Check out our latest HR news roundup with items ranging from benefits and background checks to wisecracking bosses and diversions from the lighter side.

Attractive return-to-work programs and why you need them
Danielle Westermann King, Human Resource Executive

Ensuring employees remain engaged and productive, retaining key talent in a recovered economy, and attracting and retaining diverse talent are the trifecta causing HR leaders’ insomnia, according to HRE’s 2018 What’s Keeping HR Up at Night report. Meeting these needs while also keeping business-strategy goals in mind means that HR executives have to come up with creative solutions. Lip service to diversity and inclusion, random pizza parties and offering slightly higher salaries for fewer benefits are ineffective methods for increasing engagement and retention.

To really improve the overall employee experience, experts recommend determining what’s important to employees and embedding it into the workplace culture. Companies that keep this in mind have implemented some unique benefits, including student-loan repayment programs, learning and development opportunities, flexible work arrangements and longer paid parental leave.

Are you ready for rolling background checks of employees?
Jon Hyman, Workforce

Last week, Bloomberg published an article warning businesses to get ready for rolling background checks at work — the practice of running regular background checks of existing workers in addition to the routine pre-employment screening.
… Indeed, rolling background checks are a thing, and they very well might be the right thing for your business. They will tell you if someone working for you was convicted or a crime, or filed a bankruptcy, or perhaps suffered some other key life event that impacts their ability to perform their job for you, which either happened during their employment, or perhaps was missed during the initial pre-employment check.
The catch, however, is that this rolling check must still comply with the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act.

The unfunny side of wisecracking bosses
Matt Palmquist, strategy+business

Using humor to lighten up the office has long been seen as a way to boost employee performance, engagement, and satisfaction. It can help employees feel closer to their bosses, and sometimes it simply breaks the ice and makes the workplace more comfortable. To that end, plenty of leaders have been known to take improv classes or hire humor coaches in an effort to improve their witty repartee. But the “funny boss” might want to think twice before starting the next meeting with a zinger, according to a new study that weighs the pros and cons of leaders’ use of humor.

Paid family leave is increasing employee retention rates
Terri Rhodes, Risk & Insurance

While there seems to be some momentum for federal paid family leave, it also continues to gain popularity with private employers and local and state governments. The reasons aren’t surprising — employees want it, and employers are more open to offering it as the labor market grows ever tighter. But more importantly, many of the organizations who implemented programs say that it came from the top down, with most leaders saying that it is just the right thing to do.

Want to be a great leader? Learn from the 25-year-old soccer coach trapped in a Thai cave for 3 weeks
Brenda Barbosa, INC

After leading his team his astray, a young soccer coach trapped with his team in a cave in Northern Thailand for nearly three weeks showed the world real leadership.

Choice is the new competition for organizations
Sharlyn Lauby, Workforce Institute

It shouldn’t be a surprise that there’s been a shift to a candidate-driven job market. And organizations are feeling the impact. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) report titled “The New Talent Landscape”, 68 percent of HR professionals are experiencing difficulty recruiting candidates. This isn’t expected to go away anytime soon. The Washington Post reports that “2018’s Challenge: Too Many Jobs, Not Enough Workers”.
This scenario is exactly why employers need to focus on the candidate and employee experience. Because employees have choices. And similar to the customer experience, if a candidate or employee doesn’t like their experience with the organization, they will go elsewhere.

More HR News: Quick takes

From the lighter side…

Not quite HR news, but there’s the old adage about all work and no play…

Inspiration: What do you think you’ll be doing when you are 90 years old? This is what Lois is doing. Great story!

Can you pass the test NASA gave potential astronauts in 1958?

Shake things up a bit in the lunchroom when you bring in rainbow pasta. Linda shows how she makes these astonishing creations in her YouTube page.

Check out this charmingly funny video of babies with dogs. Mental health hint: bookmark it to watch the next time you are having a bad day.

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