As we approach “election season”, I’m sure many are already tuning out the political ads. If that’s you, you might have only clicked on this article because it has “Mumbojumbo” in the title. But hopefully you haven’t tuned me out yet, because I would like to share with you an experience that I believe is invaluable for Human Resources professionals.
The local SHRM chapter, IndySHRM, recently hosted a Day at the Statehouse that invited anyone to join in a free, half-day learning experience. Those of us in the Human Resources field are expected to understand the business aspect as well as the human aspect of our respective industry. And when your state politicians are making laws and passing legislation that will impact your business and your humans, otherwise known as employees, then you need to know about it.
Understanding New Legislation
The Legislative Affairs committee within IndySHRM, of which I am a committee member, put together this experience at the Indiana Statehouse. The day started with an overview of the legislative process: How does legislation (a bill) get started? What does it go through? How does it get passed? What can I do to impact this? Then our participants were presented with a list of bills that had some sort of Human Resources interest and were still alive at the halfway point of the legislative session.
One of the proposed bills talked about wage payment and wage assignments. We talked about this in-depth with the group because one of the participants, an ExactHire client as it happened to be, asked for more details. To be a key player in your organization it is wise to be knowledgeable about current laws but also those that are in the pipeline.
While we here at ExactHire are not Labor and Employment Law attorneys, we do find that investing our time in understanding the political and legal landscape is important. At the very least it helps us be a better partner to our clients. For example, if you ask us to put a question on your application asking applicants if they’ve been convicted of a felony, we are going to ask you if you are sure you want this on your application because we know several states (and some cities) have specific wording that must be used when asking about criminal history (if the questions are even allowed – see “Ban the Box”). Again, we are not legal experts and we would never give you legal advice, but we will bring items to your attention that we think you should be certain about…or for which you should pursue legal advice.
I encourage you to participate in any legal updates or recaps that your local SHRM chapters may be hosting so that you can be in the know. Those of us at ExactHire take advantage of these opportunities because we want to be the best partner we can be to our clients by staying at the front of the curve. We promise, no mumbojumbo, just a commitment to your success.