The 2016 HCM Year in Review

January 6, 2017

From the overtime rule to the Presidential election, 2016 has been full of twist and turns that will impact the Human Resource industry for years to come. Let’s take a look at a few of the top events that shook up HCM this year and will reshape the HR landscape:

1) Reporting to Work – Generation Z Starts Clocking In

In 2016, the first group of Generation Z started entering the workforce. Born between 1994 and 2010, this diverse generation is expected to have a major impact on today’s workforce. It is estimated that by 2019, there will be 30 million Generation Z employees in the U.S. workforce.

What’s so different about them:

  • Technology is their second nature – 43% of Generation Z find it easier to learn via online and digital courses
  • They prioritize finding their dream job over financial security
  • Roughly one-third of Generation Z employees plan to leave their current job in 3 years or less
  • Unlike their predecessors, Generation Z employees are seeking mentors to show them the ropes as they work their way up the corporate ladder.
2) New Forms & More Reporting – The New Forms I-9 and EEO-1 Report

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) both made news in 2016 with revised compliance forms.

On November 14, 2016, the USCIS released the new Form I-9 to the public. Employers may continue using the current version of Form I-9 until Jan. 21, 2017. The new Form I-9 is designed to be easier to complete electronically with drop-down lists and calendars for filling in dates, on-screen instructions for each field, easy access to the full instructions, and an option to clear the form and start over.

Other updates include:

  • Section 1 now asks for “other last names used”
  • Prompts to ensure the correct information is entered
  • Ability to enter multiple preparers and translators
  • An area to include additional information

Additionally, in May the EEOC issued its final rule to amend the EEO-1 Report. The new form includes 3,360 additional data fields to capture pay data by race and position. The EEOC says the information will be used to aid investigations into pay discrimination.

3) Ready, Set, STOP- The Overtime Final Ruling & Injunction

After the final rule was issued on May, 18 2016, much of last year was spent preparing for the DOL’s amendments for the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The rule was set to go into place December 1 and would have increased the standard salary level to qualify for overtime from $455 to $913 per week, $47,476 annually. That was until a federal judge issued an injunction weeks before the FLSA deadline, effectively halting the amendments indefinitely. The injunction seriously shook up the HR community with many on the SHRM Facebook page noting that they had already made pay and staffing changes because of the impending regulation. While many are still waiting for the courts final decision on the FLSA changes, some companies have decided to stand by the salary increases they instituted.

4) Hail to the Chief- Donald Trump’s Surprise Election

Without a doubt, the biggest event that shook up 2016 was the surprise election of Donald Trump. Despite poll numbers and expert predictions, Donald Trump clinched the victory and surpassed the 270 electoral college votes needed to win.

With his election, comes a new era of workplace changes. Four key HR-related items the President-elect is likely to focus on are:

  • The Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare) – The Trump administration has stated that they plan to work simultaneously to repeal and replace the ACA to avoid lapses in protection. He also expressed that he would consider keeping the provisions that allow for pre-existing conditions and children living at home to remain on their parents’ insurance.
  • Maternity Leave & Day Care – Trump’s plans include expanding unemployment insurance (UI) to accommodate six weeks of paid maternity leave and incentives for employers to provide child care at work.
  • E-Verify – In an August 2016 speech, Trump indicated that he planned to work with Congress to strengthen and expand the use of the E-Verify system across the country.
  • FLSA Overtime Rule – President-elect’s Trump’s appointment of Andrew Puzder as the Labor Secretary makes it highly unlikely that the Department of Labor will pursue further action to enforce or implement the final rule passed in May of 2016. Should the injunction be overturned, Trump has hinted that he is in favor of a small business exemption to the Department of Labor’s FLSA Overtime Rule Change.

There were plenty of other twist and turns to fill 2016, and we are sure that 2017 will not disappoint. But no matter what compliance changes come your way, Netchex is here to help with HCM. We continually monitor the ongoing changes to regulations such as the ACA, EEOC, and more to ensure our HR clients stay compliant at every turn.


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