Welcome to the bi-monthly installment of nextSource’s “Working Knowledge” feature. This portion of the website delivers informative perspectives for practitioners of contingent workforce management, culled from trusted sources. Readers of this feature enjoy boiled-down information on specific tactics, legal/regulatory updates and other tactical information. Here’s part one from this two-part digest of Working Knowledge gathered throughout November and December 2020, addressing market developments, technology advancements and other newsworthy notes.

Market Developments
Temporary Staffing is on the Rise.  Though reaching a 10-month high in November, temporary staffing jobs numbers still remain 9% below the same time last year. Attributed to a decline in business conditions suggesting growth has slowed in Q4, the Conference Board Consumer Confidence index fell in November. Nevertheless, the use of temporary staff increased slightly according to the American Staffing Association (ASA) Staffing Index.

Department of Labor issues opinion letters on COVID-related and other work challenges.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s “Wage and Hour Division” which addresses the issue of compensable time under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), has issued opinion letters in an attempt to clarify the application of regulations in a COVID environment. The letter suggests changes in compensation for travel time to include non-exempt employees. The letter also addresses COVID safety guidelines, reporting, and record-keeping requirements. Lastly, the communication focuses on compliance with prevailing wage laws on Federal projects; wherein it has been revealed that 78% of organizations investigated in 2020 had DBA violations, resulting in employers paying $1,329,512 in back wages to 920 employees.


State Ballot Initiatives Bring New Workforce Regulations as recent national elections impact classification and treatment of independent contractors in the “Gig” economy, individual privacy rights, higher minimum wage thresholds, paid leave expansion, and cannabis legalization. California’s closely watched Prop 22 legally defined app-based drivers and other workers as Independent Contractors. CA Prop 24 expanded the Consumer Privacy Act, requiring companies in state to update privacy programs to include a new category of personal information. The new “Sensitive Data,” category includes government identifiers, account and log-in information, geolocation data, race or ethnic origin, religious beliefs, etc.

Colorado voters passed Prop 118, creating a new Paid Family and Medical Leave program for Colorado employees. It will provide 12 weeks of paid leave, with an additional four weeks available in specified circumstances. Florida Amendment 2 raises the state’s minimum wage to $15 by 2026. While Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, Mississippi and South Dakota all legalized cannabis with each state’s law containing guidance for employers.

State-level wage law changes have also occurred as several States Enact Wage Increases via legislation. Washington state’s minimum wage will rise by 19 cents per hour on Jan. 1, 2020. Employees age 16 and older must be paid at least $13.69 per hour, and those between 14 and 15 years of age must be paid at least $11.64 per hour. California increases the compensation threshold for exempt computer professionals to at least $98,907.70 annually ($8,242.32 monthly) or an hourly wage of $47.48 every hour worked in order to remain exempt from paying such employees overtime compensation.

Continue on to Part II of this bi-monthly digest for Technology Advancements and Newsworthy Notes from the November/December 2020 Working Knowledge Series.