Navigating HCM

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One of the biggest roadblocks to HR’s strategic relevance in many organizations is the time and energy spent navigating the legal and procedural landscape of human capital management.

Image of a labyrinth
Labyrinth by xOneca, Wikimedia Commons

Staying on top of international, national and state level requirements is a full time job in itself. Conversations with HR Executives of growing companies often involve some degree of frustration over the complexity of the HR regulatory environment. Between the FLSA, FMLA, EEOC, etc. in the US, not to mention increasing exposure to international regulations, compliance is a moving target.

While we can’t terraform the HR landscape into something less challenging, we can offer these quick links to some basic resources where you’ll find answers to some of your most common regulatory questions.

Government Resources

US Department of Labor – Summary of Major Laws

Fair labor Standards Act Family and Medical Leave Act

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

American Disabilities Act

Occupational Safety and Health Administration


National Labor Relations Board

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Internal Revenue Service

Occupational Employment Statistics

U.S. Supreme Court 


Non-Government Resources

Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)

Equal Opportunity Advisory Council

American Payroll Association

Human Resources Law

American Society for Healthcare Human Resources Administration (ASHHRA)

Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology

Council for Global Immigration

Association for Talent Development

BLR HR Employment Solutions

HR Laws

HR Hero

State Law Chart Builder

International HR Law Guides

International Labor and Employment Law

O-Net Occupational Information

Employers Counsel Network

This is not a comprehensive list, but we hope it serves as a useful resource in helping you chart your course as you travel through the complex HR regulatory landscape.


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Employment and Disability

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American census data as reported in Americans with Disabilities: 2010 reveals that 19% of the population (about 56.7 million people) had a disability in 2010. More than half of those indicated that their disability was severe. Here are a few of the employment and income related findings from that report: 41% of those age 21 to 64 with any disability were employed, compared to 79% of those with no disability.] The incidence of persistent poverty among people age 15 to 64 was significantly higher for those with a disability: 10.8% of those with severe disabilities, 4.9% of those with a non-severe disability, as compared with 3.8% of those with no disability. Adults age 21 …

Problem Solving: A Double Diamond Approach

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Whether you’re designing a new product or solving a personnel problem in the bullpen, there is an optimal process for arriving at a workable solution. Of course, the optimal process is not always the same, and it’s not always followed. This is especially true when it comes to solving people challenges. In fact, when a worker is out of line or conflict erupts, the most common response is a rush to solution: tackling outward behaviors without adequately assessing underlying causes. Some of the most difficult challenges we face in the workplace are people issues. Speaker and …

Our Hidden Biases and What to Do About Them

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A friend of mine once said, “for every PhD thesis, there is an equal and opposite PhD thesis. Certainly, I’ve come to learn there are (at least) two sides to every story and that what we see in a given situation is often exactly what we’re looking for. Cognitive bias research makes it abundantly clear that we are seldom the objective observers and rational decision makers we prefer to believe we are. Cognitive biases are “mental errors caused by our simplified information processing strategies…a cognitive bias does not result from any emotional …

Know Your Why

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No one can want something for you more than you want it for yourself.  As the saying goes; you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink. The horse has to be thirsty. That’s why putting opportunities in front of someone who lacks purpose or an internal motivating force seldom succeeds.  It’s also why so many leaders miss the mark or lose their way.   True North, Wikimedia Commons Whatever the undertaking, enterprise or project you’re launching, you need to start with the why. Before defining …

When Job Ownership Runs Amok

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When it comes to fostering engagement in the workplace, encouraging employees to take ownership of their jobs is right up there with providing meaningful work. In American Venture Magazine[1], Dr. Noelle C. Nelson writes: “Studies show that job satisfaction among employees by itself doesn't predict productivity. It is only when job satisfaction is paired with psychological well-being at work that productivity is high. Psychological well-being at work includes a sense of purpose in one's job and a feeling of accomplishment. One of the easiest ways of supporting employees' sense of purpose is to give them ownership of …

5 Things Writing Code Can Teach us About Working With People

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I’m a writer, not a programmer. But I spend much of my life surrounded by people who write code and it’s hard not to cultivate at least a passing familiarity with something that permeates your work environment. You’ll know what I mean if you’ve ever jumped into source view in your content management system, or asked a co-worker to explain that strange combination of English and…whatever…on the monitor.  Feeling a bit like a stranger in a strange land, I decided to learn a little about the local …

How to Avoid Meeting Burnout

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Here we are in September again and I’d swear that some unwritten, “let the meetings begin” policy has automatically kicked in. Much like the potted mums that magically appeared last week outside every grocery store and garden center, workplace calendars are suddenly blossoming with meetings and conference calls—through to 2016! Annual Mum Carnival, Internet Archive If your calendar is getting over-crowded with all the meetings you’ve booked (or been booked into), you might want to consider these tips for avoiding meeting burnout. They fall into two broad categories: eliminating unnecessary meetings and making …

What Does Labor Day Mean to You?

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The original meaning of Labor Day is lost on a lot of people in the United States and Canada. The first Monday in September is variously the final long lazy weekend of the summer, the last breath of freedom for students heading back to school, or the first break in the school year for those students who resume classes in August. Celebrating Workers Many forget that this public holiday sprang from the labor movement, which in turn was rooted in the growing tensions between factory workers and their employers in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The movement had a …

Happy Employees: Is Technology the Answer?

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One recent study[1] found that better technology was reason enough for one in four employees to consider switching jobs. Almost half of the respondents in the same study said they would use personal devices to get the job done, rather than struggle with sub-standard technology at work.  In an article for Fortune[2], Padmasree Warrior (Strategic Advisor and former CTO at Cisco), ranks access to technology and the internet with the most basic of needs on Maslow’s Hierarchy, and advises organizations to adapt accordingly. While today’s employees are increasingly particular about workplace technology; the writing has …

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The Latest from Workplace Tribes
Navigating HCM October 06, 2015
Employment and Disability October 01, 2015
Problem Solving: A Double Diamond Approach September 29, 2015
Our Hidden Biases and What to Do About Them September 24, 2015
Know Your Why September 22, 2015
When Job Ownership Runs Amok September 17, 2015
5 Things Writing Code Can Teach us About Working With People September 15, 2015
How to Avoid Meeting Burnout September 10, 2015
What Does Labor Day Mean to You? September 07, 2015
Happy Employees: Is Technology the Answer? September 03, 2015