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Client Success Story: Gajeske

At Gajeske, Inc., a Polyethylene and Pipe company, we had issues with making decisions regarding our employees. We engaged Achilles Group to help us with this, and other difficulties. They have helped us create a structure for our termination basis and other HR obstacles we needed to overcome. There were many moving pieces involved and we learned how to handle them without being uncomfortable or awkward.Achilles Group has aided us with employee role clarity and helped us to evaluate a number of ...

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Client Success Story: SeAH Steel

SeAH Steel has worked with Achilles Group since October 2016, and we are very fortunate to have them as partners. When we purchased two other companies, Achilles guided us through the unfamiliarity of that process by providing recommendations for our new organizational structure. Since then, they have developed detailed job descriptions for all employee positions and conducted market research to determine compensation ranges. Additionally, they have assisted us with employee investigations, mana...

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PPP Loans Are No Longer Available. Here Are Some Alternatives to Consider.

The deadline to apply for a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan was August 8, 2020. If you missed this deadline but still need financial assistance, there are other programs available including the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA), as well as number of tax deferral programs created by the CARES Act.Click here for more information on the EIDL programClick here for more information on tax programsHere are some of the basics tha...

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Employee Spotlight: Katy McClanahan

Meet Katy McClanahan, our resident human resources new guru and September's Employee Spotlight!Katy has a servant’s heart, a robust understanding of HR fundamentals and leverages her exceptional research skills to keep our team and clients on the leading edge of compliance issues. She is invaluable in her ability to navigate State and Federal statutes and guidelines and to collaborate with her colleagues to help meet client needs. Katy also works on our internal policy, compliance and HR risk mi...

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Time Tracking & Non-Exempt Employees

Q: How do I verify hours worked from home for an hourly non-exempt employee?A: The amount of technology available concerning the tracking of time can be a little overwhelming. How you track work from home for hourly non-exempt employees will depend in large part on the capabilities of your current payroll system. Some payroll systems will have the option of allowing employees to log in on their laptop to track their hours, or through an app on their phone. If a more basic approach is needed, you...

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How to Handle "Doomsday" Employees

Q: I have a "Doomsday" employee causing stress and frustration; what should I say to them?A: As we have discussed before, fear is easy to come by right now. Everywhere we turn we’re hearing nothing but doom and gloom, so it’s not surprising some employees may be more sensitive to that. The best way to address this type of situation or employee is head-on, and in a private conversation. It’s a good idea to get your human resources representative involved so they can help guide the conversation an...

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Employee Spotlight: Monica Scott

Meet Monica, accomplished human resources professional and member of the Achilles Group management team! Monica enjoys working at Achilles and feels blessed by the opportunity to collaborate with so many talented leaders and professionals. As a member of our management team, Monica serves internally as our champion for team talent, growth and development efforts. She is also tasked with driving technology platforms, and as a member of our management team, enhances our effectiveness with her big-...

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How To Accommodate Employees Who Wish to Self-Quarantine While Keeping Normal Operations Afloat

Q: Should I accommodate employees who wish to voluntarily self-quarantine, and how do I keep my operations running if multiple employees wish to stay home?A: First, it’s important to stay current on CDC guidelines concerning best practices for employees who’ve been exposed to COVID-19. The CDC has issued new guidance on return-to-work procedures for employees who have been exposed to COVID-19: you can view it here.Secondly, fear is understandable in our current climate, but we don’t have to let ...

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How Do I Adjust My Organizational Structure and the Essential Positions I Need?

Q: How do I adjust my organizational structure and the essential positions I need?A: How do you adjust it? Thoughtfully. And strategy is important. At Achilles Group, we encourage our clients to manage their focus, not their time.  If you can identify the priority focus for each role, then determine the time an employee spends on tasks related to the focus, you have a head start on identifying the organizational structure that best supports your business goals.  In this current business environm...

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Employee Spotlight: Christina Klafka

Meet Christina, a pivotal member of the Achilles Group team!Christina brings extensive direct work experience in the hospitality industry within family-owned and Fortune 500 companies. She loves that at Achilles we value the whole person and how we build a great team from a variety of professional backgrounds. Now, as an Achilles HR Professional, she is well equipped with a personal understanding of what it takes to develop work teams as a coach, trainer and supervisor. Christina leverages her p...

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We’re Discontinuing Our Hourly Recruiting Service

Never heard of our Hourly Recruiting Service? No need to worry! Now is your chance to get to know our new recruiting service, TalentConnection.You might be asking, what is TalentConnection? We're happy to tell you all about it! We've come to realize that the former name of our recruiting program, Hourly Recruiting, doesn't fully describe what it is we've been doing for our clients. Because of that, we've revamped the program name to give it a better fit. It's the same great service as before, wi...

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How to Motivate and Appreciate Your Team During COVID-19

Q: How do I motivate and appreciate my employees during this difficult time? A: The number one employee motivator or incentive businesses think of is money. And honestly, money does have an immediate impact to reward and recognize employees. However, money only motivates people for a short period of time because when you get more money, you spend it! Considering that most businesses don’t have the cash-flow right now to give out bonuses or incentive pay, we can’t get stuck in a rut thinking the ...

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How to Deal with Sickness at Work During COVID-19

Q: An employee tells others “Go home so you don’t get everyone sick.” How do I handle this?A: Now that we know more about the symptoms of COVID-19, there are some pretty well-known expectations that have been set. An employer should post that if you’re having symptoms (coughing, feeling sick, running a fever, etc.), then don’t come to work.The best way to handle an employee engaging in this type of behavior is to pull that employee aside and have a conversation with them. Tell the employee that ...

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How To Keep Your Team Engaged While Working Remotely

Engagement is more difficult when you can’t do it face-to-face. We lose a lot of our communication capabilities when we’re not together in person. Ninety-three percent of how we communicate is through our tone and our body language. While working remotely does make it difficult sometimes to engage, there are creative ways to connect with your team members. Just think outside of the box!“No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the Continent, a part of the main.” -  John Don...

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Client Success Story: Smartbridge

Smartbridge is a Houston-based organization dedicated to simplifying business transformation, and applying thought leadership and innovation to bring their customers’ digital agendas to reality. We began working with Achilles Group two or three years ago, and since working with them, our business has grown in tremendous ways.We are a very process-oriented company, and Achilles Group has helped us streamline our processes to make them more effective than they were previously. We have introduced s...

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Emergency Sick Pay & Documentation: What You Need To Know

The answer to this question is both yes, and no. It’s important to note that there are six reasons you can qualify for Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL), part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA): The employee is subject to a federal, state or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID–19. The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID–19. The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID–19 and seeking a medica...

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Important Texas Workforce Commission Updates

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) recently posted some important updates regarding work search requirements for those collecting unemployment. The June 30th announcement states that it will delay the reinstatement of the work search requirement for unemployment benefits in Texas. This requirement, which is federal law, was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. From the outset, TWC has stated that bringing back work search would be conditions-based.“Due to the resurgence of COVID-19 cases in...

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Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act: Answering Your Frequently Asked Questions

The recently created Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act (PPPFA) addresses several concerns expressed by businesses regarding the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). While the PPP loans were met with great enthusiasm, the program's rollout left many concerned about the possibility of being unable to meet the requirements for full loan forgiveness. Below is a summary of the revisions created by the PPPFA to address those concerns. Under the original provisions of the PPP, loan recipients w...

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Apache Services COVID-19 Decontamination Service Testimonial

As we ease into reopening the office, Achilles Group team members have been brainstorming ways to safely make the transition back into office life. When we learned that one of our clients, Apache Services, Inc., offers COVID-19 Decontamination services, our team member Dan Calvert scheduled them to clean the office. The results are impressive and worthy of sharing! Keep reading to learn about Dan’s experience with Apache Services. Dan's Experience with Apache Services  Upon Apache Service’s arri...

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Harris County Face Mask Ordinance FAQs

Monday, April 27 marks the first day of the Harris County face mask ordinance. Below are some answers to frequently asked questions about the ordinance:   What is the new mandatory face mask mandate? On Wednesday, April 22 Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo officially announced an order requiring face coverings on most county residents who leave the house, in an attempt to stop the spread of the COVID-19. Under the executive order, people ages 10 and older must cover their noses and mouths with a ...

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