While the pandemic has dominated much of your focus in the past two years, it’s time to put some attention back on compliance issues that impact your organization.
While it may not exactly be business as usual, it is time to re-examine the regulatory and compliance concerns that will increase security, help you attract and retain good workers, maximize resident and staff satisfaction, and even improve the bottom line. According to Paychex, these are the leading issues that you should be prioritizing for 2022:
- Workplace Safety. Thanks to guidance coming from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and other entities, you likely have made many policy changes and implemented new safety measures. It will be important to ensure you are up-to-date with the latest guidance and mandates and that past issues – such as PPE shortages – have been adequately addressed and resolved.
- Cybersecurity. While you’ve been attending to the pandemic, cybercriminals have been coming up with new and innovative ways to steal your data and infiltrate your systems. Over 40 state legislatures have proposed more than 250 bills and resolutions on cybersecurity and will continue to address this issue in the coming months. Make it a point to know what’s happening in your state and what you need to do to comply.
- Paid Leave. Several states and localities have passed legislation on paid leave. These cover issues such as sick time, family and medical leave, and vaccination leave. More attention to this – as the staffing crisis continues to make headlines – is expected in 2022. Stay on top of the trend toward “paid leave for any reason” and how this might affect your staff.
- Retirement. Pooled Employer Plans (PEP) are already making retirement plans more available to organizations; and current legislative proposals include provisions such as increased and expanded tax credits for small businesses offering retirement plans and mandated auto-enrollment.
- Tax Changes. State unemployment tax rates have been affected by various new rules and funding, and these will continue to be an issue in 2022. Remote and hybrid work arrangements also have added a layer of complexity to state tax structures.
- Healthcare Reform. Start by furnishing and filing timely and correct information returns related to Affordable Care Act Employer Shared Responsibility (ESR) reporting. Remember that “good faith transition relief” from penalties for incomplete or incorrect returns was discontinued starting with the 2021 tax year.
- Pay Equity. Stay abreast of federal and state initiatives designed to address pay inequity. These may include salary history bans and requirements to include salary ranges in job postings.
- Worker Classifications. Watch for a possible new rule addressing independent contractor worker classifications. This might include more workers being considered as employees under the federal wage and hour law.
- Privacy. Take time to review and update policies about transparency regarding the collection, use, and storage of workers’ personal information. Some states have enacted stricter privacy laws, so know when is happening in your jurisdiction.
- Cannabis in the Workplace. With 19 states having legalized the recreational use of marijuana, it will be important to make sure your workplace policies are consistent with state and federal laws and that they are communicated to all employees.