When is the right time to employ HR help? (compliance perspective)
So here you are. You’ve started a business, have a great line of products or services, and a great team to sell and execute it all! As time goes on, you start finding yourself dealing more with personnel issues, or “HR challenges”, that ultimately take you away from moving your line of business forward. Every business owner gets to that point! So how do you know when it is a good time to hire a specific HR professional?
Short answer: “Whenever you want!”
There is no official standard, law, or regulation that requires you to EVER hire a HR professional. The need for such a hire naturally occurs as your business grows and you find your senior leadership counterparts putting out more “people fires” than they should. Ultimately, this takes them away from the critical oversight they should be providing to their lines of business.
With that being said, however, there are a number of laws and regulations to abide by, based on company growth, that would kick in and may jump start your need to hire a professional to help you navigate.
Lets break them down…
Basic Employee Count Legislation:
When your company grows, so does your responsibility to abide by federal and state regulation. As an example, I’ll break down the approximate number of laws you might need to follow!
Less than 15 employees: 53 laws
15–19 employees: 63 laws
20–49 employees: 67 laws
50–99 employees: 73 laws
100+ employees: 74 laws
DON’T LET THIS SCARE YOU! This responsibility sure seems HUGE but some of these regulations likely do NOT affect your business. As an example, if you are not in the business of farming, mining, or roofing, you have less to worry about!
Let’s discuss a few that affect just about everyone…
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA): Requires employers to maintain records of race and sex identification. It is also the driving force behind hourly wages and overtime.
National Labor Relations Act (NLRA): Grants employee rights to unionize.
Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA): Requires employers to provide needed safety gear for on-the-job performance.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA): (For less than 500 employees) Employers may be eligible for a tax credit for voluntarily providing paid leave due to COVID-19 exposure. As of this writing, it is effective through 9/30/2021. Unless the employer chooses to offer paid leave, this legislation is no longer applicable.
Employers with 15+ employees…
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): Employers cannot discriminate against physical or mentally disabled individuals (applicants or employees).
Civil Rights Act, Title VII: Employers cannot discriminate against any race, color, religion, national origin, or sex. Depending on company size, fines could include up to $300,000!
Employers with 20+ employees…
Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA): Employers with group health insurance programs must offer terminated employees the chance to continue their coverage after they leave or no longer qualify due to hour reductions.
Employers with 50+ employees…
Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA): Pays for up to 12 weeks of leave within a 12-month period (unpaid unless otherwise determined by the company). Employee is guaranteed to return to the same job, same pay, and same conditions.
This is only scratching the service of federal regulation, let alone any additional (or altered by) state regulations.
So if any of those regulations make you nervous about your company’s compliance, THEN it is time to look into hiring a professional.
My recommendation: START SMALL!
You may not need to go all out with a full blown “HR Department”. You can certainly start with a part time HR Manager or a full-time HR Coordinator to help get your wheels turning and figure out where you stand in the realm of compliance. Once you/they get those pesky regulations in order, those HR professionals will still be invaluable in boosting your people programs and helping your company thrive with other HR-centric programs such as engagement, retention, benefits administration, and more!
How can Cobb HR Solutions help?
If you are feeling overcharged with stress on the accountability of your company compliance or people, Cobb HR Solutions can help! With monthly support or “à la cart” options available to tackle all your HR-related concerns. Let us be your “baby step” into building an HR footprint to establish (or confirm) your processes.
Cobb HR Solutions can centrally manage your people programs from our own HRIS/payroll system OR we can integrate with your own employed programs. Either way, we’ll help you save something you’ll never get back…TIME!