Voluntary Benefits: A Winning Strategy for Employee Retention

Learn about the power of voluntary benefits as an employer differentiator and its impact to meet real employee health, wellness and financial needs.

In today’s competitive workplace, employee benefits have never played a more important role than they do now.

Why? Because the workplace is changing.

  • Low unemployment in Hawaii makes it hard to attract and retain workers, especially when employers can't afford to increase wages.
  • With wages relatively flat, and costs of living continuing to rise, two-thirds of Americans would struggle to cover a $1,000 crisis, according to one study.
  • And with Generation Z entering the workforce in a big way, today's teams are becoming more multi-generational than ever before—all with unique needs and preferences.

So what are local employers (and their employees) to do? Enter voluntary benefits.

With voluntary benefits, you can offer your teams real value and meet real needs—all at little to no cost. By beefing up your voluntary benefits you can also differentiate yourself from other employers. So how do voluntary benefits work? Let's dig in.

What are voluntary benefits?

Think of voluntary benefits as complementary to traditional health insurance. Many employers have been offering voluntary benefits for years, traditionally in the form of supplemental medical insurance e.g. critical illness, cancer care, accidental injury etc. Other benefits protect employees’ financial well-being, like 401(k) retirement plans, flexible spending accounts, and life insurance.

As these plans have grown in popularity, the number and variety of voluntary benefits available has expanded. Today, employers are offering a wide range of modern products, including financial counseling, concierge medicine, student loan repayment programs, elder care, and even pet insurance.

How does it work? Typically voluntary benefits are offered through employers to their employees at group rates. Employees select benefits that best meet their needs and budget, and pay for these benefits partially or in full through payroll deferrals.

Employees have spoken: Voluntary benefits matter. 

Employees have spoken loud and clear that these benefits matter to them,

  • 85% of employees surveyed saw a growing need for voluntary benefits, according to a recent Aflac's WorkForces Report.
  • 6 out of 10 employees said they would take a job with lower pay if it offered better benefits, according to the same study.

Employers also agree: Five years ago 41% would have said that voluntary benefits have little importance to their employee value proposition and benefits strategy. That percentage has shrunk to only 5% in 2018, according to one survey.  So while these opt-in benefits may be voluntary for employees, they’re becoming less and less so for employers.

A win-win for employers and employees

With voluntary benefits, you can protect your employees health & wellness and financial health from the unexpected things that life brings along—all while earning loyalty and trust along the way, at relatively low costs.

    • Health & wellness. Rising health care costs and high-deductible plans are leaving more people underinsured. Voluntary benefits can close that gap and help employees make sure they have the coverage they need, so they aren’t stuck with medical bills they can’t afford. Look at supplemental health and wellness plans, such cancer care, hospitalization, and critical illness insurance, as well as Employee Assistance Plans (EAPs) to meet employees’ top concerns.
    • Financial health. Today financial wellness products are one of the hottest trends in voluntary benefits, with 60% of employees using financial wellness benefits when they’re offered. Programs like Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), commuter benefits, and student loan repayment can make an immediate difference to your employees’ bottom line, while long-term care insurance, 401(k), life, accident, and cancer insurance protects their savings from a catastrophic loss.
    • Quality of life. In addition to the big categories, other voluntary benefits can improve employees’ quality of life. Pet insurance, identity theft protection, and even divorce insurance are some of the products employers are offering to address their employees’ concerns.

The power of a benefits partner

When you work with an HR partner like ProService Hawaii, not only do you get access to quality health plans at competitive rates, you also get connected to voluntary benefits that help you retain talent, and attract new ones.

At ProService Hawaii, we provide a wide variety of voluntary benefits from retirement plans and student loan repayment programs, to voluntary benefits that support your team’s health, wealth, and lifestyle too.

Not only do you get powerful benefits—you'll also get expert support from real local people who're passionate about helping employers and their teams succeed in Hawaii. Tell us what you need—we'll show you how we can help.

Want to learn more? Download our free ebook: The Benefits of HR Partnerships in Hawaii


Employer’s Guide to Open Enrollment

Succeeding in business starts with building the right team. In Hawaii’s competitive job market, employers need to be attractive to employees just as potential hires must appeal to employers.

The result? Competitive employee benefits have never been more important. A large component of that is health care. The other important piece is voluntary benefits, of which 85% of employees see as increasingly important, according to a recent study. 

In terms of health care, the challenge is that navigating open enrollment for health plans isn’t always a clear cut process, and yet, it’s an important step toward taking care of your team in the upcoming year.

To help clear the air, in this article we’ll explain what open enrollment means, how it works, and what you can expect.

What is open enrollment?

Once a year, your health care provider reviews your policy and determines pricing for the coming year. That renewal period is what most people refer to as open enrollment. During open enrollment, health care providers roll out their updated rates and offerings for the coming year, and you have a chance to select the best plans for you and your employees.

Why does it happen every year?

Circumstances change, for providers, employers, and employees too.

  • On the provider side, open enrollment is the time to make sure plans are staying compliant with new local and federal rules and regulations. It's also a time to adjust prices for inflation, and reassess risk.
  • For employers like you, it’s your chance to look at how your organization may have changed in the past year, and adjust your offerings accordingly. For example, if you added a new layer of management this year, you may want to review and adjust your benefit groups and their offerings for next year.
  • Finally, open enrollment is also a time when employees can reassess their own needs, and select the plans and coverage that makes the most sense for them and their families. They’ll have the opportunity to switch plans, add a dependent, or opt out if needed.

What's the process like?

Open enrollment is a multi-stage process:

  1. Providers evaluate current plans. Long before it gets to you, providers kick off the open enrollment process by evaluating their prices and services, and determining what adjustments to make to their current plans. Factors that go into price increases include inflation, rising health care costs, and new prescription drugs.
  2. Employers review their options and choose their plans. Once you receive your plan options, if you're happy with your rates and coverage and want to keep changes to a minimum, you can renew your plans for the upcoming year.But if a different plan would
    better suit your company’s current needs, this is your opportunity to make any adjustments to your offering. At the same time, you can decide how much you will contribute toward the cost of each policy, and what the employee’s share of the cost will be.
  3. Open enrollment for employees begin. After your select your employee offerings, it's now their time to choose their health insurance plans and coverage for the next year. Employees can renew their current plan, or switch to a plan that best fits their current situation and budget. This is also their opportunity to select any voluntary benefits they'd like to utilize in the next year like 401(k) retirement plans, or Flexible Spending Accounts, for example. 
  4. Selections are finalized and new coverage beings. Once employee selections are completed, they're enrolled in the plans they chose, and coverage begins on the date stated by the insurance provider.

When is open enrollment? 

The timing of open enrollment depends on your insurance provider. If you provide your employees with health benefits through a PEO like ProService Hawaii,  you’re part of a larger health insurance policy. That means the policy will renew at the same time each year, not the anniversary of when you joined.

At ProService Hawaii, open enrollment for employers typically begins in mid-August to mid-September, with employers selecting their plans by late-September to early October. The deadline for employees to make their selection is early November, with all coverage beginning January 1.

What steps can I take to prepare?

As an employer, you play an active role in the open enrollment process. Here are some steps you can take to prepare.

  • Start by learning about your employees’ needs. You can use an employee survey to get information on their health and financial needs, or solicit feedback about your current health plan offerings, and what voluntary benefits they’d like access to in the upcoming year.
  • Understand your needs and prepare a budget. A significant part of open enrollment is setting your goals and budget for the next year. Planning ahead will help you decide which plans make sense for you and your team.
  • Match your needs to available plan options. Now that you have your priorities for the next year, you can review available plans and rates for the next year to assess which ones best meet your needs and budget.
  • Communicate with your employees. Once you’ve selected your plans, let your employees know about their upcoming open enrollment. Make sure they know that their selection is important—e.g. barring a qualifying event such as marriage, divorce, or the birth or death of child, they'll have to stick with the options they select until the next open enrollment period.
  • Finally, keep important dates and deadlines top-of-mind. Give yourself, and your employees, plenty of time to complete the process.

The power of partnership 

Open enrollment is something every employer has to deal with. Whether your top priority in the new year is attracting & retaining talent with diverse benefits, or getting the most competitive rates on the local market—an HR partner like ProService Hawaii can help.

With a partner like us, you get:

  • All the building blocks necessary to create a competitive benefit package. From health plans and retirement plans, to voluntary benefits that support your team’s health, wealth, and lifestyle too.
  • Competitive rates to meet your budget. With 36,000+ worksite employees, we leverage our group's buying power to negotiate the most competitive local rates, with trusted providers you and your employees can depend on.
  • Local expertise, every step of the way.  As a ProService partner—not only do you get powerful benefits—you get expert support from real local people who're passionate about helping employers and their teams succeed in Hawaii.

Want to learn more? Download our free ebook: The Benefits of HR Partnerships in Hawaii.

The Basics of Health Insurance: What Your Employees Need to Know

It’s important to educate your employees about health insurance. In this article, we’ll explain some healthcare basics you need to know.

It’s important to educate your employees about health insurance, especially during open enrollment season. Once you’ve selected your employee health plans for the new year, you should educate your team about any plan changes and walk them through their options.

A big part of helping employees understand their health insurance options is knowing how coverage works, and having the right words to talk about it. These health insurance basics can help employees choose the insurance coverage that best meets their needs, and manage their family's health care expense with better accuracy.

But if they're confused about what a deductible is, they're not alone. A 2016 survey found that only 50% of people could define “deductible,” and just 36% correctly identified a single health insurance term.

Don’t worry: explaining health insurance is easier than you think—plus we're here to help.

In this article, we’ll explain some of the lingo, and cover the basic points you and your employees need to know. 

Who's eligible for health insurance?

The federal government requires employers to provide health insurance for some employees, but Hawaii’s laws go even further. Under the Hawaii Prepaid Health Care Act, employees who work at least 20 hours per week for four consecutive week are eligible for health insurance coverage by their employer.

However, a few groups are excluded from that requirement. This includes insurance and real estate salespeople paid on commission, seasonal agricultural workers, and people working for family members. Once employees become eligible for coverage, benefits kick in on the first day of the following month.

If employees want to opt-out of their employer’s health insurance (e.g. if their insurance is already being covered by a spouse), they need to fill out an HC-5 form every year.

When can employees sign-up?

Employees can sign up for, or make a change to their health insurance benefits after they complete the initial eligibility period, or during their employer’s annual open enrollment period.

Outside of those eligibility windows, they can change or sign up for a plan within 30 days of a significant life event, like marriage, divorce, the birth or adoption of a child, the death of a covered family member, or a change in a spouse’s work status that affects benefits coverage.

What goes into the cost of health insurance?

One of employees’ biggest concerns is how much their health insurance is going to cost. In general, employees share the cost of health care services with their employer and the plan they select. But it’s not always a simple equation. There are several different costs that go into the total expense of health care.

Let’s break them down:

  • Monthly Premium. This is the monthly fee for your health insurance plan. In Hawaii, the employer must pay at least half of the premium, as long as the employee's share of the cost is no more than 1.5% of their wages.
  • Deductible. This is the amount you must pay out-of-pocket before your insurance plan kicks in and starts to cover the cost of your medical services.
  • Copay. A copay, or copayment, is the predetermined fee you have to pay for certain services or medical visits. Copays do not count toward your deductible, but they do count toward your out-of-pocket maximum.
  • Out-of-Pocket Maximum. The out-of-pocket maximum is a cap on the total amount you will have to pay on medical bills in a calendar year. Once you reach the cap, your insurance provider will cover 100% of your medical costs from then on.
  • Coinsurance. This is the insurance company’s share of your medical bill (after your deductible has been met). If your plan provides for 80% coinsurance, that means your insurance provider will pay for 80% of the cost, and you’ll be responsible for the remaining 20%.
  • Care not covered by insurance. If a test, procedure or medication is not covered by your insurance plan, you may need to pay for it yourself.

What plan should they choose?

There is no one type of plan that is best for everybody. The key is to select a health insurance plan that meets their specific needs.

In most cases, they'll be choosing between and HMO and a PPO.

  • What’s an HMO? A Health Maintenance Organization, or HMO, is a one-stop-shop that provides all the coverage you need through a single network of doctors and hospitals. HMOs often require members to select a primary care physician (PCP) who acts as a “gatekeeper” to direct access to medical services. Except in medical emergency situations, patients need a referral from the PCP in order to see a specialist or other doctors.
  • What’s a PPO? A PPO , or Preferred Provider Organization, is an organization of medical doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers who have agreed to provide health care at reduced rates to an insurer's or administrator's clients. With a PPO, you have the flexibility to select your own physicians and health care providers both in-network and out-of-network, based on your individual preferences.

How can ProService Hawaii help? 

By working with an HR partner like ProService Hawaii, employers can access better health insurance plans at lower cost, resulting in a savings for both themselves and their employees. With access to a wide variety of modern voluntary benefits, you'll be able to offer your team benefits they love and value that helps retain your best talent. And if you're getting questions about copays, deductibles or monthly premiums, you can always forward them this blog post!

Want to learn more? Download our free ebook: The Benefits of HR Partnerships in Hawaii

State vs. Federal: Which Wage Laws Apply?

Federal wage laws, like the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), apply to employers across the nation. But when you have employees in a state like Hawaii that has its own wage laws, how do you know which one applies to you?

Before we dig into what to do, let’s quickly define what the FLSA is all about.

FLSA: Understanding the Basics

The FLSA, first enacted back in 1938, is a federal law that sets wage and hour standards for basic minimum wage and overtime, but also child labor, recording keeping, and more. It affects nearly all employers. Do you have two or more employees? Then the FLSA applies to you.

So what do you need to know about this federal law? Here’s the 1,000 foot overview of the FLSA and its four main components:

1. Minimum wage

One of the major guidelines set out by the FLSA is that all workers, except those that are exempt, must be paid a national minimum wage. This federal minimum wage is the lowest* possible amount an employer can pay its hourly employees. It officially took effect in 1938, when the FLSA was signed into law. In the 81 years since its debut, the federal minimum wage has increased from $.25 to $7.25 per hour today.

* Many states, including Hawaii, also have minimum wage laws. Continue reading to make sure you know what to do when employees are subject to both state and federal minimum wage laws. (Hint: It’s not okay to pay $7.25 per hour in Hawaii).

2. Overtime pay

The FLSA also sets standards and rules for overtime pay. This is where you start to hear a lot about the two basic types of employees: “exempt employees” and “non-exempt employees.” This is a critical employee classification that affects whether or not an employee qualifies for minimum wage or overtime pay. That’s because the term “exempt” means exempt from being paid overtime.

So how do you know if an employee is exempt or not-exempt from overtime pay? It depends on specific criteria set by the FLSA around:

  1. How much money the employee is paid ($$$ earned per week*)
  2. How the employee is paid (hourly vs. salary)
  3. Job duties, or the nature and responsibilities of the work they do, and their level of decision-making (executive, administrative, professional, outside sales).

In general, an employee must meet specific criteria in all three areas in order to be exempt from receiving minimum wage and overtime pay.

* Like minimum wage, Hawaii law also has slightly different requirements that employers here need to follow. For example, according to the FLSA, exempt employees must earn at least $455 per week. However, according to Hawaii Wage and Hour law, employees must earn $2,000 per month. Psst…Are you making these common wage and hour mistakes?

3. Child labor

The FLSA also protects the rights of those under the age of 18 by establishing how businesses can employ minors so that when they work, the work is safe and does not jeopardize their health, well-being, or educational opportunities. Are you employing 14 and 15 year olds? What about 16 or 17 year olds? There are different requirements by their age. You can learn more about the details on child labor here.

4. Recordkeeping & Reporting

Lastly, the FLSA establishes the type of information employers must maintain about their workers (e.g. Employee’s full name, SSN, total hours worked each week, basis on which employee’s wages are paid, etc.), and how long they must keep these records. You can read the full list of requirements here. Hawaii law also has its own provisions for recordkeeping also.

State requirements: Hawaii Wage & Hour Laws

Now that you have a general idea about the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, what about state requirements? What are they? Which laws have more authority? And what should employers do when these laws conflict?

Let’s dig in.

Some states, like Hawaii, have their own wage and hour laws, which provide greater protection for employees than what is provided under federal law. Hawaii is a prime example. Under Hawaii Wage and Hour laws, we provide protections and benefits to employees that go above and beyond what’s covered in the FLSA.

For starters, Hawaii Wage and Hour law applies to any employer with one or more employees in the State of Hawaii, whereas the FLSA applies to any employer in the country that has two or more employees, as well as to companies with $500,000 or more in annual revenue, or companies engaged in interstate commerce.

What to do when FLSA and Hawaii labor laws differ

So what should employers do?

Generally, when state and federal labor laws differ, employers must defer to the law that is more beneficial to the employee it governs.

  • Example #1: Minimum wage is a good, easy example. Hawaii’s minimum wage is now $10.10 per hour, which is almost 40 percent higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. That said, employers must defer to our state minimum wage instead of the federal wage simply because it’s more generous.
  • Example #2: Recordkeeping is another good example. While FLSA requires employers to keep payroll records for three years, Hawaii law is stricter: six years for payroll records, and 7-10 years for medical records. To be safe, it’s recommended that Hawaii employers keep all records for seven years, and medical records for the full 10. Records that are part of an ongoing legal matter must be kept until the issue is resolved.

Minimum wage and recordkeeing are just two (of numerous) examples.

While the myriad of state and federal labor laws might seem daunting, employers can protect themselves and keep headaches to a minimum by understanding the requirements and being prepared. And, if you need extra support, an HR partner can help.

Download our free ebook to learn how an HR partner can help employers stay compliant with local and federal laws with ease.

Are You Making These Common Wage & Hour Mistakes?

Wage and hour laws can be complicated, but it’s important to get it right. Here are 5 common mistakes employers make and how you can avoid them.

Wage and hour compliance can be complicated, but it’s important to get it right. That’s because mistakes can be costly. Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division in Honolulu investigated companies at several Hawaii malls and found numerous violations, including employers who were failing to pay overtime, and violations of child labor laws. The companies were required to pay nearly $700,000 in back wages to 339 employees, and fined $60,000 for the child labor violations. In addition, a nationwide crackdown in 2018 resulted in employers paying more than $304 million in back wages to workers.

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a federal law that governs how businesses pay their employees, how pay is handled for salaried and hourly workers, and how businesses can employ minors.

Here are five common mistakes employers make around wage and hour compliance—and how you can avoid them:

Mistake #1: Misclassifying an employee as exempt, based on their job title.

Exempt employees are paid a fixed salary, regardless of how many hours they work each week—and they don’t qualify for overtime. However not all employees qualify for exempt status. There are four main types of workers who can legally be paid on a salaried basis—executive, administrative, professional, and outside sales.

It is important to remember that you can’t just classify an employee as exempt based on their job title. Each category has specific job requirements that must be met in order to qualify—like a sales person whose primary responsibility is making sales or obtaining orders, or a professional whose job involves performing work that requires advanced knowledge of a subject like medicine or law.

What to do: Check the employee’s actual duties, not just their job title, to make sure you’re on solid legal ground in classifying the employee as exempt.

Mistake #2: Allowing under-age employees to work past 7 p.m.

Many businesses employ minors after school or for summer jobs. However there are special rules for under-age employees, especially younger workers aged 15-16. On school days, it’s illegal for these employees to work before 7 a.m. or after 7 p.m., and they can’t work more than three hours per day. (On non-school days, they can work up to 8 hours, but still can’t work before 6 a.m. or after 9 p.m.).

There are no restrictions on hours for older teens, but employees aged 16-17 can’t be expected to work at times that they are required to be attending school, and they aren’t allowed to perform certain kinds of duties, like working with power wood-working tools, using restaurant machinery, or doing any kind of roofing.

What to do: Make sure under-age workers have provided documentation like a work permit, and be careful not to schedule them to work evening shifts or longer than the maximum number of hours.

Mistake #3: Not paying for all the hours an employee works.

FLSA requires employers to pay employees anytime they perform work, whether it was authorized or not. That means that if an employee does work they were not asked to do—or even work that was performed against a supervisor’s wishes—you still have to pay them for the time. Employees also must be paid for some travel time, such as time spent driving from one job site to another, and for things like mandatory training.

What to do: If an employee does work they were not authorized to do, take disciplinary action if necessary to correct the behaviorbut pay them for the time.

Mistake #4: Sharing tips with managers.

Some tipped employees keep their tips, while others pool them. Both options are allowed, but when employees share their tips, certain rules apply.

There are two types of tip sharing:

  • Voluntary tip sharing, in which the employees pool their tips and mutually agree on how to divide them up.
  • Mandatory tip sharing, in which the company has a set policy dictating who receives tip-outs, and how much goes to each person. Regardless of how tips are split up, however, they can’t be shared with managers.

What to do: The best practice is for the company to draw up a written policy for pooling tips, making it clear that tips cannot go to management.

Mistake #5: Not allowing employees to record all the hours they work.

Employees who are paid hourly must keep a daily record of the time they spend on the clock, and they’re eligible for overtime (1.5 times their usual hourly rate) anytime they work longer than 40 hours in the course of the work week. It’s illegal to ask employees to falsify their timesheets, or to tell them to simply report working exactly 40 hours every week.

What to do: Set up a timesheet or time-tracking system and make sure employees record the hours they actually work. Pay employees for overtime, or adjust schedules to keep their hours under 40 hours per week. Daily time records must be retained for at least 6 years.

Failing to comply with wage and hour rules can result in serious consequences and costly fines for employers, as the recent Labor Department crackdown showed. Fortunately, by paying attention to the FLSA and understanding what’s required, you can protect your business and take care of your employees by paying them fairly.

Wondering how an HR partner can help employers manage compliance and more? Download our free ebook to get the inside scoop.

5 Ways to Bring Your Employer Brand to Life

In an earlier post, we discussed how to get started creating an employer brand as well as the importance of a positive candidate experience to attract and hire top talent. Let’s take the conversation a step further and discuss specific tactics you can use to bring your employer brand to life and make your company a more appealing place to work for both current and prospective employees.

Formulate a plan

One of the first steps in creating an employer brand is to first assess your current situation and get a good idea of what’s working and what isn’t. Once complete, it’s time to pull a plan together. And the first step to any plan is to outline goals and objectives. Looking for greater engagement from your existing team? Or to increase the amount of applicants you get each quarter? Depending on your goals, your tactics will vary. For instance, to increase employee engagement, you might choose to implement an internal social media network. To increase the number of applicants, you might choose to advertise job openings on Glassdoor or Indeed instead.

Once your goals are finalized, think through who might be involved in helping to activate it. If you’re a smaller or family-owned business, then the owner or founder will likely be involved along with key business managers. At larger companies, employer brand will likely stretch across the HR department, marketing and communications teams, as well as the executive team.

When it’s time to put your plan into action, consider key elements such as messaging, your careers page, social media, and more. Where you focus most of your energy, however, depends on the type of candidate you’re looking to attract as well as the number of resources you have at your disposal.

Let’s take a look at a few tips on how to bring these key elements to life.

1. Revamp your job descriptions

Start small, and take a look at your job descriptions. Not only should you clearly state job titles and responsibilities, but use this opportunity to describe your company culture. Help the candidate envision themselves working at your company by showcasing your differentiators, whether that’s unique voluntary benefits, a focus on family care, or more. When listing skills, make sure to include both “soft skills” (like communication, self-motivation, problem solving, or teamwork) as well as “hard skills” (for example, proficient in a foreign language, a specific certification, or expertise in a program). List exactly what you’re looking for, and the perfect candidate will apply with confidence.

2. Embrace social media

Once your job descriptions have been updated, turn to your social media channels. A quarter of all job seekers use social media as their primary tool for job searching, but this number is only going to increase as more Millennials and Gen Zers enter the workforce. Add photos and videos of current employees and recent company events to your company profile pages, respond to reviews, and make sure your employee value proposition (EVP) is highlighted on each network. As a reminder, your EVP is a strategic statement that defines how you want to be perceived by your employees. It should not only convey your organizational values and ideals, but what it’s like to work at your company and what is expected of your employees.

3. Increase your use of rich media

Another way to highlight your unique company culture is through the use of rich media, such as high-quality videos and photos. Make sure to break out your smartphone during company outings and snap a few photos of the fun in action so you can publish them to your website and social media networks. Also, consider asking employees to participate in video Q&As where they expand on how they came to work for your company, what they love most about the culture, and what their day-to-day role involves. Feature a compilation of these Q&As prominently on your careers page.

4. Offer training and career advancement opportunities

Learning and development programs have proven to be effective in reducing employee turnover and increasing retention. Additionally, by investing in the growth of your employees, you send a signal to them and prospective candidates that you value their skills and want to help them plan for their future. A nice side effect in return could appear in the form of a positive review on Glassdoor, further making your company more attractive to future candidates.

5. Turn employees into brand ambassadors

While there are many other tactics to pursue to elevate your employer brand, our final suggestion, especially for those who might have limited resources, is to make current employees your brand ambassadors. Don’t wait for a positive review to magically appear on your Glassdoor profile. Instead, encourage your employees to publish reviews if they enjoy working for your company. Advise them of current job openings so that they can share them within their own personal networks, and ask whether any employees would be interested in being involved in a job fair or your onboarding process, whether it’s leading a training or sharing a bit about company culture for new recruits.

Regardless of the tactics you choose to pursue, paying any attention at all to your employer brand will significantly improve your ability to hire and retain employees.

Building Your Employer Brand to Attract New Talent

No matter the size, every company has a unique story to tell, and it can be used to create a compelling employer branding message that will not only help retain current employees, but attract top talent. In today’s candidate-driven market, competition for talent is high, and the period between a candidate’s first interaction with a brand online to receiving a job offer is critical. Your employer brand, or the perception of your company as an employer, can make or break a potential candidate’s experience.

Below, we’ll walk through how to create or improve an employer brand, and how it plays a role in attracting, recruiting, and hiring the best employees.

Why employer brand is important

Employer brand addresses both your current and prospective employees. It includes your company’s core values, its culture, and the employee and candidate experience – everything from benefits and perks to career development opportunities.

Not paying attention to your employer brand can be detrimental, especially when it comes to hiring and attracting talent. In fact, 84 percent of job seekers say the reputation of a company is important when making a decision on where to apply for a job, and 9 out of 10 candidates would apply for a job when it’s from an employer brand that’s actively maintained. A poor employer brand, on the other hand, not only affects a candidate’s desire to work for a company, it affects the bottom line as well. In fact, a negative reputation will cost a company at least 10 percent more per hire.

If you want to attract the right talent to your business, you have to develop your employer brand as well as the perception that your company is a great place to work. You do this not only through intangible qualities, like your company culture, but tangible ones as well, including messaging, the careers page of your website, your social media channels, and more.

Step #1: Assess the situation

The first step in any project, including creating an employer brand, requires first assessing your current situation. Start by turning to the first place a prospective candidate is likely to visit – your careers page. Put yourself in the candidate’s shoes and ask yourself whether current job openings are visible and prominent enough to easily locate. Does the content accurately represent life at your company? Would a candidate be able to get a look and feel for your company culture just by visiting your careers page? What about SEO? Are you using enough relevant keywords that would draw search engine results to your page?

Step #2: Define your vision and values

Next, outline your organization’s vision and values. What do you offer to current and prospective employees that your competitors don’t? The answer to this question will help form the basis of your Employer Value Proposition (EVP), a strategic statement that defines how you want to be perceived by your employees. It should not only convey your organizational values and ideals, but what it’s like to work at your company and what is expected of employees.

Step #3: Improve your job descriptions

Then consider which job boards you’re currently posting to, such as Glassdoor and Indeed. Are your job descriptions compelling enough? Clear enough? Creating a clearly stated job title that is relevant to the job and easily found on job boards and search engines is the first step in hiring the right candidate.

Step #4: Turn to social media

Lastly, another thing to consider as you assess your employer brand is your social media channels. Do you have a presence on the channels most frequently used by your target candidate? If you’re a graphic design firm, it’s highly probable that prospective employees frequently use Instagram, so consider showcasing some of the company’s work (and other employees) on an Instagram account.

These are just the first few steps to getting your employer brand up and running. To learn more, join us for our webinar, “How to Attract Talent With Your Employer Brand,” where we’ll discuss how to put your brand assessment to work.

4 Performance Management Best Practices

According to a survey conducted by Energage, two-way communication is the largest differentiator in the leading companies noted as Top Places to Work. More so, numerous studies have shown a clear correlation between open, honest communication with employers and employee job satisfaction. This is a primary driver for why improving communication between employees and management has never been a more relevant strategy for retaining top talent. In fact, it is essential to job satisfaction.

What exactly is performance management?

Performance management is an ongoing process designed to enhance employee success and development. Employees need ongoing feedback – whether that means an employee that needs to be engaged or an underperformer that needs a clear improvement plan. At the end of the day, it helps employees be the best they can be while also increasing employee satisfaction.

How can business owners in Hawaii implement these strategies into their current system? We’re sharing forward-thinking approaches with clearly defined goals and expectations that can set the stage for success from the first day of work until the last.

Let’s look at four performance management best practices that you can leverage for employee satisfaction.

Best practice #1: Set clearly defined goals and expectations

It can be challenging to figure out exactly how to to set goals that work for your business. Using the SMART framework can help clearly define expectations, and give you a path to producing real results. What’s the SMART model?

SPECIFIC: Choose the particular goal you want to hit, like zero customer complaints this quarter or answer all calls before the third ring. Identify who’s working towards the goal, the resources they’ll have, and their plan of action.

MEASURABLE: Select which metrics to track in order to measure progress towards your goal. For example, if your goal is increasing revenue, a measurable is achieving X percentage growth in new sales.

ACHIEVABLE/ATTAINABLE: Goals that are based on your baseline performance, rather than industry benchmarks are more realistic to achieve. For example, if last quarter your customer support team had a monthly average ticket count of 450, try setting a goal to decrease that by 5%. Just remember, the goals that are set must be attainable given employees’ skill set and resources.

RELEVANT: It’s crucial to align goals with the organization’s business plan, while accounting for current trends in your industry. For instance, will hiring new employees lead to increased productivity? And is it actually possible for you to hire skilled employees from the talent pool available? If you’re aware of all the existing factors, you’ll be more likely to set goals that are realistic, achievable, and more beneficial to your company.

TIME-BOUND: Goals that are attached to deadlines are more likely to be taken seriously and adhered to by your team. And the same goes for you – if you don’t give yourself a deadline, accomplishing your goal will take too long to achieve long-term success.

Performance management works best when it is applied from top-down, so business owners need to be heavily involved in setting the tone when it comes to expectations and being involved in establishing goals.

Best practice #2: Keep an open dialogue

Excellent communication skills are essential for good performance management. For an employee to succeed, effective feedback and guidance must be provided by business owners and managers in an open, honest way. Additionally, employees sometimes feel threatened when discussing their performance, so it’s especially important to pay attention to how the message is being delivered – as well as received. Keeping an ongoing and consistent dialogue related to performance will also help employees better understand how to improve, meet, or exceed expectations.

Best practice #3: Establish milestone dates

It’s been said time and time again that only checking in with employees once a year during annual performance reviews is ineffective. Performance management shouldn’t just happen once a year, rather it should occur on a continuous basis. For business managers, a good exercise is to build out an annual schedule with dates attached to when goals are set, how often you’re touching base with employees, when self-assessments and/or peer evaluations should take place, as well as official review meetings. For instance, here is a sample calendar:

January: Use SMART model to set goals.

March, June, September: Have quarterly check-ins with employees you manage.

October, November: Encourage employees to prepare for their review meeting,

individually or as a team. This is a good time for you to start getting your documents in order for each team member.

December: Host annual reviews.

Being transparent about the coming year helps employees and managers know how to plan for and manage expectations.

Best practice #4: Acknowledge positive behavior

Recognizing excellence can make a world of difference in the workplace. From encouraging positive behavior in employees that are meeting standards to creating healthy competition amongst the team, rewards are a proven way to impact both employee engagement and company culture.

We’ve seen firsthand the impact of employee reward programs and one of the biggest misconceptions we come across is cost. But you don’t have to break the bank to reward your employees’ hard work. Here are a 3 ways to recognize employee performance for under $30: free lunch, books or a subscription to Audible, or a charitable donation.

Performance management does not only happen once a year; effective business leaders manage performance every day. Use the best practices outlined above to create the best system for your own business.

To learn more on this topic, sign up for our webinar, “Supervisor Series: Performance Management Best Practices” here.

Five Ways to Advance Your Leadership Skills in 2019

Better leaders create better teams, which results in greater efficiency, productivity, and confidence. But becoming a more effective leader requires spending time and resources on learning and developing your skills.

We promise you the investment will pay off. In fact, you’ll see higher sales, lower turnover, and higher customer satisfaction. But where should you start and how can you go about advancing your leadership skills in 2019?

Here are our five suggestions for investing in yourself in order to get ahead:

1. Join business organizations and attend conferences 

Providing learning opportunities doesn’t have to be expensive and include a large travel budget. In fact, Hawaii has quite a few exceptional leadership organizations and development conferences that have the advantage of understanding the local business landscape.

Hawaii Business 

Hawaii Business is the longest-running regional business magazine in America. With their website, social media platforms, monthly magazine, and events, Hawaii Business focuses on the big issues affecting Hawaii’s economy and businesses, including jobs, profit and loss, education, housing and much more. Their aim is to provide information that helps local companies succeed and people advance their careers. Among their busy calendar of events are two of Hawaii’s most popular conferences for local business leaders:

Leadership Conference 2019

Deemed the largest professional development conference in Hawaii, this conference aims to build smart, confident and authentic leaders. Gain insight from dozens of Hawaii’s most prominent leaders during a full day of skill-building workshops, speakers, and networking. While this year’s conference date is yet to be announced, it typically takes place during the summer months.

The Wahine Forum

The Wahine Forum is Hawaii’s largest leadership and career development conference for women. Hawaii’s top female executives, entrepreneurs, up-and-coming leaders and others intent on advancing their careers come together for a full-day event featuring national speakers and local leaders. Connect with like-minded individuals and cultivate relationships this Fall.

ProService Growth Series

Hosted by ProService Hawaii three times a year, Growth Series’ are premier free learning events to provide business owners and leaders with actionable and concrete learnings to enable them to build and run a successful business in Hawaii. Events focus on topics related to leadership, hiring and retaining top talent, and managing your workforce. Our February event, “Atomic Habits: Compound Tiny Changes into Remarkable Results” will be led by James Clear, New York Times best-selling author, and will share strategies to transform your habit systems and achieve remarkable results.

Chamber of Commerce

The Chamber holds numerous events and seminars throughout the year and across each of the Hawaiian islands that provide valuable networking and marketing opportunities, business training, legislative information and resources, as well as opportunities to discuss issues with government officials and top business leaders.

With over 65 events attended by close to 4,000 business leaders per year, a few ones to note for the upcoming year include “FocusON: Small Biz Marketing Tools,” “Employment Law Seminar,” and “Business on the Green Golf Tournament.” Access each of the Chamber of Commerce’s 2019 event calendars here: Oahu, Maui, Kauai and Hawaii Island.

Patsy T. Mink Leadership Alliance

The Patsy T. Mink Leadership Alliance was launched in 2016 to increase the representation of women executives in Hawaii. It is a 10-month cohort program designed for professional women leaders and entrepreneurs who are committed to personal growth, professional impact, and community change. This year’s program is from August 23, 2019 – May 28, 2020, with applications opening on April 1, 2019.

Hawaii Leadership Forum

The Hawaii Leadership Forum is a societal change organization dedicated to advancing leadership in and for Hawaii. The organization strives to improve leadership throughout the state with their cornerstone program, Omidyar Fellows, which is designed to enhance the capabilities of mid-career leaders and change-makers who can mobilize other individuals and organizations to create positive and lasting change. Applications for this year are currently being accepted through April 12, 2019.

2. Leverage the power of feedback

Feedback can be a powerful tool used to fuel growth and learning within teams and organizations. Feedback is a key to learning, growth, innovation, and scale. However, many leaders are challenged with how to give and receive feedback.

In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor states that 93% of employees feel undervalued. Communicating appreciation in the workplace is particularly important for trusting building, and can impact an employee's ability to hear other forms of feedback, like coaching.

Without appreciation, coaching comes off as complaining and nitpicking. In order for you to come alongside a team member and effectively coach them on a behavior or skill, you must first put in the time to appreciate the work they’ve already done.

Additionally, a formal process is critical for business owners that want to make feedback more effective across their organizations. Whether your company uses annual performance reviews or independent workplace surveys, understanding the results can give visibility into where there might be gaps in employee satisfaction.

3. Improve 1% each day

What are your most important goals in life? What habits fuel those goals? And what would happen if every day, you were able to get 1% better at each of those habits?

Bad habits repeat themselves not because you don’t want to change but because you have the wrong system for change. This is a core philosophy of James Clear's best-selling book Atomic Habits — you don’t rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems.

Goals are good for setting a direction, but systems are best for making progress. Learn more about designing the best system for advancing your leadership in this blog post. Tiny changes can equal remarkable results.

4. Utilize external training and development programs

With online courses, video webinars, and leadership talks readily available from our computers and mobile devices, there are so many resources available today to business leaders looking to continue their professional development. A couple notable options include learning boot camps, like One Month, and free educational sessions, like Coursera.

We also offer free webinars, on-demand recordings, and live events covering best practices on human resources management for all types of business owners.

A leader that creates a culture of continuous learning creates a workforce that isn’t satisfied unless they are always pushing themselves and meeting new challenges. And that’s a productive workplace.

5. Grow your skills outside of work

Developing professional skills can also be achieved by growing personally. According to the results of Deloitte’s 2016 Impact Survey, businesses and individuals may be undervaluing the benefits of volunteerism. In fact, 92% of respondents agree that volunteering is an effective way to improve leadership skills.

Well-rounded leaders can grow through volunteering or serving on a board for a local community organization. In Hawaii, these organizations are always seeking volunteers that want to make an impact: Aloha United Way; Make-A-Wish Hawaii; Surfrider Foundation; Aloha Harvest.

Being a leader is not always the easiest job; leadership is tough. But it’s also something that you can work towards by joining organizations and attending conferences, using effective business management strategies, as well as improving yourself at the office and outside of work.

Good leadership isn’t accidental, it’s something you strive to achieve and pursue with purpose.

Looking to get started? Join us at our first Growth Series event of 2019. We’ll be discussing how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master tiny behaviors which can lead to big change.

Setting Goals? Focus on This Instead

This article is an excerpt from Atomic Habits, James Clear's New York Times best-seller. Join us for Growth Series with James Clear on February 27, 2019 to learn about how to improve 1% every day through tiny changes. Registration is still open. Use promo code GS2019 to save your seats.  

Prevailing wisdom claims that the best way to achieve what we want in life—getting into better shape, building a successful business, relaxing more and worrying less, spending more time with friends and family—is to set specific, actionable goals.

For many years, this was how I approached my habits too. Each one was a goal to be reached. I set goals for the grades I wanted to get in school, for the weights I wanted to lift in the gym, for the profits I wanted to earn in business. I succeeded at a few, but I failed at a lot of them. Eventually, I began to realize that my results had very little to do with the goals I set and nearly everything to do with the systems I followed.

  • If you’re a coach, your goal might be to win a championship. Your system is the way you recruit players, manage your assistant coaches, and conduct practice.
  • If you’re an entrepreneur, your goal might be to build a million-dollar business. Your system is how you test product ideas, hire employees, and run marketing campaigns.
  • If you’re a musician, your goal might be to play a new piece. Your system is how often you practice, how you break down and tackle difficult measures, and your method for receiving feedback from your instructor.

Now for the interesting question: if you completely ignored your goals and focused only on your system, would you still succeed?

For example, if you were a basketball coach and you ignored your goal to win a championship and focused only on what your team does at practice each day, would you still get results?

I think you would.

The goal in any sport is to finish with the best score, but it would be ridiculous to spend the whole game staring at the scoreboard. The only way to actually win is to get better each day. In the words of three-time Super Bowl winner Bill Walsh, “The score takes care of itself.” The same is true for other areas of life. If you want better results, then forget about setting goals. Focus on your system instead.

What do I mean by this? Are goals completely useless? Of course not. Goals are good for setting a direction, but systems are best for making progress. A handful of problems arise when you spend too much time thinking about your goals and not enough time designing your systems.

Problem #1: Winners and losers have the same goals.

Goal setting suffers from a serious case of survivorship bias. We concentrate on the people who end up winning—the survivors—and mistakenly assume that ambitious goals led to their success while overlooking all of the people who had the same objective but didn’t succeed.

Every Olympian wants to win a gold medal. Every candidate wants to get the job. And if successful and unsuccessful people share the same goals, then the goal cannot be what differentiates the winners from the losers. It wasn’t the goal of winning the Tour de France that propelled the British Cyclists to the top of the sport. Presumably, they had wanted to win the race every year before—just like every other professional team. The goal had always been there. It was only when they implemented a system of continuous small improvements that they achieved a different outcome.

Problem #2: Achieving a goal is only a momentary change.

Imagine you have a messy room and you set a goal to clean it. If you summon the energy to tidy up, then you will have a clean room—for now. But if you maintain the same sloppy, pack-rat habits that led to a messy room in the first place, soon you’ll be looking at a new pile of clutter and hoping for another burst of motivation. You’re left chasing the same outcome because you never changed the system behind it. You treated a symptom without addressing the cause.

Achieving a goal only changes your life for the moment. That’s the counter intuitive thing about improvement. We think we need to change our results, but the results are not the problem. What we really need to change are the systems that cause those results. When you solve problems at the results level, you only solve them temporarily. In order to improve for good, you need to solve problems at the systems level. Fix the inputs and the outputs will fix themselves.

Problem #3: Goals restrict your happiness.

The implicit assumption behind any goal is this: “Once I reach my goal, then I’ll be happy.” The problem with a goals-first mentality is that you’re continually putting happiness off until the next milestone. I’ve slipped into this trap so many times I’ve lost count. For years, happiness was always something for my future self to enjoy. I promised myself that once I gained twenty pounds of muscle or after my business was featured in the New York Times, then I could finally relax.

Furthermore, goals create an “either-or” conflict: either you achieve your goal and are successful or you fail and you are a disappointment. You mentally box yourself into a narrow version of happiness. This is misguided. It is unlikely that your actual path through life will match the exact journey you had in mind when you set out. It makes no sense to restrict your satisfaction to one scenario when there are many paths to success.

A systems-first mentality provides the antidote. When you fall in love with the process rather than the product, you don’t have to wait to give yourself permission to be happy. You can be satisfied anytime your system is running. And a system can be successful in many different forms, not just the one you first envision.

Problem #4: Goals are at odds with long-term progress.

Finally, a goal-oriented mind-set can create a “yo-yo” effect. Many runners work hard for months, but as soon as they cross the finish line, they stop training. The race is no longer there to motivate them. When all of your hard work is focused on a particular goal, what is left to push you forward after you achieve it? This is why many people find themselves reverting to their old habits after accomplishing a goal. The purpose of setting goals is to win the game.

The purpose of building systems is to continue playing the game. True long-term thinking is goal-less thinking. It’s not about any single accomplishment. It is about the cycle of endless refinement and continuous improvement. Ultimately, it is your commitment to the process that will determine your progress.

Fall In Love With Systems

None of this is to say that goals are useless. However, I've found that goals are good for planning your progress and systems are good for actually making progress. Goals can provide direction and even push you forward in the short-term, but eventually a well-designed system will always win. Having a system is what matters. Committing to the process is what makes the difference.

How to Get 1% Better Every Day

What are your most important goals in life? What habits fuel those goals? And what would happen if every day, you were able to get 1% better at each of those habits?

Tiny changes can equal remarkable results—that's New York Times best-selling author, James Clear’s topic at our first Growth Series event of 2019. Mark your calendars for February 27, you’re invited!

Here’s what you need to know:

The topic: Change starts small—atomic small

Bad habits repeat themselves not because you don’t want to change but because you have the wrong system for change. This is a core philosophy of James Clear's best-selling book Atomic Habits — you don’t rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems.

So whether your goals are all business, personal or a mix of both, at the Growth Series, you can expect to learn about James’ proven framework for improving every day. Things like practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to big change.

The speaker: Best-selling author and habit formation expert

Who is James Clear? He’s one of the world's leading experts on habit formation. He’s the author of Atomic Habits the creator of the Habits Academy, a weightlifter, and oh, a travel photographer in over 30 countries, too.

You may have even seen his name and book on Inc.’s list of Best Books to Buy to be a Better Person in 2019.

And he’s also our keynote speaker at Growth Series in February—we couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome him to Hawaii.

The event: Growth Series by ProService Hawaii

New to Growth Series? Let’s fill you in. It’s the event you’ll want to attend to get actionable insights and inspiration that will help you take your business to the next level. Hosted by ProService Hawaii three times a year, Growth Series are premier learning events for our clients and Hawaii’s business and HR community.

Did we mention that it’s free, too? That’s because continuous learning is one of our core values at ProService, and we take extra care to handpick the very best speakers to invite (and remove all cost barriers)—so your businesses and those that operate them can grow together.

If, like us, you’re committed to making 2019 the year you accomplish your goals, make sure to you register for Growth Series with James Clear today.

Get the details: Mark your calendars for Wednesday, February 27 and join us at the Prince Waikiki from 7:45 AM -1 PM. Get more info here and use the promo code GS2019 to register today!  Psst … if you’re one of the first 100 people to register by January 31, you’ll get a free copy of James Clear’s New York Times bestseller, Atomic Habits. *
* Limit of 2 copies per company; must be present at the event to claim copy.

An Employer’s Guide to Hawaii’s New Salary History Ban

Earlier this year, Governor David Ige signed a bill into law which prohibits employers from asking job applicants about their salary history. Hawaii’s Equal Pay Act, also known as the Salary Ban Law, takes effect on January 1, 2019.

So what do you need to know?

While it’s true these changes mean many businesses will have to look at their hiring practices and potentially make changes to their application process and training, the new law also offers an opportunity for employers to modernize their business practices by creating a formal compensation philosophy or strategy.

Ultimately, getting your hiring process and compensation strategy up to date will help you attract quality employees — and retain them for the long haul.

What It Means

Under the new law, you can’t ask applicants what they earned at their last job, or anything else about their salary history. You also can’t use what you know about their past salary to determine their pay, benefits, or other compensation during the hiring process.

What’s more, employees have the right to discuss their wages or ask about what others earn, and you can’t punish them for discussing salaries amongst themselves.

Why Not Ask?

So why not just ask? The purpose of the law is to end the cycle of pay discrimination. Even today, women in Hawaii earn 84 cents for every dollar earned by men. When an employee’s salary is based on what they earned in previous jobs, unequal pay can be perpetuated years into the future for women and minorities.

Related content: What's Trending for Women in Business

And Hawaii’s not alone in taking on this issue. Eleven other states, including but not limited to California, Oregon, New Jersey, and New York, have passed salary history bans, along with cities like Chicago, New Orleans, and San Francisco.

What You Can Do

First of all, let’s talk about what you’re still allowed to do under the new law. If a job applicant brings up their previous salary — voluntarily and without prompting — it’s OK to take that information into consideration but it shouldn't be the sole basis.

You can also ask an applicant about their expectations around pay. While re-framing the question in this way is still legal, it’s a sticky question that you’ll probably want to avoid. Instead, you can discuss objective measures of the applicant’s productivity, like revenue, sales, or production reports, or criteria like experience, education, and skills.

Finally, if you conduct a background check to confirm other details of their application, and it happens to turn up information about their previous salary, you haven’t broken the law — as long as you don’t then use that information as the basis for their new compensation package.

How to Stay Compliant

If part of your hiring process includes asking about salary history or current pay rates, you will need to make some changes.

Here are two things you can do right now:

🗹 1. Start by updating all of your application materials — both paper and electronic — and remove any references to salary history. If you’re a ProService client, we’ve already done this for you!

🗹 2. Next, take a look at everyone in your organization who’s involved in the recruitment and hiring process, and make sure they’re trained on the new requirements. (Share this post with them or check out our free, on-demand webinar to learn more.)

Additionally, it’s worth noting that the new law includes reference checks and background research, so staff should know not to do an internet or public document search for prior salary history, for example.

Build a Better Process

Obviously, pay is a huge part of the hiring discussion, and employers need some way to make reasonable salary offers. The good news is, there are alternative and better ways to do that than to ask about an applicant’s salary history.

Think of this as an opportunity to develop a compensation strategy for your company, or to improve your existing strategy, if you already have one. Consider objective criteria like experience, education, and skills, and then use that to create a salary or pay range for a job.

Compare and Contrast

It can also be useful to look at what other companies are paying for similar jobs. One tool we use at ProService Hawaii is Payscale, a service that gives us access to the world’s largest database of salaries.

Tools like Payscale can be used to generate reports showing employers the market value for a job they’re trying to fill, and they can be customized based on experience, education, and other criteria.

And since the reports look at a broad range of salaries, and not the salary history of an individual candidate, they’re perfectly legal under the new law. Once you determine your compensation criteria, you’re free to inform the job applicant about the proposed salary or salary range for the position.

Bottom Line

As you take another look at your compensation philosophy and strategy, it’s good to remember why you’re doing it. By law, pay practices are supposed to be consistent, non-discriminatory, and not arbitrary. The whole purpose of the salary history ban is to end pay discrimination and to prevent past inequality from being perpetuated into the future.

By following best practices and basing your compensation on objective measures, you’re making your hiring process more fair and transparent, eliminating uncertainty, and building trust for both yourself and your employees.

Let Us Help!

As an employer, running a business means adhering to federal, state, and local employment regulations. The list is so long it’s actually quite hard to keep track of what you have to do to stay compliant.

So whether it’s Hawaii’s new salary history ban or the State’s Paid Family Leave Bill (SB-2990) that’s undergoing analysis to determine its impact — let an HR partner like us help you navigate Hawaii’s highly regulated environment. Schedule a free HR consultation to learn how our HR services can power (and protect) your business.