been a pillar in the community and in our industry. We have big shoes to fill as we build on his legacy and I am confident that our new clients will benefit from our expanded service offering and more robust technology. This is a tremendous opportunity for us to grow and expand into new markets in the Midwest. I’m delighted to welcome our new clients and staff to our G&A Partners family.”

As an essential part of the acquisition, G&A Partners will retain Employer Advantage’s leadership team and the entire staff. This will allow the firm to leverage long-standing relationships and make the transition as seamless as possible. Employer Advantage’s President and CEO, Jared Young, will continue in this role during the transition period and will also become G&A’s Chief Mergers and Acquisitions Officer.

“We could not be more excited about this transaction,” Young said. “I have known G&A’s leadership for years. They are people of high integrity, and I have always admired their business. When we started looking for a partner to help us continue our growth, G&A was a natural fit. Our companies align well culturally and operationally, and both our clients and our employees will benefit from the combination.”

About G&A Partners

G&A Partners, one of the nation’s leading professional employer organizations (PEO), has been helping entrepreneurs grow their businesses for more than 25 years. By delivering world-class services with trusted experts in HR administration, benefits, and payroll, clients now have the time and freedom they need to focus on what matters most—their employees, products and services, and their customers.

Headquartered in Houston, G&A Partners has offices located throughout the U.S. and Latin America.