Mr. Bill Edwards Joins Anthros, Inc. as Director of Legal Affairs

Mr. Bill Edwards has been appointed Director, Legal Affairs for Anthros Inc. Mr. Edwards has worked closely with the Anthros team since 2005 and has believed in the Anthros vision for nearly a decade. Prior to joining Anthros Inc, Mr. Edwards served Of Counsel in the Tampa office of Broad and Cassel. Mr. Edwards was a member of the Firm’s Commercial Litigation, Corporate and Securities and Labor and Employment Practice Groups.Prior to Broad and Cassel, Mr Edwards served as General Counsel and Director of Legal Services for a national Professional Employment Organization. As a member of the executive management team, he was a decision maker for complex commercial litigation strategy, regulatory issues, employment litigation and contracts. Edwards has significant experience managing corporate, commercial and employment practices liability insurance claims. Edwards has defended clients from charges of discrimination brought before the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), various human rights commissions and Occupational Safety and Health Administration. He has also represented clients in wage claims before the Department of Labor. Edwards is well-versed in labor and employment law and provides EEOC compliance training and strategic advice for the human resources departments of organizations. Edwards received his Juris Doctor from Stetson University College of Law and his undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, from Florida Southern College. While in college, he achieved many honors and served as commencement speaker for his graduating class. Mr. Edwards is an active member of various professional and community organizations, including FAPEO and NAPEO and has recently been selected to join the Legal Advisory Council for the National Association of Professional Employer Organizations (NAPEO). Edwards joins 41 other industry professionals from some... Read More

Gratitude

 Expressing gratitude to your employees does not have to cost a lot of money or take much time. Many organizations struggle with how to thank their employees for a year of hard work and dedication, particularly during times of financial difficulty. The good news is that as long as it is heartfelt, it does not have to break the bank. One way to thank your employees is to give them a little freedom during the day. If that hard working mom needs an extra hour at work to run a few errands or go Christmas shopping, the freedom to do so will go a long way. Encourage your employees to step away from their desk each month to enjoy a meal with their child at school, spend some time at the gym or even volunteer at a local charity. Encouraging personal and professional development will undoubtedly create a more inspired, engaged and happier workforce. Hosting a holiday potluck lunch at the office is another way to express gratitude toward your employees. For example, Anthros recently joined together for our first annual Thanksgiving luncheon. The company provided the turkey and team members contributed side dishes. It allowed us to take the time to sit together, share the things in our life for which we were thankful, and enjoy a meal as a family, not just as colleagues. It was cherished time together and a celebration enjoyed by all. Additional gestures of gratitude may include gifting your employees a subscription to their favorite magazine, or perhaps providing a gift certificate to the local grocery store. The monetary amount associated with the... Read More

The Future of 401(k) and Social Security

How do we get a larger potion of the work force to think about the future? Approximately half of large companies offer retirement plans and only about 10% of their employees participate. Should retirement savings be forced on employees? The Administration’s latest initiative would expand automatic enrollment in 401(k) and other retirement savings plans to make it easier for companies, especially those smaller and midsize firms lagging behind their larger counterparts, to sign up their workers and decide whether and how much they should save for retirement Under these plans, employers deposit a set percentage of each employee’s paycheck into his or her retirement account, and the worker could opt out or invest a different amount. The Government initiative will make it easier for employers of all sizes to adopt automatic enrollment by allowing them to rely on pre-approved language issued by the IRS. Currently, plan sponsors typically must first get the agency’s written approval to amend their plans. While this idea may not excite lower income workers, recent research has found automatic enrollment programs go a long way toward helping the nearly 78 million Americans who don’t have a retirement savings plan at work. The Administration says there’s a clear need because fewer than 10% of those without a plan at work formally save for retirement on their own. Another option would be for workers under a certain age to opt out of social security and put the same percentage (or more) in a 401(k) retirement plan. The laws would have to change; under the present social security system, the government prevents the contributions from unconditionally being passed... Read More

IS WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW HURTING YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS?

 There isn’t a Company in the market today that is 100% protected from Employee Lawsuits. What would you do today if you were contacted by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) stating that an employee has filed a claim against your company? Regardless of the size of your Company you can fall into the status of employees filing claims against you as noted below with Claims filed against Radio Shack: EEOC Wins Jury Verdict Against RadioShack in Retaliation Case 55-Year-Old District Manager Fired Days After He Complained of Age Discrimination; Awarded $187,000 in Back Pay Selected List of Pending and Resolved Cases Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) DENVER – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) won a victory in federal court in Denver yesterday afternoon in its employment discrimination lawsuit against major communications equipment retailer RadioShack. A unanimous jury of nine decided that RadioShack intentionally fired an employee in retaliation for his complaints about age discrimination. According to the EEOC’s suit, in the fall of 2007, David Nelson, then 55, had been employed for more than 25 years when RadioShack assigned a new, 43-year-old regional manager to supervise him. Within four months of the new supervisor’s arrival at the regional office in Denver, Nelson, who had a spotless performance record, was placed on two performance improvement plans. Nelson believed that he was being discriminated against by his new supervisor because of his age and he complained to the human resources department about the discrimination. Within five days of the first complaint, before the period for assessing the improvement in his performance had expired, RadioShack terminated... Read More

The Anthros Difference

What is the Anthros difference? The better question may be, what isn’t different about Anthros? From our client service philosophy to our client base…we are simply different! Anthros puts clients at the top of our organizational chart and filters down to the CEO at the bottom. Why, you ask? Because our clients are at the helm of everything we do, every decision we make and every action we take, every day. Anthros’ mission is to provide cost-effective, relationship-focused, Human Capital Management solutions empowered by professionals who consistently aim at re-engineering the client-centric business model with only the latest products and services. The constant re-engineering of the Anthros business model stems from regular shifts in what is relevant to our clients. At Anthros, we believe in constant and sincere communication; conversations with our clients provide invaluable intelligence, as client needs shift. These constant shifts in client needs, backed by sincere listening and then execution of solutions to exceed those needs, provides Anthros the differentiation in the market place. Anthros continues to invest heavily in team coaching & development. This investment in our internal human capital training has resulted in a premier service team well-known in the industry for highest client retention ratios and client satisfaction. Every Anthros member is client-facing and fully equipped to work with multiple layers of influence at client locations in their respective areas of expertise. We do not ask our clients to use one person as their service conduit, but rather give them direct access to a team of experts, promoting quicker response times. In addition, each member of the Anthros team possesses an empathetic view... Read More

Employer Health Strategies

Employers from the smallest companies to the largest are strategizing over what they will offer in the next 5 years in the realm of health benefits. While many companies will renew current benefit plans, many smaller companies will stop offering health insurance because of increased cost. These employers may encourage employees to go to the federal or private exchanges. Larger companies (employees over 100) will offer defined contributions, and encourage employees to have annual wellness and risk assessments in order to create a healthier workforce and attempt to keep costs down. Generally speaking, employees who participate in the assessments will pay less for insurance and those that refuse to do the risk assessments will pay more. Some companies offer wellness points and employees will have to maintain a certain number of points to pay the lowest cost available. Elements of an employee’s health, such as cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking, and other risk factors will determine health costs. The landscape has changed and it is now up to employees to manage their healthcare costs. Employees can be proactive in their wellness initiatives and take preventative measures through lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, exercising, and eating healthier foods. Employers can encourage healthy lifestyle choices among employees and provide support that will benefit their human capital. Many states offer free help to stop smoking, such as Florida (tobaccofreeflorida.com), to help employees choose an option that will work for them. Anthros Inc. assists businesses in healthcare compliance, provides guidance for future employer health strategies, and offers consultation as well resources for employees looking to minimize healthcare costs. About the Author: Helen... Read More

HR Outsourcing: How to Choose the Right Firm

Outsourcing is a great option for business owners who want to save time and run their company more efficiently. When you make the decision to outsource payroll, you are also turning over your payroll tax responsibilities and confidential company information. Mitigate risk by obtaining references and getting to know your outsourced personnel. When hiring a Human Resource Outsourcing (HRO) firm, verify that they are a reputable company and are a true business partner who fits your corporate culture. The outsourced company you choose should be licensed, insured and bonded. If you are considering outsourcing, ask yourself these simple questions: What are my responsibilities and risks as an employer? What are my risks and responsibilities if I outsource? Consider these three major areas of risk: 1. IRS/Tax Compliance. Mishandling tax issues include penalties and additional taxes. When you outsource, the HRO collects and remits payment on your behalf for payroll taxes, including Federal and State unemployment taxes, and workers’ compensation payments. Often times the HRO is assuming the liability through co-employment- make sure you understand the structure and transfer of any liability. 2. Employment Law. Federal, State and local employment laws can be a complicated set of rules and requirements. If you are not educated in employee rights, minimum wage amounts and processing of hiring, disciplining and firing employees, you can end up with fines and penalties and lawsuits that can put any company directly out of business. When you decide to outsource, you are obtaining access to knowledge regarding laws and regulations to minimize your risk of legal liabilities, which can be a huge benefit to your organization. Make... Read More

What Can a Human Resource Information System (HRIS) Do for You?

Anthros has partnered with F.W. Davison and Company to provide our clients and worksite employees access to the most robust and user-friendly HRIS system in the industry, HRPyramid (HRP). HRP gives worksite managers and employees the ability to view, create and maintain payroll, benefits and HR information, all in real-time. Accessible 24/7 via the web or mobile app, our clients can submit payroll data from anywhere, reducing processing time and errors. Customizable security allows HRP to be molded to fit any organizational structure. Logos and links can be added to custom brand the site. Employees have access to view and/or update their personal HR data reducing the manual workflow it often takes to manage HR functions. Anthros also offers Service Organization Controls (SOC 1) compliance through HRPyramid. A SOC 1 Report is a report on Controls at a Service Organization which are relevant to user entities’ internal control over financial reporting. The SOC1 Report is replacing the standard SAS70, complete with Type I and Type II. HRP allows companies to focus on their core business functions by dramatically reducing the time it take to oversee Human Resources. HRP is available to all Anthros clients at no additional charge. If you would like to see how Anthros and HRP could help your company, please contact us for further information. Please visit our website at www.anthrosinc.com to see how we can help you with employee benefits administration and other business consulting solutions. About the Author: Nikki Brown, SPHR – Director of Operations About Anthros, Inc.: Anthros provides expert back-office solutions in human capital management-from payroll and human resources, risk management and workers’... Read More

Defined Contribution Health Plans: A Win-Win for Employer and Employee

Employers are facing key decisions about the level and types of benefits to offer their employees, given rising health care costs and premiums. Private insurers continue to create new cost-sharing measures in health care plans. Many employees face the challenge of high deductible amounts attached to their health insurance. Given these events and changes for both public and private payers, some experts speculate that health care spending growth will outpace the growth of the economy. It is predicted by 2015 that one in every five dollars will be devoted to health carecosts. More and more companies will be offering Defined Contribution Health Plans. Just as employers realized the savings associated with moving away from defined benefit retirement pensions and toward 401(k) plans, many businesses are applying this model to their health benefits program. Defined contribution health plans work for employers and employees because: The contributions can be tax-free to the employer and employees receive pre-tax The employer gains fiscal control and predictability over their health benefits budget. There are no minimum or maximum contribution amounts, and no minimum Employees have choice in health insurance plans and make consumer-driven choices. Defined contribution health plans will have the same benefits of a defined benefit (group health insurance) plan, often at a much lower cost for the business and employees. Please visit our website at www.anthrosinc.com to see how we can help you with employee benefits administration and other business consulting solutions. About the Author: Helen Usher – Director of Benefits About Anthros, Inc.: Anthros provides expert back-office solutions in human capital management-from payroll and human resources, risk management and workers’ compensation... Read More

3 Things You Can Outsource to Maximize Human Capital and Grow Your Business

How do businesses get an edge over competition? In today’s competitive landscape organizations are trying to find creative ways to stand out and are realizing the importance of outsourcing non-revenue producing activities so time can be spent expanding market share. Imagine maximizing your human capital by focusing on ways to drive profits versus being piled under the administrative burden of paperwork. Here are some items you can outsource for your business: (1) Payroll & Taxes Sure, payroll and taxes can be prepared through purchased software, but the question becomes: what is the cost affiliated to produce payroll in-house in regards to human capital? What are the costs to maintain the changes that occur within your State or Federal Government to make sure your business remains compliant? In addition to keeping up with the latest tax, wage and hour laws, there are often other costs associated with payroll such as check stock, printer ink, envelopes and maintaining licenses to keep the processing software. Having to track and comply with court-ordered garnishments and other deductions can sometimes prove daunting for businesses. Outsourcing payroll not only improves accuracy and compliance, but saves time and money for the business owner by freeing up their human capital to focus on other revenue producing areas for the company. (2) Human Resources & Benefits Confused about ACA Reform, FMLA, or ADA requirements? In recent years, compliance has become more difficult for employers. Benefit administration can be very time consuming and many organizations have turned to outsourcing to improve accuracy. Some popular items to outsource in Human Resources & benefits include: Employment forms, personnel file maintenance, and... Read More