Coastal HR Blog


How Background Checks Protect Company Liability


Many employers receive a wealth of information when it comes to hiring a potential employee, mainly to protect themselves against a claim of negligent hiring.  Due to an increase in security and restrictions following the September 11 attacks, many things have changed in the hiring practices. A comprehensive background check has now become a major priority for many companies. Background checks cannot give an employer everything they want, but there are databases of information such as sex-offender registries, workers’ compensation histories, and more. There are also the typical checks that include criminal, employment, and education background.

Background Checks Create a Safe Workplace

A background check is not something that should be performed after you hire an employee. A background check should be the first thing you take into consideration prior to hiring someone. Companies should disclose their requirement of background checks by including it in job descriptions and on their website. An advantage of doing this is that you are encouraging applicants to be open about things that occurred in their past.

Potential Pitfalls of Not Checking Backgrounds

Your company may not feel that a background check is necessary. For instance, say you belong to a small and tight-knit community and the referrals come from current employees, so you trust who you are hiring. This will not cover your company if you are sued for negligent hiring. By performing a background check, employers have the information they need to make the best hiring decision possible. By not performing a background check, the employer could be subject to a lawsuit and penalties if an unchecked employee commits a crime.

The most common background reports include:

  • County Criminal Checks
  • Prior Employment Verification
  • Motor Vehicle Record
  • Social Security Number
  • Credit Checks
  • Reference Checks

The minimal search would include a criminal history in the applicant’s county of residence, along with the places where they worked and went to school. When it comes to your business and its liability, it is best to perform background checks and have confidence in those you are hiring.

Coastal Human Resource Group, Inc. is a Human Resource Outsourcer (HRO) that serves as a full-service human resources department for small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Southeast. We perform many services including background checks, payroll management, employee scheduling, and more. Visit or call us toll-free at 1-888-757-7444 for more information. We’re here to help ensure that all your human resources needs are met.                                   



Employment Background Checks and the Fair Credit Reporting Act

Have you ever filled out a job application and prior to submitting, it asks if you are willing to undergo a background check if accepted for the position? Background checks are a common practice employers take to ensure they are hiring the right candidate. Background checks include credit history, criminal history, driving records, academic history verification, and past employment checks. However, background checks are regulated and covered by the Fair Credit Reporting Act of 1970.

What is the Fair Credit Reporting Act?

The Fair Credit Report Act (FCRA) was passed in 1970 and is enforced by the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and private litigants. The FCRA is a United States Federal Government legislation that was created to help ensure accuracy, fairness, and privacy of consumer information that is obtained in files held by consumer reporting agencies. The Fair Credit Reporting Act along with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act form the basis of consumer rights law in the United States. 

Fair Credit Reporting Act & Employment

The Fair Credit Reporting Act plays a key role in how an employer can ask for, receive, or use a background check from a third-party consumer reporting agency. Before an employer can receive the background check of a potential employee, they must notify the prospective employee in writing and receive written consent back. If an employer conducts a background check and decides not to hire the prospective employee based on their report, they must provide the candidate a pre-adverse action disclosure. A pre-adverse action disclosure will include a copy of the candidate’s credit report and a copy of their rights. If a candidate does not agree with something found on the report, they can dispute it by receiving the name and address of the Consumer Reporting Agency from the employer. At all times, an individual has the right to records in their name. You may also receive your credit score, dispute inaccuracies, or seek justice from a company that has violated your rights.

When is a Background Check Illegal?

A background check is illegal if an employer uses it to discriminate. Hiring discrimination is when an employer makes a decision based on an individual’s national origin, sex, race, religion, disability, genetic information, or age. If a person suspects they have been denied a job based on any of the above, they should contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Background checks are becoming a more common practice by employers during the job hiring process. While candidates are able to deny a background check, they must also keep in mind that an employer may also use this as a reason not to hire them. If you are on the hunt for the perfect job, it is best to be aware of any red flags that may be on your record and figure out how to get them taken care of.

Coastal Human Resource Group, Inc. is a Human Resource Outsourcer (HRO). We serve as a full-service human resources department for small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Southeast. For more information, visit or call us toll-free at 1-888-757-7444. We’re here to help ensure that all your human resources needs are met and to answer your questions.


Rising Above Workplace Politics

It’s safe to assume that everybody wants to be respected and valued as a team member in their workplace. It’s unlikely that your list of hopeful demands include being gossiped about. However, that’s a common complaint of those caught up in office politics.

Oftentimes, workplaces can mirror high school culture, especially with the influx of time we spend with our co-workers each week. Here’s how to rise above and navigate workplace politics so you keep your reputation, work, and integrity intact.

If You Have An Issue, Go Directly To The Source

If you hear someone has said something bad about you, or even if you hear it – ask him or her directly. If you go to other co-workers about this issue, you are contributing to the drama, which you seek to avoid. You can do this in a professional manner by scheduling a meeting, asking questions in a calm tone, and seeing what needs to be done to resolve the issue at hand.

If you’re unable to solve your conflict with peaceful mediation, you’ll need to bring HR and your supervisor into the next conversation. It can be helpful to alert your supervisor of your initial conversation for records of conflict.

Do Your Best Work

If you are a contributing member of the team who is working diligently, you will likely leave no room to be discussed. Be sure to do your full capacity of work each day and help those who may be in need.

Be Friendly

You do not need to be friends with anyone in your workspace. However, you will be spending upwards of 40 hours with each person, each week, so it doesn’t hurt to be friendly. Get to know their hobbies, likes, kids’ names and make work a pleasant space to be.

Avoid Sensitive Topics

Avoid discussing politics, religion, and other people. These are key phrases that will keep you safe from office politics. If your co-worker starts discussing someone else, or one of these topics, kindly remove yourself and change the subject.

Be Respectful

Respecting others’ privacy, workspace, and even lunch items in the fridge will afford you the same respect in return.

Lastly, try to listen more than you talk, re-read your emails, and treat each person in your office as you’d like to be treated. While it’s not always easy to be on your best behavior at work, we know you’ll be successful in the long run by following these rules and doing your best, honest work each day.

Coastal Human Resource Group, Inc. is a Human Resource Outsourcer (HRO). We serve as a full-service human resources department for small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Southeast. Visit or call us toll-free at 1-888-757-7444. We’re here to help ensure that all your human resources needs are met. © Southern View Media 2018: Reproduction without explicit permission is prohibited. All Rights Reserved. “We Put You Online So You Don't Get Left Behind.”


Thoughtful Employee Appreciation & Recognition Ideas for 2018

One of the best ways to keep your employees engaged and for company morale to remain high is to recognize everyone for their hard work. At times, employees can feel like their hard work is being overlooked, especially in a larger company setting. To keep them motivated and working hard, take some time to compliment their efforts or offer rewards for their efficient work. By doing this, it will make your employees feel valued and respected. Check out the ideas below on thoughtful ways to show your employees that they’re appreciated and their hard work is not overlooked!

Give Social Media Shout Outs

In this day in age, what faster way to spread news than by taking it to social media? By shouting out an employee on social media, not only do others in the company see it, but so will their family and friends. You can give special social media shout outs for employee birthdays, employee anniversaries, to recognize an employee’s hard work, or to acknowledge a promotion someone has earned.

Recognize What They Are Passionate About

Grant your employees an hour or two a week to work on something they are really passionate about. By recognizing an employee’s passion, it will show them that you value them and show an interest in their happiness.

Use Your Website

A great idea for website content is to add an employee spotlight feature. You can choose a new employee each month and have them fill out a questionnaire. The questionnaire can consist of work-related and random interest questions so that you can recognize their other passions.

Give Them A Gift They Will Love

While Amazon or Target gift cards are definitely nice, try giving your employees something that they will love. For instance, if you have an employee who is obsessed with Star Wars, trying giving them a Star Wars action figure or purchasing a lightsaber to give to them for their office. Really, who wouldn’t be jealous of an employee with a lightsaber in their office?

Celebrate More Often          

Employee recognition doesn’t have to be just singling one employee out for their hard work, make it company-wide! This can be done simply by providing breakfast or lunch for employees or by allowing them to work half of a day!

Recognize Personal Goals

You don’t have to limit your recognition to work related success, it can also be personal. If you know of an employee who is going through a weight loss journey, recognize their efforts! This can be as simple as bringing them a protein shake. By succeeding in personal goals, people often succeed more at work.

As you can see, there are a lot of unique ways to show your employees that you appreciate them! Those listed above are just a few suggestions. Just remember to make it personal and add a little heart. Your employees are sure to enjoy the fact they are being recognized!

Coastal Human Resource Group, Inc. is a Human Resource Outsourcer (HRO). We serve as a full-service human resources department for small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Southeast. Visit or call us toll-free at 1-888-757-7444. We’re here to help ensure that all your human resources needs are met. 



Human Resources are the unsung heroes of our companies; there to keep us within the law, make sure our employees are taken care of properly and generally serve as watchdogs for the business and it’s moving parts. While a human resources department is vitally important to the safety of your company, their involvement can get a bad rap. It’s why Michael Scott always hated Toby for no actual reason. However you can’t run a business without the department, so here are the top reasons to outsource your HR.


  • Save Money
    • The biggest selling point of outsourcing is the bottom line. A contract payment is far less than a full-time employee and is usually worth more than you pay (as seen in the following points). By outsourcing, you are also no longer responsible for benefits; that alone will save a bundle.
  • Focus Less on Administrative Task
    • Since you’re saving money in the cap by not hiring full-time employees for HR, that can be budgeted for other positions that are more in line with your company’s mission. By contracting the job you can guarantee that every department within your business will be able to worry less about administrative tasks and more on the strategy.
  • Access to Data
    • There are studies and research materials that the common HR department simply wouldn’t have access to for information. These are things like demographic studies, new hiring practices, ways to bundle benefits, analytics, etc. A company devoted solely to HR practices will have the technology needed for this access, taking the burden off your budget.
  • Improve Compliance
    • Even if an in-house HR department understands the rules relating to your business, the law changes constantly and it can be a lot to keep up with. By outsourcing, you’re using someone who is constantly staying abreast of changes, how it relates to your field and how to best navigate the rules. This takes a huge weight off the shoulders of your company.
  • Increases Recruiting Pool
    • When it comes time to make a hire the hassle almost isn’t worth the end result. There are postings to make, resume to go through, interviews to conduct and that’s only the beginning. Even then you might not be casting the net to find the type of person you want for an employee. When you outsource, however, an HR company has access to a much larger recruiting pool. They also have more streamlined and tested practices to sort through candidates. Once a decision is finally made they can help with the paperwork and additional logistics, letting you go straight to focusing on implementing your new employee.


These are just a few of the top reasons to outsource your HR. Helping your business evolve and grow should be your number one priority so when it comes to HR trust the experience at Coastal Human Resources.


At Coastal Human Resources Group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Contact us today at 251-478-7444 or visit us online at



Invest in Professional development

First things first, make this a year of professional growth for your business. Not just for your team - but for you too! While you’re at the drawing board, think of a few things that could really take your business further and invest in trainers to take your team to the next level. Starting your first quarter with a training course or workshop will show your employees you are excited and ready to take the business to the next level, starting with the ‘ground crew.’



Whether it’s advertorial media placement, grassroots word of mouth, or blogs to drive social media traffic - you are sure to find the right mix to promote what you love and increase your net worth as you invest in promotional materials and resources for your business in 2018. You may want to look into marketing, but also consider your current printable materials - is it time for a graphic design upgrade? A new logo or printed materials can help with how your business is seen in the community and increase your exposure.


Giving Back

2018 may be the time to focus on giving back. Finding one charity your employees and your family are passionate about can be an excellent way to build commentary through volunteering and fundraising, but also to align your passions in support of those less fortunate. This new year's resolution can give your entire office a case of the ‘feel goods’ as you give back to well-deserving charities this new year.


Employee Engagement

Simple adjustments such as having lunch with super-star employees of the month to hear their ideas and learn more about their personal life is a great way to engage the workforce. Other ideas such as healthy snacks at meetings or bagel Mondays also show your employees you’re thinking of them.


Get to know your customers

By engaging in social media in 2018, you can start to create an online community and dialogue with your customers. It may also be a good idea to hold focus groups (small settings of five to six customers who can give you their honest feedback in exchange for snacks, of course) or start engaging with customers one on one to get to know what they’d like to see from you in 2018. By getting to know your audience, you can produce products and services that best suit your target market.


Hold an employee and family social

Lastly, in addition to everyday employee engagement, don’t forget to celebrate the big and small wins throughout the year with a great social! One annual event, perhaps with awards for different categories for your employees can serve a world of good. Assigning a small team of your employees to organize this annual event can also highlight talent and skill sets of event planners on your staff roster, making these individuals feel even more important! Anytime you’re able to highlight your employees you can help reduce turnover as employee engagement and morale rise.


At Coastal Human Resources Group, we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. If your company needs staff, then contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit




At the end of the year, it’s time to review the productivity of your sales staff to evaluate the progress and income each individual brought to your company in 2017. If you don’t have a firm calculation to see what you should be paying your sales people, we have a few tips that can help you get started. When coming up with a compensation plan for those that will bring in new clients to your business consider the following:



Does your sales person have years under their belt? If so, they probably won’t require much guidance from you when it comes to self-starting their call list, following up on their leads, or qualifying their incoming potential closed sales. When you’re evaluating experience, years matter, but also look into specific characteristics like being able to write a contract or previous management experience. With tenure also comes the ability to mentor your younger sales force.



Experience is fantastic, but what really matters is being able to get prospects to sign on the dotted line. Review the recent results of your sales person in the past year if they are a current employee. If it’s a new employee, request to see statistics from previous employment.


Connectivity and Responsiveness

Review how well you can trust the communication skills of your sales team members at the end of this year to contemplate their compensation. There’s nothing worse than trying to contact your employee and not being able to get a hold of him or her. Does this person respond quickly and professionally to you? If so, you can be confident they are treating your potential clients in the same way. Some of the best responses can just be a simple “Got your message.”


Balance of Base Salary and Commission

You’ll want your employee’s base salary to be livable but not so comfortable that the individual doesn’t feel the need to push for sales to make their paychecks bigger every payday. If you’re paying a higher base than most agencies, your commission structure might be a little less and vice versa. See if you can find the appropriate balance to make sure you are competitive with other employers.


Reimbursable Expenses

Another important factor to consider is the amount you are reimbursing your employees. If the expense account is large and lends itself to fancy dinners and gas mileage, you may be able to include that as a perk when considering your compensation plan.


Potential for Tenure

Lastly, if this is an employee you see going the ‘long run’ with your company, consider a three to five-year contract to secure a higher base salary. Though you can’t control what will happen, a contract can help you feel more secure paying a higher rate and investing in further training with your employee for the future.


We hope you’ve found this formula helpful to jump start your brainstorming conversations at year-end reviews. At Coastal Human Resources Group, we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. If your company needs staff, then contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit


The relationship between boss and employee is an interesting dynamic. This is someone who holds an important position in your life and someone you most likely see on a near-daily basis. But in most circumstances, they aren’t a life-long friend, a relative or even a co-worker who you hang out with after quitting time. This balance is amplified at Christmas. Your boss is someone who deserves a gift, but what do you get him or her? Luckily Coastal Human Resources is here with seven Christmas gift ideas for the boss.


  1. Cheese Board & Knife Set

Give them a classy gift with a cheese board and knife set. Have their monogram etched into the wood of the board and/or knife handle for a personal touch. This gift can be used for all the future dinner parties you’ll be invited to after becoming a favorite with this amazing present.

  1. Charitable Donation

For the boss who has everything, help them spread the wealth with a charitable donation in their name. This is especially perfect for the philanthropist leader and company. You’ve given a thoughtful gift and they get their name attached.

  1. Personal Bobble Head

If your boss has a sense of humor, then give them something that will keep them laughing. Order a custom bobble head that will look great on their desk and become a talking piece that will keep you on their mind.

  1. Tickets

Give them a reason to take a night off and let loose with tickets to a local sporting event or concert. Pay attention to conversations or trinkets around the office to figure out their favorite team or musician. This gift is guaranteed to give them a few hours of reprieve and a memory that will last longer than any fruit basket.

  1. Custom Pen

An executive appreciates a good pen and a good pen is worth the penny. Have one custom made with material that reflects their personality and taste (i.e. deer antlers, mahogany, marble, etc.) and etched with their name or initials. If possible, purchase it with a warranty that will allow it to be refilled when necessary.

  1. Artwork

A beautiful piece of artwork is great because it can go in the office or home. Take cues from the other type of decorations and style they exhibit to find art that goes along with their taste. If your boss started his or her own business, then make the artwork custom, like a watercolor or sketch of the office building.

  1. Wine or Scotch

When all else fails, go with a nice bottle of wine or scotch (depending on your boss). It can be enjoyed right away or at a later date. It’s versatile for all circumstances and personalities and let’s face it, they probably need it. Sweeten the pot with a box of luxury chocolates.


With these seven Christmas gift ideas for the boss from Coastal Human Resources, you can find something that will help you stand out as an employee this holiday season.


At Coastal Human Resources Group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit us online at





When you are in charge of a business, the weight of the world—or at least the company—seems to fall directly on your shoulders. Every problem, every issue, every employee fight must filter through your office. It can easily become overwhelming, to the point you want to just leave it all and escape to a tropical island that can’t be found by modern technology. But every problem is a blessing- an opportunity to learn if you choose to see it that way. So, during this season of thanks, we here at Coastal Human Resources would like to remind you why it’s important to be thankful for your business, regardless of your challenges.


  • Employees

Managing employees can feel like managing a lot of toddlers at times. They are forced to work together even if they don’t get along. And even if they love their job, most people can’t help but keep an eye on the clock and will jet when it’s quitting time faster than Fred Flintstone at the whistle. All of this becomes your problem as a boss. But every time one of your employees—or collectively as a group—gets on your nerves, remember that their presence means your business is doing well enough to demand the extra hands. More so, those extra hands are there to assist. Being in charge can feel like being on an island (and not the one you want) but employees are fellow team members above all else. Work with them and you’ll find yourself being thankful for them much more often.

  • Persistent Phones

When that phone rings for the 37th time before lunch, you’d probably like nothing better than to throw it out the window. While being connected is essential, especially in business world, easily accessible technology seems to have also stripped away peace and quiet. Remember, though, that every time that phone rings it’s a chance to grow your company, to impress a potential customer and strengthen an existing connection. That ringing phone represents your tether to an institution that is fostering its place in the world. So, answer it with pride. Then don’t feel bad for silencing it during lunch.

  • Meetings

You probably only go to meetings for the snacks or coffee and we don’t blame you. Half of the time we find ourselves sitting in meetings thinking “Couldn’t this have been handled over email?” But never underestimate the power of face-to-face interaction and the magic that can happen when people are in the same room bouncing ideas. Those meetings signify an opportunity for your company to decide its next step and decide where it can fit into the future of your field. No matter how insignificant a meeting might appear, embrace the open channel of communication to take your mission plan further.

  • Dirty Dishes

While this one is literal in the hospitality industry, it’s metaphorical for others. The sentiment is the same though. Every dirty dish you wash means there was a customer there that needed it. That is to say, every bit of paperwork following a project, there’s trash that needs to be cleaned up. Filing a follow-up report means you (hopefully successfully) provided your service and a client left satisfied. It means your business served its purpose. The documentation process, the long paper trail, the tedious follow-ups all mean that you’re dotting your I’s and crossing your T’s.


When that 4 o’clock Tuesday hour seems to drag on forever and you want nothing more than to walk out and leave everything behind, look at those things you are apt to loathe and see them from a different perspective. Doing so will remind you why giving thanks for your business is important.


At Coastal Human Resources Group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit us online at





If there’s one word that causes more discussion, debate, and even discourse in our society today, it’s ‘millennials’. Everyone has an opinion on the 18-34 year old age group. But what’s important to remember is that age group takes up a large portion of the population. Many managers and leaders find themselves struggling with millennials and their place in the office. This has led to a misconception that the age group doesn’t have a good work ethic and can’t function in adulthood. The actuality is that these young people just have a different work ethic. The key to creating a positive and productive environment is to understand how to motivate your staff instead of trying to push them into the same boxes that previous generations worked within. With that being said, here are four tips to engage millennials in the workplace from Coastal Human Resources.


  1. Push a Career Path
    • Contrary to popular belief, this age group craves longevity and a career. This must be manifested in a fulfilling way, though. Millennials aren’t content with just a 9-5, clock in and out of job, which is why you see so many becoming Instagrammers while trying to figure out what to do next. They want to become part of a company— a community if you will— and help build it through the years. Show that your business is a place to grow with opportunities for advancement and young people will feel inspired to not only work there but to help you grow.
  2. Open Workplace
    • For all the flack the group takes for being consumed by their phones, this age of people actually thrives on being around others. Locking them into an office or even a cubicle will do nothing but make them feel drab. Millennials need stimulation. Instead of scoffing that this just means they’re easily distracted, test out the theory to see the difference in production. When surrounded by co-workers in an open air workplace the work will feel less like, well a job, and more like an attainable task to work towards as a team.
  3. Create Community
    • In that same vein, create a community atmosphere outside of the office. Young people want to connect with those around them and that includes their co-workers. If they feel like others in the office are their friends then coming to work won’t seem like so much of a chore. Organize an after-work happy hour outing or a weekend retreat. Bring back the company picnic but amp it up with a 5K or karaoke. To really appeal to this generation, use these events to make a positive difference in the neighborhood, which leads to…
  4. Emphasize Social Impact
    • Millennials are very cognizant of social issues and are constantly looking for ways to make a difference in the world around them. If your company puts an emphasis on social impact then they will want to work for you. They’ll also feel encouraged to promote and develop a company in which they believe. Most importantly, your business will be doing good for the community and world.



The unknown can be seen as scary. As of right now, there is still a lot of unknown about millennials among the older generations. It doesn’t have to be intimidating or frustrating though. By learning to work with them instead of against them, you will create a more positive and productive environment for all. Use these four tips to engage millennials in the workplace from Coastal Human Resources to do just that.


At Coastal Human Resources Group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit us online at






Health insurance has changed a lot in the last few years and there are now many rules and laws which regulate the industry. As a business owner, many of these rules can affect you. Some of these are federal, while other mandates are state-originated. Each state has the right to set up the mandates for the insurance offered by their businesses. Let’s take a quick look at some of the laws and mandates which affect Alabama.
HIPAA: Enacted in 1996, The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is a federal law that requires inclusion of dependents and disallows exclusions for pre-existing conditions, age, or medical history. In some cases, there may be a six-month exclusion for some pre-existing conditions, but after that time, they are covered. HIPAA was enacted to streamline processes and help protect the privacy and security of information. The privacy tenet is one of the largest sections of the law. When people hear HIPAA, they usually think of the privacy aspect. With the exception of disease reporting, government oversight, and some legal investigations, information is highly guarded. There are also monetary and criminal penalties ascribed to breaches.
COBRA: Only required for private sector companies with over 20 employees (there are exceptions for federal plans and religious organizations) and state and local governments, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act was enacted to continue insurance coverages to employees or former employees under certain circumstances. While the employer does not have to pay for the coverage continuation, they do have to administer it the same as their group coverage. This insurance safety net can be very expensive for the employee. However, it does meet a need and many find it useful. If an employee loses their job or quits; if divorce interrupts coverage; if death occurs; or if your age disqualifies you, then you may be entitled to COBRA insurance for up to 18 months. Interestingly, many states have mandates which extend this coverage to other sub-sets of employees, such as companies with fewer than 20. This is known as a mini-Cobra. HIPAA also sets out requirements enabling special enrollment in another parent’s plan. There are also options for enrollment in Marketplace plans at a lower cost or with some subsidies.
STATE MANDATES: Once the federal laws have been met, each state has the ability to set their own levels of requirements based on perceived need and the ability to manage costs. The state of Alabama has the second lowest number of state mandates. While the average is 38, Alabama has half that amount, at 19. The more state mandates expressed, the more requirements on insurance, and the higher the cost in general. Some of the coverages for this state include Chiropractors, Dentists, Nurse Anesthetists, Optometrists, Pharmacists, Physician Assistants, Psychologists, and Newborn Coverage. These mandates may change over time.
While insurance is an ever-changing game, and many rules seem to be in constant evolution. It is important that you stay up to date on these changes. At Coastal Human Resources Group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit us online at
© Southern View Media 2017: Reproduction without explicit permission is prohibited. All Rights Reserved. “Get Online or Get Left Behind”


We know it is coming. We deal with it every year and we still let those small tasks pile up and overwhelm us. While some financial administrators have plenty of time throughout the year to get tasks done, others seem to be overloaded from January to December and feel challenged at every turn to accomplish all of their responsibilities. This is especially true of small companies where one or two office workers handle the administration and keeping the books is only a small part of their job. This year, start early and get ahead of the game so that you can enjoy the holidays and head into the new year with a confident frame of mind.

Here are a few things you may be able to knock out now:

  • RECEIPTS may have been laid to the side when other things demanded your time. Now is a great time to pull out the charge card statements or spending reports and start matching them up. If you have a scanner and save electronic copies, the process may be slightly different, but the result is the same. Attach the correct receipts to the statements, so the accountant can see physical evidence of your disbursements. This is especially important if you are under certain guidelines for spending.
  • RECONCILIATIONS should be caught up before the last minute. When you have many accounts, and some are investments, those statements may be laid to the side as well. It is a given that you would generally know what is happening with those accounts, that nothing will change, and all you need to do is some simple data entry. Priorities are what they are and sometimes other things just take precedence. Get those accounts updated and check that off your list.
  • BALANCES can be achieved as you go through the reconciliations. Reports are easy to print off for the accountant, but you want to be sure that the balances you give him or her are the most current. If you get quarterly statements, you can call ahead and get a balance directly from the bank.
  • BUDGET reports can be printed, evaluated, and used to develop the new budget. Remember to keep your spending analysis to the lower side of your projected earnings to avoid budget crises later on. You also can adjust the budget if earnings exceed expectations and you want to invest more in the business.
  • REPORTS may be needed by several people in your organization. Each person may want or need different things in their reports. It’s helpful to get as many done as possible. Estimators may want budgets and projected earnings. Financial officers may want profit and loss statements through various periods of the year. Department heads may want to look at profits compared to their process charts. Those responsible for hiring may want to see payroll reports. While some simply have to wait till the year ends, others may be generated ahead of time.

If you need help getting on top of your game, or you would like assistance in completing end-of-year tasks, give Coastal Human Resources Group a call today. We provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit




While it may seem that hiring women and men is the same process, studies have shown that the reasons women and men work are different. Being able to adjust the recruiting process to cover the things we are looking for will bring the best candidates to the table.

  • RESPECT is paramount. Even more important than pay, females want to go to work in an environment where they are given respect due their level of service. The higher we climb on the ladder of success, the more we expect our opinion, knowledge, skills, and experience to be used for the betterment of the organization.
  • PAY based on the resume is important. While everyone wants the most we can get for their time, it is true that as the resume grows and improves,  they expect to be compensated for the years spent learning.
  • BENEFITS for them and their families are necessary, and the more the better. In many cases, the compensation package is the difference between hiring those knowing and those growing. Offering a package which takes care of any family members is huge, and good medical, vision, dental, disability, and retirement are only the beginning. Profit-sharing and bonuses give incentive to build a profitable enterprise. Offering child care, education reimbursement, travel compensation, and a pathway to leadership are also major draws. Many women will pass up other benefits to have child care on site. Maternity leave is a huge attraction for females of child -bearing age and interest, and the better the maternity leave, the more they will look at you as a prospective employer. While six weeks is normal, there are companies which offer a graduated return schedule to allow an easier transition between leaving the baby and coming back to work.
  • CONSIDERATIONS such as flex time and remote work will bring in women who typically are the ones left to call off work when a child is ill or has an appointment. Flex time has been shown to increase productivity dramatically, and being able to stay home while still completing necessary tasks benefits everyone. An employer who has the ability to give this option to the employees and fails to do so is missing out on a great tool to increase performance. Mandatory overtime is another consideration, and will often drive women to look for other options. Many women usually prioritize their families first. If women are being forced to leave them for excessive hours through the week or on weekends, they will probably find another job.
  • FULFILLMENT may mean the difference between hiring great employees and retaining them. A work environment which allows them to enjoy coming to work, and feel appreciated while there, will keep them coming back for years. By supplying them with the tools for personal growth, financial stability, and emotional satisfaction, you can build an organization of cherished employees whose loyalty will bring your company the best in growth and profit.

By structuring your interviews and learning which of these attractions hold the highest place on the list for your best candidates, you can build a package to bring in and retain great women, and we know there are a lot of talented ladies out there!


At Coastal Human Resources group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. If your company needs staff, then contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit


Have you ever met those people who make it look easy; who seem to accomplish everything they need to do, and still have time to go out to dinner every evening? The ones who are never ruffled or perturbed? And who never miss a deadline? Well, if you ask them how they do it, they probably can’t tell you. Many of them are naturally organized. But if you aren’t, don’t give up. Here are some tips which will help you be in the successful cliché, by focusing your efforts.

  • KEEP A LIST of tasks to be accomplished. Carry over everything not accomplished today to the top of tomorrow’s list. Prioritize each morning over your coffee, and decide which items are musts, shoulds, and hopefuls. Outlook has a great task list. You can put in tasks, make them recurring, send reminders and set alarms, and add emails and other items for follow-up.
  • USE A CALENDAR to block time for appointments and projects. Keeping things in front of you means that you won’t be stressing over what you forgot. Leave the stress for the important things, and make sure you always know what is going on. Consult your calendar daily.
  • CONSIDER A TIME MANAGEMENT TOOL such as Asana. This awesome project manager is amazing for tracking, assigning, and following work. Tasks, subtasks, and more can be followed easily. You can use Asana as a team, and each person can have their part of a project available for everyone to stay on top of. This is also a great motivator.
  • STAY FOCUSED on the task at hand within the realm of your day. Try to finish what you are doing before starting another job. Multi-tasking is really simply the ability to stay on one task while dealing with fifty others competing for your time.
  • BE FLEXIBLE and remember that things do happen, and you may have to put your task down and do something else. Just try not to become absorbed in it, and sidetracked. Go back to what you were doing as soon as possible. If you need to send a fax, then run the report, fax it, file or shred it, and get back. Don’t get sidetracked into filing the whole pile of paperwork that you noticed while you were faxing.
  • SCHEDULE DOWN TIME. You can’t work all the time. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Remember that little bit of common sense? Take a few hours to dine out or see a show. Spend time with those you love. Just get away from it for a while. Work will always be waiting.

At the end of the work day, take a few moments to reflect on your progress. Get a plan together for the evening, including family time and adequate rest. Although it is possible to get through the day while burning the candle at both ends, studies do show that those who get seven hours of sleep are more functional during the day, and are more focused.

Coastal Human Resource Group, Inc. is a Human Resource Outsourcer (HRO). We serve as a full-service human resources department for small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Southeast. Visit or call us toll-free at 1-888-757-7444. We’re here to help ensure that all your human resources needs are met.


7 Email & Phone Scams To Be On The Lookout For

If you belong to any of the myriad of online job sites such as Career Builder, Indeed, or Monster, then you know how flooded your inbox can get with spam. Over the last few years, scam artists passing themselves off as legitimate employers have become smarter at reeling in job seekers who are desperate to secure employment. Their end game is to steal your identity or clean out your bank account. In some cases they will involve you in illegal activity without you even knowing it.

Below is a list of the top seven email and phone scams and what to look for in each:

Offers That are too Good to Pass Up

You’ve seen them before. A job description will pop up in your email that offers extremely good pay, with a top position that is available right away…but you only have to work for 12 hours in the comfort of your own home. In most cases, these hackers have contacted you with unsolicited offers that you didn’t ask for.

Unclear Job Descriptions

If you get a job offer that doesn’t make any sense whatsoever, then that should raise a red flag. Scammers use vague job descriptions in an attempt to pique your interest so that you supply your personal information. The descriptions are general in nature so that they appeal to a wider audience.

Poorly Written Emails

You can almost always tell when an email is a scam just by the pathetic sentence structures, misspelled words, and misused punctuation. In the case of a phone scam, the person on the other will speak in broken in English. Companies do not hire HR representative who cannot write in proper English.

No Return Contact Information

Any reputable employer will make it easy for prospective employees to contact them. They will usually provide company (not personal) emails, phone numbers, addresses, and a website. If there none of this information exists in the email, then block the sender or delete the email.

Company Not Listed in Google Search

No matter who is calling or emailing you, you owe it to yourself to do some background research on the company. Look for an official website that can easily be found using a Google search. Call the company number and speak to the hiring manager. Try to find reviews and other information about the company.

You’re Asked to Submit Personal Information

No legitimate company is going to ask you to submit confidential information in an initial email or phone call. This usually happens after an interview and a confirmation of employment. It is only then that info such as social security numbers, bank account drafts, etc. are requested.

You’re Asked to Pay for Something

Only a scammer would ask you to pay for something up front in order to land your ‘dream’ job. Don’t fall for it. While it is true, that some companies may require you to invest money in items such as equipment, uniforms, or background checks, these expenses don’t come up until after you’ve been hired. No legitimate company is going to request money before you’ve even walked through the door.  

Coastal Human Resources, Inc. is a Professional Employer Organization (PEO),
serving as a full-service human resources department for small and medium sized businesses throughout the Southeast. We provide a wide range of services for employers who are looking to expand their workforce. Contact us today at 888-757-7444 to request a free quote or visit


For most of us, our business is a necessity. We don’t start them for fun, but to make a living. As such, we must protect our investments of time and money. When you shop for insurance, here are some of the most important coverages:

  •  LIABILITY: This is probably the most important insurance your business can purchase. There are several types, including general, product, service, and professional. You will want to have general and any of the others which apply to your situation. If someone is injured on your property, or by an employee, product, or service, these policies cover the defense attorneys in the case, and any awarded settlement. Because there really are people out there looking for an excuse to sue, this policy is non-negotiable. If you want to keep your business and operate in today’s sue-happy climate, protect yourself and your investment. Another consideration in the liability department is a cap insurance, which kicks in if your damages exceed the general policy’s limits.
  • PROPERTY INSURANCE: Your building and equipment are necessary to the operation of the company. Theft or damage are covered with property insurance. For even better coverage, pair this one with interruption of business. When something unforeseen happens, and the business is unable to operate for days, or weeks, the lost income is compensated. If you have employees counting on their paychecks, you will want to cover payroll to retain your staff. In the case of fire or smoke damage, repairs and cleaning can take several weeks or longer.  
  • WORKERS’ COMPENSATION: This policy is mandatory if you have employees. Workmans’ Comp covers any employee injured on the job. Their medical bills and compensatory replacement of lost pay helps get them through the time of healing and protects you from lawsuit.
  • FLEET INSURANCE: Most businesses have vehicles. Protect the drivers, contents, and automobiles with this policy, as well as any others injured in a collision. If you also comp employees for driving their own cars, you may want to inquire about a non-owned rider to back up their insurance.
  • INFORMATION PROTECTION: It seems that every other day we are hearing about hacking. Yet, as we continue to shelter personal information, we should also have some sort of protection for our business in case that information is compromised.

Many insurance companies offer a Business Owner’s Policy, which can be thought of as the “bundled” plan. They have taken all of the insurances you may need, and discounted the package.

Home-based businesses may need some modifications to the property insurance.

You may desire additional coverages. As business models change, so do the insurances offered. Today there are policies for cyber-theft or other electronic breaches. The information you save is not the only thing that can be obtained. You may find your bank accounts emptied or your system held hostage and requiring a ransom.

Business insurance is relatively inexpensive, but the peace of mind it brings is immeasurable. Be sure you have everything you need, before you need it.

Coastal Human Resource Group, Inc. is a Human Resource Outsourcer (HRO). We serve as a full-service human resources department for small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Southeast. Visit or call us toll-free at 1-888-757-7444. We’re here to help ensure that all your human resources needs are met.

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6 Effective Conflict Resolution Techniques



As long as there are humans working in your company, then there will always be tension and conflict on some level. Whether you are working in HR, administration or top-tier management, conflict resolution is a skill you’ll need to refine over time. Below are five proven conflict resolutions techniques that will help you keep the office running smoothly.

Do a lot of Listening

You are more likely to earn trust and loyalty by simply sitting down and listening to what someone else has to say. When someone else is talking, avoid interrupting him or her. Ask lots of question for clarity and always communicate when you don’t understand something.

Minimize the Conflict as Much as Possible

Let’s face it, some people are just drawn to drama. When the pot stirs, they are often the first to jump in. So, when conflict arises, the best course of action is minimize how many people are involved. Sure, there are moments when people may need to be called in to confirm or clarify a claim. Most of the time, however, conflict comes down to two people on two different sides of an issue. If you can get into a room and get the involved parties to work out the dispute without involving everyone else, you’re more likely to get it solved quickly and quietly. Once the conflict is solved, encourage everyone in the room to keep it to themselves. There’s really no point in drawing the entire office into an encounter.

Facts, Not Feelings

The ability to listen is an admirable quality. When there’s a dispute between two employees, they are both dying to be heard. And while a listening ear is important in gaining the trust of your staff, your decisions should never be made on how your employees feel. As someone in charge, your duty is to gather the facts and make a decision (if necessary) that is based on those facts. By focusing on the facts, you rid yourself of needless emotional baggage that can effect how you judge a situation and its outcome. When everyone else in the room is angry or hurt, you need to be the calm, steady, level-headed voice in the room that provides clear direction.

Try to Create a Win-Win Situation

Conflict creates duality. Essentially, both sides have a need or desire. Somewhere in the middle is a compromise in which each side can get what he or she wants if only in part. Effective management seeks to do what is best for everyone in the room. Therefore, you’re more likely to create a long-term solution if your goal is to help everyone resolve the conflict in a way in which both parties can benefit at some level.

Focus on Issues, Not People

It doesn’t take long for a disagreement to get personal. This is especially true for employees who have been working together for a long time and know each other well. When tensions get high and people get emotional the tendency is to focus on personalities instead of issues. As a supervisor, however, your #1 goal is to solve the issue. Thus, you should avoid character attacks and personalized statements. Get to the heart of the matter and stay there.

Develop a Plan for a Solution

Some disagreements can be solved within minutes – others within hours. And then there are some conflicts that take a few days. In some instances you may need to develop a plan of action for finding the right solution. Once you’ve developed the plan, then share it with all involved and resolve the problem as a team if possible.

At Coastal Human Resources group we provide a wide range of HR services for business owners in Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. If your company needs staff, then contact us today at 251.478.7444 or visit

There are four approaches to effectively discipline an employee though that will prove successful and beneficial for both your company and your employee.


When it comes to disciplining an employee, there’s no easy o