Apprentice Personnel Blog

Temp staffing hiring up for 11th consecutive quarter

01/08/13 at 09:46 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

The national unemployment rate is falling, and few statistics tell the story better than in what’s happening in the temporary staffing world.

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New Minimum-Wage Rates Take Effect in Colorado

01/02/13 at 09:57 AM | by Larry Hannappel

As most employers know, Colorado was among a dozen states and cities that raised their minimum wages on Jan. 1.

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Implications for Employers in Marijuana Amendment

12/24/12 at 02:50 PM | by Will Temby

Amendment 64, the Colorado marijuana initiative, was passed by voters in November but it’ll be months before employers can expect to get a clear idea of what it’ll mean to their job sites.

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Avoiding Davis-Bacon Act violations

12/10/12 at 12:00 PM | by Lon Matejczyk

The Davis-Bacon Act requires federal contractors to pay prevailing wages for work performed on those contracts. Workers who work more than 40 hours per week must be paid overtime on federally funded contracts as well.

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Veterans: A Results-Focused Workforce

11/20/12 at 09:25 AM | by Larry Hannappel

We learn job skills from many experiences. Military service is one, and one we should recognize as a resume-worthy citation. How can we bring our vets back, find them jobs and acknowledge their service and sacrifice? By treating them as humans first. By recognizing skills for their value, not judging them for where they were acquired. By being bigger-hearted, by rejecting small-minded and simplistic views. By being real people working with real people.

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Earn Thousands in Tax Credits, Hire Veterans

11/14/12 at 06:54 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

If you're planning to claim an expanded tax credit for hiring certain veterans, you should act soon, as the Jan. 1, 2013, deadline is fast approaching. Businesses may qualify to receive thousands of dollars through the Work Opportunity Tax Credit, but only if the veteran begins work before the new year.

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Hiring our Heroes

11/11/12 at 05:25 PM | by Will Temby

Many military veterans seeking jobs struggle to market themselves effectively. Employers receive resumes every day from veterans, but hiring managers have trouble understanding the military lingo and identifying transferable skills.

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Finding the Right Staffing Firm for You

11/05/12 at 08:52 PM | by Larry Hannappel

Close to 2.8 million people are employed by staffing companies every business day. But how do you decide which firm to choose? Here are some tips on finding the right staffing company:

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Social Media in the Workplace

10/29/12 at 07:49 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

Nearly half of America’s workplaces have a formal social media policy in place and, in our view, if you don’t have one yet, it’s a good idea to get moving. These policies, simply stated, define what employees are allowed to talk about and how employers will monitor them.

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How Staffing Firms Can Protect You Against Workers' Comp Predators

10/24/12 at 01:37 PM | by Will Temby

The headlines are filled with them: Stories about workers’ compensation fraud and the millions of dollars that businesses and insurers are forced to spend in fighting “workers’ comp predators.” There are ways to reduce workers’ comp claims but one often overlooked by employers is in identifying high-risk applicants. That's where we can help.

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The Affordable Care Act: How Temp Staffing Can Help

10/08/12 at 05:54 PM | by Larry Hannappel

The U.S. Supreme Court this year upheld the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. So now what? Getting a handle on the ACA isn't for the faint of heart; it's extremely complex stuff for even the experts and things might change.

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Finding Employees with the Right Skills

09/25/12 at 05:43 PM | by Will Temby

Is a skills shortage making it tough for you to find the employees? In a recent op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Nick Schulz of the American Enterprise Institute notes that more than 600,000 jobs in manufacturing went unfilled in 2011 due to a skills shortage.

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Temp Agencies As Matchmakers

09/22/12 at 02:52 PM | by Will Temby

Working for a temporary agency used to be an ideal option for victims of corporate downsizing. If companies weren't hiring but needed extra help, they'd turn to temporary workers to help fill in the gaps. But the role of the temp agency has changed dramatically in the last decade. Instead of just providing help for short-term assignments, many now specialize in matching workers with companies that might eventually hire them. Think of it this way: before you buy a new car, you test-drive it. Why not test-drive your next employee, too? More and more today, companies are opting to go with a temporary employee before bringing them on as permanent staffers. In other words, there’s a “trial” period of sorts that workers go through before they’re brought aboard...

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Making The Best First Impressions Fast

09/19/12 at 08:31 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

Job seekers don’t have much time to win over hiring managers. Sixty percent of HR managers polled by Accountemps said they form a positive or negative opinion of candidates during interviews in 10 minutes or less. For some, impressions are made even more quickly. Nearly one in five (18 percent) respondents indicated it takes them five minutes or less to draw conclusions about an interviewee. Wow. So, what can you do to get the job interview off to a good start? Here are a few tips Pay attention to the details. Extend a firm handshake, maintain eye contact and present a professional image. This includes ensuring your shoes are shined, clothing is pressed, and nails are clean and trimmed. Ace the likely questions.

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Using Video To Help Sift Through Applicants

09/17/12 at 10:20 AM | by Larry Hannappel

Is the first interview you have with a prospective employee a waste of time? It may well be, and now a small but growing number of HR managers are turning to video to sift through applicants and help save some of that time. OfficeTeam surveyed HR managers and found that 63 percent of the respondents said their company often conducts employment interviews using video. That’s up from a meager 14 percent just one year ago. What’s more, 13 percent of HR managers said they will use video more frequently to meet with applicants in the next three years. So, has your company moved to conducting job interviews virtually?

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Workers Compensation And Temporary Staffing

09/04/12 at 11:00 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

Here's something to noodle on: Whether the economic recovery is as robust as we think it should be or not, the cost of workers' compensation insurance is expected to be a bigger issue in Colorado (and most likely elsewhere) as companies begin to hire more workers. If you've tracked the numbers carefully, you'll know that workers' compensation insurance rates increased an average 3.7 percent in 2012 to cover rising medical costs and an increased number of claims. That's not bad but, in a recovering economy, bad enough, especially because workers' compensation insurance rates in the previous decade were mostly flat. Of course, some industries this year experienced higher percent increases than others...

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The Contractor Myth In Temporary Staffing

08/10/12 at 08:42 AM | by Will Temby

OK, so we've been talking about myths in the industry all week. Here's my favorite: Myth: It is legal to flip an employee to contractor status. The reality, folks: Labels are not so important when dealing with the difference between an employee and a contractor. What is key is who has the right to control the worker's performance. Using the services of an ex-employee under the guise of a contractor relationship could raise a red flag with the Internal Revenue Service and could open your business to liabilities for unpaid payroll and other employment taxes. Oh, and don't forget about the potential for unpaid overtime if the employee works more than 40 hours in any week. That's it for myths for now. Got questions on any of this stuff, let us know...

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Two More Myths About Staffing And Temporary Workers

08/09/12 at 09:39 AM | by Will Temby

Here are two more myths about the staffing industry: Temporary employees are not entitled to benefits. The reality is that, for many companies, temp workers are in fact not entitled to benefits. In other organizations, however, temporary employees may be entitled to the same benefits as full-time, permanent employees. It all depends on the terms of your plans and other factors including the length of time a temporary worker is in your service. Wage and hour laws do not protect temporary workers. In reality, temporary employees are entitled to the same minimum-wage and overtime rights as full-time, permanent employees. Check back here later this week for more myth-busting truths about staffing...

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Myths About Temporary Staffing

08/08/12 at 08:28 AM | by Will Temby

A couple of years ago, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission settled a race and sex discrimination case against an Ohio temporary agency. The EEOC alleged that the agency used code words to identify the race, color, and sex of candidates it placed with employers. For example, "hockey player" equaled white male, "small hands" equaled female, "basketball player" equaled African-American men, and "chocolate cupcake" equaled young African American women. The temporary agency, according to the EEOC, would attach note cards containing the coded phrases to job applications submitted to employers. The temporary agency paid $650,000 to a nationwide class of 11,000 people...

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Why Onboarding Is Critical To Keeping Your Staff Happy

07/23/12 at 06:30 PM | by Larry Hannappel

One of the big issues for business in the next decade will be attracting and keeping the best workers. It is an ongoing problem for companies to find the right people. The issue becomes even more significant when you consider the results of a new survey, which shows that one-fourth of all new employees leave a company within one year of employment. The cost to firms for this turnover can really add up because the survey also showed that the average cost to fill a position was about $11,000. And the prime reason for this quick turnover was a problem with the "onboarding" process. One-fourth of the companies said they offered no training at all to new employees, while 60 percent said they don’t set any goals for people joining the company...

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Staffing Can Help Ease Looming Construction-worker Shortages

07/03/12 at 08:09 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

As the construction industry struggles to regain its footing following the recession, many are worried about a looming shortage of skilled workers. The construction industry has not completely recovered so the demand for workers is not as high as it once was -- at the moment. The problem is, as jobs for skilled workers disappeared during the height of the recession, many workers abandoned the profession to take other jobs or retire. That has generated worries about what will happen when the jobs return, as they are now. If there is a big construction boom, many are telling us they don’t know where the workers would come from. With time needed to train workers from entry-level to higher-performing skills, many employers are expecting a gap...

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Dealing With Employee Turnover

06/19/12 at 09:15 AM | by Larry Hannappel

When an employee quits, it’s bad, right? Well, not always. But as an experienced staffing agency, Apprentice Personnel knows that the topic of “employee turnover” is almost always discussed in a negative light. After all, what manager really wants to deal with all the ins and outs, and ups and downs, of the recruiting and hiring process? Let’s face it, though. Sometimes turnover is just plain good. For instance, an employee may have lost enthusiasm or motivation within their position. Or perhaps they’ve outgrown the company in other ways. Whatever the case, they’re disengaged and them leaving is a positive for your company. Another instance in which turnover is a good thing is when a low performer or someone with a bad attitude leaves...

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Want a raise? Hit the gym

06/14/12 at 12:15 PM | by Will Temby

Ready for a raise? Forget about putting in extra hours at the office and instead aim for more time on the treadmill. That's what a new study concludes, asserting that employees who work out take home, on average, 9 percent more pay than folks who don’t exercise.

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Using temporary staffing to reduce employee burnout

06/11/12 at 10:42 AM | by Lon Matejczyk

Companies and organizations regularly wrestle with the issue of employee burnout. In restaurant and hotel settings, especially, employees work long hours in often stressful situations that tax their physical, mental and emotional stamina.

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Staffing amid a rising 'quits rate'

05/08/12 at 11:30 AM | by Larry Hannappel

There were 3.7 million job openings on the last business day of March, up significantly from a year earlier, and people continued to quit jobs at higher levels, according to the government's latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey.

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News and Latest Events 
 
Economist pegs 2017 construction growth at 5 percent

The 2017 Dodge Construction Outlook sees total U.S. construction starts for 2017 advancing 5 percent to $713 billion, following increases of 11 percent in 2015 and an estimated 1 percent this year. Read more arrow

Robust jobs report eases worry over economic growth

The U.S. labor market in July capped off the best two-month stretch of hiring so far this year, a sign of strength for an economy that has been showing mixed growth signals in recent months. Read more arrow

U.S. growth and employment data tell different stories

Measured by traditional yardsticks for growth, like gross domestic product, the American economy definitely looks weak. View it through the prism of hiring and employment, however, and the economy seems surprisingly strong. Read more arrow

Labor Department clarifies employment guidelines 

The Labor Department has waded deeper into the contentious issue of joint employment, seeking to clarify who is accountable for violations of employment laws when two different entities, like a manufacturer and a staffing agency, both have ties to the same worker. Read more arrow

 
Prepare for the great moderation in U.S. job growth

An increasing number of Wall Street economists and those inside the Federal Reserve are concluding that job growth is bound to shift into a lower gear as the aging population drags on the amount of available labor. Read more arrow


Weakness and strength: 7 snapshots of the U.S. job market

Employers added a meager 142,000 jobs in September, the government said Friday. And the average job gain for each of the past three months — 167,000 — is well below the 231,000 average for the previous three. Read more arrow

Housing, construction may be able to improve U.S. jobs picture 

Even though Friday’s lackluster U.S. jobs report proved a disappointment, the growth in construction and housing jobs might be able to pull the U.S. economy through this rough patch. Read more arrow

Kansas employment stats create muddled picture

The data on employment in Topeka, Wichita and Kansas are behaving in puzzling ways, making it unclear whether their employment pictures are getting better or worse, according to an economist at Wichita State University. Read more arrow

NLRB will let more workers bargain with their employer’s employer

The decision could have widespread implications for subcontracting, franchising, and temporary staffing agencies that have become increasingly prevalent in today's "fissured" economy. Read more arrow 

 
Should Americans work more? 

While the average American workweek is already longer than in most high-income countries, the Irish and the South Koreans show it’s possible for an advanced country’s workers to put in more hours than we do. Read more arrow 

Labor Department expected to make millions more eligible for OT

Millions of Americans who work in excess of 40 hours a week will qualify for overtime pay under a proposed Labor Department rule. Read more arrow

 
Nailed it: Construction employment helps fuel economy

April was the best month for construction employment since January 2014, U.S. Labor Department figures showed — and not just for job creation. Unemployment among construction workers fell to its lowest level since 2006. Read more arrow

Despite hiring efforts, veterans face employment obstacles and civilian disconnect

A new report says that vets have trouble finding and keeping jobs and that civilian employers struggle to understand them. Read more arrow

 
Apartment construction a booming business nationwide

According to U.S. Census Bureau figures, apartment vacancies nationwide hit their lowest point in two decades in the last quarter of 2014: 4.8 percent. The low vacancy rate has led to sky high rents and an explosion of apartment construction that so far cannot keep pace with demand. Read more arrow


Trade plan hopes to grow Wichita exports by more than $1 billion

The Wichita-South Central Kansas Regional Export Plan aims to raise Wichita area exports by $1.1 billion over five years. Such a boost in sales would translate into roughly 6,000 more jobs, according to federal estimates. Read more arrow

The worst mistakes job seekers are still making

In today’s job market, applicants have enough challenges without worrying they’ve made a wrong move bad enough to cost them the position. There are all kinds of theories out there about which blunders are the absolute worst. Read more arrow

Companies face new rules on labor practices

President Obama will sign an executive order that could make it harder for companies that violate wage, labor and anti-discrimination laws to win federal contracts. Read more arrow