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What Record-Breaking Heat Waves Mean For Your Business

What Record-Breaking Heat Waves Mean For Your Business 2560 1707 Alicia East

Yesterday, I drove by a young man directing construction traffic from the side of a freshly-tarred road. We are in the middle of a heat wave in my area and even by 9 AM, we were well into the 90’s. If it had been a cartoon, I would’ve been able to see the heat waves rising beneath him. I wanted to drop some gatorade off for the guy! Don’t be mistaken: Heat stroke is not just dangerous to the most vulnerable among us. It can land even a young man like this worker in the hospital with very little warning.

We aren’t the only ones experiencing record-breaking highs this summer: Many regions are facing increasingly wild weather. So what does this mean for individuals or companies whose work requires them to be outdoors? I’ll tell you what it doesn’t mean: waiting until someone has a heat stroke to think about worker safety.

As we head into another record-breaking summer, it’s a good time to talk about workplace safety. Protecting workers—especially those who spend extended time outdoors—requires a little extra forethought and attention. While your workers’ health is a good enough reason to take extra measures, addressing safety risks can also prevent fines and lawsuits.

Worker Safety in Extreme Heat

Staying compliant with OSHA’s guidelines on Occupational Heat Exposure prevents workers from getting heat related illnesses. It also prevents them from missing work and you from getting fined. Keep everyone safe so neither you nor your employees end up paying the price.

  1. Provide water, rest, and shade: It’s easy to get into a project and forget about the time. Sometimes proactive measures like mandatory breaks with plenty of hydration will remind people to take care of themselves in the heat.  Make plenty of water and gatorade easily accessible.
  2. Recognize the signs: Managers should be on high alert for symptoms of heat exhaustion. According to the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration (OSHA), “Persons suffering from heat exhaustion might have cool, moist skin; sweat heavily; or complain of headache, nausea or lightheadedness.”
  3. Watch the weather: At different temperatures and conditions, different measures are appropriate. Monitor the heat index as well as the associated risks. Schedule reminders and water breaks ahead of time and stick to them, regardless of your schedule.

General Emergency Preparedness

Heat isn’t the only hazard workers may face. OSHA’s website provides resources for winter weather and just about every situation here. Preventative measures for all inclement weather issues is a worthwhile investment. OSHA offers free on-site consultations to help diligent employers eliminate any problems up front. Contact them at 1-800-321-OSHA for more information.

Bottom Line

Watching out for your workers’ safety is not just about staying compliant with the letter of the law, but about understanding and staying true to the spirit behind it. Even if you can push workers a little further to get the job done faster, it’s worth going above and beyond to provide a safe environment. Watching out for people makes workers more loyal and you’ll ultimately be more productive, too.

Man at computer - Payreel

Cybersecurity And The Responsibility to Protect Your Company And Clients

Cybersecurity And The Responsibility to Protect Your Company And Clients 2560 1707 Alicia East

The interconnectedness of today’s digital world makes it increasingly important to be vigilant on the cybersecurity front. Digital information cannot be locked up in a safe and unlike a physical object, you may never even know it’s been obtained by a malicious agent. We learn early to keep our valuables under close watch but digitally, you’re protecting invisible, highly-valuable assets. Unlike a wallet, our identity, data, and customers’ personally identifiable information (PII) are not tangible items that we can keep in our sight, knowing that as long as it’s in our hands, it’s not in someone else’s. Cybersecurity requires a different approach.

It seems every week, a major company, hospital, or education system experiences an alarming security breach. The breaches may compromise privacy (hacked laptop/phone cameras, for example), data, or PII. Credit monitoring companies, phones, and even entire cities have been compromised and even taken hostage. This NPR piece offers a sobering read on the fifth domain (after land, air, water, and space) of the cyberworld.

Businesses and consumers increasingly rely on apps and software to get everyday work done. For companies, this comes with a responsibility to protect clients’ information. So what’s a company to do?

It’s a real problem. So now what?

We’re not going to offer a sobering perspective without offering solutions. While we’re talking about what businesses can do, we would be remiss not to address one important aspect of how you can protect yourself on a personal level. You can freeze your credit as well as that of your minor-aged kids. Here’s an article from the USA Today with more about how and why to take this step.

Customers trust companies with priceless personal information and sensitive company data and companies have a great responsibility to handle that data with care.

How Companies Can Protect Sensitive Customer Information

  1. Password management: There are tools that offer super-secure ways to make sure your company passwords are accessible only to whom you want them to be. If you’ve ever tried to access a company account after the person who managed it is no longer with the company, you see the value here. Aside from the convenience, it’s a way to keep information super secure.
  2. Policies and procedures: Make sure you have policies and procedures in place to prevent attacks. Train employees on good security etiquette. For most organizations, human error is by far the most likely source of mistakes that lead to breaches.
  3. Insurance coverage: Should you experience a breach, having solid insurance coverage in place can make it a lot less painful by covering the financial loss. This article provides a lawyer’s guide to cybersecurity insurance coverage.
  4. Penetration tests: Have third parties perform monthly security checks and an annual penetration test. 
  5. Customer encryption: Encrypt all information at multiple levels. Encryption scrambles data so that it’s unreadable without the encryption key. This article on business cybersecurity talks about three ways companies should encrypt data: “at rest, in motion and in use.” 

The Bottom Line

Any investment in your security is a wise investment indeed.

 

 

Together is the way pic - Payreel

The Fundamentals for a Solid Team in a Changing Workplace

The Fundamentals for a Solid Team in a Changing Workplace 2560 2048 Alicia East

In the movie Miraclea ragtag group of individuals from rival schools transforms into a well-functioning team and the unlikely winners of the Olympic gold. During tryouts, many of the United States’ top hockey players made a show of their fancy skating skills. Still, Coach Herb Brooks had something more basic in mind. He knew this team wasn’t the most skilled or the most experienced, but he was determined they would be the most well-conditioned.

As our work teams continue to disperse to their home offices and fancy devices, it’s easy to lose focus. Still, the fundamental principles remain solid. While the methods will continue to change, an effective team is always built on effective communication. Another foundation of a team that feels cohesive–no matter how it’s structured–is taking care of people. 

Whenever we get a little sideways or start to feel the distance growing between team members, divisions, and workers with various statuses, we can always come back to the tried and true basics and work on our communication as well as the human side of our business. 

We’ve collected some resources for cohesively knitting teams with different structures. 

Communication

Three Elements of Great Communication, According to Aristotle 

Good Communication Goes Beyond Open Door Policies

New Study: How Communication Drives Performance

The Next Generation of Office Communication Tech 

Taking Care of People/Teambuilding 

The New Science of Building Great Teams 

How to Respectfully Discuss Contentious Issues at Work

In a Hybrid World, Your Tech Defines Employee Experience

What is the Purpose of Your Purpose?

Managing a Polarized Workplace

Empathy Rules

Bottom Line 

There’s no way to build an effective team without communicating well and taking care of your people. What are your tried and true principles/tactics you always come back to?

 

Butterflies in cocoon - Payreel

Strategies to Help You Through The Changing Workplace

Strategies to Help You Through The Changing Workplace 2560 1700 Alicia East

Like a lot of you, we’ve been reading about how to adjust to the changing workplace. We hope you find this curated list of the Harvard Business Review’s resources to help you through the changing workplace.

The Great Resignation

  1. 6 Strategies to Boost Retention Through the Great Resignation (Harvard Business Review)
  2. How to Hang On to Your High Potentials (Harvard Business Review)
  3. One Way to Fight the Great Resignation: Re-recruit Your Current Employees

Communication

  1. How to Interrupt Someone’s Workday–Without Annoying Them
  2. Communicating Authentically in a Digital World
  3. Five Ways to Improve Communication in Virtual Teams

Leadership

  1. How to Get Your Team to Stop Asking You Every Little Question
  2. Use Purpose to Transform Your Workplace
  3. What Courageous Leaders Do Differently

What patterns are you seeing out there? What’s helping you through?

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The #1 Myth About Hybrid Events

The #1 Myth About Hybrid Events 1244 844 Alicia East

While in 2020, virtual events reigned supreme, 2021 brought the rise of hybrid events–those that combine both in-person and virtual experiences. We saw trade shows, company rallies, and conferences turn to hybrid events for the best chance at reaching their audience. Raise your hand if you’ve participated in a hybrid conference. ✋

It’s easy to spot the events that fell victim to the prevailing myth that 🚫 “All you need to conduct a hybrid event is a virtual streaming provider.” 🚫

This idea is false and the mistake could be very costly to your organization.

As we approach 2022 and in-person gatherings continue to make a comeback, hybrid events are a prominent player in our new reality. This offers some advantages, but if you’re considering putting on a hybrid event, approach the idea with a healthy dose of caution. If you’re going to go to the effort, you need to do it right. If all you do is stick a camera in the back of the room and livestream an event with no additional accommodations for the virtual attendees, you’ve missed the boat. And that means you’ve lost out on engagement, leads, sales, and income. Of course you do need a solid livestream partner, but make no mistake: if the online experience comes across as an afterthought, it’s better not to offer a virtual component at all.

Here, we’re walking through how to make the most of a hybrid event for your business and what you’ll need to conduct one effectively.

Does a Hybrid Event Make Sense?

Virtual events still make the most sense for webinars and similar short-form, video-heavy occasions. On the other hand, we’ve learned that many traditionally in-person events can translate incredibly well virtually, too. Even if you don’t think your event is a good fit for a hybrid style, give it a little more time before you write the idea off. Haven’t we all learned we can do more virtually than we ever thought? Once you make the decision to hold a hybrid event, it informs all of your remaining choices.

Elements of a Successful Hybrid Event

Content

Hybrid events are aptly named. They offer two very different experiences for one event. That’s pretty amazing! And also pretty challenging. If you do decide to hold a hybrid event, the reigning wisdom remains true: Content is everything. You might say that it’s even more important during a hybrid event than an exclusively onsite event because virtual attendees are more likely to stray to the kitchen or get distracted by their phone’s pin or their washing machine’s ding. To help whatever is happening in-person keep online viewers engaged, consider incorporating polls or Q&As. Help every presenter tailor content in a way that engages both in-person and virtual attendees. Bottom line: Just make sure you have a plan for how to convey information to each group.

Seamless Details

Have a branded event registration webpage with event information as well as clear registration info with customized funnels/follow-up communication for both the virtual and in-person options. This way, attendees can sign up easily and also receive only the information that is relevant to their experience.

Considerations for Virtual Attendees

Consider offering virtual-only sessions, breakout rooms, or networking opportunities. While it’s incredible to be able to include participants virtually from all over the world, you’ll also need to be aware of the time zone differences and make appropriate accommodations. For example, you may want to offer your most in-demand sessions at multiple times or at least give access to the recording.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking about putting on a hybrid event, you’re in good company! Do it! Just make sure you do it well.

Note: This post is part of a series. Check out this post on How to Get More Mileage Out of Hybrid Events.

Covid Mask Painting - Payreel

How to open business/go back to work safely

How to open business/go back to work safely 400 300 Alicia East

As the country tests the waters on how to open back up in the midst of a pandemic, everyone–from government officials to businesses and workers–is making tough decisions. While it’s hard to say what’s next, one thing seems clear: We are going to be in this thing for a while. As we navigate new waters, businesses have new considerations to protect workers, too.

If you staff special events or hire freelance video crews for one-off projects, temporary workers are an incomparable asset.  You’re responsible for providing basic protections under the best circumstances.  As COVID-19 runs its terrible course, the risks of not adequately protecting workers have increased tenfold. You don’t want to put your workers at risk of infection, of course. On top of that, if your workers don’t feel safe, they will be less likely to put their health at risk for your event or whatever it is you’re trying to accomplish.

When it comes to keeping them safe, happy, and productive, the best insurance for temporary employees is accident and illness prevention.

COVID-19 Protocol

OSHA updates its guidelines as the situation changes, so be sure to check back regularly and refer to the CDC’s coronavirus webpage. The CDC advises that in addition to touching contaminated surfaces, spread occurs through “respiratory secretions” that “enter the mouths and noses of people nearby, and can be inhaled into the nose and lungs.” Asymptomatic spread makes it extra hard to trace and prevent.

We all know about social distancing, but OSHA has developed thorough guidelines for classifying worker exposure risks into lower, medium, high, and very high-risk categories, with corresponding guidance and resources for protecting workers in each category. See the Control and Prevention page.

Occupational Heat Exposure

In addition to COVID-19, we are also in the middle of the hottest months of the year in much of the U.S. So don’t let occupational heat precautions go out the window while you work on virus prevention. By taking the following precautions against heat-related issues, businesses can lower safety risks and prevent fines and lawsuits, too:

  1. Provide water, rest, and shade: It’s easy to get into a project and forget about the time. Sometimes proactive measures like mandatory breaks with plenty of hydration will remind people to take care of themselves in the heat.
  2. Recognize the signs: Managers should be on high alert for symptoms of heat exhaustion. According to the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration (OSHA), “Persons suffering from heat exhaustion might have cool, moist skin; sweat heavily; or complain of headache, nausea or lightheadedness.”
  3. Know and respect workers’ rights: It’s not just about staying compliant with the letter of the law, but about understanding and staying true to the spirit behind it. Even if you can push temporary employees a little further to get the job done faster, it’s worth going above and beyond to provide a safe environment. OSHA offers free on-site consultation services to help diligent employers eliminate any problems upfront. Contact them at 1-800-321-OSHA for more information.

COVID-19 is our current reality. If we want to get back to any semblance of life as we once knew it, we simply must accommodate for it. OSHA provides thorough guidelines for going back to work and preparing the workplace. They even have a section for specific industries. In addition, staying compliant with OSHA’s guidelines on Occupational Heat Exposure prevents workers from getting heat-related illnesses. It also prevents them from missing work and you from getting fined. Keep everyone safe so neither you nor your employees end up paying the price.

Prevention is great, but actual insurance for temporary employees is still a must. You don’t need to spend hours translating all the legalese. We’ve already done it and know just what businesses need to do to stay compliant with insurance regulations. PayReel eliminates guesswork and frees you up to get you back to doing the creative work you love. Click here to speak to us! 

Lemons - Payreel

5 ways you can produce food without a big yard

5 ways you can produce food without a big yard 2560 1920 Alicia East

You’ve baked a cake from scratch. You’ve lost too many hours of your life to Tiger King. You have a jar of sourdough starter on the counter. You know what it’s time for? Something (anything) outside. You could take advantage of this rare period of time when you’re not driving through the Chick-fil-a on your way to soccer practices and take a walk with your quarancrew. Do it in a place where you can keep practicing social distancing, though! You could forage for mushrooms (but only after educating yourself on the subject, please). Better yet: you could grow some food in your yard, on your patio, or even on your counter! 

If you’re thinking about producing some of your own food, you’re not alone. Some seed companies are short on stock and local nurseries are running out of starter plants. There are still options though and you don’t even need a traditional garden with rows or some ambitious plan to feed your family for a year. Even people with a small patio or simply a sunny windowsill can produce a satisfying crop at home.

Here are 5 ways to produce your own food (even without a big yard).

  1. Raised bed plots: This is a great option to get you outdoors and growing a few goodies with minimal investment of time and energy. You can grow a surprising amount of food in a 4×4 plot and you don’t even have to tear up your yard. If you find you love it, you can add new plots next year. Here’s an intro to the method of Square Foot Gardening.
  2. Potted porch plants: Without any yard at all, you can grow some herbs, greens, and maybe even a few tomato plants right on your back porch or patio. Herbs are a great place to start because they cost so much in the store and go bad quickly once harvested. Growing your own means you can step outside for a breath of fresh air and come in with a handful of aromatics. Bonus: you’re less likely to forget about something you see regularly than a plot in the corner of your yard. No porch? We got you, too! 👇
  3. Sunny windowsill: Some plants–especially herbs like basil and mint–thrive without the traditional requirements. To avoid disappointment, look for varieties that do well indoors before you buy.
  4. Indoor growing systems: You can invest in a system like this one with lights and the capacity to grow dozens of plants at a time or you can get a small tabletop aquaponic system to grow some greens and entertain your kids at the same time. The large systems require a big up front cost and regular nutrients, but the big bonus is that you can do this year round. The small systems aren’t especially economical for the amount of food you get, but some say the experience is priceless. Plus right now, Back to the Roots is offering 30% (code LOVEMOM30) off with a mother’s day special.
  5. Indoor/outdoor fruits: We saved the most ambitious for last. Even if your climate isn’t known for growing fruit, you may be able to grow fruit trees in pots. Many of these grow well indoors most of the well and benefit from being outside during summer months.

This is admittedly a departure from our usual topics, but after weeks of hunkering down indoors, we felt it was time to talk about doing something (anything) outside. While a big perk of gardening is of course the good clean food you’ll harvest, it also carries the bonus perks of helping you get a little exercise. Whether you’re concerned about food security or simply want to have the yard you’ve dreamed of, now is a good time to get out and grow some stuff.

Bruce Almighty Typing -Payreel

The freelancing secrets I wish I’d known a decade ago

The freelancing secrets I wish I’d known a decade ago 490 294 Alicia East

I was a year into a career change I thought would be permanent and I was leaving…again. I’d lasted one year and 2 weeks as a high school teacher and it was….umm…not a fit. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I’d won awards in the position I had left the previous year but, while I was certainly happier in sales than in teaching, the profession didn’t speak to me either. With a mere three years of life after college under my belt, I’d experienced success without satisfaction in my first “real” job and then neither success nor satisfaction in my second.

I had harbored the “someday” dream of writing for a living from the moment I realized it was a thing. So one day, while picturing a future of business suits, uncomfortable shoes, and a schedule someone else set for me, I made the “risky” decision to just go for it. I’ll explain why that’s in quotes later.

Here are five truths I’ve learned in my decade plus as a freelancer

  1. The true risk isn’t the first one that comes to mind: Here’s the deal: in comparison with a 9-5 job, freelancing is risky. You absolutely could lose everything…or at least be very, very hungry at times. I mean it. You could have clients who pay late or don’t pay at all. You could have slow months that land you in the red and times you’re trying to figure out how to create a meal from whatever you can find in the freezer (“use by” date be damned) and the last quarter cup of rice in your pantry. Risk aversion is real, but if it keeps you in your swivel chair at a 9-5 you hate, then you’re afraid of the wrong kind of risk. Because there’s nothing more risky than staying there in your cubicle feeling like you’re wasting your life.
  2. The freedom is fantastic, but it still comes at a price: Yes, the dreams of working from the beach and choosing the jobs that excite you are real. To overworked, underappreciated 9-5ers, freelancing may seem like the holy grail. But going out on your own isn’t just a world of free-flowing creative juices, coffee breaks, and wads of money. Freelancing can make you feel just as burnt out and unstimulated as whatever made you take a hike from your previous gig in the first place.
  3. Your “boss” may be liberal about time off, but you still have to answer to your bank account: You’re your own boss. That means you can take Friday off because it’s a great powder day (that’s the Colorado girl in me speaking). Still, if you want to build a solid business, you have to put in the work. And if you want leave of any kind–vacation, maternity/paternity, sick days, etc.– you have to create it yourself. Ideally, that means building yourself a solid savings account with 3 months living expenses. The hope is that, because you’re building your own dream (and not someone else’s/one you don’t believe in) that you’ll at least enjoy it more. While it can be enormously satisfying and liberating to build your own business from the ground up, that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Some days, you’ll get to take a Friday off because you want to. Others, you’ll grind away on a Saturday because you have to. Any workday can be a weekend and any weekend can be a workday. 
  4. You don’t have to starve. The “starving artist” is a familiar refrain. And it’s certainly easy to do, but you don’t have to. Start by producing work you can be proud of. From there, you can feel good about charging fair prices for it and walking away from projects people ask you to do “for experience.” You may have to take projects that don’t exactly stimulate you. My husband fondly recounts one of his early editing jobs for a veterinarian client. He got feedback to show a dog’s anus at 50% opacity (i.e. tone down the butt shots). Keep the long-term goal in mind and you can take the less than stellar projects in perspective. You’re building something. You’re building your thing. Once you have a steady flow of clients, you can be more selective and you can charge more as your experience (or equipment) grows. Remember that being able to walk away puts you in the best position to negotiate more freely.
  5. It’s easier than ever to burn out. I know how easy it is to have your life and energy sucked away by a “regular” job. The counterintuitive truth for many freelancers is that it’s even harder when it’s your business. You can pay your mortgage and your car loan and your grocery bill because you pounded the pavement to find the client and then pounded it again to produce a product they wanted. When you’re in business for yourself, it’s easier than ever to just do, do, do all the time. The trap is the lie that you have to. But you give yourself out completely and guess what? There’s nothing left. There’s nothing left for your bedtime routine with your kids, or those glorious miles on the trail with your sneakers and your headphones. And here’s the real, counterintuitive kick in the pants: if you don’t have time for the stuff the fuels you, you don’t have a business. As a freelancer, your business is you. It’s’ your creativity, your talent, your brains, and your guts. That’s something you simply cannot phone in. You have to be fueled, which means you can’t give everything to your business. You have to give something to yourself, which in turn, gives everything to your business.

The bottom line

Once you go out on your own, you live and die by your own work. The allure of working from home in your pjs and not having a boss breathing down your neck is real. But the struggle of life without a full time, “safe” job is real, too. It’s awesome. And terrifying. It’s not easy. Whether you’re on your own or working a “safe” job, you will kill yourself if you don’t find balance. But here’s the truth about freelancing, if you can handle it. And you can handle it, by the way, because you are scrappy enough to think about launching out on your own in the first place. It’s hard, gut-wrenching, kick you in the seat of your pants, pride-swallowing work. And it’s all yours, which is effing fantastic.

Netflix - Payreel

6 binge-able series to make your hibernation bearable

6 binge-able series to make your hibernation bearable 2560 1707 PayReelUser

By Dani Lyman

Spring may be just around the corner but we are not out of the (snow-covered) woods yet. Dangerous storms and record cold snaps are sweeping the nation—forcing people off the road, into their homes, and often to the comforting glow of their devices. If you’re not sure how you’re going to survive the long, boring winter nights that will eventually give way to Spring, these 6 streaming series filled with cold-hearted villains and heart-warming lovers are here to make your hibernation at least an entertaining one.

So grab a blanket and cuddle up with your favorite human (or animal) and stay warm bingeing these winter-worthy series.

YOU – NETFLIX

People cannot get enough of YOU. Women cannot get enough of YOU. The show itself, especially season two, is intriguing, murdery and sexy, but perhaps the real mystery here is the audience’s fascination with a serial killer who internally justifies his actions while stalking and slaying his prey. Outside of being a truly well-crafted and well-acted series, the show’s appeal lies in its complicated nature and the effect it has on its viewers. It is a fiery subject on social media—sparking dialogue on abusive relationships, boundaries, and violence. The lead actor, Penn Badgley, often interacts with his fans on Twitter and has been open about his discomfort portraying such a dangerous character. This show has created an opportunity to discuss truly important issues while also entertaining the heck out of us.

KILLING EVE – HULU

This BBC America international spy thriller starring the very talented Sandra Oh and the intoxicating Jodie Comer is one of the smartest, most intriguing and fun shows on TV right now. With the second season recently released on Hulu, Killing Eve offers nearly 16 hours of edge of your seat suspense, twists, creative murders, dark witty humor, and a fabulous female-driven soundtrack. The love/hate relationship between the attention-seeking and dynamic assassin Villanelle (Jodie Comer) and the career-obsessed MI-6 agent Eve (Sandra Oh) turns into a complicated, sexy and dangerous game of cat and mouse. This is a must-watch.

MODERN FAMILY – ABC/ HULU

If murder and mayhem isn’t your style, then the classic sitcom Modern Family is a solid go-to this winter. On its final season (spoiler alert), the Dunphy/Pritchett clan is up to their old shenanigans while learning how to navigate the complicated and hilarious waters of blended families. This season they are exploring their futures as they prepare to bid viewers farewell.

SCHITT’S CREEK – NETFLIX

From comedy legend Eugene Levy (American Pie, Best in Show) and his son, Dan Levy, comes this quirky, offbeat and surprisingly heart-warming comedy about a filthy rich family who loses everything and must restart their lives together. Schitt’s Creek is as subtle as it is outlandish and sure to hit you with the laughs as well as the feels. The endearing characters and awkward antics make this show addictive and easy to binge. You can catch-up on all five seasons on Netflix and then, when you’re thirsty for more, follow EW ON Set Podcast for more insider info.

THE MARVELOUS MRS. MAISEL – PRIME

Playful, upbeat and relevant, this Prime Original series follows Midge Maisel on her journey to become a successful stand-up comic in…wait for it… the 1950’s. The ambitious and likable lead, portrayed by Rachel Brosnahan, is adored by critics and viewers alike. From the creator of Gilmore Girls, Amy Sherman-Palladino, this series is creative, witty and a positive reflection of women and their tenacity to reach outside the box and create the life of their dreams.

Good Times - Payreel

3 ways we’re improving the client experience

3 ways we’re improving the client experience 2560 1707 Alicia East

We are all about providing you with the tools that will make your job easier and more effective. Independent contractor payroll management can be complicated: We simplify it so you can get back to the work you do best. We spent a lot of 2019 improving your experience and now we have our sights set on what we can do next.

Here’s some of what Payreel did in 2019 to improve client experience:

Standardized the un-standardizable to keep you on sure legal ground 

Worker classification is a hot topic right now. And for good reason. With California’s AB5 and the subsequent shockwaves it has sent through the industry, everyone has their eye on where things are and where they’re going. We do, too! We’ve developed AI-based software to take much of the subjectivity out of classifying workers. While there’s no way to truly standardize something with so much gray area, what we can do is put a set of parameters in place to make sure that your organization makes the decision the same way every time based on a set of measurable rules rather than someone’s opinion. The biggest benefit here is that it gives you a solid leg to stand on if you ever have to justify your decisions in a court of law. We’ve also made it easier, quicker, and more efficient for you to see where an IC classification case stands as well as each worker’s IC population in PRO.

Software development may not seem very sexy until you realize how much time, money, and headache it can save you!  

Matrix-ed our system so it can “learn” your system’s language with no human translation necessary 

We developed an Application Programming Interface (API) that bridges the gap between your software and ours. This is extra special because it means PayReel software can communicate with your time-tracking (or any other kind of) software without any human intervention. That means you can fulfill changing needs on your end quickly without having to rewire/recode (i.e. without disruption), intuitively connect your people to critical information, forms, and reports, and skip maddening double data entry/typing. Sexy, right? 

Take a client with a self-developed proprietary system for time tracking, for example. When we plug their Enterprise Relationship Program into our API, it sends everything needed for a project or a job and updates all 32 necessary fields automatically. That allows us to forego bulk uploads and manual data entry with absolutely zero human involvement required in the middle.

Sound good? Contact us here or reach out to your Client Relationship Manager to get started. 

Doubled our team 

We really like solid software, but it’s still good people who make our world go around. We doubled our team in 2019 so that each Client Relationship Manager (CRM) can continue to offer the same quality of service to each of our clients even as we grow. We’ve also transitioned Michelle (our longest-standing CRM) into a new role that allows her to maximize her many years of knowledge and client experience. She’ll now be using all of her experience to directly channel the voice of the customer to the team as we continue developing the solutions. 

Okay, so what’s ahead? 

You guessed it: Software updates

Now that you’re as in love with them as we are, we can tell you we’re focusing on improving operational efficiencies with PayReel Online, our dashboard, and with our Sick Leave Accrual Management application (SLAM). More states have added sick leave and FMLA compliance regulations into law. We enhanced our proprietary tool to manage the rapid changes to the paid sick leave (PSL) laws and all their many new complexities being implemented on both the state and local levels. That’s good news for you because you can rest assured we are staying up to speed with where the laws go into effect in 2020. 

The visibility reports you asked for! 

It’s true. We saved the best for last. You asked for more reports to give you insight into your backend payroll information and we listened! Soon, supervisors and managers will have better visibility to see where workers are in the process. We’re also working on a report writer that can put together the specific info you’re looking for.

Thanks for a great year! Get excited because 2020 is shaping up to be even better!