Newsletter Detail

MVHRA Connections - September 2017




MVHRA Moves to Next Step in Strategic Planning


By LaTonia McCane, SHRM-CP, PHR, GBA


As some of us are taking time out for the Ohio HR Conference this month, I wanted to give you some insight as to what your chapter board has been working on behind the scenes the past couple months.


Rick Blackstone who is the Chair for our Past Presidents Committee facilitated our biennial strategic planning session.  He has been instrumental in helping us develop the vision/mission of this organization that better reflects today’s ‘Business of HR’ as well as, set goals that will help lead us into the next phase of internal & external chapter leadership and develop a plan to achieve them.  This planning involves stepping back from our day-to-day operations and asking where our Association is headed and what our priorities should be.


Finally, the plan reiterates our commitment to the stewardship of our members and creates an atmosphere of open dialogue and collaboration.  In that spirit, we welcome suggestions to help us become as efficient and effective as possible in the pursuit of our mission.  We are excited to be able to introduce these concepts to you.  Once the plan is finalized, it will be posted on our website.   


In the meantime, these planning sessions are instrumental in how we develop our time & resources and this is one of the reasons why our chapter has been around since 1818.  I would like to thank the board for committing their time to implementing our 2018 Strategic Plan as this is almost more important than the plan itself.



Check out these exciting Human Resources job opportunities:

  • Total Rewards Specialist (Compensation) – Dayton Children’s Hospital
  • Staffing and Retention Manager – SoBran, Inc.
  • Human Resources Manager – Pratt Industries
  • Human Resources Generalist – Ohio Living Dorothy Love



Medical Marijuana and Drug Testing: Getting Into The Weeds

By: Steve Watring, Auman Mahan & Furry

Marijuana use is now legal to some extent under the laws of most states and in some municipalities.  But marijuana use still is illegal under federal law.  What is an employer to do?

In general, an employer can still consider marijuana use, even prescribed marijuana use, to be a violation of its policy, unless the employer is in one of those few (primarily coastal or western) jurisdictions where that is no longer the case.  Likewise, most employers normally still can refuse to hire applicants and discharge employees who test positive.   Marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance, meaning that is has no legal uses under federal law.  The Americans with Disabilities Act does not protect the current illegal use of drugs.  In Ohio, the new medical marijuana law expressly provides that it does not prohibit an employer from discharging or taking any other adverse action against an employee for using medical marijuana. While almost every adverse employment action carries a degree of risk, the risks here appear to be relatively low.

The answer is more complicated if you want to make some exception for marijuana use.  In that case, the answer depends on whether your drug policy is subject to government regulations or customer requirements. 

The United States Department of Transportation and the Department of Health and Human Services have long been the standard bearers in the area of drug testing and have long included marijuana as a mandatory substance to be tested.  Even if your company is not directly subject to these regulations, many state and federal laws incorporate by reference DoT and DHHS procedures and requirements. 

Said another way, DoT and DHHS regulations often are woven into the fabric of other drug testing laws and regulations.  For example, if your company wants to bid or perform on any state or federal government projects that require a drug policy or drug testing, your safest course of action is to include marijuana as a part of your policy and as one of the tested substances.  Likewise, marijuana must be covered under Ohio’s Bureau of Workers’ Compensation drug-free workplace discount program.  The same may be true for customer-mandated testing.

The DoT has repeatedly driven a bulldozer through the idea that users of medical marijuana should get a pass when tested positive.  In fact, as recently as June 20, 2017, the DoT updated and re-issued a “Medical Marijuana Notice” reaffirming that use of medical marijuana under state law cannot be considered a valid medical explanation for a positive DoT drug test.

Therefore, if your company is directly covered by DoT regulations, you should not exempt marijuana use under your policy, even if that use is legal under state law.  In my opinion, the same thing is true if you are indirectly made subject to those regulations because of other government laws or customer requirements.

If your drug policy is not subject to government regulations or customer requirements, you can choose to exempt marijuana use from your policy.  For most employers, I believe that the better approach is to cover marijuana use.  If your policy is worded correctly, you still should have multiple options for how to deal with an employee who tests positive.  But if you would rather not treat it as a violation, that is your right. 

For DoT testing, any positive result for marijuana must be reported as a positive.  For non-DoT testing, once you decide how you want to handle marijuana use under your policy, the next step is to interface with your drug screening company or Medical Review Officer.  Otherwise, you are leaving the decision up to them.  For example, some drug testing professionals have a policy of reporting a positive medical marijuana test as a negative result absent contrary instructions from the employer.  Even worse, you probably won’t even know that the employee actually tested positive.  The drug testing professional should honor your requests in this regard, at least with respect to medical marijuana.  If they won’t honor your preferences, find someone who will.  

Unfortunately, I must conclude with a couple of disclaimers.  The law in this area is changing rapidly and may become different with the passage of time.  While employers may find this as a useful general guide, they should consult with competent employment law counsel for specific advice.

Steve Watring ( is a partner in the labor and employment law group of Auman, Mahan & Furry.  He has counseled employers, written articles and given speeches on drugs and alcohol in the workplace since the 1980’s.  Steve formerly served as chair of the Dayton Chamber of Commerce’s Drugs Don’t Work Committee.  He is a Certified Specialist in Labor and Employment Law.  He holds a Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell, and has been recognized as a Super Lawyer.

Employee Perks and Benefits: Are You Keeping Up?

Win the talent tug-of-war by staying up on trends.


By: John Rossheim


Your company is determined to attract and retain A-players in these times of scarce talent. But how will you do so while meeting management’s mandate to cap the average raise at, say, 3 percent?


You’ve got to brand your organization as a provider of the mix of employee benefits that workers want in 2017.


What do we mean by benefits? Keep in mind that talent -- especially the Millennial generation that now dominates the workplace -- won’t put up with low-value perks. 

“Millennials are a lot more mobile than their older colleagues,” says Justyn Harkin, a spokesperson for Jellyvision, which offers a communications platform for employee benefits. “If they don’t like what’s going on, they leave.”


Here are the key trends in benefits and perks that can help your organization win the talent tug-of-war of the late 2010s.


Drum roll: Benefits that are trending in 2017. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) surveyed its members of all sizes to determine what’s hot -- and not -- in the field of competition for benefits. 


According to the survey, at least 5 percent of respondents said they plan to introduce one or more new benefits in 2017, such as wellness programs that might include health tips and rewards, health fairs, annual health risk assessments, mentoring programs and leadership coaching.


In uncertain times, health insurance is still the highest-value benefit. Health insurance continues to be an effective retention tool, especially given the uncertain future of the employer mandate to insure workers.  “People are mainly concerned with health insurance, health savings accounts and high-deductible health plans,” says Harkin. 

With their potential to extract thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket costs, high-deductible health plans have earned greater scrutiny from employees and job candidates. 


Highly profitable enterprises -- whether large corporations or small professional services firms -- are competing for talent by paying higher premiums for plans with lower deductibles. 


Half of surveyed firms offer financial advice. Whether they are Millennials who came of age during the 2007-2009 recession or Gen Xers and Boomers who took a direct hit, workers are asking for help with their finances. And employers are responding by providing a financial education for employees. 


“Financial advice benefits are trending upward, going from 28 percent in 2014 to 49 percent in 2017,” says the SHRM report. “If employers offer benefits for personal finance and retirement, that can really help relieve stress and anxiety, so workers can focus on their work,” says Tanya Mulvey, a researcher at SHRM.


Flex is bigger than ever. Employees in many different life situations seek flexible work options for at least a portion of their workday. Many employers are responding positively, hoping to reach hard-to-get talent pools such as highly-skilled women returning to the workforce. 


“Flex doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg,” says Lenny Sanicola, a spokesperson for WorldAtWork. And flex is equally available to firms of all sizes.


Student loan repayment is very popular with young workers. “Loan repayment won’t work for everybody, but it will work for companies doing a lot of campus hiring,” says Sanicola. “It’s both an attractor and a retainer.” 


Professional services firms are the small business sector most likely to be able to afford the substantial out-of-pocket for this benefit.


Mature workers seek 401(k) match. Gen Xers and Boomers care about health insurance -- but they care even more about the employer’s match of 401(k) contributions, says Harvey Bass, CEO of recruitment firm Stascom Technologies, an affiliate of MRINetwork. 


Staffing firms that match their associates’ retirement contributions can earn substantial employee loyalty -- a rare commodity in the temp industry.


Professional development bridges generation gaps. It may not reflect well on American employers that professional development is now often pitched as a fringe benefit rather than a business necessity -- but that is the case. 


“Professional development benefits are important at all career levels, including people late in their careers,” says Mulvey. Small, mid-sized and large companies and staffing firms are equally well positioned to offer professional development in one form or another.

For some employees, convenience perks add up.  Are trendy fringe benefits valued by employees as much as they cost employers? In some cases, yes. 


“Perks like house cleaning services, on-site dry cleaning and access to local pet care providers -- they may sound superfluous,” says Al Zink, senior vice president of human resources at “But when these benefits are packaged with flexibility, family care and tuition assistance, they reduce work-life conflict.”

What benefits do your employees want? Ask them. Only 31 percent of employees who say they use benefits as a talent strategy actually collect data on the value of specific benefits to employees, according to a SHRM survey. For companies of all sizes, failing to ask employees what benefits they want is a big mistake. 


“We use surveys and engagement processes that help us understand what our employees want,” says Matthew Owenby, senior vice president and chief human resources officer at Aflac. “We survey every 18 months or so.” 


Flaunt your benefits with job candidates. Does your company spell out the key features and value of the key benefits you provide? Be sure to highlight them in your job descriptions -- and reiterate them when you first meet with a candidate. “A lot of employers don’t include benefits in their recruiting materials,” says Harkin.


Resolve to Recertify Your SHRM Certification in 2017

Many of us technically don’t have to recertify our SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP certification until 2018, but why wait – do it in 2017! If you have (or will have) the 60 PDCs to recertify in 2017 – please RECERTIFY early and promote RECERTIFICATION! You can learn more about SHRM Recertification at:



Scholarships for SHRM certification are available to individuals who have, or will, sit for their exam in 2017 or will sit for their exam in the next 12 months. More than 100 winners will be selected to receive a scholarship of $750.  Learn more at
Deadline to apply: October 10, 2017

Graduate Scholarships are awarded to eligible students seeking a graduate degree in a masters or doctoral program in business, psychology, human resources, organizational development, or have been accepted to begin studies within six months. Applicants must be current SHRM members, attending an accredited institution of higher learning, with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Winners receive an award of $5,000. Learn more at
Deadline to apply: October 10, 2017

Undergraduate Scholarships are awarded to eligible students seeking an undergraduate degree in business, psychology, human resources or organizational management. Applicants must be current SHRM members, attending an accredited institution of higher learning, with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Winners receive an award of $2,500. Learn more at
Deadline to apply: October 10, 2017 





MediaWorks 2017

MediaWorks 2017 presented by CMG Ohio is a free expo that provides the latest marketing information necessary for today's business owner to stay competitive in the greater Ohio area.

The FREE, interactive marketing expo will be running for 5 days at Cox Media Group Ohio, 1611 S Main St, Dayton, Ohio from Monday, September 18 through to Friday, September 22, 2017.

In just one 45-minute seminar, you'll learn how easy and affordable it is to attract new customers and increase sales by advertising in Ohio’s most influential Cox Media Group brands. See our strictly limited expo-only offers.

Who should attend?

Business owners/managers and marketing executives. Many organizations, particularly small to medium businesses, think CMG Ohio prestige brands are out of their marketing reach and budget. MediaWorks is designed to introduce these businesses to the extraordinary power of TV, Radio, Print and Digital through CMG Ohio at an affordable investment.

At the show, you'll have access to CMG Ohio’s exclusive multi media advertising packages that suit different business sizes and marketing budgets.

Utilize the proven marketing strategies that CMG Ohio’s most successful advertisers have learned.

The Seminar

This FREE expo is a fantastic opportunity. You will be introduced to one of our experienced marketing executives for a one-on-one consultation to discuss your business and marketing goals. They will explain how MediaWorks can help you achieve those goals through advertising.

Benefits of the Program

Learn the proven marketing strategies used by Dayton’s most successful advertisers. See how simple it is to reach the consumers you want and stay ahead of your competition. Growing your business through advertising has never been easier or more affordable with our range of amazing expo-only packages where all the work is done for you.

Our team of experts will be on hand to advise you on the right advertising package for your business. Meet our creative team who will design, write and produce your advertisements for these special campaigns for FREE and talk to digital experts about your website and search marketing.

Locations & Sessions

Cox Media Group Ohio
1611 S Main St
Dayton, Ohio 45409

Session Times

Six convenient daily sessions:  09:30 a.m., 11:00 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 02:00 p.m., 03:30 p.m., 05:00 p.m.

2017 SHRM Certification (SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP) Scholarships

The SHRM Foundation will award 220 certification scholarships -- $750 for the SHRM Certification exam and/or preparation (SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP). The next scholarship application deadline is October 10, 2017.

More information is available here.

Upcoming MVHRA Meetings and Events


Workshop:  Basics: Tips and Traps for HR Supervisors by Virginia Hegwood, Virginia Hegwood, LLC

Luncheon:  Leading at All Levels by Lisa Kappesser, EQ Coaching Solutions LLC and Bob McEwan, Management, Consulting, LLC



Webinar:  Reignite Your Talent Sourcing Strategy: Create a Data Driven Function by Bill Neese, Paycor



Workshop:  Legal Update: Workplace Issues in Changing Times by Matthew Bakota, Auman Mahan & Furry

Luncheon:  Understanding Emotional Intelligence



Luncheon: Motivation, Inspiration and Manipulation: The Intersection Between Workplace Conflict and Workplace Culture by Judson Laipply, Award-Winning Speaker and Inspirational Comedian


Please note: Professional Development Workshops are 7:45am – 11:15am and Luncheons are 11:15am – 1:00pm

Topics and speakers are subject to change depending on speaker availability.

All programs have been preapproved for SHRM and HRCI recertification.


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