Employers face innumerable HR law challenges in a complex and changing workplace. The purpose of EANJ’s HR Risk Management Solution is to provide an individualized, comprehensive and coordinated support, rather than on a piecemeal basis, to EANJ members in order to 1) reduce the frequency and severity of employment practices claims and charges, and 2) create an organizational culture that minimizes and manages employment practice risks.
Scope of Review
The primary scope of EANJ’s HR Risk Management Solution is to assess the risks, if any, presented by a member’s current anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies and practices and to recommend alternatives, if any, to mitigate those risks. The risk assessment necessarily covers the employer’s current compliance with relevant HR laws, rules and other workplace policies and procedures.
The seminal case of Lehmann v. Toys R Us, Inc., 132 N.J. 587, 592 (1993), and the more recently the case of Aguas v. State, 220 N.J. 494, 512 (2015), set out the criteria New Jersey employers should consider as a benchmark for their compliance with federal, state and local laws prohibiting discrimination and harassment. Courts frequently look to these factors to determine whether employers are negligently or vicariously liable for discrimination or harassment in the workplace. Accordingly, using the Lehmann/Aguas criteria during the Review, an assessment is done to determine whether the Township could presently produce suitable evidence of:
- a “well-publicized and enforced anti-harassment policies”
- an “effective formal and informal complaint structures”
- “anti-harassment training programs”
- “harassment monitoring mechanisms” and
- upper management’s “unequivocal and consistent commitment to its anti-discrimination policy.”
Documents to be Reviewed
- Personnel and Policy Manual
- Change of policy Acknowledgement Form;
- Applications for Employment;
- Employee Incident Report Form;
- Reportable Incident Form;
- Electronic Notification system;
- Workplace harassment training programs:
- Collective bargaining agreements;
- Record keeping policies;
- Past claims’ history; and
- Relevant job descriptions
Conferring with HR Administrator, Manager and Risk Management Personnel
Interviews with relevant personnel are essential to determine whether the Lehmann/Aguas criteria are met. Additionally, a critical part of risk management review is to determine that key personnel or aligned both in terms of function and within the organizational structure. This is also an opportunity to assess how the employer-member has handled past claims.
Personnel Handbook Review
An Employee Handbook is useful for communicating policies and guidance to employees. Such a document allows employers to publish policies and rules in a cost-effective, convenient way. Often, such handbooks are required by insurance companies for effective risk management. Generally, handbooks must be reviewed carefully for legal compliance on an ongoing basis. Unfortunately, some uninformed employers use off-the-shelf or generic handbooks given to them by payroll firms which are often incomplete or worse – they do not meet legal standards. Each handbook must be both customized to meet the specific business needs of the organization as well as to meet legal standards. In New Jersey, handbooks must also address emerging workplace issues such as the recreational use of cannabis, ethnic and racial expression at work and electronic privacy.
Legal Compliance Training for the Workforce
EANJ training sessions, live and delivered on site or conducted online, exceed compliance standards by involving employees and supervisors in a truly interactive learning experience.
- Complying with EEOC Guidelines
- Harassment at Work
- Complying with EEOC Guidelines
- Harassment at Work
- Implementing the Family and Medical Leave Act
- Managing Leave of Absence: FMLA, FLA, ADA, NJLAD
- Sex and Gender Harassment
- Implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act
- Understanding the Fair Labor Standards Act
- Understanding the National Labor Relations Act
- Understanding the NJ Whistleblower Law
Even though HR Law training is, more or less, mandatory in New Jersey, the typical employer’s experience has been that such training often does not drive down the frequency of employment claims and charges. However, experience and research strongly suggest, that complementing mandatory compliance training with teaching supervisory skills drives down frequency and severity of claims
General Supervision Topics:
- Performance Reviews
- Discipline and Coaching
- Diversity/Team Building
- Conflict Resolution
- Ethical Workplace
EANJ’s HR Risk Management Solution is priced on a sliding scale based on number of employees.
|Up to 49 employees||$800|
|725 employees or more||$7,500|
Training billed at standard rates. Costs start at $990 for 1-hour session, $1,250 per 2-hour session and $1,550 per 3-hour session.
EANJ is a nonprofit trade association that supports public and private employers with, among other things, advice, guidance and training to manage employment law risks and to facilitate productive relationships with members’ labor unions. EANJ is staffed by lawyers, trainers and HR professionals. It does not render legal services, does not engage in lobbying activity, nor does it directly or indirectly persuade employees concerning their organizing or bargaining rights.
For more information, please contact John Sarno: email@example.com