Are Your Employment Posters Playing ‘Hide and Seek’?
The New Year is a good time to review your employment posters to ensure they are up-to-date, displayed, and accessible to all employees. For other compliance tasks for the New Year, check out our exclusive 2021 New Years HR Checklist.
Employment posters are required to inform employees of their rights under various laws and regulations. The content on these posters is governed by the applicable federal or local law. Posters may seem like a small thing but the fines can be quite large at up to $1000 per missing poster.
With many employees working remotely from home, this has become an even bigger challenge as the posters in the office break room are not considered accessible to employees who no longer go into the office.
What Do You Need to Know?
If your remote employees still visit the office 3 or 4 times a month where your physical posters are located, you are most likely in compliance with the Department of Labor (DOL) recommendations as long as the posters in your office are up-to-date. If the employees visit the office less often, you will need to provide the posters to the remote employees in a different manner. The easiest way to do this is by providing them to the employees electronically via e-mail or a company website or shared drive.
If you have some employees who are working in the office and some who work exclusively from home, you still need to have a hard copy of all the posters in your office for the office employees. You can supplement these posters with electronic posters for the remote employees but you can not replace the hard copies with electronic ones.
The DOL explains electronic posting for remote employees is only compliant if these employees customarily receive information from the company via electronic means and all employees have ready access to the electronic posters at all times. This means they can not be required to request access to view the posters or to access a computer each time. They must also be informed of where and how to access the posters and they must be able to easily determine which postings apply to them and their worksite.
Please be aware if remote employees are working in different states and cities than your office location, you must provide them with the state and local posters applicable to where they are working. This may be different than when they worked in your office. In addition, some states have different rules on which posters can be made available electronically and which must be provided in paper format.
What Do You Need to Do Next?
- If you have employees who work in your office, ensure you have the current Federal, State and Local posters in hard copy format required for your location. Many posters have changed for 2021 so if you have not updated them this year, you will need to do that now.
- Determine if you have any remote employees who need to be provided with electronic posters. If so, make a list of their work locations so you can ensure you have all the required Federal, State and Local posters that need to be provided.
- Ensure you know which posters can be provided electronically and which may need to be mailed to your employees homes based on the state and city in which they work.
- Find an easily accessible location on your company website where employees can access the electronic posters at any time. If that is not available, you will need to plan on emailing the posters to the employees.
- Ensure the posters are separated out by the Federal, State and Local posters so employees in different locations can easily access the ones that are applicable to them.
- Inform your employees of the location of the posters, how to access them and which posters apply to their specific location. Mail any required hard copy posters to the employees.
How SDHRC Can Help
Contact San Diego Human Resource Consulting for assistance with updating your posters to the most current versions as well as gathering all the required Federal, State and Local posters. We are also here to assist in ensuring which can be delivered electronically, which will need to be mailed and ensuring that employees are informed of where to access their posters. While posters may seem like a rather simple and overlooked component of business protocols, they help ensure compliance when it comes to employee rights, laws, and regulations.
About the Author
Traci Hagan, “Treasure Trove”
Traci is an HR Consultant who has been with SDHRC for over 2 years but has over 32 years of experience in employee relations, conflict resolution benefits administration, training and development, workers’ comp and staffing! Traci is also a Professor who enjoys traveling and spending time with her 16-year-old “puppy”.