Posts Tagged ‘NLRB’

How can you effectively use social media to hire and retain employees? Look for Kathryn Carlson’s presentation – AutoCon 2012

Monday, August 6th, 2012
Kathryn Carlson, Product Director for KPA's HR Management System

Kathryn Carlson, Product Director for KPA’s HR Management System will discuss social hiring at AutoCon 2012.

While auto dealerships know that social media is a powerful marketing tool, many don’t realize that it is equally powerful for hiring and retaining quality employees. To use social media effectively, however, employers must avoid many legal pitfalls.

Kathryn Carlson, Product Director for KPA’s HR Management System, will discuss this at AutoCon 2012. Kathryn will cover how you can remain legally compliant while leveraging social media for a better workplace. For example, she’ll discuss how to develop policies that align with National Labor Relations Board regulations.

Kathryn’s AutoCon presentation is on the 7th of September. The title of her presentation is “How to Use Social Media Compliantly and Effectively to Hire and Retain Employees.”

Kathryn’s a featured blogger on Dealer Communications. You can also learn more about her on LinkedIn.

7 Safety Pitfalls in Your Parts Department

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

How would your Parts Department fare today, if you received a safety inspection? Our engineers have found 7 common areas where things go wrong. Some are pretty easy to spot, but some are less obvious. Let’s take a look at a few:

1) Unsafe storage on shelves 
If you have sprinkler heads in your Parts Department, make sure items stored on the top shelf don’t obstruct the sprinkler heads. If you don’t have sprinkler heads, keep two feet of clearance between the roof and the top shelf of your storage.

2) Electrical panels
Make sure you have at least three feet of clearance around all sides of your electrical panels. You may want to use caution tape, or something similar, to mark the area that must stay clear.

3) Batteries
Do you have used or warranty batteries stored in the Parts Department? Most dealers do. Make sure that they are in containers that eliminate battery acid spill on the ground. It’s also best to have baking soda on hand to make sure that any acid spills can be quickly neutralized.

4) DOT hazardous materials training
DOT training is required and due every three years. This applies to your Parts Department if they ship any kind of hazardous materials like seat belt pretensioners or air bag modules.

Want to guess what the other 3 pitfalls are?… There are also numerous hazards related to light bulbs, upstairs storage areas and forklifts.

To get more information on all these safety pitfalls, watch KPA’s 3 minute video.

Employee Rights Posting Postponed Yet Again- Now Required by April 30, 2012

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

For the second time, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) postponed the effective date for posting its employee rights notice. The new date is April 30, 2012. Most private-sector employers including dealerships must post a new notice issued by the NLRB entitled, “Employee Rights Under the National Labor Relations Act.” The poster informs employees of their rights to organize a union, bargain collectively through representatives chosen by the employees and to make efforts to improve the terms and conditions of their employment. The poster requirement was initially scheduled for implementation on November 14, 2011, but was delayed until January 31, 2012, as a result of litigation filed by various organizations.  On December 23, 2011, the NLRB said it would delay implementation to April 30, 2012, in response to a request by a federal court judge hearing  a legal challenge to the poster requirement. However, because this issue remains in litigation, there is a chance that this posting deadline will be delayed at least one more time. Employers who have already posted the notice may take it down or leave it up as they chose at this point.

It is not uncommon for a federal or state agency to  make a rule and then have it challenged in court or even to have the agency delays to seek further comment and clarification.  The Red Flags Rule is a perfect example of multiple delays before the final implementation date was settled on.

If you would like a copy of the proposed Employee Rights Notice go to https://www.nlrb.gov/poster.  KPA’s HR Management clients will find the notice in the “Toolkit Section”.

NLRB Delays NLRA Employee Rights Notice Posting Requirement Until January 31, 2011

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

The National Labor Relations Board  has pushed back the requirement to post a notice advising employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act from November 14, 2011 until January 31, 2012. A number of trade and industry groups have challenged the posting requirements include NADA.
The NLRB website states “as of January 31, 2012, most private sector employers are required to post a notice advising employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act. The 11-by-17-inch notice should be posted in a conspicuous place, where other notifications of workplace rights and employer rules and policies are posted. View the final rule in the Federal Register.”

 

Firing for a Facebook Post? Maybe Yes, Maybe No

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

An NLRB administrative law judge has ruled that a Chicago-area luxury car dealership did not violate federal labor law when it terminated a salesman who posted pictures and  comments about an accident on his Facebook page. The judge rejected the NLRB’s argument that the termination was motivated by other Facebook postings by the employee related to a customer  event  that mocked the quality of the food and beverages provided.

KPA’s partner law firm Ford & Harrison represented the dealership.  Frequent guest speaker at KPA’s  webinars Jim Hendricks, was the attorney of record.  A full review of the case is  available at http://www.fordharrison.com/shownews.aspx?Show=764

When firing for  a Facebook post what many private sector employers do not realize is that – employee may engage in “protective concerted” activity”  under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) .  Facebook posts and the subsequent “wall” posting and comments  and other social media  communications can be protected concerted activity within the meaning of Section 7 of the NLRA.

While the firing of the sales person was upheld in Chicago,  in another case involving Facebook posts the firing were deemed illegal.  In a case a case called Hispanics United of Buffalo, administrative law judge Arthur Amchan said HUB violated the National Labor Relations Act when it fired five employees who commiserated about their jobs on Facebook. Judge Amchan’s ruling endorsed the NLRB’s stance that employees are protected from retribution for job-related postings.

So can you fire for a Facebook post?

According to Jim Hendricks “Employers, especially non-union employers, must be mindful of the concept of protected concerted activity before taking adverse action against an employee. Also, employer policies and practices need to keep pace with emerging technology, including social media. This remains a largely uncharted area of the law. If one of your employees publishes something offensive or confidential on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube, proceed with caution before taking action.employer policies and practices need to keep pace with emerging technology, including social media. This remains a largely uncharted area of the law. If one of your employees publishes something offensive or confidential on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube, proceed with caution before taking action.”

Unionized or Not, NLRB Rules Apply to Dealerships

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

On 8/25/11, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued the final rule that requires nearly all private-sector employers to post a notice notifying employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).  Agricultural, railroad, airline employers and the U.S. Postal Service are exempt at this time but auto, truck and equipment dealers must post the notice.  The deadline for posting the notice is November 14, 2011 however the NLRB hasn’t provided a final version of the required poster at this time although a draft is availalbe at https://www.nlrb.gov/
Remember that many  NLBR rules apply to non-unionized organizations with some exception for “very small business”- you should consult with your attorney or finance advisor to determine if your business is a “very small business”.

The NLRB (National Labor Relations Board) has been very active in 2010.  In May the NLRB issued a complaint against a Chicago area dealership for allegedly illegally firing an employee for critical comments regarding the dealership posted to Facebook. http://www.nlrb.gov/news/chicago-car-dealership-wrongfully-discharged-employee-facebook-posts-complaint-alleges.   Having a social media policy is a good idea, but given the current regulatory climate make sure that the policy has been reviewed and approved by an attorney who is very familiar with the NLRB position on social media usage as a protected activity.