In this issue:

How To Use 401(k)s As A Retention Tool

Nearly 1 in 4 employees each year choose to switch companies – and it can cost from 29 to 46% of an employee’s salary to replace him (US Department of Labor). These numbers only include the tangible costs, such as interviewing time by management, productivity lost due to vacant position, training an employee, and any advertising or other associated expenses. What this doesn’t include are the unknowns, such as customers who might leave or the knowledge lost with a resignation.

Profit-sharing and/or matching into a 401(k) plan is an easy and successful way to improve loyalty and reward employees for a job well done. For example, some companies give matching contributions that vest over a one to four year period as as an additional incentive to stay while boosting employee engagement in their jobs.

401(k) plans can also be used as much more than a retirement vehicle; they can help you save on taxes and can even drastically lower your costs of acquiring and keeping your best talent.

For more information on our multi-employer 401(k) plan, please contact Alison Lalla, Pension Administrator at or by phone at 443-321-7713.

How A PEO Can Help With Small Business Owners’ Top 4 Challenges

According to a recent survey conducted by Robert Half, the four main challenges affecting small business owners today are: finding skilled workers, managing difficult employees, maintaining employee morale & productivity, and retaining staff. These four categories happen to be the specialty and expertise of a Professional Employer Organization (PEO). We can help by:

  1. Offering competitive and comprehensive benefits
  2. Allowing your HR team to focus on recruiting and training – or we can do it on your behalf
  3. Providing access to comprehensive and customizable employee benefits packages
  4. Providing access to compliance and legal advice
  5. Focusing on human capital management
  6. Managing and communicating employee benefits to maximize value

Hiring the wrong person from the start, failing to monitor employee morale, and mishandling difficult employees can affect your retention rate. Employers that offer employee benefits tend to see a decrease in employee turnover, and a well-administered, well-communicated employee benefits package provides more value to employees.

By utilizing a PEO, business owners no longer need to worry about the paper work or creating an HR strategy. Instead, they now have the time to develop strategies that focus on their core business initiatives.

If you have any questions please contact Jena Judd, HR Business Partner at or by phone at 443-321-7708.

End Of Year Planning: Bonuses

A year-end bonus is typically a sum of money paid to employees at the end of the year. It’s a wonderful program to have and can be a strong retention tool. Your bonus program can be calculated in a number of ways – a percentage of hours billed, a percentage of the company’s profits, how many years the employee has worked for you or it can be based on merit. There are four bonus programs that can be easily implemented to motivate, retain, and reward your employees.

  1. Performance Bonus. Each employee is given an individual goal at the beginning of each year and rewarded with a bonus at the end of the year if he achieves it.
  2. Non-Performance Bonus. Everyone in the company is awarded a bonus as a means of showing your appreciation for a job well done.
  3. Longevity Bonus. When awarding loyalty bonuses, divide employees into groups according to the number of years they have worked for you and then give the individuals in each group a specific amount of money based on your budget. For example, employees with 5 years of service receive $500; employees with 10 years of service receive $1,000, and so on.
  4. Non-Monetary Bonus. If you cash flow is not sufficient to cover monetary rewards for the entire staff, think about giving turkeys or holiday baskets filled with holiday treats, grocery store or gas cards, gift certificates or even extra paid-time-off.

For more information, please contact Jena Judd, HR Business Partner at jenajudd@hri-online or by phone at 443-321-7708.

Flu Season Is Quickly Approaching

Flu season starts in October and runs until March, but it can continue into spring. On average, 5-20% of the US population will get the flu each year. As an employer, it’s important to help prepare your employees for the influenza, and that means encouraging flu shots, examining sick leave policies, initiating and communicating basic flu prevention strategies and ensuring cleanliness in the workplace.

Encourage your employees to get the flu shot in order to maintain productivity and attendance in the workplace. You can even incentivize your workforce by offering an on-site flu clinic, free lunch, a casual dress day, or even paid-time-off.

Review your sick leave policy – or implement one if you don’t already have one in place. To help keep the flu away from the office, your leave policy should ensure that people can take time off when they are sick. Also communicate other related polices to your employees, including administrative leave transfer between employees, pay policy for sick leave, child care options, and what to do when ill during travel.

Keep your workplace clean. Make sure you have the following items available and that your staff knows where they can find them:

  • No-touch wastebaskets for used tissues
  • Soap and water
  • Alcohol-based hand sanitizer, such as Purell
  • Disposable towels
  • Cleaning/sanitation materials

By cleaning frequently touched surfaces, you can cut down on the number of cold and flu germs that are passed from one co-worker to another.

For more information on flu prevention, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Did You Know?

On September 12th, Chris Rutzebeck, our Benefits Manager, moderated a panel discussion focusing on How the ACA Will Impact Small Business Owners. The panel was sponsored by the Baltimore Washington Corridor Chamber of Commerce and hosted by the Laurel Regional Hospital.

Panelists included Tequila Terry of the Maryland Health Exchange, Mary Hesse with Corporate Insurance Systems and Deb Rivkin with CareFirst.

Thank you to all our participants! Check out our Facebook Album!