Workplace Strategies Conference

11966 El Camino Real | San Diego, CA 92130

Concurrent Sessions

We will have three concurrent breakout sessions going on throughout the conference. You will be able to choose the topics that interest or challenge you the most from compliance to best practices.

Sessions will include:

A Deep Dive Into California's New Fair Pay Act -- Key Issues, What to Expect, How to Prepare

Fred Plevin, Paul, Plevin, Sullivan & Connaughton LLP

California's Fair Pay Act, one of the toughest equal pay laws in the country, takes effect on January 1, 2016. In this session, we will examine the details of the new law, and explore some of the big unknowns: What does "substantially similar work" mean and how is it different from "equal work?" How will comparing employees in different locations work and where does cost of living fit in? Can you use past salary as a basis for setting compensation? What is a "bona fide business factor?" We will also look at steps employers can take to minimize potential claims and liability under this new law.

Against the Odds?  How to Successfully Resolve Wage Claims in the Labor Commissioner's Office

David Monks, Fisher & Phillips LLP

California's book of wage-and-hour laws is like no other anywhere in the country. To aid enforcement and expedite resolution, the state allows an employee to seek relief from the Labor Commissioner rather than force the employee to file a lawsuit. But with exaggerated allegations by employees and seemingly pro-employee biases of deputy labor commissioners, is the deck stacked against employers' ability to achieve a just result? Not necessarily. This program will give you tips for preparing for and handling settlement conferences and evidentiary hearings at the Labor Board in a way that, in most cases, should maximize the likelihood of a result that is fair in the circumstances. You will learn about key aspects of the process, including (1) the importance of advance preparation; (2) giving your story as much credibility as possible; (3) understanding what is really important to the deputies; (4) building leverage to help you reach an outcome you can live with; and (5) using good information to present your story at the evidentiary hearing. Don't continue to dread dealing with the Labor Commissioner's office. Join us to acquire practical guidance for handling wage claims in a manner that will lead to more satisfactory outcomes.

Audit Yourself First: What Wage and Hour Audits Should You Do Now To Prepare For 2016?

Brenda Kasper, Esq., SPHR-CA, SHRMSCP, Kasper & Frank LLP

Learn about significant wage and hour developments for 2016, including minimum wage changes, amendment of the California Fair Pay Act and the Department of Labor's proposed overtime regulations. Plus, City of San Diego voters may increase San Diego’s minimum wage and implement another sick pay law. In this engaging seminar, Brenda Kasper will give an overview of these wage and hour issues and provide practical advice for what employers need to do to be in compliance for 2016. She will also discuss best practices for performing an audit of your organization's exempt classifications.

Conflict Management Coaching to Resolve Employees Disputes

Yvette Durazo, Unitive Consulting

In this workshop, attendees will learn powerful and effective tools to dealing and managing conflict at the workplace. Conflict management coaching skills are useful to expand self-awareness, building confidence and self-determination to enhance perception towards a positive and restorative resolution of any conflict at the workplace. You will leave this workshop having a deeper understanding about how conflict is created, take away useful conflict management skills to become more effective as a leader when doing direct negotiations and resolving conflict. By gaining these leadership skills you will assist others to gain awareness on how they are co-creating conflict around them and be a catalyst for transforming behavior that otherwise sabotage the experience of successful work relationships and performance. Conflict management coaching may be used in a one-on-one or group coaching situations and especially when working with abrasive behaviors to restore conscious culture and leadership.

Cyberattacks: The Danger Within

Madeline Cahill, Cahill & Campitiello

Experts estimate that each internal breach of an organization comprises an average of 10,000 individual pieces of sensitive information. With personal data stored on company web portals, it is important that your company adopts and implements a data security plan and system that protects your company from potential cyber breaches. Today, it is no longer a matter of “if” your company will experience a data breach – it’s a matter of “when.” The repercussions of cybercrime are overwhelming for companies of any size, especially those that aren’t prepared with a comprehensive plan. Attendees will learn best practices for how to plan for, handle and recover from a cyberattack.

Drug-Free Workplace Enforcement: Don't Get Lost in the Weeds

Kathryn Gray, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.

Two dozen states have legalized medical marijuana, including California. The passage of these new laws have left employers confused as to what they need to do to accommodate these new laws in the workplace. How should my policies and procedures be altered for adherence to the new laws? Can I terminate an employee who holds a medical marijuana card for testing positive for marijuana? What accommodations must I make for those with medical marijuana cards? We will discuss the new laws, what they mean for employers and the changes that will need to occur in your company in order to comply with the new laws. By the end of the presentation, you will have a clear understanding of the policies and procedures that will need to be established and a strategy for rolling out the changes in your organization.

He Said/She Said

Kim Parker, California Employers Association (CEA)

This presentation will be an informative and entertaining presentation about determining credibility in the employment life cycle. Through a discussion of recent events and helpful examples, we will explore how employers can articulate their credibility determinations to prevent liability when making decisions, specifically in the world of employee relations. At the end of the day, the truth may not be discovered, but the legal standards are attainable. Join us as we discuss the tools necessary to avoid liability in hiring decisions, workplace investigations and termination decisions. Learn how to access the credibility of witnesses during internal investigations and what pitfalls to avoid. At the end of the day, the truth may not be discoverable, but the legal standards for basing your decisions are attainable.

PPACA Update

Linda Keller, HUB International

Now that all employers over 50 are subject to the Employer Shared Responsibility of PPACA, what's next? Presentation will include a discussion around the Employer Reporting requirements, audits, excise tax and the future of non discrimination testing.

Recruiting and Retaining Foreign Workers Tackling Visa Challenges

Karine Wenger, Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP

In 2015, an unprecedented number of H-1B CAP cases were filed with USCIS, reducing the odds of being selected in the infamous H-1B CAP "lottery." In anticipation of next year's CAP season, recruiters and HR teams are faced with the challenge of thinking outside the box in order to retain and attract foreign talent. This session will discuss strategic ways to prepare for the 2016 H-1B CAP season to ensure cases are filed as soon as possible and for the correct pool of employees. Additionally, we will explore creative options that may be available to those who are not selected in the H-1B lottery--allowing employers to retain the best and the brightest talent. The discussion will cover related compliance issues, including important considerations in protecting the company and brand, site visit issues and what companies need to know in working with staffing and consulting companies.

Walking the Transgender Tightrope: How to Balance Culture and Compliance in the Modern Workplace

Jodi Slavik, Vigilant

Jodi will explain the current legal requirements for employers, provide tools for creating compliant practices in the workplace and describe best practices for avoiding harassment and privacy issues related to transgender employees. The presentation will include real-life examples from companies who have recently had transgender employees transitioning in the workplace, and will cover practical HR issues such as non-discriminatory practices, preventing harassment, background checks, job applications, record-keeping, employment policies, restrooms, communication and privacy.