2017 thanks you-01Another successful seminar in the books! Thank you to the nearly 400 attendees who came from near and far. We hope you were able to get a “glimpse into the future” of Labor & Employment law. Check out our Facebook album with photos from the event to see if you can spot yourself or your colleagues!

Congratulations to the winners of our blog contest!

  • $250 AMEX Gift Card: Cynthia Amaro, Fisher Island Club
  • Complimentary Registration to our 2018 Seminar: Maray Rodriguez, Crowne Plaza Miami Airport

The top takeaways from each of our sessions:

  1. Bob Turk: The Crystal Ball Says…. Federal Agency Actions under the Trump Administration Over the last 40 years, many employment laws and regulations have come to fruition at the federal, state and local levels.  Those now in Human Resources need to be more knowledgeable and nimble when “juggling” the many legal issues coming their way than their predecessors of just a generation ago.   With the advent of the Trump Administration, our crystal ball predicts there will be a number of additional changes for which HR will need to be prepared to handle. 
  2. Lisa Berg & guest speaker Ed Stroz: Cyber Warfare in the Workplace: HR on the Frontlines The recent global attack and the many other cyber breaches we read about on a daily basis, should spur HR in all organizations to think about what they are doing to safeguard their computer systems and data, and resist the urge to treat cybersecurity as only the IT Department’s problem.   An effective cybersecurity program requires participation and buy-in from various departments in an organization, and Human Resources is a critical component of that effort.  It’s no longer a matter of fearing “if” your organization will experience a data breach, but “when.” 
  3. Eric Gabrielle, Andy Rodman and guest speaker Chris Daniels: Analyzing the Analytics, Artificial Intelligence & Algorithms of the 21st Century Workplace Big data, analytics, and even robots are replacing “old school” recruitment methods, such as the placement of classified ads, the review of stacks of resumes, and initial interviews conducted in-person.  But, these technological advancements are not without potential legal risk, so HR practitioners should be aware.   
  4. Bayardo Aleman & Giselle Madrigal: The Times, They Are A-Changin’: Medical Marijuana, Paid Sick Leave, Arbitration, Trade Secrets Act We reviewed recent and proposed legislation affecting employers and practical considerations for staying up with the times.  1) Medical Marijuana in Florida–– an issue ripe for litigation and as to which we expect to see developing rules and law.  2) Defend Trade Secrets Act: a uniform, civil, federal remedy that allows for civil seizure orders and whistleblower protections. 3) Proposed “FAMILY ACT” legislation––a paid sick leave bill that incorporates much of the FMLA and would require employees and employers to pay into a fund intended to cover limited paid leave. 4) Pros and cons of arbitration as a means for resolving employer-employees disputes.
  5. Ingrid Ponce: Back to the FLSA Drawing Board Even though the DOL salary test regulations remain on life support, companies must still continue to monitor their operations to ensure compliance with wage and hour laws.  Ensure that your employees are correctly classified by conducting regular wage and hour audits. Remember that job titles are not enough.  The work exempt employees are actually performing must align with the exemption.  For non-exempt employees in Florida, preserve all time and payroll records for at least 5 years to defend against claims brought under the Florida Minimum Wage Act.  Lastly, train your managers on your time-keeping policies and other wage and hour issues.  They are your first line of defense.
  6. Sharon Dixon & Kara Nickel: Finding the Well in Wellness Programs Employers must be aware that wellness programs are subject to several federal laws and regulations.  The use of wellness “apps” and electronic devices to monitor wellness plan participation gives rise to special challenges and several states now have enacted laws that also apply to electronic biometric information gathering.  A knowledgeable consultant is a great asset to help design your program but the employer remains responsible for compliance.
  7. Bob Turk & Elitsa Yotkova:  The Multigenerational Workplace: Boomers, X’ers and Millennials-Who is Managing Whom? A successful search for better job applicants starts with authenticity and transparency in the recruiting process. Millennial applicants are motivated by a sense of purpose and a strong drive for innovation and social progress– they want to do it on a flexible schedule or working remotely. Different generations can work collaboratively in the workplace, but be prepared that their (your) communications with co-workers will be increasingly tech-based. Every generation has strengths to bring to the proverbial table. Organizations that can embrace internal diversity will be the leaders in a new era of workplace management.
  8. Glenn Rissman & Eric Roth: Investigating Conduct Unbecoming of an Employee Keys to an effective internal investigation: 1) selecting an investigator who is fair, objective, thorough and thoughtful; 2) encouraging witnesses to be candid and cooperative, reminding them of the company’s anti-retaliation policy; 3) implementing corrective action consistent with past practices and reasonably calculated to address any misconduct identified; and 4) creating and maintaining a properly documented investigation file.