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March 2018 - MVHRA Connections

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MARCH 2018 




Check out these exciting Human Resources job opportunities:

  • HR Manager – Sawdey Solution Services, Inc.
  • HCMS/Payroll Specialist – Nidec Minster Corporation
  • Human Resources Assistant – ETI Tech LLC
  • Staffing Consultant (2 openings) – Manpower of Dayton, Inc.




MVHRA Programming Updates


Don’t Miss This Upcoming Workshop:  “What Is Implicit Bias And How Does It Influence My Work?”


On Tuesday morning, May 8, 2018, MVHRA will host Tiffany Taylor Smith, M.S.Ed., for a professional development workshop that you won’t want to miss.  Ms. Taylor Smith comes to MVHRA highly recommended and will present a detailed discussion on the subject of implicit bias, including how it can influence our interactions with others and how it can impact important issues in the workplace, such as companies’ recruiting, hiring, and retention efforts. 


Ms. Taylor Smith is a cultural competency consultant with experience in higher education and human resources, and currently serves as Executive Director for Inclusive Excellence Education and Professional Development at the University of Dayton.  See additional details below in our Upcoming Events!


Keep An Eye Out For News On 100th Anniversary Programming!


Did you know that 2018 is MVHRA’s 100th anniversary?  On Tuesday, October 9, 2018, MVHRA, its members, and guests will celebrate this important milestone with a professional development workshop and luncheon at Sinclair Community College.  Whether you’re a long-time MVHRA member, new to MVHRA, or just thinking about joining, please put this date on your calendar and plan to join us.  More details available soon!


Avoid Employment Claims By Avoiding “Desperation Hiring”


By Steve Watring, Auman, Mahan & Furry


Help wanted signs increasingly are starting to litter the business landscape.  Online help wanted postings are on the rise.   It is rapidly turning into an “employee’s market” in which jobs are more plentiful than qualified and quality workers.


This dynamic often leads to what I refer to as “desperation hiring.”  You need someone to do the work.  You need them to start yesterday.  You find a candidate that looks qualified.  You are concerned that someone else will beat you to the punch and hire them out from under you.  You move too quickly.  You take some shortcuts in the screening process.  You miss or disregard some red flags.  


A desperation hire can work out, but it is high risk.  The reality is that desperation hiring usually is better for your attorney’s business than it is for yours.   This is because today’s desperation hire frequently cultivates in the petri dish until it flourishes into a full blown employment problem -- next week, next month or next year.  Just give it time. 


In our firm’s employment law group, we frequently say that 5% of the employees create 95% of the employment problems.  There is only one reason we say that -- because it’s true!   And what is worse, sometimes that one desperation hire spreads problems like a virus, and infects the other 95% of your workforce as well.   


The best solution is relatively simple.  The single best way to limit employment problems is to screen out that 5% before they become your employees, and your problem.  The single best way to do that is to establish and exercise good applicant screening practices.  Avoid desperation hiring by taking a disciplined approach and sticking to those practices even in an “employee’s market.”  Furthermore, try to get others in your organization (yes, even your bosses) to buy into and follow those practices.  Show them this article if necessary.  While it cannot always be controlled, a manager’s back door job offers to acquaintances still are subject to the 5% rule.  And a mistake in hiring a management level person can be even more catastrophic for your organization.


While applicant screening steps can vary depending on your business and the position involved, here are a few precautions that every employer should at least consider including in its screening process:

  • Develop a good employment application!  Our model application (updated this year) is available on our website for those who are interested.
  • Require a completed employment application for all applicants -- NO EXCEPTIONS!   And actually take the time to scrutinize the application.  A partially completed or poorly completed application alone can be a red flag.  A resume is fine, but it is no substitute for a completed application.
  • Utilize proper interviewing techniques! Watch for red flags along the way.
  • Conduct drug testing!  Remember that a drug test is NOT considered to be a medical examination under the ADA.  Ideally, a drug test should be conducted AND the results received before an offer is made, not after.  Just the fact that you drug test can deter substance abusers from pursuing employment with your business.
  • Conduct background checks!  Remember to follow the requirements of the Fair Credit Reporting Act. 
  • Conduct skills, competence, intelligence or personality testing! It is amazing how few employers take advantage of this.  I equate it to looking under the hood before you buy a car.  If the job requires that an employee be able to hit a nail with a hammer, why not require them to demonstrate that ability before you hire them?   The testing doesn’t always have to be elaborate or expensive, and the legal restrictions are fairly easy to navigate.
  • Conduct an internet or social media search!  Whether or not you are conducting background checks, there sometimes is a wealth of information available concerning the applicant on the internet.  While there are some legal pitfalls and risks associated with such searches, more often than not the benefits outweigh the risks.  Sometimes these searches can tell you more about a candidate than anything else. 
  • Check references from prior employers! Remember that a letter of reference is no substitute, and may actually be a warning sign.  Make sure you direct the reference inquiry to the proper person or department, which may not be where the employee wants you to direct it.  Don’t settle for a reference from someone that is no longer with the organization.  Checking references is one of those unpleasant tasks that it is easy to find an excuse not to do.  While it can be a frustrating process, just do it.  Think of it as business networking!  Always ask if your applicant would be rehired or is eligible for rehire.  It is the one question that I recommend that every employer asks and that almost every employer answer (with very limited exceptions).  And the answer often tells you all you need to know.
  • Make your offers conditioned on medical examinations or inquiries!  The EEOC has indicated that the window of time between a conditional offer and the final offer is the time when the employer’s right to make medical inquiries is the broadest.  The inquiries don’t even have to be job related!  The main restriction is that the inquiries are made of all job offer recipients for the same position.  True, even if you get unfavorable information, it may be necessary to proceed with the hire.  But sometimes it is a basis for rescinding the offer.  Either way, you want to be able to make an informed decision.
  • Remember that you are allowed to make subjective judgments!  How did the person interview?  Are there concerns that the applicant did not adequately address?  Would the person be a good fit for your organizational culture?  What do your instincts tell you? True, you have to be prepared to defend against discrimination claims.  At the same time, your right to make subjective hiring decisions is one of the reasons that failure to hire claims are among the least common and easiest to defend.
  • Document, document, document!  You want to be able to prove the steps that you took and your reasons for rejection of an applicant.  Remember that under Ohio law discrimination claims can be made five years after the alleged discrimination occurred.  Are you going to be able to prove why you rejected an applicant five years ago?

Not all of these ideas are right for all employers and for all jobs.  But all of them are part of the menu of options that you should be considering as part of your applicant screening process.  If you have your process in place so that it goes smoothly, the associated delay can be kept to a minimum.  It can even project to that hot prospect that you are a sophisticated employer that knows what you are doing!


Desperation hiring can open your doors to the very workers that you want to keep out of your work force.  Reduce employment claims later by developing and exercising good hiring practices now!


MVHRA Announces Scholarship Recipient


Submitted By Kay Phillips, MSM, PHR, SHRM-CP


The 2018 Winter/Spring HR Certification Prep Course Scholarship has been awarded to Brooke Stucker.  Brooke, who is a Human Resources Specialist with Gosiger (a family-owned and operated machine tool distributor and manufacturing solutions provider headquartered in Dayton), first learned about Human Resources from her mother’s work in HR.  Learning about her mother’s HR work led Brooke while just in the 8th grade to set career goals of obtaining a college degree and working in the HR field. 


Brooke holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Leadership from Wright State University, which she says taught her empathy, leading effectively, teamwork, problem-solving, and critical thinking, among many other attributes.  Brooke is motivated to continue expanding her professional knowledge and growing as a leader in Human Resources.  


She believes that achieving professional certification is a worthwhile objective for HR professionals, and as a young HR professional, Brooke feels she “need[s] the educational background of technical and operational aspects of HR” which certification provides.  Of the certification she says, “Obtaining this certification not only helps me become a better HR professional leader, but it also helps all of the employees at my company.”  She looks forward to applying knowledge gained in her certification pursuit to her current position and also in sharing with her HR team members.  Brooke looks forward to sitting for the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification shortly after completing the prep course.  We wish Brooke all the best as she pursues certification!


The current Wright State University prep course began in early February with on-campus sessions taking place for four hours each Saturday morning for ten sessions.  Course participants not only receive in-class instruction on exam topics but also have access to online resources, which enables them to continue preparing for the certification exam until their scheduled exam date. 


MVHRA is pleased to partner with Wright State University in making certification prep course scholarships available to MVHRA members twice each year.  The 2018 Summer/Fall HR Certification Prep Course scholarship offering will take place in early summer for the prep course beginning in late August/early September.  Details will be made available in upcoming MVHRA newsletters and on the MVHRA website.  Specific questions can be directed to  


Certification Items Of Note


Submitted By Kay Phillips, MSM, PHR, SHRM-CP


SHRM 2018 Spring Exam Window - For individuals wanting to sit for a SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP certification exam during the Spring Exam period, applications are due to SHRM by March 23rd. Following SHRM approval, individuals can register for an exam date occurring between May 1st and July 15th. For full details, visit


SHRM PDCs – When submitting professional development credits (PDCs) for renewal of a SHRM certification, please note that any PDC of less than 1.0 (1 hour) may generate an audit of your renewal application.  We have heard from at least one MVHRA member whose renewal application was audited because it contained a 0.75 PDC conference activity.  While SHRM guidelines state that providers are to offer activities of at least 1 hour in length (1.0 PDC), it’s been noted that conferences may offer sessions of 45 minutes (0.75 PDC).  And while this may be okay for conference scheduling, it just might draw unwanted attention to your renewal application.  A word to the wise, choose your PDCs carefully!


If you have certification tips to share with fellow MVHRA members, email them to


Don't Miss The Boat: Upcoming HR Collaborative One-Day Conference (April 25)


This year's one-day HR Collaborative conference is on April 25. Be sure to register today at


Reasons to attend this year's conference:

  • Earn up to 6 SHRM and HRCI re-certification credits  
  • Engage with dynamic speakers, including keynote Tim Kight (official leadership coach for the Ohio State Buckeyes) and Jordan BirnBaum (VP and Chief Behavioral Economist at TalentX)
  • Network with other HR professionals from across southwest Ohio and northern Kentucky
  • Convenient location at Sharonville Convention Center

Click here to view the flyer.

Conquer your Hiring Challenges with a Talent Pipeline


By Catherine Conlan, via Cox Media and


Do you struggle to stay ahead of hiring demands? If so, a talent pipeline provides a proactive approach to manage current and future staffing needs. 


A well-stocked talent pipeline can generate multiple benefits:

-    Identify the talent you’ll need in advance
-    Insure your new hires are a better fit
-    Improve your employee retention rates


While it requires a bit of front-end work, a well-planned talent pipeline is likely to pay off in the long run.


“It doesn’t take a million dollars, but it does take investments in time and conversations,” says Natasha Stough, Americas director of campus recruiting at EY, a professional services firm headquartered in London.


Here’s how to get it right.


Set your Hiring Strategy

The first step in the process: align your talent-pipeline strategy with your overall business strategy. This will identify your real hiring needs.


For example, does your company expect an increased hiring demand and the ability to respond quickly? Does it plan to acquire other companies? What roles will be key in those scenarios?


Stough works with EY’s leaders to better understand the external marketplace and internal challenges. “Business needs are changing, and it’s critical that we are aligned with the business to anticipate those changes,” she says. 


“So much of recruiting, particularly entry-level hiring, is done one to two years in advance, so it’s important to understand the direction the business is moving in.”


Assess Hiring Needs

Once you’ve identified your company’s direction and how your talent pipeline will support it, it’s time to determine where your talent pool is now and where it needs to be. 


Start by identifying key talent in the organization who can take on a larger role. Then actively develop them for the future, says Melanie Lundberg, assistant vice president of talent management and corporate communications at Combined Insurance, a Chubb company, based in Glenview, Illinois.


Assess these high-potential candidates carefully, experts say. “It’s a determination of all capabilities,” says Brannigan Thompson, senior vice president for talent, organization and leadership development at Voya Financial, based in New York City. “It’s not just the skills but also the behavioral component as well. It’s both what they’ll do and how they’ll do it.”


High-quality tech-based assessment tools can provide objective, data-driven reports of employees’ current competencies and potential for growth, she says.


Develop your Workforce...  

Your strongest asset when developing a talent pipeline is your current employees. After all, they are a proven fit and understand your business. You also know the skills they need to take on new responsibilities. Now is the time to coach them through some growth.


Companies with a strong company culture that promotes feedback will find this easier to do, experts say. 


“People tend to be afraid of hearing about themselves,” especially about their shortcomings, Thompson says. To address this challenge, Voya relies on objective assessment data to help employees understand where their “development points are,” and fosters a culture of feedback. It also allows employees to learn from failure


“We make it clear that it’s OK to make mistakes as long as you’re learning from them, correcting them and then forgetting them,” he says.


… While Looking Externally to Fill Gaps

There will be roles that your internal employees aren’t ready to take on or that they may not be interested in. In those cases you’ll need to hire from outside. It’s important to find both the skills and cultural fit so your new hires can hit the ground running, Thompson says.


The best way to attract qualified talent is to create a compelling, authentic and distinctive employer brand, says Kevin Keohane, director of brand and talent strategy at PartnersCreative, an advertising agency in Missoula, Montana. 


Keohane suggests using social media recruiting to establish a presence in specialized interest spaces (such as online tech discussion boards.) Another option is to develop a recruiting relationship with academic institutions. 


“When you're getting it right, you are attracting smaller numbers of perfectly qualified candidates and developing your own people so they are growing with the business,” Keohane says.


Leverage Current Employees

brandful workforce is essential to build up your talent pipeline, Stough says. Employees can provide real-life information about what it’s like to work at your company; their friends and former colleagues are also likely to be a good fit. Make it clear to employees that you welcome their efforts to be brand ambassadors.


Encourage them to share “behind-the-scenes” social media posts about what it’s like to work at your company. In addition, referral programs that reward employees for tapping their networks for potential hires can spark interest.


Keep an Eye on the Future

Remind hiring managers and department leaders about the importance of taking the long view when assessing talent. Encourage them to think months and years in advance when hiring and developing employees. And be sure to keep them up to date on how your business strategy may impact hiring.


At Voya, managers are accountable for talent pipelines Thompson says. They’re required to have a succession plan in place to continually identify who will fill key roles and what they need to get there. 


“We spend a tremendous amount of time internally developing leadership and criteria, as well as the courses and paths that employees can take to learn more,” he says.


A talent pipeline can help your company prepare for talent needs, including those you plan for as well as unexpected hires. It’s one of the most effective ways to conquer your staffing challenges.


Reminder:  MVHRA Legal Services Plan Available


MVHRA has an agreement with local attorneys to provide a legal services plan for MVHRA members (the “Plan”).  The Plan is available again for 2018 and is included as part of your current membership at no additional charge.  Further details available at


Note:  You must be a MVHRA member AND logged into to access this service within the "MY MVHRA" link at the top of the page.


See Your Article In Our Newsletter!


MVHRA members, do you have something to submit to the MVHRA Newsletter?  Please send it to Amy Mitchell, Newsletter Committee Chair, via email at




APRIL 10, 2018


Luncheon: Workplace Violence Prevention: Preparing for an Active Shooter

Speaker: David Powell and Mike Coltrane

Location: Sinclair Community College

Time: 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM


With the amount of Active Shooter events occurring at an alarming rate, it’s imperative employers address this issue. By having and rehearsing a comprehensive Active Shooter Plan, you provide your employees with a better opportunity to survive an attack in the event one happens. In this training, you will:

  • Get an overview of recent Active Shooter events by category.
  • Obtain a better understanding of Law Enforcement & First Responders response scenarios.
  • Learn an easy to remember tool to help in the moment.
  • Gain an understanding of the metaphysical changes during an Active Shooter event.
  • Gain a general understanding of your surroundings.

Credits: This program has been approved for SHRM Professional Development Credit (PDC).  Attendees seeking recertification credits from the HR Certification Institute (HRCI) will receive a certificate of attendance to assist them in applying for HRCI credits after the program(s).


Learn more and get registered here.


APRIL 25, 2018


2018 HR Collaborative Conference: Navigating the Course: Building a Winning Crew

Speakers: Tim Kight and Jordan BirnBaum

Location: Wright State University Nutter Center, Berry Room

Time: 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM


The mission of The HR Collaborative is to bring together and expand the Human Resources community in the SW OH and Northern KY. See above for additional information about this conference. Click HERE to register.


Credits: Earn up to 6 SHRM and HRCI re-certification credits. 

MAY 8, 2018


Workshop: What Is Implicit Bias & How does It Influence My Work?

Speaker: Tiffany Taylor Smith

Location: Sinclair Community College

Time: 7:45 AM - 8:00 AM: Registration & Continental Breakfast

8:00 AM - 11:15 AM: Professional Development Workshop


What are the biases we carry when we have attitudes towards people or associate stereotypes without our conscious knowledge? Come learn more about implicit bias and the attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions and decisions in an unconscious manner. In this interactive workshop, we will discuss the concept of implicit bias, how our personal experiences have influenced the bias we carry and how to identify and move past our blind-spots.


Luncheon: A New Look at the Way We Work – Ergonomics for the HR Professional

Speaker: Scott Mullett

Location: Sinclair Community College

Time: 11:15 AM - 11:30 AM: Registration & Networking

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM: Announcements & Lunch

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM: Speaker


Ergonomics encompasses every aspect of our lives. To create a safer, more productive and focused workforce, employers must address ergonomics. This session includes a discussion about common ergonomic concerns within the occupational setting, statistics, costs associated with ergonomic-related injuries and specific cases that provide solutions. The audience needs a basic knowledge of ergonomics.


Credits: These programs have been approved for SHRM Professional Development Credit (PDC).  Attendees seeking recertification credits from the HR Certification Institute (HRCI) will receive a certificate of attendance to assist them in applying for HRCI credits after the program(s).


Learn more and get registered here.


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