Taking a cautious but optimistic approach, the country is starting to reopen this month in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In New York and other states, ramping back up and allowing people to return to work is happening in phases to ensure health and safety and prevent a coronavirus reoccurrence. Never before has there been such a critical time to reach out to your team members, properly manage their compensation and related issues, and manage your HR data – all while staying compliant.
That’s where your human resource information system (HRIS) comes into play. Here are four ways you can put it to the best use for your company at this time:
1. Payroll and Tax Administration
Many businesses have had to furlough or lay off employees during the current global pandemic. The challenges of handling payroll and tax issues - while always having had the potential to create major management headaches - have reached unprecedented new levels. Among many other applications, you can use your HRIS to assist with:
- Remotely updating and processing payroll.
- Managing changes to employee pay rates and scheduled hours.
- Placing temporary holds on voluntary benefit deductions and tracking any that are missed.
- Working within the parameters of the federal CARES Act, including tracking employee payments towards federal and state leave policies or changes to 401(k) loan deduction due to new limits and deferral options.
2. Management of Employee HR Data
Even if you’re not currently hiring, this is an excellent time to develop or reassess your online recruitment and onboarding processes. You can also use your HRIS to:
- Have employees review and update their personal and emergency contact information via the system’s self-service capabilities.
- Enable team members to change their tax withholdings, and switch to direct deposit versus paper checks if they haven’t done so previously.
- Update your benefit administration system to allow employees the ability to change their section-125 benefit elections if you are allowing employees to make mid-year changes per the recent optional changes issued by the IRS.
3. Ensuring Compliance
Does your business meet thresholds for federal and state leave laws? Do you know which workers are eligible for the newly-mandated leave policies? All this data and more are available via your HRIS. You can use it to stay fully compliant by:
- Posting required notices and updated policies, which employees can acknowledge electronically.
- Creating new policies and procedures to communicate and track the time taken.
- Running related reports.
- Providing a central point and link out to COVID return to work resources or daily health screening surveys.
4. Communicating with Your Employees
People’s lives have been turned upside down in the past three months. They may be trying to work from a makeshift home office, oversee their children’s schooling, reorganize graduations, weddings, and other milestone events, care for themselves, and others who may have health issues – or all of the above. Crank your communications up a notch by placing emphasis on being caring, compassionate, and empathic to all that’s going on. Use your HRIS to:
- Remind people of your Employee Assistance Program (EAP), telemedicine options, or other benefits they may need.
- Provide ongoing updates on company changes and developments.
- Manage work schedule changes through web-based time and attendance.
- Provide ongoing visibility and two-way communication with managers.
HR Works Can Help
For a closer look at how HR Works can assist you with your HRIS technology needs as your company prepares to bounce back from COVID-19 and for other important resources at this time, contact us online or give us a call. Last but not least, stay safe and well! #InThisTogether