What Are The Legal Elements Of A Hostile Work Environment?

Work environment: something that is often overlooked and ignored but can also be the most extraordinary staying power in an employee’s work life and a company’s biggest asset. If it remains ignored, however, it can also lead to a great downfall for the employees and the company. The term “hostile work environment,” however, has an exact legal meaning in the context of workplace discrimination legislation and does not include all situations that the word “hostile” may imply. The concept of civility in the workplace is not codified in law.

Of course, there are always outliers. What if, for instance, someone’s animosity is limited to a particular group, such as women or individuals of a particular ethnicity? Such conduct might be illegal in certain jurisdictions and is certainly unacceptable in any workplace. In such a case, consulting a violent crime attorney is highly recommended. They will be able to provide you with solid, legally binding advice on how to proceed with your employment dispute.

Any workplace where prejudice or abuse is so pervasive that it alters an individual’s or group’s working circumstances is considered hostile.

Read on for more information on this.

Recognising the “Legally Protected Group”

One must demonstrate they were singled out for harassment because they belong to a legally protected group to raise a case of a hostile work environment. Potentially covered categories include:

  • Beliefs
  • Sexual orientation
  • Pregnant Women
  • Race/Ethnicity
  • Age/Disability
  • Physical illnesses/disability

Individuals who fit into one of these categories have the right to appeal their case to court.

An Objective Conduct

For a claim of a hostile work environment to succeed under federal legislation, a plaintiff must allege that the defendant engaged in conduct that:

  • A rational individual would find hostile or disrespectful.
  • The complainant qualitatively sees as adversarial or violent.
  • The defendant engaged in such conduct based on the complainant’s protected characteristic.

Please note that the offensive behaviour or abuse needs only to be “severe or pervasive,” not “severe and pervasive,” to be deemed actionable. Thus, creating an unsafe workplace may just take one extreme incident.

Variables such as the regularity of the misconduct, whether it is verbally harassing or humiliating if it interferes with an employee’s work performance, and whether mental damage has been prompted all play a role in determining whether the purported behaviour ends up creating a hostile work environment.

Employer Liability

If a defendant claims they were subjected to a hostile work environment, the burden of proof shifts to them to show that their employer was responsible for the behaviour that led to the hostile work environment.

When: (1) the worker or agent had an executive or supervisory duties; or (2) the company knew about the worker’s or agent’s illegal discrimination and either let it happen or didn’t take immediate action to stop it, the company will be held responsible for an unjust form of bias based on the worker’s or agent’s actions that violated one or both of these categories.

Working in a hostile environment can be difficult for anyone. Work performance and enthusiasm for coming to the office might be affected.


Creating a positive work environment that respects the dignity and rights of all employees is not only a moral obligation but also a legal one. Employers must take proactive steps to prevent and address hostile work environments by implementing clear anti-harassment policies, providing training, and promptly addressing any complaints. By doing so, they can ensure a productive and harmonious workplace while avoiding the legal and reputational consequences of allowing a hostile environment to persist.

Things To Consider If You Want To Create A Safe Working Environment

It’s important to create a safe working environment for your employees, yourself, and your clients to achieve better results and business outcomes. So, you need to take some time to consider the safety of your workers, and put some measures in place to protect them from potential harm.

Some things you can do to make your workplace safer include: installing safety equipment, conducting safety training, and creating a safety plan.

Here is a detailed guide on how to create a safer working environment.

Start From Your Employees

Your employees are the core of your company and the powerhouse of your working environment. As such, employees need to feel appreciated, valued, and respected for them to work harder and smarter. If an employee feels unsafe or uncomfortable at work, it will show in their performance. Conversely, your employees should also make the environment safe. So, employees who are intoxicated at work, who have serious mental health issues and criminal backgrounds are far more likely to cause trouble. Because of this, conducting a 12 panel drug test on all of your employees from time to time and a background check for new employees should be a mandatory company policy.

This will help you avoid unnecessarily bad situations in the workplace and help you achieve better business outcomes.

Consider Your Employees’ Perspective

When you’re thinking about safety in the workplace, it’s important to start from your employees’ perspectives. What are their daily tasks? What do they need to do their job safely? What are the potential risks associated with their work? By understanding your employees’ work tasks and the potential risks involved, you can put measures in place to help them avoid injuries and accidents. For example, if you have office workers who sit at desks all day, they may be at risk of developing musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) such as carpal tunnel syndrome. To reduce the risk of MSDs, you can provide ergonomic furniture and equipment, and conduct regular stretching and exercise breaks.

If you have warehouse workers who lift heavy objects, you can provide them with proper lifting training and equipment to help prevent back injuries.

Understand The Occupational Safety And Health Act

The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) is a federal law that requires employers to provide their employees with a safe and healthy work environment. OSHA covers a wide range of topics, including electrical safety, fall protection, hazardous materials, and more. It’s important to familiarise yourself with the OSHA standards that apply to your workplace so that you can ensure compliance. You can find more information on the OSHA website. Once you’ve reviewed the OSHA standards and assessed the risks in your workplace, you need to create a safety plan. Your safety plan should include procedures for dealing with emergencies, such as fires, evacuations, and medical emergencies. It should also include policies and procedures for preventing accidents and injuries, such as slips, trips, and falls.

Be sure to involve your employees in the creation of the safety plan so that they understand their roles and responsibilities. Additionally, make sure to review and update the safety plan regularly.

Conduct Safety Training

Safety training is essential to ensure that your employees are aware of the hazards in your workplace and know how to stay safe. Your safety training should cover topics such as fire safety, electrical safety, fall protection, and more. You can find more information on OSHA’s website.

  • Fire Safety: The best way to prevent a fire is to have proper fire safety procedures in place. Be sure to review your fire safety procedures with your employees regularly. Make sure everyone knows how to use the fire extinguishers in your workplace. Conduct regular fire drills so that everyone knows what to do in the event of a fire.
  • Electrical Safety: Electrical hazards are one of the leading causes of workplace injuries and accidents. Be sure to identify all of the electrical hazards in your workplace and put measures in place to eliminate or minimise them. Be sure to provide your employees with proper electrical safety training.
  • Fall Protection: Falls are one of the most common causes of injuries and fatalities in the workplace. If your employees work at heights, you need to have fall protection measures in place. Be sure to provide your employees with proper fall protection training.
  • Hazardous Materials: Hazardous materials are all around us, so it’s important to be aware of the potential risks they pose. Be sure to identify all of the hazardous materials in your workplace and put measures in place to control them. Be sure to provide your employees with proper training on how to safely work with hazardous materials.

Enforce Safety Policies And Procedures

Once you’ve created a safety plan and conducted safety training, you need to make sure that your employees follow the safety policies and procedures. Be sure to enforce the rules and take disciplinary action when necessary. Establish a culture of safety in your workplace by setting the example and leading by example, and by having a good HR team.

Make sure to also consider the psychological factors that can contribute to accidents and injuries, such as stress, fatigue, and boredom.

Talk About Mental Health

Mental health is an important part of overall health and safety. Be sure to create a safe and supportive environment in your workplace where employees feel comfortable talking about mental health. Provide employees with information on how to identify the signs and symptoms of mental illness and how to get help. You can find more information on the Mental Health America website. Mental health can significantly impact the working environment. However, an even bigger reason to consider mental health is that it affects business outcomes. So, make sure to listen to employee concerns and address them accordingly.

It’s important to create a safe and healthy workplace for your employees. There are many things you can do to make sure your workplace is safe, such as reviewing OSHA standards, creating a safety plan, conducting safety training, and enforcing safety policies and procedures. You should also talk about mental health in the workplace so that employees feel comfortable talking about it. By taking these steps, you can help create a safe and healthy workplace for your employees.

What to Expect in the Workplace After COVID-19

The COVID-19 epidemic has had a significant influence on the workplace. Many employees now work from home, requiring employers to find new ways to keep their workers connected. We’ll talk about what you may expect in your job after COVID-19 in this article.

So whether you are about to return to your usual pre-pandemic office environment or start your own small business from home, you need to read this!

Health and Safety First

The most significant change at work is the increased emphasis on health and safety. Employers are now required by law to provide their workers with a safe working environment. This implies that cleanliness and hygiene will be more important in the workplace. New social distance policies and usage of PPE may also be implemented as a result of this.

Your employer is going to be extra diligent about informing you about changes in policy or practice. They’ll also want to know if you’re okay to go back to work and whether there are any issues. It’s critical that you speak up if you have any concerns so that your employer can address them.

There may be changes to your job responsibilities as organisations attempt to adjust to the new reality. For example, if you work in customer service, you may be required to take greater precautions for client and employee safety. Wearing a face mask and gloves or constructing a plexiglass barrier.

Flexibility in the Workplace

Another difference that you may notice is greater workplace flexibility. Many businesses are now providing workers with more flexible hours and remote employment opportunities. This is to meet the needs of families with children or elderly relatives who require attention. It’s also designed to ease tension for employees in these extraordinary times.

If you’re returning to the workplace, your employer may request that you report in at various hours to avoid rush hour. They may also stagger lunch and break times so that fewer people are in the kitchen or break room at once. These modifications are all made with the goal of ensuring everyone’s safety and health in mind.

What Hasn’t Changed?

Even though there have been some significant changes in the workplace, some things remain the same. For instance, if you are a manager, you will still be responsible for ensuring that your team is productive. And if you’re an employee, you’ll still need to meet your deadlines and goals.

Businesses and organisations have been forced to adapt in order to survive the epidemic. At the end of the day, employers must still accomplish tasks, and employees must still contribute.

The bottom line is that the workplace has changed as a result of COVID-19, but it’s still functioning. Employers are doing their best to provide a safe and healthy environment for their employees. So if you’re returning to work, or starting a new job, be prepared for some changes. But also know that the fundamental goal of most businesses remains the same: to be successful.

So, these are some of the things you can expect in the workplace after COVID-19. Health and safety will be paramount, and there may be some changes to your job responsibilities. You can also expect more flexible hours and remote employment opportunities. Lastly, your employer will want to ensure that you’re comfortable with returning to work and have no concerns. If you do have any questions or worries, don’t hesitate to reach out to your employer!

10 Tips on How To Make the Best Cover Letter for a Managerial Position

In this article, we’ll be discussing tips on how to make the best cover letter for a managerial position. It’s important to note that different positions will have varying requirements and expectations. That being said, there are some general guidelines that should be followed in order to create a great cover letter.

The following list of 10 tips will help you write an excellent cover letter for your future managerial position:

1) Be specific about what type of work you’re looking for

Instead of saying “I’m interested in any opportunity,” it’s better if you specify exactly what kind of job or company interests you. If it’s a particular company, mention their name and why they would be the right fit for your skillset.

2) Use the right tone

A cover letter should be professional, but also tailored to the company you’re applying to. For example, if the company has a more casual vibe, you can loosen up your language a bit. However, you don’t want to come across as too familiar or casual.

3) Address the letter to a specific person

This may sound like common sense, but you should always address your cover letter to a specific person by name. It’s better if you can find someone who works in the department for which you’re applying. This will help them place you more quickly and determine if they want to read further.

4) Keep it short

No one wants to read an essay, especially when it comes to a cover letter. Keep your letter short and to the point. This also means that you shouldn’t include any irrelevant information.

5) Sell yourself

This is your opportunity to highlight your strengths and why you’re the perfect candidate for the job. Don’t be afraid to brag a little bit.

6) Use strong action verbs

Action verbs help to create a powerful and concise image of yourself. Use words like “managed,” “led,” and “created.”

7) Showcase your achievements

Many employers will want to know what you’ve accomplished in your previous roles. Be sure to list any notable achievements or awards you’ve received.

8) Mention your personality

A cover letter should give the employer a sense of who you are as a person. You can do this by briefly mentioning your personality and why it would be a good fit for the company.

9) Check for errors before sending

Read through your letter carefully to make sure there aren’t any grammatical or spelling mistakes that could mar your chances of getting the job.

10) Follow-up

After submitting your cover letter, be sure to follow up with the hiring manager. A simple email or call will do. Thank them for their time and express your continued interest in the position.

With these tips in mind, you’re well on your way to writing an excellent cover letter for a managerial position! Remember to tailor your letter to the specific company and position you’re applying to, and be sure to proofread for errors.

Bonus Tip: Use Venngage

Venngage is an online infographic maker that also provides a vast display of free cover letter templates for people who are currently looking for jobs. Here are some cover letter examples from their page.

Cover Letter Example 1

Cover Letter Example

What You Should NOT Do When Writing a Cover Letter for a Managerial Position

When you’re writing your job application letter, it’s easy to get carried away and include too much information. While some employers may want to know everything about you, that’s not the case for every employer.

Here are some things you should NOT do when writing your cover letter:

1) Don’t lie

As tempting as it may be, you should never lie in your cover letter. If you’re caught, it could ruin your chances of getting the job.

2) Don’t include irrelevant information

This includes information about your personal life or unrelated work experience.

3) Don’t ramble

Keep your letter concise and to the point.

4) Don’t send a generic letter

This is more of a follow-up tip, but you must tailor your cover letter to the particular job for which you’re applying.

5) Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want

If there’s a specific company or job that interests you, it shows initiative and drives if you ask about their hiring process or if they have any additional positions available.

6) Don’t just focus on yourself

A cover letter should give the employer a sense of who you are as a person. Be sure to mention any volunteering or extracurricular activities you’ve been involved in.

7) Don’t forget to edit

You want your cover letter to be perfect, so it’s worth spending the time to edit and proofread. Be sure there aren’t any errors that could ruin your chances of getting hired.

8) Don’t come across as too familiar

Your first sentence should already be fairly formal, so try not to become too familiar with the hiring manager until you’ve been given the opportunity to do so.

As you can see, there are a number of things to consider when writing an excellent cover letter for a managerial position. If you want the best chance at getting hired, be sure to write your letter with these tips in mind and proofread it before sending it off. It’s also worth noting that many employers will have specific guidelines about what they’re looking for in their candidates so make sure to check out those as well. If you are ready to take your career to the next level, start making your cover letter with Venngage today!

6 Tech-backed Tools That Will Make Hiring New Employees Easier

Hiring new employees is arguably one of the most difficult tasks that an organisation can do. There are dozens of different things to consider, from finding talent to conducting thorough reference checks to sorting through the hundreds of resumes an employer receives for every job listing they post.

But hiring decisions don’t have to be hard or time-consuming if employers make use of technology designed specifically for their needs. While no tool will ever take all the stress out of recruiting and interviewing new employees, here are six tech-backed tools that streamline the hiring process:

Recruiting Software

Recruiting software is designed to help employers find people who meet specific job qualifications or fulfil certain skill sets. Using recruiting tools to find candidates eliminates time-consuming Internet searches and reduces the number of resumes employers have to sort through before finding somebody qualified for a particular position. This type of software is most often used by organisations that need to fill positions quickly, however, any employer can benefit from recruiting software if they need someone with very particular skills.

Companies that use recruiting software typically receive hundreds if not thousands of resumes for each position they post online. These tools help employers sort through all those resumes and identify qualified candidates more quickly, which saves them time and energy.

Applicant Tracking System

Applicant tracking systems or ATS allow an employer to keep track of applicants and references in a centralised database where all of the relevant information is stored and easily accessed by recruiters whenever they need it. Employees whose resumes go into an ATS never have to worry about their applications getting lost or forgotten about. These systems also give employers access to reference checks without having to stress about contacting former bosses and colleagues every time they want another piece of information before making a final offer.

Most applicant tracking systems work with third-party services, which make it possible for employers to conduct background and reference checks in a fraction of the time it would normally take. Tools like these make the hiring process faster and more efficient, which helps employers avoid burning out their best employees with long hours and busy work schedules.

Applicant Testing

Applicant testing is a great way to determine the skill level of applicants for a position before they even set foot inside of an office. Online tools like virtual tests ask potential employees questions about their skills and how they would respond to certain scenarios. Some recruiting software programs have built-in applicant testing that employers can use to further determine whether or not prospective employees are qualified for a particular role.

Applicant testing is typically used by organisations with high turnover rates because it helps them find people who are better suited for their work environment. It’s also an excellent way to weed out applicants who don’t have the necessary skills to do the job.

Salary Calculator

Salary calculators provide potential employees with information about typical salaries within an industry based on factors like education level, job type, experience, and location. When prospective employee uses a calculator to find out what they might earn working for a specific company, it gives them an idea of the type of salary that would be appropriate during a discussion with a hiring manager or recruiter.

Salary calculators not only give applicants more information about pay rates within different companies, but they also allow employers to see where their salaries stand in comparison to those other companies as well. This is helpful because it allows employers to make better offers to new hires without overpaying for people who don’t deserve higher salaries based on their skill levels or level of education.

Social Media Integration

A lot of companies are hesitant about integrating social media sites into their daily business activities but there are several ways that social media can help with the hiring process. One of the biggest benefits of social media integration is that employers can use social profiles to identify who is a pool of job applicants is most qualified for a position without having to contact each person individually.

Employers can search out specific keywords in an applicant’s profile and then immediately weed out people who don’t have the necessary skills or experience needed for a particular role. This saves time and energy, which ultimately gives employers more time to focus on other aspects of their businesses.

CRM Integration

Customer relationship management (CRM) integration is beneficial to all employers, but it can be especially useful when hiring new employees. Like social media integration, CRM systems allow employers to store and sort through a large number of resumes quickly and find applicants that fit into specific criteria. This saves time for hiring managers and recruiters and allows them to focus on more important matters than sorting through stacks of resumes or trying to contact potential employees to set up interviews. An excellent feature about using CRM software with recruiting tools is the ability for employers to track whether or not someone has responded after being contacted by phone or email.

Each of these elements has its unique benefit and helps employers perform their jobs more easily. By using multiple tools at once, hiring managers can save time, reduce energy consumption, and have an easier time finding the right people for the right roles. So if you are on the hunt for new hires,  try using some of these tools and make your job easier.

An Employers Guide To The Worker Compensation Claims Process

Worker compensation claims! As an employer, your primary responsibility to ensure your employees healthy and safe working environment. However, there are instances when workers get injured or become ill due to work. This is where the workers compensation insurance program enters the picture.

Under this program, employers must buy insurance coverage that provides medical and wages replacement benefits to workers who sustained an injury or illness due to their jobs. Regardless of who’s at fault for what happened, the injured or sick employee can get compensated. But before they can recover compensation, you need to file a claim on your employees behalf.

Keep reading this article to familiarise the employers guide to the workers compensation claims

businessman in blue jacket giving form for compensation claim to

businessman in blue jacket giving form for compensation claim to worker with broken arm at table in office, compensation concept

What Is Workers Compensation For Employers?

As mentioned, workers compensation insurance is designed to compensate employees who are injured or become at will. Some injuries and illnesses covered by this insurance coverage can include sudden accidents, repetitive stress injuries, occupational diseases caused by workplace
conditions, and many more.

Hence, if you want to provide financial assistance to your injured or ill workers, you should carry workers compensation right from the start. Failure to do so can result in some legal consequences. For example, suppose you don’t have insurance coverage. In that case, your injured or sick employee can sue your business with the help of a lawyer from a reliable law firm like Terry Katz and Associates. When this happens, you’d need to hire a lawyer to represent and defend your company against the suing worker.

Steps To Navigate The Claims Process

Now that you know what workers compensation is for employers, the next thing you can do is familiarise yourself with the steps associated with the claims process. Under the workers compensation insurance program, you’re responsible for filing the claim to your insurance

To make sure the claim is filed correctly, below are a few steps you need to consider from the

1. Remind Your Employee To Report The Injury

To make the claims process as smooth as possible, you need to ensure your employee reports in writing the injury or illness to you as soon as possible. Although the notification time varies from

one state to another, the standard timeframe would be within 30 days from the date of the accident or sickness.

Generally, prompt reporting of what happened is crucial for the claims process. When workers fail to do so, they may lose their right to compensation under the insurance program.

2. Help The Employee With The Paperwork

After being notified, you should assist the employee with completing the necessary paperwork. For example, you need to inform them about their rights under the workers compensation program. Make sure to provide them with forms to fill out. These can include the workers comp claim form and the report of injury form, which should be submitted to your state workers compensation board.

When it comes to filling out the claim form, make sure the employee writes down all the details, including the nature and type of the injury as well as when, how, and where it occurred. This way, you can ensure a successful filing later on.

3. File The Claim Form

Once your employee fills out the claim form, the next step you should take is to file the claim form to your workers comp insurance provider. In doing so, you may need to submit some supporting documents, including a medical report from your employees doctor. These pieces of documentation may be necessary to support your workers claim and increase their chances of receiving compensation.

4. The Insurance Carrier Will Either Approve Or Deny The Claim

After the filing, the insurer will review the forms submitted and determine whether the employee should be granted the benefits or not. If they approve the claim, they’ll notify you and the employee with the payment details. Your worker and their lawyer will step in the process by accepting the payment offer to cover benefits or negotiating a larger settlement offer.

On the other hand, if the insurer denies the claim, the employee will be notified. At this point, they have the option to file a motion for reconsideration from the insurer or institute a formal appeal with your states workers comp board.

5. Your Employee Returns To Work

When your employee is injured or sick at work, they’re given ample time to heal. Once they’re done with the recovery, they should notify you and the insurance carrier in writing that you can return to work.

When this happens, you can provide some programs to help the employee get back to work productively. For example, you can give them some training in other job positions if they can no longer perform their regular functions because of the injury or illness.

Bottom Line

Sometimes, your employees can sustain injury or sickness at work. When this happens, you should be ready to support them financially, emotionally, and mentally. This is one reason you should have workers comp to ensure financial protection to your workers and avoid potential non-compliance issues that may affect your business.

However, if you need help navigating a workers comp claims process more efficiently, keep this guide in mind. By doing so, you’ll not only make the entire filing process much easier and faster, but you’ll also improve your employees chance of getting compensated.