Sunday, December 30, 2007
Workplace Trends for 2008 as reported by Kansas City.com:
Expect any substantive workplace regulatory changes to be put on hold pending the outcome of the presidential election. There’s not likely to be the political will to do anything but possibly a minor adjustment to the Family and Medical Leave Act . . . .
Expect a lot more talk about sustainability, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) construction and “reducing your carbon footprint.” . . . .
Expect more employers to create and push employees to take advantage of healthful lifestyle programs . . . .
Expect health-care insurance costs to continue to increase, and expect more small-business operators to say they can’t afford to subsidize it.
Similarly, expect more small businesses to look for ways to reduce the cost of benefits administration by turning to professional employer organizations. With PEOs, some businesses take advantage of economies of scale and relieve their human-resources staff of some duties.
Expect the long-predicted wave of baby-boomer retirements to gain steam.
These all sound right to me, and I would add that there will be more ERISA class actions by 401(k) account holders, more use of Voluntary Employee Benefit Associations (VEBAs) to deal with the growing problem of retiree health care, and there will be more emphasis on helping employees returning from military service.