Tag: Employee Relations

Question: How should I counsel an employee whose body odor is affecting others in the workplace? Answer: When dealing with hygiene issues, such as body odor or strong scents of any kind, it is best to approach the matter with sensitivity and to be as confidential as possible. The employee’s supervisor or someone from human resources should…

Question: Would it be permissible to transfer a long-term part-time employee who is an average to poor performer to another role and replace that position with a full-time employee? Answer: Unless there is an employment contract or collective-bargaining agreement that suggests otherwise, employers do have the ability to set an employee’s work hours and job duties based…

Question: A long-term employee is retiring next month and has just begun having performance issues. When we addressed them with him, he became hostile and abusive, alleging various forms of discrimination during his tenure with us. What should we do? Answer: Considering the actions that have taken place, you have two sensitive issues to address:…

Question: What guidance or templates can you provide relevant to implementing a mentorship program? Answer: When considering the implementation of a mentoring program, there are many components that are critical to the foundation for success of the program. Specifically, what is the primary goal or objective of the program? Is the intent to onboard new employees…

Question: How do I know if an employee’s self-disclosed medical condition needing accommodation is covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)? Answer: The ADA does not outline specific ailments or disabilities which qualify under the ADA, but defines a disability as a“…physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities….”…

Question: Can our California manufacturing department work an eight-hour shift every day without taking a meal break? Answer: California requires employers to provide nonexempt employees working between five and eight hours each day with both a 30-minute meal period and a 10-minute rest period for every four hours worked (or major fraction thereof). Although this…

Question: How should an employer handle an employee who is speaking to other coworkers about forming an employee group to file an employment complaint or lawsuit? What are the rights as a company to address this employee through work reassignment, discipline or termination? Answer: Consider any employment-related actions you make with employees engaging in groups discussing…

Question: Can an employer require employees to read a book that has information which would help each employee perform better within the company? Answer: As part of your new hire onboarding process or employee development initiatives, you can require your employees to read any job-related materials as a condition of employment. Ensure that the contents…

Real question from the hotline: Question: How does a company handle personal domestic violence issues employees are experiencing outside of work? This particular situation involves both spousal and child issues. Answer: As an employer, you are showing great care and concern for your employees, and that goes a long way to creating a positive employee…