By most definitions, employment law isn't exactly fun. But a new blog uses comedy and interactive gimmicks to engage and educate business owners on the topic.
Mark Toth, creator of The Manpower Employment Blawg and chief legal officer at Manpower, a Milwaukee-based employment-services firm, is providing his online resources free of charge to help employers keep legal fees down and avoid unnecessary lawsuits.
Toth delivers information in an entertaining way, with an employment law sing-a-long, for example, and an "Employment Law Greatest Hits" -- a top 10 list of the best lawyer advice, with rules such as "Follow Your Own Dang Policies."
Visitors can also browse additional resources, which include employment-law alerts to keep employers up-to-date on any changes or new developments with the law, as well as guidelines for working with outside counsel and developing a law firm request for proposal, found under the heading "How to Keep Lawyers from Taking All Your Money."
The Manpower Blawg also features a video contest, "How to Hire if You Want to Get Fired," to encourage user participation. In the video, Toth dresses up as Elvis and conducts a mock interview. The employer who identifies the most interview mistakes will have a chance to win the grand prize of two airline tickets to anywhere in the continental United States.
Once employers have the laws down, they can also find other "Dumb But Fun Stuff" on The Manpower Blawg, such as the "Top 5 Best Work Songs Ever" with lyric commentary. To learn more, visit www.manpowerblogs.com.
It's Who You Know
The next front in the battle for top talent may be waged on Facebook.
Facing a tight labor market, companies are increasingly turning to the Web to locate qualified job candidates. To help small-business owners stay ahead in the recruiting game, Taleo, a Dublin, Calif.-based talent-management firm, has announced plans to provide its eRecruiting program as an application on Facebook.
Employers who use Taleo's Business Edition to host their career website or conduct online recruiting will now also be able to leverage the power of online social networking to spread the word about their company's job openings. When a hiring manager or recruiter visits a company's career site to browse the job listings, they will see a button next to each job that gives them the option to add the listing to their Facebook profile.
The recruiter or hiring manager will be directed to sign in to their Facebook page and download the application, which will allow others within their corporate network to see the selected job listings. All listings will appear on the profile in order of proximity to the Facebook user's network location, and will provide a link back to the employer's website.
"There is a significant population of progressive businesses that are using Facebook as their collaboration platform, so this [Taleo application] is a great opportunity for recruiters to share and post hot jobs within their corporate networks," said Jason Blessing, vice president and general manager of the SMB unit at Taleo.
While the target users for Taleo's application are hiring managers and online recruiters, Blessing says he thinks the application could have appeal to Generation Y users as well. "Often a hiring manager or a small company will give incentives to an employee who recruits potential job candidates," Blessing said. "In that situation, a Generation Y employee may be motivated to post a job on their profile."
Taleo plans to fully launch the application at the end of September. For more information, visit www.taleo.com.
Target: Vending Machines
Business owners looking to combat rising health-care costs may consider offering a new wellness program to their employees.
The Healthy Lifestyles program, developed by health-solutions provider HMC and available to all customers with an Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance account, was designed to help motivate employees to make healthy behavior changes.
Representatives from Anthem National Accounts will work with employers to identify the areas where changes can be made within the office, such as offering healthier items in vending machines. Anthem representatives also work with medical professionals to develop tailored programs for employees to address five key health concerns: tobacco cessation, weight control, nutrition and diet, exercise, and controlling stress.
Employers can incorporate the Healthy Lifestyles program into their benefits package, which allows employees to take advantage of additional counseling tools online and connect with health coaches. Employees will also have access to a national network of fitness centers, and will receive discounts on various health services.
"People want more 'how-to' advice, and Healthy Lifestyles helps them understand how the choices they make can affect their health," Samuel Cramer, vice presidents of clinical programs at HMC, said in a statement. "They learn how to make healthier choices and most importantly, develop their own personal strategy to help improve their health."