PEOs Provide Support During Uncertain Times
How PEOs provide peace of mind during uncertain times
We may have entered the new year, but many of the same old challenges of last year, especially related to COVID-19 and the workplace remain with us, especially in the workplace. In other words, if you feel like you’ve been reliving Groundhog Day since early 2020, it’s not just your imagination.
One major point of contention has to do with vaccine mandates for U.S. workers. While President Joe Biden has been a strong supporter of the measure, the Supreme Court recently ruled his administration had overstepped its authority by trying to impose an OSHA rule that would require employees at large companies to be vaccinated or undergo regular COVID testing and wear a mask while at work.
However, that’s not to say that businesses can’t create their own vaccine requirements for their employees. At least a third of Fortune 100 companies already have and Biden continues to encourage other workplaces to follow suit.
The same day the Supreme Court made its decision, Biden announced that “high-quality masks” would be made available to Americans free of charge in an effort to contain the rapidly spreading Omicron strain of the virus. Additionally, he shared that his administration plans to purchase another 500 million tests that will be available to Americans at no cost.
However, many people are becoming more skeptical about the efficacy of masks and they wonder why they should bother testing for it if contracting COVID is seemingly inevitable.
All these “howevers” make life in a pandemic especially difficult, and business owners are certainly feeling the strain.
“They’ve been dealing with so many changes and it feels like every day there’s new information that contradicts what they were told last week,” said Patrick Moraites, a partner and vice president of business development for Tampa-based Axis Group. “They’re doing the best they can to follow the rules but it’s definitely a confusing time.”
And on top of all that, Moraites said, business owners still have to deal with all the everyday aspects of running a company and keeping it profitable. However (and this is a good kind of, however) they don’t have to go it alone. PEOs are there to help.
What’s a PEO, you ask? Great question. A PEO, also known as a Professional Employer Organization, is a single-source provider of integrated business services that allows business owners to outsource many of their administrative, HR, payroll, and other employment-related tasks. Additionally, because PEOs offer economies of scale by pooling employees from different companies, they can leverage their coverage and pricing. This means that small business owners can gain access to benefits and resources that are typically reserved for larger companies. Here are just a few for starters:
- Workers compensation coverage
- Health insurance
- FMLA administration
- Onboarding and training new employees
- Risk management
- Tax compliance
- Safety procedures
- Wellness programs
And now more than ever, with pandemic rules and regulations constantly shifting and an increase in employee-related issues concerning sexual harassment and discrimination, it’s an ideal time for business owners to consider a PEO.
From a liability standpoint alone, hiring a PEO is a great decision for many business owners, Moraites said. Through the PEO, they have dedicated access to certified HR professionals and labor attorneys who can help them navigate the complexities that come with managing employees and ensure they stay in compliance legally.
“None of us can predict the future,” Moraites said. “But business owners can be proactive in protecting their employees and their companies. A PEO can go a long way in providing the peace of mind we all need these days.”
If you’re thinking about hiring a PEO and you’re not sure where to start, the team of experts at Axis Group is here to walk you through all your options and help you make the right decision. To schedule a consultation, click here.