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BUS 502 HUMAN RESOURCE MANSGEMENT

SPRING 2015

Submission: Mid Term

Nahian Kabir Sarkar


ID:20885

QUESTIONS I (20% Points):


Suppose that you are currently the Human Resource (HR) Manager of a hypothetical company
Hugo, Inc. Explain the strategic management process in your part of Human Resource
Managerwith practical examples based on the framework of human resource management - ARDM

The process of developing a strategic human resources management (HRM) plan allows businesses of
any size to better understand the human resources available to them, determine what human resources
they will need, decide how to best use the human resources at their disposal, and develop a system to
ensure human resources needs are sufficiently covered.
1. Identify both opportunities and problems that can affect your HRM plan. Consider the business
environment, upcoming projects, potential drops in revenue, and anything else that may affect how many
employees youll need and be able to hire.
2. Consider your current and future demand for human resources. Look at the quantity of employees you
will need as well as the job functions theyll have to perform. Finding a concrete number is nearly
impossible, but estimating projected human resource needs will help you create a more effective HRM
plan. If necessary, provide online training opportunities to ready employees to step into positions with
more responsibility.
3. Analyze the human resources you have available. Look at the strengths and skills of current employees,
as well as their weaknesses. This will help you to better place each employee in a position to achieve their
best and avoid problems that might arise when an employee is put into a position for which he has no
aptitude. Consider your business environment, space and company culture as well to see how you can
best use all of the available resources you have on hand.
4. Create a plan to mesh the demand for human resources with the human resources you have available. If
the demand is greater than the supply, youll need to determine how to fill that gap and find the additional
resources you need. This may mean authorizing overtime hours, using contract or temporary workers, or
hiring new employees. If you have more employees than you need, youll have to look for options to help
you reduce the workforce in some way. This might involve early retirements, layoffs or even
terminations.

Developing a strategic human resources management plan will help you more effectively and efficiently
meet the needs your business has for qualified employees who can fulfill their job functions successfully.
If youre struggling with your HRM plan, there are eLearning opportunities available to help you improve
your skills and create a better plan.

Human Resource Management


Steps in developing HRM strategy
Step 1: Get the 'big picture'
Understand your business strategy.
Highlight the key driving forces of your business. What are they? e.g. technology, distribution,
competition, the markets.
What are the implications of the driving forces for the people side of your business?
What is the fundamental people contribution to bottom line business performance?
Step 2: Develop a Mission Statement or Statement of Intent
That relates to the people side of the business.
Do not be put off by negative reactions to the words or references to idealistic statements - it is the actual
process of thinking through the issues in a formal and explicit manner that is important.
What do your people contribute?
Step 3: Conduct a SWOT analysis of the organization
Focus on the internal strengths and weaknesses of the people side of the business.
Consider the current skill and capability issues.
Vigorously research the external business and market environment. High light the opportunities and
threats relating to the people side of the business.
What impact will/ might they have on business performance?
Consider skill shortages?
The impact of new technology on staffing levels?
From this analysis you then need to review the capability of your personnel department. Complete a
SWOT analysis of the department - consider in detail the department's current areas of operation, the
service levels and competences of your personnel staff.
Step 4: Conduct a detailed human resources analysis

Concentrate on the organization's COPS (culture, organization, people, HR systems)


Consider: Where you are now? Where do you want to be?
What gaps exists between the reality of where you are now and where you want to be?
Exhaust your analysis of the four dimensions.
Step 5: Determine critical people issues
Go back to the business strategy and examine it against your SWOT and COPS Analysis
Identify the critical people issues namely those people issues that you must address. Those which have a
key impact on the delivery of your business strategy.
Prioritize the critical people issues. What will happen if you fail to address them?
Remember you are trying to identify where you should be focusing your efforts and resources.
Step 6: Develop consequences and solutions
For each critical issue highlight the options for managerial action generate, elaborate and create - don't go
for the obvious. This is an important step as frequently people jump for the known rather than challenge
existing assumptions about the way things have been done in the past. Think about the consequences of
taking various courses of action.
Consider the mix of HR systems needed to address the issues. Do you need to improve communications,
training or pay?
What are the implications for the business and the personnel function?
Once you have worked through the process it should then be possible to translate the action plan into
broad objectives. These will need to be broken down into the specialist HR Systems areas of:
employee training and development
management development
organization development
performance appraisal
employee reward
employee selection and recruitment
manpower planning
communication

Develop your action plan around the critical issues. Set targets and dates for the accomplishment of the
key objectives.
Step 7: Implementation and evaluation of the action plans
The ultimate purpose of developing a human resource strategy is to ensure that the objectives set are
mutually supportive so that the reward and payment systems are integrated with employee training and
career development plans.
There is very little value or benefit in training people only to then frustrate them through a failure to
provide ample career and development opportunities.

QUESTIONS II (20% Points):


Assuming that you are the HR Manager of a hypothetical company Hugo, Inc., (a) provide a job
descriptions and job specifications for your assistant before hiring a person with whom to replace
you. (b) For job design, explain the job characteristics model of work motivation.

Administrative Assistant hugo inc


Position Description
The Administrative Assistant will support the
hugo inc.
Market Operations team. You will
support the hugo inc. Market Manager,Nahian Kabir Operations and the VP of Market Operations
for hugo inc.
.
Primary Responsibilities:
Performs general clerical duties to include but not limited to: photocopying, faxing, mail distribution and
filing.
Coordinates and maintains records for staff office space, phones, company credit cards and office keys.
Creates and modifies various documents using Microsoft Office.
Maintains Outlook calendar(s) in current and accurate status.
Coordinates meetings and conference calls as needed or anticipated.
Coordinates travel arrangements as needed.
Answer phones promptly and uses good judgment to prioritize the distribution of messages in a timely
manner.
Prepares meeting materials and assists with the development of PowerPoint presentations.

Responsible for keeping inventory of all office supplies and placing orders for replenishment is needed.
Records minutes at various meetings and archives them accordingly.
Performs all other related duties as assigned.
Requirements:
High school diploma/GED
3+ years of administrative support experience with increasing responsibility required
Microsoft Word: Mail merge and know how to embed documents
Microsoft Excel: (transferring Word documents to Excel and editing spreadsheets)
Assets:
Some college coursework or business vocational school education preferred
Previous experience in a healthcare environment preferred
Bilingual/Spanish is a plus
Core Competencies:
Strong attention to detail and excellent organizational skills required.
Must have the ability to multi-task in a fast paced and deadline driven environment.
Must be able to maintain professionalism and a positive service attitude at all times.
Must be able to work Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Hugo inc is part of the family of companies that make one of the leaders across most major segments
of the US health care system.
Hugo inc helps nearly 60 million Americans live their lives to the fullest by educating them about their
symptoms, conditions and treatments; helping them to navigate the system, finance their health care needs
and stay on track with their health goals. No other business touches so many lives in such a positive way.
And we do it all with every action focused on our shared values of Integrity, Compassion, Relationships,
Innovation & Performance.
At Hugo inc , you will perform within an innovative culture thats focused on transformational
change in the health care system. You will leverage your skills across a diverse and multi-faceted
business. And you will make contributions that will have an impact thats greater than youve ever
imagined.
Diversity creates a healthier atmosphere: equal opportunity employer M/F/D/V

Hugo inc is a drug-free workplace. Candidates are required to pass a drug test before beginning
employment. In addition, employees in certain positions are subject to random drug testing

b) Job Characteristics Model


The job characteristics model is one of the most influential attempts to design jobs with increased
motivational properties.Proposed by Hackman and Oldham, the model describes five core job dimensions
leading to three critical psychological states, resulting in work-related outcomes.

The Job Characteristics Model has five core job dimensions.

Skill variety refers to the extent to which the job requires a person to utilize multiple high-level skills. A
car wash employee whose job consists of directing customers into the automated car wash demonstrates
low levels of skill variety, whereas a car wash employee who acts as a cashier, maintains carwash
equipment, and manages the inventory of chemicals demonstrates high skill variety.
Task identity refers to the degree to which a person is in charge of completing an identifiable piece of
work from start to finish. A Web designer who designs parts of a Web site will have low task identity,
because the work blends in with other Web designers work; in the end it will be hard for any one person
to claim responsibility for the final output. The Web master who designs an entire Web site will have high
task identity.
Task significance refers to whether a persons job substantially affects other peoples work, health, or
well-being. A janitor who cleans the floors at an office building may find the job low in significance,
thinking it is not a very important job. However, janitors cleaning the floors at a hospital may see their
role as essential in helping patients get better. When they feel that their tasks are significant, employees
tend to feel that they are making an impact on their environment, and their feelings of self-worth are
boosted.
Autonomy is the degree to which a person has the freedom to decide how to perform his or her tasks. As
an example, an instructor who is required to follow a predetermined textbook, covering a given list of
topics using a specified list of classroom activities, has low autonomy. On the other hand, an instructor

who is free to choose the textbook, design the course content, and use any relevant materials when
delivering lectures has higher levels of autonomy. Autonomy increases motivation at work, but it also has
other benefits. Giving employees autonomy at work is a key to individual as well as company success,
because autonomous employees are free to choose how to do their jobs and therefore can be more
effective. They are also less likely to adopt a this is not my job approach to their work environment and
instead be proactive (do what needs to be done without waiting to be told what to do) and creative.[ The
consequence of this resourcefulness can be higher company performance. For example, a Cornell
University study shows that small businesses that gave employees autonomy grew four times more than
those that did not.[ Giving employees autonomy is also a great way to train them on the job. For example,
Guccis CEO Robert Polet points to the level of autonomy he was given while working at Unilever PLC
as a key to his development of leadership talents. Autonomy can arise from workplace features, such as
telecommuting, company structure, organizational climate, and leadership style.

3. In recruiting employees to fill open positions, you have two resources of


manpower: internal and external. If you have two positions - High and
Low, from which source are you going to recruit to fill both positions?
Why?
The searching of suitable candidates and informing them about the openings in the
enterprise is the most important aspect of recruitment process.
The candidates may be available inside or outside the organization. Basically, there
are two sources of recruitment i.e., internal and external sources.

(A) Internal Sources:


Best employees can be found within the organisation When a vacancy arises in
the organisation, it may be given to an employee who is already on the pay-roll.
Internal sources include promotion, transfer and in certain cases demotion. When a
higher post is given to a deserving employee, it motivates all other employees of
the organisation to work hard. The employees can be informed of such a vacancy by
internal advertisement.

Advantages of Internal Sources:


The Following are The Advantages of Internal Sources:
1. Improves morale:

When an employee from inside the organisation is given the higher post, it helps in
increasing the morale of all employees. Generally every employee expects
promotion to a higher post carrying more status and pay (if he fulfills the other
requirements).
2. No Error in Selection:
When an employee is selected from inside, there is a least possibility of errors in
selection since every company maintains complete record of its employees and can
judge them in a better manner.
3. Promotes Loyalty:
It promotes loyalty among the employees as they feel secured on account of
chances of advancement.
4. No Hasty Decision:
The chances of hasty decisions are completely eliminated as the existing employees
are well tried and can be relied upon.
5. Economy in Training Costs:
The existing employees are fully aware of the operating procedures and policies of
the organisation. The existing employees require little training and it brings
economy in training costs.
6. Self-Development:
It encourages self-development among the employees as they can look forward to
occupy higher posts.
Disadvantages of Internal Sources:
(i) It discourages capable persons from outside to join the concern.
(ii) It is possible that the requisite number of persons possessing qualifications for
the vacant posts may not be available in the organisation.
(iii) For posts requiring innovations and creative thinking, this method of recruitment
cannot be followed.
(iv) If only seniority is the criterion for promotion, then the person filling the vacant
post may not be really capable.
Inspite of the disadvantages, it is frequently used as a source of recruitment for
lower positions. It may lead to nepotism and favouritism. The employees may be
employed on the basis of their recommendation and not suitability.

(B) External Sources:


All organisations have to use external sources for recruitment to higher positions
when existing employees are not suitable. More persons are needed when
expansions are undertaken.
The external sources are discussed below:
ows which attract many prospective employees. Many a time advertisements may
be made for a special class of work force (say married ladies) who worked prior to
their marriage.
These ladies can also prove to be very good source of work force. Similarly there is
the labour market consisting of physically handicapped. Visits to other companies
also help in finding new sources of recruitment.
Merits of External Sources:
1. Availability of Suitable Persons:
Internal sources, sometimes, may not be able to supply suitable persons from
within. External sources do give a wide choice to the management. A large number
of applicants may be willing to join the organisation. They will also be suitable as
per the requirements of skill, training and education.
2. Brings New Ideas:
The selection of persons from outside sources will have the benefit of new ideas.
The persons having experience in other concerns will be able to suggest new things
and methods. This will keep the organisation in a competitive position.
3. Economical:
This method of recruitment can prove to be economical because new employees are
already trained and experienced and do not require much training for the jobs.
Demerits of External Sources:
1. Demoralisation:
When new persons from outside join the organisation then present employees feel
demoralised because these positions should have gone to them. There can be a
heart burning among old employees. Some employees may even leave the
enterprise and go for better avenues in other concerns.
2. Lack of Co-Operation:

The old staff may not co-operate with the new employees because they feel that
their right has been snatched away by them. This problem will be acute especially
when persons for higher positions are recruited from outside.
3. Expensive:
The process of recruiting from outside is very expensive. It starts with inserting
costly advertisements in the media and then arranging written tests and conducting
interviews. In spite of all this if suitable persons are not available, then the whole
process will have to be repeated.
4. Problem of Maladjustment:
There may be a possibility that the new entrants have not been able to adjust in the
new environment. They may not temperamentally adjust with the new persons. In
such cases either the persons may leave themselves or management may have to
replace them. These things have adverse effect on the working of the organisation.
Suitability of External Sources of Recruitment:
External Sources of Recruitment are Suitable for The Following Reasons:
(i) The required qualities such as will, skill, talent, knowledge etc., are available from
external sources.
(ii) It can help in bringing new ideas, better techniques and improved methods to
the organisation.
(iii) The selection of candidates will be without preconceived notions or reservations.
(iv) The cost of employees will be minimum because candidates selected in this
method will be placed in the minimum pay scale.
(v) The entry of new persons with varied experience and talent will help in human
resource mix.
(vi) The existing employees will also broaden their personality.
(vii) The entry of qualitative persons from outside will be in the long-run interest of
the organisation.

So to me it can be said that both of sources are needed to finally recruit the
candidates.

Performance evaluation is important for compensation and promotion of employees.


(a) Explain the process of performance evaluation with practical examples. (b) How
could you create a market-competitive pay plan? Explain this with the point
system.

4.Performance evaluation is important for compensation and promotion of


employees. (a) Explain the process of performance evaluation with
practical examples. (b) How could you create a market-competitive pay
plan? Explain this with the point system.

Most appraisal instruments require raters to evaluate employees in relation to some


standard of excellence. With employee comparison systems, however, employee
performance is evaluated relative to the performance of other employees. In other
words, employee comparison systems use rankings, rather than ratings. A number
of formats can be used to rank employees, such as simple rankings, paired
comparisons, or forced distributions. Simple rankings require raters to rank-order
their employees from best to worst, according to their job performance. When using
the paired comparison

Exhibit 1
Rating Errors and their Likely Causes

Errors

Leniency

Severity

Central tendency

F
X

Errors

Halo

F
X

Implicit personality
theory

Recency

X
Key:
A

administrative
procedures

D political considerations

poorly defined rating


standards

E incomplete information

C memory decay

rater's lack of
conscientiousness

approach, a rater compares each possible pair of employees. For example,


Employee 1 is compared to Employees 2 and 3, and Employee 2 is compared to
Employee 3. The employee winning the most "contests" receives the highest
ranking. A forced distribution approach requires a rater to assign a certain
percentage of employees to each category of excellence, such as best, average, or
worst. Forced distribution is analogous to grading on a curve, where a certain
percentage of students get As, a certain percentage get Bs, and so forth.
GRAPHIC RATING SCALE.
A graphic rating scale (GRS) presents appraisers with a list of dimensions, which are
aspects of performance that determine an employee's effectiveness. Examples of
performance dimensions are cooperativeness, adaptability, maturity, and
motivation. Each dimension is accompanied by a multi-point (e.g., 3, 5, or 7) rating
scale. The points along the scale are defined by numbers and/or descriptive words
or phrases that indicate the level of performance. The midpoint of the scale is
usually anchored by such words as "average," "adequate," "satisfactory," or "meets
standards."
Many organizations use graphic rating scales because they are easy to use and cost
little to develop. HR professionals can develop such forms quickly, and because the
dimensions and anchors are written at a general level, a single form is applicable to
all or most jobs within an organization. Graphic rating scales do present a number of
problems, however. Such scales may not effectively direct behavior; that is, the
rating scale does not clearly indicate what a person must do to achieve a given
rating, thus employees are left in the dark as to what is expected of them. For

instance, an employee given a rating of 2 on "attitude" may have a difficult time


figuring out how to improve.
BEHAVIORALLY-ANCHORED RATING SCALES.
A behaviorally-anchored rating scale (BARS), like a graphic rating scale, requires
appraisers to rate employees on different performance dimensions. The typical
BARS includes seven or eight performance dimensions, each anchored by a multipoint scale. But the rating scales used on BARS are constructed differently than
those used on graphic rating scales. Rather than using numbers or adjectives, a
BARS anchors each dimension with examples of specific job behaviors that reflect
varying levels of performance.
The process for developing a BARS is rather complex. Briefly, it starts with a job
analysis, using the critical incident technique. This involves having experts generate
a list of critical incidentsor specific examples of poor, average, and excellent
behaviorsthat are related to a certain job. The incidents are then categorized
bydimension. Finally, a rating scale is developed for each dimension, using these
behaviors as "anchors" to define points along the scale.
BEHAVIOR OBSERVATION SCALES.
A behavior observation scale (BOS) contains a list of desired behaviors required for
the successful performance of specific jobs, which are assessed based on the
frequency with which they occur. The development BOS, like BARS, also begins with
experts generating critical incidents for the jobs in the organization and categorizing
these incidents into dimensions. One major difference between BARS and BOS is
that, with BOS, each behavior is rated by the appraiser.
When using BOS, an appraiser rates job performance by indicating the frequency
with which the employee engages in each behavior. A multi-point scale is used
ranging from "almost never" to "almost always." An overall rating is derived by
adding the employee's score on each behavioral item. A high score means that an
individual frequently engages in desired behaviors, and a low score means that an
individual does not often engage in desired behaviors.
ACCURACY OF THE RATINGS.
Accurate ratings reflect the employees' actual job performance levels. Employment
decisions that are based on inaccurate ratings are not valid and would thus be
difficult to justify if legally challenged. Moreover, employees tend to lose their trust
in the system when ratings do not accurately reflect their performance levels, and
this causes morale and turnover problems. Unfortunately, accurate ratings seem to
be rare. Inaccuracy is most often attributable to the presence of rater errors, such
as leniency, severity, central tendency, halo, and recency errors. These rating errors
occur because of problems with human judgment. Typically, raters do not

consciously choose to make these errors, and they may not even recognize when
they do make them.

b)

I.

Basic Factors in Determining Pay Rates

Employee compensation refers to all forms of pay or rewards going to employees,


which include direct financial payments and indirect payments. Direct financial
payments include wages, salaries, incentives, commissions, and bonuses. Indirect
payments include financial benefits like employer-paid insurance and vacations.

Aligning Total Rewards with Strategy The basic thrust in pay plans today is to
produce an aligned reward strategy to create compensation plans that guide
employee behaviors in the desired, strategic direction. Distinguishing between high
and low performers is a policy issue, as is seniority-based pay.

Equity and Its Impact on Pay Rates External and internal equity are crucial in pay
rates. External equity refers to how pay compares with rates in other organizations.
Internal equity refers to employees viewing their pay as equitable given other pay
rates in the organization. Individual equity refers to the fairness of an individuals
pay as compared with what his/her coworkers are earning for the same or very
similar jobs in the company. Last, procedural equity refers to the perceived fairness
of the processes and procedures used to make decisions regarding the allocation of
pay.

Legal Considerations in Compensation There are many laws that govern


compensation. For example, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulates the
minimum wage and requires that overtime be paid at a rate of one and one half
times the normal rate of pay for hours worked over 40 in a workweek. Employees
are categorized as exempt from the act or non-exempt from its provisions. Other
compensation laws include the Equal Pay Act, the Employee Retirement Income
Security Act (ERISA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA.)

Table 1. Companies with Salary Range Structures

Percen
All Companies

72%

Number Employees
1 to 100

44%

101 to 500

64%

501 to 2,500

78%

2,501 to 10,000

86%

Over 10,000

85%

Source: 2010-2011 Culpepper Salary Budget & Planning Survey.


Frequency Salary Range Structures Are Reviewed
Salary range structures should be reviewed regularly to maintain a competitive
edge in attracting and retaining top talent. Most companies with formal base salary
range structures review their ranges and structures annually (Table 2).
Table 2. Frequency of Salary Range Structure Review
Job Level

Percent of Companies
Annually

Top executives

60%

Every Two Years

Every Three Y

8%

5%

Nonexecutives

77%

9%

7%

Nonexecutives include directors, managers, professionals and hourly nonexempt employees.


Nineteen percent of participants with formal salary range structures reported that
they do not use formal salary structures with executives.
Companies choosing "other/varies" indicated that the frequency for reviewing
structures varies by type of job, business unit, location or union status. Examples
include:
Some companies with union employees review salary structures based on the
length of multiyear labor contracts and review other nonunion jobs annually.
Some companies in very competitive job markets review salary structures for critical
jobs semiannually.
Methods Used to Design Salary Range Structures
The two most common methods companies use to design base salary structure
ranges are market pricing using external market data and point factor focusing on
internal pay equity.
Most companies use a market-pricing approach with current salary survey data for
individual jobs, to design and adjust salary range structures (Figure 1). Only 3
percent of companies rely solely on the point-factor method, which assigns a point
value to specific jobs within a company.
In addition, 19 percent of companies blend market-based and point-factor
approaches when designing their salary range structures.

Traditional vs. Broadband Salary Structures


Traditional salary structures are organized with numerous layers and range
structures (or pay grades) with a relatively small distance between each range. This
provides a hierarchal system enabling employees to be promoted from one pay
grade to another. When designed correctly, traditional structures enable the
recognition of differing rates of pay for performance and guarantee a reasonable
level of control over internal compression and salary expenditures.
Broadband salary structures are more flexible and consolidate pay grades into fewer
structures with wider salary ranges.
On average, 82 percent of surveyed companies use traditional salary structures,
while only 7 percent use broadband structures (Figure 2). Nine percent use a hybrid
or mix of traditional and broadband structures.

Single vs. Multiple Salary Structures


Fifty percent of companies with salary range structures have multiple structures
varying by job and/or geographic location. There is a strong correlation between job
level and number of salary structures. Single salary structures are more common for
executives and multiple salary structures are more common for nonexecutive
positions (Table 3).
Table 3. Single vs. Multiple Salary Structures
Job Level

Percent of Companies

Single
Structure

Multiple Structures Differing by Job


Function

Multiple Structures
by
Geographic Location

Executives

52%

12%

8%

Directors/
managers

47%

18%

19%

Professional

44%

19%

20%

Hourly/
nonexempt

43%

17%

24%

As companies increase in size, they typically have a higher number of salary


structures to accommodate more locations and job structures.

5. (a) Explain the typical benefits and services of employees. (b) Suppose
that you are now retired from your profession at the age of 65 years old.
After your retirement, how could you make your livings as an ordinary
citizen or resident in the United States?

Employee Benefits Programs


The objective of a good employee benefits program is to help protect both employees and their
families from the possibility of severe economic hardships caused by illness, disability, loss of
life, or unemployment.
A comprehensive employer program will also provide retirement income for the employee and
their family, as well as suitable assistance such as paid time off from work.
Administering and Selecting Programs
Employers consider the cost to provide and administer benefits plans an integral part of the total
compensation package offered to its employees. While these benefits programs are typically

managed by employers, oftentimes employees are asked to contribute small premiums or


copayments to enjoy the added coverage.
Employers offer benefits to employees for one or more of the following reasons:
Attracting and retaining a talented workforce.
Aligning benefits packages with competitive offers in the marketplace.
Promoting higher levels of morale among employees.
Providing opportunities for promotion or advancement as workers resign, retire, or move to other
positions within the organization.
Keep in mind that no single program can provide for the needs of all employees, it is usually a
combination of benefits that is most effective in meeting the employer's objectives. That being
said, there are two broad categories of benefits offered by employers in today's work
environment: mandated and optional.
Mandated Benefits Programs
Mandated benefits are those required by law. These include federal or state sponsored programs
that aim to provide for the most essential needs of employees and / or their families. Examples
of three very important, and mandated, benefits include:
Social Security
Unemployment Insurance
Workers Compensation
While unemployment provides help to those that lose their jobs, workers compensation programs
provide assistance to those disabled by occupational illness or injury. Social Security protects
the aged and disabled against expenses that might otherwise exhaust their entire savings.
In March 2010, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare and
the Affordable Care Act (ACA), was signed into law. While not mandating health care coverage,
the law states that firms employing fifty or more people, and not offering health insurance, will
pay a shared responsibility requirement if the government subsidizes an employee's health care
costs.
Optional Benefits Programs
As the name implies, optional employee benefits includes a wide array of programs that
employers can choose to offer employees; typical programs include:

Health Care Insurance


Disability Insurance
Life Insurance
Retirement / Pension Plans
Flexible Compensation
Paid Leave
Perhaps one of the most valued of all employee benefits includes paid time away from the job,
which is often spent with family and friends: holiday pay and vacation time. Nationally, the
average number of paid holidays is eight.
Full retirement age is the age at which a person may first become entitled to
full or unreduced retirement benefits.
If your full retirement age is older than 65 (that is, you were born after 1937),
you still will be able to take your benefits at age 62, but the reduction in your
benefit amount will be greater than it is for people who were born before
1938.
Here's how it works if your full retirement age is 65.

If you start your retirement benefits at age 62, your monthly benefit
amount is reduced by about 30 percent. The reduction for starting
benefits at age

63 is about 25 percent;

64 is about 20 percent;

65 is about 13.3 percent; and

66 is about 6.7 percent.

If you start receiving spouse's benefits at age 62, your monthly benefit
amount is reduced to about 32.5 percent of the amount your spouse
would receive if his or her benefits started at full retirement age. (The
reduction is about 67.5 percent.) The reduction for starting benefits as
a spouse at age

63 is about 65 percent;

64 is about 62.5 percent;

65 is about 58.3 percent;

66 is about 54.2 percent; and

67 is 50 percent (the maximum benefit amount).

The earliest you can start receiving Social Security retirement benefits will
remain age 62.