How PEOs are helping employers navigate vaccine mandates

Coronavirus cells in microscopic view. Virus

How PEOs Can Help Employers Navigate The Covid-19 Vaccine Mandate

With Covid-19 cases remaining high across the country due to the highly contagious Delta Variant, President Joe Biden recently announced that private companies with 100 or more employees will be required to ensure their workers are vaccinated or tested weekly for the virus. Companies that don’t comply could face more than $13,000 in fines for each violation.

The mandate, which will impact about 80 million Americans, represents a major step in the fight against Covid. However, plenty of logistical questions remain – and the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been tasked with figuring out the answers. While OSHA plans to roll out more information on the mandate soon, there are growing concerns that the agency is way too understaffed to enforce it.

According to Insurance Journal, OSHA employs about 800 safety and compliance inspectors – far fewer than needed to police the more than 100,000 private-sector companies impacted by the new requirements. And even if every company makes a good faith effort to adhere to the new rules, there are still bound to be hiccups and growing pains as everyone adjusts to the new normal. So how can employers navigate this confusing and stressful time while still handling all the other things on their plate? And how can they avoid violating any rules or making any potentially costly mistakes? The answer could be as simple as hiring a Professional Employer Organization, better known as a PEO.

PEOs are single-source providers of integrated business services that allow business owners to outsource many of their human resources, administrative and employment-related tasks. Because PEOs offer economies of scale by pooling their employees with those of other companies, they’re able to leverage their coverage and pricing, often resulting in access to the types of benefits and resources typically only enjoyed by larger organizations.

As details of the mandate are revealed, being able to connect to these additional resources will become even more critical, especially for small businesses that aren’t prepared to take on something of this magnitude.

“Even a company of 100 employees in some cases doesn’t have a certified HR professional or a labor attorney to speak with,” said Patrick Moraites, a partner and vice president of business development for Tampa-based AXIS Group. “That means they have to roll the dice and rely on someone who may have started out as an office manager and now they’re in HR and payroll but they don’t have that level of certification needed to handle more complex situations.”

“Things are changing so rapidly,” Moraites said. “Having access to certified HR professionals and labor attorneys can help provide you with the direction and counsel you need to make the most appropriate decisions for your business going forward.”

With a PEO, employers are able to tap into the knowledge of experts who are laser-focused on the most current employment issues – and who are certainly paying close attention to the vaccine mandate.

“Things are changing so rapidly,” Moraites said. “Having access to certified HR professionals and labor attorneys can help provide you with the direction and counsel you need to make the most appropriate decisions for your business going forward.”

Even companies that have their own team of certified HR professionals can benefit from working with a PEO, Moraites noted.

“With a PEO, you’ll always have someone you can speak to who you can bounce ideas off of and share information,” he said. “Everyone likes to have peace of mind and a PEO can help provide that.”

Wondering if using a PEO is the correct choice for your organization? Contact the experts at AXIS Group via phone or email by clicking here.

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