Category Archives: human resources

Dress Codes in the Workplace

Warmer weather often brings more relaxed dress codes — that’s if your agency hasn’t already adopted a more relaxed dress code year-round. According to a 2016 Employee Benefits Survey by the Society of Human Resource Management, 83% of firms have … Continue reading

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Tips for Avoiding Liability when it Comes to Job References and Background Checks

This article is excerpted from Especially for Texas Employers. Texas law protects from defamation liability an employer who releases information about a current or former employee to a prospective new employer, unless “the information disclosed was known by that employer … Continue reading

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Ransomware Attacks on the Rise

In 2015, victims paid a collective $24 million in ransom and another $325 million to disinfect machines and restore backup data. In 2016, the cost was expected to total $1 billion. Ransomware is malicious software that locks one’s computer or … Continue reading

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In the Groove: 5 Steps for Onboarding New Producers

By Bill Harwood, co-founder and managing partner of New Level Partners, LLC, a learning and development company specializing in insurance New producers face a dual challenge when they join an agency: absorbing the massive range of information about their new … Continue reading

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Balance Technical Expertise with Soft Skills

Insurance agency services are riddled with technical jargon, heavily regulated and vulnerable to litigation. It’s no wonder that there’s such an emphasis on technical expertise and E&O loss control. However, focusing on just the technical and process aspects of the … Continue reading

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Are You Using the New I-9 Form?

Beginning Jan. 22, 2017, employers must use the 11/14/2016 N version of Form I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification, to verify the identity and work eligibility of every new employee hired after Nov. 6, 1986, or for the re-verification of expiring employment … Continue reading

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Texas Judge Blocks New Overtime Rule

As we noted back in May, sweeping new regulations regarding overtime pay were to take effect on December 1, 2016. A federal judge has temporarily blocked the new rule which would have doubled overtime salary thresholds. Texas and 20 other … Continue reading

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New Filing Deadline for W-2s and 1099s is January 31st

The IRS is reminding employers and small businesses that there is an earlier deadline than in the past. Previously, employers typically had until the end of February if filing on paper and to the end of March if filing electronically. … Continue reading

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5 Mistakes Leaders Make When Motivating Their Team

A recent Independent Agent magazine article explored common mistakes agency leaders make when trying to motivate their teams. Only about 30% of employees are engaged on the job, and disengaged workers cost employers at least $450 billion a year in lost … Continue reading

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Health Care Costs: 5 Ways to Help Commercial Clients Reduce Employee Angst

A recent Independent Agent Magazine article reported that the average cost of health care now exceeds $25,000 a year for a family of four covered by a PPO. The Milliman Medical Index reports that the average cost of health care … Continue reading

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