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Author: Lindsay Sommers

Which States Raised Minimum Wage in 2021?

A man holding a minimum wage sign, climbing up stairs.

Over the years, employees in the United States have fought to increase the federal minimum wage to $15/hr with many political leaders joining in the effort. The federal minimum wage has remained at $7.25/hr since 2009 and studies show that roughly two-thirds of Americans support an increase. With the new makeup of the Senate this year, this long-overdue increase is looking more likely than ever. In the meantime, many individual states have continued to increase their minimum wages in order to keep up with the cost of living in their regions.

Did your state increase its minimum wage? Let’s find out!

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The New Mileage Rate for 2021

If you’re an employer in the United States, it’s likely that you pay your employees mileage reimbursement when they’re traveling for work purposes. Every year, the  IRS adjusts the mileage reimbursement rate based on examination of variable costs. Based on the latest study, the IRS has changed 2021’s mileage rate to a lower rate than last year. Taxpayers will use this rate to compute their deductible costs associated with using a vehicle.

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6 Ways Your Business Can Stop Wasting Money in 2021

A man wearing business attire, carrying a giant bag of money over his head.

Owning and running a business is costly. In fact, most business owners are shocked when they see how much they’re spending in the office. Small costs here and there really add up causing business owners to spend hundreds to thousands of dollars extra every year. To save your business money and keep revenue on the rise, you must cut unnecessary costs. Luckily, there are ways that you can save money by planning ahead and taking the right steps. 

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Small Business Hiring Tax Credit for CA Employers- Effective Dec. 1, 2020

a person putting money into a piggy bank.

Many California employees and employers faced challenges as the coronavirus impacted their workplaces. During this difficult time, business owners had to make tough decisions in order to stay afloat. Ultimately, this led to many lay-offs in the state. With rising unemployment rates, the California government decided to take action. In order to remedy this economic and unemployment setback, Governor Gavin Newsom enacted Senate Bill 1447, the Small Business Hiring Tax Credit, on September 9, 2020. This bill allows any qualified employer credit against personal income and/or corporate taxes for each taxable year beginning on or after January 1, 2020. 

Do you qualify for assistance? Let’s find out:

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Is it Legal to Record Phone Calls and Conversations?

The thought of someone recording your conversation seems like a breach of privacy, but it’s actually legal in many states. If you plan on recording phone calls, in-person conversations, or videos with sound, your state may allow you to legally record the entire conversation as long as at least one party is aware of the recording. The laws vary by state, so remember that if they’re not followed correctly, you may be at risk of criminal prosecution.

What are your state’s laws? Let’s find out.

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Business Math: How to Calculate the Cost of Gas for Traveling

Knowing the cost of your travels, whether for work or personal reasons, is very important. Some people focus mainly on the federal reimbursement rates to gauge how much their remuneration will be, but being able to calculate your actual expenses in advance is equally as important. Calculating the cost of gas before you leave is a great way to budget yourself by simply finding out how much this trip will cost you.

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Veterans Day Time Off in the U.S. -Who Gets It?

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Currently, the FLSA (Federal Labor Standards Act) does not require employers to give employees time off for any holiday. In fact, the federal government does not require employers to pay for any time that an employee doesn’t work (such as vacation time). Although this is true, some states have their own holiday policies that business owners must follow.

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Are You Legally Required to Give Employees Voting Leave?

It’s election season and people all over the nation are encouraged to vote and express their opinions. There are three ways in which one can vote for a Federal election: by mail, by absentee ballot, or in person. If you don’t have the opportunity to vote by mail or with an absentee ballot, you must vote in person on the day of the election. Unfortunately, those who aren’t registered to vote by mail only have one way to vote. If employees are scheduled to work on election day, they may miss the opportunity to vote.

If your employees are working on election day, you may have to give them time off to vote depending on the state you’re in. Read more to find out:

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How to Successfully Onboard a Remote Employee

A woman sitting at her computer. She is smiling.


If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve either just hired a remote employee, or you’re thinking about hiring a remote employee. Just as you’d have to do with an in-office employee, you’ll need to show your new virtual employees the ropes so they can be successful. Through careful consideration and organization, you can successfully onboard a remote employee without the headaches. How do you effectively bring someone onto your team that you’ve never met in person? We’ll tell you how:

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How to Handle Unhappy Customers: Turning That Frown Upside Down

A man on the phone looking up at the sky with an angry expression

Whether you’re working from home or in the office, you’ll cross paths with both pleasant and more complicated customers. As someone who used to manage a sandwich shop, I’ve had my run-ins with distressed and angry customers. Although they’re sometimes tricky to handle, there’s always a path to ensuring their satisfaction. It’s important to handle unhappy customers with care and respect. If handled indelicately, you may make the situation worse and end up losing the customer. Addressing dissatisfied customers’ problems is necessary for maintaining a good reputation, so you’ll want to do it right.

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How to Hire Virtual Employees

 HR manager is selecting candidate for hiring with virtual screen computer.

We live in a new age where nearly all office-based employees are working from home. There’s no question that telecommuting has grown tremendously in the past decade, but the coronavirus’ impact on the workplace has heightened its growth over the past few months. As some offices transition from temporary to more permanent home-based work, it’s time to think about something more than just managing your remote workforce. Now that you’ve abandoned previous in-office practices or you’ve considered hiring remote employees, you need to know how to hire new employees in a virtual environment and bring them onto your team successfully.

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Social Media: A Guide for Your Business

If you own a business, you probably have multiple social media profiles. If you don’t, you may want to consider hopping on the social media train! As of 2020, approximately 50% of the population uses social media, which means you’ll reach a lot of potential customers. Social media is a great way to interact with customers, inexpensively promote your services, and educate others about the merits of your business. Utilizing a social media platform like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram is especially important right now. With the coronavirus limiting face-to-face interactions and the loss of in-person marketing options, many business owners are turning to social media to keep customers engaged and informed.

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