Your OKHR Chapter is joining SHRM and other State SHRM Chapters throughout the nation in support of legislation intended to reduce the reporting burden impacting HR professionals and businesses under the Affordable Care Act employer mandate!
The Legislation is referred to as the Commonsense Reporting Act (H.R. 4070 and S. 2366). This SHRM-OKHR supported legislation proposes to:
The letter was prompted by concerns that the ACA employer mandate exposes employers that are complying with the ACA employer mandate to misguided tax penalties and compliance costs. The letter in support of the legislation states that Employer-sponsored plans are the largest providers of health insurance (66 percent of the workforce) to individuals in the United States and shares concerns regarding the reporting burden relating to the administration and implementation of workplace health care benefits.
Specifically, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) reporting requirements, employers are required to gather data on a monthly basis and report them annually to the Internal Revenue Service and their employees. This information is intended to verify compliance with the ACA’s employer mandate. According to a SHRM health care survey, 62 percent of HR professionals said reporting requirements were their biggest ACA challenge. Under the law, employers that are unable to file or furnish the IRS forms run the risk of incurring significant financial penalties. Employers diligently work to ensure compliance with the law, but too often find that reporting is administratively and financially burdensome.
The Commonsense Reporting Act will provide much needed relief to both employers and employees by modernizing and streamlining the reporting requirements. The letter in support of the legislation urges lawmakers to act on H.R.4070 and S.2366 this year. Under the Commonsense Reporting Act, employers would be provided with a second, voluntary option to report the most relevant information about the type of coverage offered to full-time employees, dependents and spouses to the IRS prior to Exchange open enrollment. Providing this voluntary, prospective reporting option will enable businesses to provide real-time employer coverage data to help consumers navigate their appropriate coverage needs. Prospective reporting will also reduce misguided tax penalty letters to employers which will provide relief and eliminate compliance costs to businesses.
The support letter closes by emphasizing the fact that HR professionals who impact the lives of more than 115 million employees!
If you or any of your colleagues have anecdotal stories of how complying with the ACA reporting requirements have led to fines on employers and employees, please consider sharing them. Even if you or your colleagues want to remain anonymous, the compelling stories can help SHRM Government Affairs representatives in their meetings with lawmakers, especially when they are trying to encourage them to take action sooner rather than later. If you have a story to tell regarding the impact ACA reporting or implementation requirements have had on you or your employer, please feel free to share that information with OKHR’s Legislative Vice-President Stefan Mecke at the phone number or email address provided below and he will route that feedback to the SHRM team handling this effort! If you have questions regarding this initiative, please feel free to contact OKHR Stefan directly!
Stefan Mecke – OKHR, Vice-President of Legislation
Stefan Mecke, JD, MBA, CFCM, SHRM-SCP, SPHR
Attorney|BARBER & BARTZ525 South Main Street, Suite 800 | Tulsa, Oklahoma 74103
Phone: 918.599.7755 | Fax: 918.599.7756 | email@example.com
Hello OKHR Friends!
As we begin to end this year and this decade, I would like to wish you all a very happy holiday season and thank you for everything that you do for our profession in Oklahoma.
I have a couple of exciting updates I would like to share with you.
First, beginning in 2020, SHRM will no longer be offering Membership Discounts like they have in the past. This is your last chance to take advantage of a SHRM Membership Discount which is good on a renewal or new membership. If you are a current SHRM member, you can still renew now to take advantage of the discount and it will add on 12 months to the end of your existing membership window. It will not impact, in any way, the current window of the SHRM Membership you have already paid for. Use code State20 when you are checking out and you will get $20 off your membership.
Speaking of SHRM Membership, the rates will be increasing in 2020. All the more reason to take advantage of this now. Tell your friends! Share on Social Media! Help us get the word out!
More SHRM news includes some great new tools for members. These are resources that we have been asking for and SHRM has delivered. The new tools include a Salary Benchmarking tool, Employee Cost Calculator, COBRA Notice Generator, and Performance Review Builder among others. You can access these on SHRM’s website under the Resources tab, then Interactive Tools. Go check it out!
We have an exciting 2020 coming at you from all perspectives, including membership. Remember that we are all OKHR and Local Chapter Ambassadors. Help us engage and retain our local chapter members so that they can experience all the greatness that we do throughout the year.
Thank you again and I’ll see you next year!
Kristi Spaethe, SHRM-CP, PHR
OKHR State Membership Director
For the second year in a row, Oklahoma State University students in the Human Resources Management Association have been recognized with the Student Chapter Merit Award by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) for providing superior growth and development opportunities to chapter members. Read more @ https://news.okstate.edu/articles/business/2019/shrm_merit-award.html
According to a study done by Harvard Business Review 93% of our communication is what comes across from non-verbal and only 7% are the actual words we say. That blew me away – that our tone, inflection, facial expressions and body posture is such a huge part of what comes across to others.
As HR professionals, we have the opportunity to “read” others, be it with the executive team, a room, or individuals. Joe Navarro who is a former FBI Agent and expert on reading non-verbal communication shares that the limbic brain is where the action is and gives us the true response as our emotional center.
We can learn the language of these cues by being aware of how we experience people at their most comfortable, and how behavior may change when the environment changes to stress or discomfort. Navarro’s book “What Every Body Is Saying” provides some great tips on reading others. The one I found most helpful was to watch other’s feet. If pointing away or toward the door, chances are they do not want to have the conversation or may be hiding information. It may also mean they are late and must go to another meeting. If their feet are pointing toward you, they are more apt to feel comfortable.
The key is to make others comfortable, look for changes to their base behavior, ask questions and watch their feet. It is best when there is an unobstructed view, so you have full observation of others. Now we can all practice in reading others and that is how we get better by learning the language of non-verbals.
Look forward to seeing you soon – Heidi
Heidi Hartman, OKHR District Director Elect
We’re excited to make some major announcements in the College Relations space on the blog this month. As students return to school, and those of us that are also educators get back in the semester swing, we’re already thinking about schedules for next Spring, and the heavy workload coming for Fall.
We’re inviting you to make some notes of important dates in your calendars, and dig into your networks to help us with on two projects:
College Competition – Save the Date
A college competition is returning in February 2020! We’re excited to announce that this competition will be held in partnership with the leadership conference on February 20-21, 2020 at the Stonecipher School of Business at East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma. Now is the time to think about your team as we begin thinking about the structure of the event.
We anticipate the following broad agenda:
Thursday, February 20: Competition begins in the afternoon so teams can travel in the morning. Teams will spend the afternoon in a competitive environment bringing their best knowledge about human resources and talent in the future. We hope to announce format in October, but we don’t expect it to be a case study. At this time, we think you’ll likely see a game or simulation format that encourages quick thinking and responsiveness, adaptability, and prioritization (You know, like HR on a day to day basis!)
Friday, February 21: We invite the teams to plan to stay on Thursday and attend the conference on Friday for opportunities to learn from the speakers and network with HR professionals from around the state of Oklahoma. You’ll travel home Friday afternoon.
College Scholarships – Open Now!
We’re excited to announce that our 2020 Scholarship Applications are live and online now. The applications will be open until midnight on Sunday, December 1, 2019. Once the process closes, we’ll review and look to notify winners in February, 2020. Scholarships will be announced and awarded during the College Competition.
Q: How many are awarded and how much are they?
A: There are 2 $1,000 scholarships
Q: What if my school doesn’t have an HR Major?
A: The scholarships are for students interested in pursuing a career in HR, with a relevant major and/or minor. For instance, a communications major with a leadership minor could be planning an HR career, and would be eligible. Please don’t limit yourself.
Q: What can help me have a better chance at a scholarship?
A: Be sure to follow directions and do your best work on the application. Take time to complete your statement about your future goals in human resources, let your ideas and passion show through, be sure to include your letter of recommendation.
Please keep an eye out on the OKHR State Council website for updated information about College Relations, stay in touch with your local chapter College Relations Representative, or reach out to us with any additional questions.
Many HR professionals consider their SHRM certification to be a valuable part of their professional portfolio. Being a certified professional can help increase your ability to take your career to the next level.
Read what Natalie Parrish, SHRM-CP had to share about her certification:
My SHRM-CP designation is important to me, but it is also important to my employees, my boss, my company, and my profession. When I started in my career I felt that becoming certified was not something I needed to do , but after spending time in this quickly changing field I found there was true value in certification and I am so glad I worked to achieve my SHRM-CP.
Are you already certified and need to recertify? I found that recertifying was simple because of my involvement with my local SHRM chapter. The chapter offers me quality programming and PDCs are offered for most events. Are you in need of more PDCs? You might consider joining a local chapter, looking online for a SHRM approved webinar or attending an OKHR Conference.
To lean more about certification visit https://www.shrm.org/certification/recertification/pages/default.aspx or contact us.
By Stefan Mecke, Esq.
My professional journey has led me into two specialized industries. Both require a significant amount of knowledge specific to those industries and I am asked by my clients to attend national seminars to stay on top of industry trends and regulatory changes impacting these industries. I was recently asked to attend such a seminar in Orlando, Florida at a conference center next to Disney World (there was a free shuttle running all day to and from the Disney parks). The location was far from my home in Tulsa but when my clients ask for something, I like to deliver, as difficult as it may be. After hearing of the close proximity to the parks, my young boys and wife (a schoolteacher) were out of school and expressed some interest in accompanying me on this particular work trip.
A “Fine” Experience
Like many other family adventures, our trip started at Fine Airport Parking, a parking facility just off the Tulsa Airport, then owned and operated by local Tulsan Mike Fine. A visit to Fine always brings back fond memories for me. Some of the first friends I met during my first year of college recruited me to drive a shuttle van for Fine. The job consisted of driving the same single circle to and from the airport and Fine lot hundreds of times per day. The job didn’t sound very exciting but my friends assured me that Mike Fine ran a great organization and “took care of his people.” Fine turned out to be a perfect place to work for a busy college student in constant need of funds. The hours were perfect as the need for airport parking/transportation services surged during weekends, holidays and summers when college course loads were less demanding.
The job at Fine also introduced me to my first workplace mentor and leader, Mike Fine. Mike Fine exhibited true excellence through his customer focused vision, pride in his company and compassion for his employees. Through his daily actions, Mike Fine led by example and taught so many college students in a way that could not be achieved through any college textbook; the powerful impact one can have by leading others with motivation and encouragement. Mike Fine was hands on and was quick to personally visit with team members about (i) how our day was going, (ii) how our school program was going, and (iii) how our family or dating relationships were fairing. The airport environment was fast-paced and hectic but Mike Fine would often pull a driver out of circulation or meet employees in the breakroom to check in and make sure everyone was ok, on and off the job.
Travelling business leaders and consultants would often ask me (as a shuttle van driver) what I thought made Fine such a special place. They would comment that they supported organizations throughout the US but struggled to duplicate the high (i) level of teamwork, (ii) motivation and commitment they experienced while parking at Fine. I always had the answer, it was Mike Fine. Before the introduction of academic customer service related terms like “moments of truth,” (delivering on a customer experience that will forever change the customer’s satisfaction, positively or negatively) “wow experiences” and “journey mapping” (tools used to orient organizations to the customer’s point of view), Mike Fine was delivering on these customer focused concepts. Customers were fanatical about Fine and would often comment that the airport travel experience, which could be so painful and demoralizing, came to a pleasant end once they saw a fine shuttle pull up to whisk them back home.
Baby on Board
I experienced Mike Fine’s warmth and compassion during a particular low point in my shuttle driving career. A day I thought would be my last at Fine. The day started with an ice storm and the fine lot and airport drive was treacherous. I eagerly picked up a young couple at the airport delicately carrying a newborn baby in their arms. After safely securing this precious cargo in the shuttle van, I proceeded to the fine lot. Concerned with the baby’s safety on such a slippery walk, I suggested pulling the shuttle van directly up to the front door of the Fine lobby to drop off Mom and Baby while Dad warmed up the car and returned to pick them up.
The unfortunate detail I had forgotten while preparing this careful plan was that the roof above the lobby was only tall enough for cars, not shuttle vans. I approached the lobby and felt a hard jolt and loud crash. Mom and Baby were rattled due to the impact but fortunately both were unharmed, physically anyway. The shuttle van and the roof did not recover as well and there was significant visible damage. I was devastated that such a great career had come to such an abrupt end…or had it?
Within seconds, Mike Fine, although this was a Saturday morning, appeared in the lobby and greeted me like a father greeting a college-aged son that had been in an accident. He asked me two questions: (i) was I ok? and (ii) were the customers ok?. That was all Mike Fine cared about, was everyone ok. Mike Fine ushered the family into his office and met with them privately. He asked me to meet with him afterward and assured me that the family was appreciative of my extra effort to protect their baby, even though my plan had gone terribly wrong. He also told me not to worry about the damage to the van or the roof and that his insurance would take care of it. Finally, he told me to grab a soda and some popcorn and make sure I was ok before I went back in circulation with another van that he had waiting for me (when I was ready).
I was not fired, or even disciplined after all. I was picked up and encouraged, even after failing so miserably. I had been trying to make an extra effort for a customer and that was what Mike Fine chose to focus in on. I am certain that family remained loyal to Fine Airport Parking after that unfortunate event, in large part due to the quick actions of Mike Fine. Later in school I learned of the term service recovery (the concept that businesses can actually achieve more loyalty from a customer after a serious mistake or mishap, based on the way they recover for that customer). I could have skipped that section in the book, as I had learned all I needed to know about “service recovery” and positive leadership from Mike Fine.
“Just Go Home”
After ample time reflecting on my Fine experiences, my boys loaded up on complimentary popcorn, sodas and cookies and we boarded the shuttle van and quickly arrived at the Tulsa Airport. Many readers are intimately familiar with the airport entry and boarding process, in particular, when travelling with kids. After making it through that process, we checked the board and confirmed our flight to Orlando was still on schedule. Suddenly and without warning, our trip took a dark and drastic turn about 5 minutes before our flight was scheduled to begin boarding passengers. The flight had been delayed for unclear reasons. We raced up to the ticket counter to be greeted with an uncomfortably long line of some pretty frustrated people. When we got to the counter clerk we pleaded our positions (our kids put on their saddest faces as we plead for assistance or some kind of mercy). We received none of these things from the clerk who very quickly gave us his advice: “Just go Home”.
Dreams of sitting in classes while my family took Disney Park by storm started to quickly fade. We informed the clerk that we were at the airport to go somewhere. To go away from our home and have an adventure (and in my case, get a much needed industry educational update). This clerk was no Mike Fine. This clerk was not warm or compassionate. This clerk was burned-out. I wondered if this clerk started the day burned-out or if it happened slowly with that long line of frustrated customers. I also wondered what the airline was doing to train its people and if they had tools in place for employees to help them manage the stressful environment they were inevitably put in from time-to-time.
Regardless of whether it was the airline or the clerk that was burned out and didn’t care, it became clear that there was nothing the clerk and/or the airline was prepared to do for us. No other planes, no other flights, just the cold reality of returning to the Tulsa suburbs when we thought we would be in Orlando. After aimlessly waiting at the Tulsa Airport for four hours we realized we were not getting out of Tulsa by plane. We were on our own. We grabbed a rental car and drove to the Oklahoma City airport where we were placed on a flight and finally on our way to Orlando. My client would be pleased to know I did not miss a minute of the industry conference.
“Just Hook a Ride with a Friend”
Orlando was breathtaking and the variety of options for a family with young kids was absolutely endless. How could anyone not love every minute of Orlando we thought, and then we met him…Sieve the Shuttle Driver. My family was thrilled to learn that the hotel shuttle van had virtually endless destinations, they were set. Unfortunately for them, Sieve did not appear to have been trained by someone like Mike Fine on the fine art of shuttle driving. He presented as a burnout. He didn’t greet my family, he didn’t engage or otherwise talk to my family and he left them stranded at the parks on many occasions.
Sieve left my family sitting at the designated pick up location after a full-day at the parks. They had been waiting for the shuttle at the designated time and place for about 40 minutes. Fearing something was wrong they called the number associated with the van. Sieve proceeded to inform my wife that he had been at the pick-up place and no customers showed, so he left. More importantly, he was an independent contractor and not contractually obligated (or paid) by the hotel to return to pick her up. Sieve’s single solution: “Hook a Ride with a Friend.” We had no friends in Orlando, my family was on their own again. I was little help from the conference center classroom.
My wife, distraught and stranded was approached by a Disney Park employee asking if he could do anything or assist them in any way. He was horrified that one of the nearby hotels would strand a mom with young kids. He phoned others within Disney inquiring into complimentary transportation, taxis or other options for my family. This park employee approached them, inserted himself into their unfortunate situation, and was actively trying to help. He presented as a hero, not a burnout. Ultimately, he secured a cab for my family but did not stop there. He left them with several highly coveted “fast-pass” tickets for Disney parks, an organization that had no part in or responsibility for stranding my family. At that point, our boys were thrilled that they had been mistreated and the ordeal quickly turned from demoralizing to uplifting. In fact, the used the fast-pass tickets the next day to avoid long lines at “Soarin.” (a ride that suspends guests in air while soaring around the world).
Another “Fine” Experience
While there were some significant challenges associated with our Orlando trip, overall our boys had a wonderful time. Eventually it was time to return to Tulsa and we found ourselves walking on to a Fine shuttle van that was waiting for us outside our gate at approximately 2 am. The driver greeted us, visited with our boys about their Disney experience and hustled our bags onto the van. When we arrived at Fine he invited us in for coffee, soda, popcorn and even roses for my wife. The Fine experience was once again a unique experience compared to many of the service providers we had experienced while on the road.
There have certainly been more recent, public and outrageous ordeals experienced by others while trying to travel from one place to another by plane. There are important lessons that can be learned from these experiences that can be applied to our profession as service providers. Many failures by service providers manifest themselves on the front-lines with employees that are likely overly stressed or burned out from their environments. These problems often stem from operations and cultures well beyond the front-line customer experience that can be negative, stressful and counter-productive. I encourage employers I meet with to consider the impact of negative employee experiences with the same passion as the impact of negative customer experiences. To truly take care of our customers and clients, we must take care of our employees that are interacting with them on the front lines as well as support staff and leadership behind the scenes. Are they all ok? If they are, there is a good chance your customers and clients will be ok…if not, they may be left feeling stranded and seeking help from other service providers, like your competitors.
Are your front-line employees, supervisors and leaders presenting as the equivalent of the Fine Airport Parking shuttle driver in Tulsa or Sieve in Orlando?
HR in Indian Country is back for its 3rd installment August 22nd and 23rd at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, OK. This conference has continued to grow in size and notoriety each year, and this year promises to continue that trend. HR in Indian Country is the only conference developed specifically for HR professionals supporting or working with Native American tribes in this region.
Who Should Attend?
Why Would I Want To Attend?
Chockma’shki (Thank you in Chickasaw),
TransformHR OKHR 2019 State Conference
4 Ways to Transform Your Experience
Lastly, thank a volunteer. We have over 650 attendees, nearly one hundred exhibitors and dozens of dedicated volunteers that make this conference happen. So if you see one in the hall, please give them a high five and a big thank you. It’s there efforts that make truly Tranform HR.
We are so excited to host the 2019 OKHR Conference in Norman this year and have some exciting new additions. New this year, Ricky DeFalco, is pulling together a fantastic fundraising event with a wine/beer/pull for $25 a pull with the added surprise of a potential gift attached to the pull. In addition, we will have Kendra Scott and Rustic Cuff on sight for a limited time with the option to purchase new spring jewelry. Rustic Cuff has created a custom “I love HR” charm in the conference colors in both silver and gold for $52. A portion of all sales will go towards the Foundation fundraiser. For those of you who are “I heart HR man”, perhaps purchase one for a mother’s day gift? We hope to see many of our friends and colleges in a couple of weeks and if you’re not able to join but would like to purchase a bracelet or would like to pre-order, please visit: https://www.okhr.org/page-18133
Wine & Beer Pull with a Twist
At this years TransformHR Conference will have our own version of a wine/beer pull. The twist is that we will have specially marked wine/beer that will have a prize included. No one will know which bottles will contain a prize until you unwrap your purchase. This event will be more like a Wine and Beer Pull Raffle. Unlike a typical raffle, everyone wins a bottle of wine/beer and some will also win a donated prize.
100% of your purchase will go directly to the SHRM Foundation.
Rustic Cuff - I LOVE HR Custom Bracelet
This beautiful piece of jewelry is only available through The TransformHR Conference.
A mix of 6mm stainless steel beads, shamballa beads and silicone beads. It is available in gold or silver and includes a custom I Love HR pendent. The beads and pendent have been custom designed to reflect the TransformHR Conference colors.
Price per bracelet $52 = a $17 donation to the SHRM Foundation (Limited Supply available)
Just in case you needed an excuse to get some beautiful new jewelry just in time for Summer. We are giving you a great reason to make a purchase at our event.
We are so excited to have Oklahoma’s very own Rustic Cuff onsite. They have been very generous to donate their time and resources to help us raise money for the SHRM Foundation.
20% of all onsite sales will go directly back to the SHRM Foundation
The Kendra Scott company maintains a focus on its customers and the causes close to their hearts, abiding by the mantra “What Matters to You, Matters to Us.” The SHRM Foundation matters to us and Kendra Scott is generously sending their associates and beautiful jewelry to our conference for you.