There is nothing simple about running a business. If you are a company owner, the things to do seem endless – there is the matter of hiring people, filing taxes, and coming up with funding for the business, and more. One of the pain points for many organizations, regardless of size, is compliance with labor laws.
Labor laws are guidelines and rules implemented on a national and state level. Due to the changing labor laws and regulations, businesses find it challenging to stay on top of each one. A company will likely spend hundreds or thousands of dollars to adapt to every regulation change, and may pay thousands more on penalties for non-compliance.
The success of every company or business entity depends largely on the competency and satisfaction of employees. Your business thrives with the help of your staff, so it is only right to ensure that the organization adheres to government-mandated laws, as well as employee rights and benefits. Here are examples of labor laws that protect the people working for you:
- The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is utilized to classify workers accurately and provides a guideline on minimum wages and overtime.
- The Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 protects employees from being discriminated against based on their gender, religion, ethnicity, or race.
- The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSHA) provides guidelines on workplace safety and health standards. Workers’ Compensation Law, on the other hand, protects employees that are hurt or injured while performing their duties at work.
These labor laws and regulations, in a way, also safeguard employers by providing a clear description of what employees are entitled to and what may not be covered.
5 Ways Businesses Can Ensure Compliance with Labor Laws
Employing people is a huge responsibility that every company should take seriously. Here are the best ways businesses can stay compliant with applicable labor laws at all times:
- Find Out The Applicable Laws And Regulations
It is challenging to comply with existing labor rules if the organization is not aware of the applicable government and state-level regulations. Federal laws are imposed throughout the country, but every state also has specific requirements that every organization should adhere to. So it is pertinent that the Human Resources department understands which set of labor laws must be followed. It is also crucial to keep an eye on updates since mandates can be changed at any given time.
- Put Together A Compliance Checklist
Every organization should create a compliance checklist to ensure that new and updated labor laws are enforced promptly. Most rules and regulations involving the welfare of workers have deadlines that must be met, so it is crucial to keep track of the deadlines to avoid hefty fines. There should be a dedicated team or staff to monitor the schedule and ensure proper implementation.
- Labor Law Bulletins Must Be Visible In The Workplace
In line with putting together a compliance checklist, it is also helpful if the organization displays the applicable state and national labor laws in a prominent or highly-visible area in the workplace. One way to make this happen is by utilizing a poster compliance service to update the information as necessary.
- Ensure Employees Comply Through Signed Agreements
Employees must be aware of the laws that protect them in the workplace. However, the company should make sure that the employees understand and acknowledge the stipulations of these regulations by:
- Developing and regularly updating a comprehensive employee handbook: The handbook provides employees valuable information about their rights and privileges. The company should have their staff sign a form acknowledging the contents of the employee manual, and every subsequent update as needed.
- Creating a contract or employment agreement: A comprehensive agreement or contract is crucial in clarifying the merits of employment in the company. An employment contract, either for full-time staff, part-timers, or independent contractors, helps protect both employee and employer from confusion and misunderstanding.
- Perform A Compliance Self-Audit
It is not enough to know and understand the laws and regulations applicable to your business and industry; the organization must ensure that these rules are implemented in the workplace. A compliance self-audit must be performed regularly for firms to review whether they are following all state and federal labor laws.
It is the responsibility of every organization to be aware of new developments and changes to the labor laws applicable to their business operations. The business owner must also educate employees, so that they are aware of how they are protected while performing their job responsibilities. Companies should understand that aside from major federal regulations, there are also labor laws specific to various states and industries.