Tag Archives: monster.com

GoodSearch & GoodShop for Charity

GoodSearch Offers An Online Option To Charitable Donations

GoodSearch offers an online option to charitable donations

In 2005, Ken and JJ Ramberg started a way for people to “give without giving.”

After their mother died of cancer, the siblings wanted to find a way to give back to the community.

“Her death was not the thing that inspired this,” JJ says, “Her life did.”

They wanted to create something that was “game-changing in the world of philanthropy,” and did so by launching GoodSearch.

GoodSearch, an online search engine powered by Yahoo, allows Web users to search and donate to a charity at the same time. By choosing a school or charity, each time a person uses the GoodSearch search engine, that nonprofit receives a penny.

So far it has raised $8 million with more than 100,000 schools and charities having benefited. The schools and charities like using GoodSearch as a fundraiser because it is a “simple way to raise money,” says CEO Scott Garell.

The Humane Society of Yuma, Grand Canyon Association, Desert Star Community School and United Way – Pinal County, are a few of the many organizations in Arizona that use GoodSearch as a way to receive donations.

The idea of GoodSearch is to take everyday actions, such as searching the web, shopping and eating, and using them as ways for people to give back to the charity of their choice.

“People love to – if it’s easy – give back to their favorite school or charity,” Garell says.GoodShop

A few years after GoodSearch was started, GoodShop was launched. GoodShop is an online mall with more than 2,500 stores at which to shop. The website provides coupons to shoppers, and 3 to 20 percent of the final cost is given to the charity the shopper choose.

“They (people) are going to shop anyways, why not save money and give back?” Garell adds.

Since the addition of GoodShop, GoodSearch has grown 15 percent yearly, and a new addition to this growth is a way to donate while dining out, according to Garell.

On Nov. 8, GoodSearch came out with its newest venue, GoodDining.

GoodDining has 10,000 restaurants that diners can eat at that will donate up to 6 percent of their check’s price to their charity.

GoodDining is partnered with Rewards Networks, and all customers have to do is register their card on the site, choose their charity, and eat at the participating restaurants.

According to Garell, this is a great way for businesses to donate to a charity they support without costing the business any money.

GoodSearch came out with a toolbar that allows searching without having to go to the GoodSearch website every time. If this toolbar were installed on all of a business’s desktops, workers would raise a penny for the companies’ cause, whenever they searched the Internet.

The toolbar also reminds users that they can use GoodShop to shop, too. It does this by lighting up a GoodSearch button if the user searches for a store that is available on the website.

Businesses can also use GoodDining by taking their clients out to eat at the restaurants on the site, or using it when they travel.

GoodSearch is a daily tool to users, but studies have shown that GoodShop tends to follow the American shopping schedule, with Christmas being the most popular.

Garell said that because of the recession, many might not be able to donate to their usual charity during the holiday season as they usually do. By using GoodShop to do their Christmas shopping, they can save and still give back to their charity.

Ken and JJ had worked in the Internet prior to creating GoodSearch. Ken and his mother founded JOBTRAK, which they sold to Monster.com, and JJ was an employee when Cooking.com started.

Because they knew how much money a search engine could bring in, they wanted to redirect those funds to nonprofits and schools that people care about.

We work with about 100,000 organizations now and have donated $8 million, but as far as we’re concerned, this is just the beginning,” JJ says.

For more information about GoodSearch, visit www.goodsearch.com.


Nonexempt Vs. Exempt Employees

Exempt Employees Versus Nonexempt Employees

Classifying employees as exempt or nonexempt might seem easy at first glance.  Either they are salaried or they are hourly.  Accordingly, they either are eligible to earn overtime for hours worked or they are not.

But it’s not that simple. Nor are the penalties a business can face. Complaints can be made against a business up to two years after an alleged misclassification and resulting lost wages.

Compliance is Key

Such allegations can prove costly, especially if tension in the workplace escalates between the accuser and the business to the level of what could be considered discrimination or harassment. In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor Website’s compliance section states:

“It is a violation to fire or in any other manner discriminate against an employee for filing a complaint or for participating in a legal proceeding under the FLSA.

“Willful violations may be prosecuted criminally and the violator fined up to $10,000. A second conviction may result in imprisonment.”

In addition, any employer found to have willfully violated employee rights, whether exempt or nonexempt from the guidelines outlined in the FLSA, “may be prosecuted criminally and fined up to $10,000,” DOL documents state. “A second conviction may result in imprisonment. Employers who willfully or repeatedly violate the minimum wage or overtime pay requirements are subject to civil money penalties of up to $1,100 per violation.”

When Wage and Hour investigators uncover violations, the DOL will often work with that employers to help them become compliant. In addition, they will be required to pay any back wages that may be due to employees.

Two-Part Test

So what is the standard by which an exempt and nonexempt employee can be measured, and what rules apply to each classification? To be considered exempt, a salaried employee must meet specific salary and duty requirements.

An employee, who is salaried who earns less than $455 per week would be nonexempt and therefore eligible for overtime and other protections under the FLSA.  An exempt employee would not be eligible for overtime, but with limited exceptions, must receive their full salary for any week during which they work, Compensation Management News reports. For more information, visit Compensation.BLR.com.

The second portion of the test relates to the duties an employee performs, their job category such as administrative, computer specialists, outside sales and more. For specific exemptions, see the accompanying chart or visit the DOL Website. In some cases, as with computer specialists, otherwise exempt employees may be paid hourly instead as long as they earn $27.63 or more per hour.

Managing Expectations

In Arizona, there is no legal definition for exempt and nonexempt employees. Everybody is entitled to a minimum wage. However, Arizona does have its own unique minimum wage law. Arizona’s minimum wage is $7.35 per hour and federal minimum wage is $7.25.

While exempt employees are generally not eligible for overtime, they reap other benefits.

“If a person works part of a day and then leaves, you cannot dock them if they are exempt,” explained John Balitis, an employment and labor attorney with Fennemore Craig. “The caveat is that you can dock a salaried, exempt employee’s leave days, so long as it does not result in a loss of compensation during the pay period in which the docking occurs. So, the docking rule for partial day absences is different, depending on whether you are talking about pay or leave.”

Paul W. Barada, a salary and negotiation expert for Monster, agrees. “Exempt employees are generally expected to devote the number of hours necessary to complete their respective tasks, regardless of whether that requires 35 hours per week or 55 hours per week. Their compensation doesn’t change based on actual hours expended. Exempt employees aren’t paid extra for putting in more than 40 hours per week; they’re paid for getting the job done,” Barada wrote in a career advice article published on Monster.com.

If not hours, what then, constitutes an exempt employee’s fulfillment of having completed a day’s work?

“This is an interesting issue that judges and lawyers are talking about, but there is no clear answer,” Balitis said. “Given the proliferation of smart phones and employees checking their email, voice mail and texts while they are at home or in the car on the way to work, there is case law that says that becomes compensable time—so the day has started and exempt/salaried employees have to be paid.”

Balitis said employers, regardless of size, would be well-advised to to purchase a multi-law comprehensive poster for the workplace. If purchased as a subscription from a service, he said, companies generally send updated posters when any of the requirements change.

Commonly Used Exemptions

Commissioned sales employees of retail or service establishments are exempt from overtime if more than half of the employee’s earnings come from commissions and the employee averages at least one and one-half times the minimum wage for each hour worked. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Computer professionals: Section 13(a)(17) of the FLSA provides that certain computer professionals paid at least $27.63 per hour are exempt from the overtime provisions of the FLSA.

Drivers, driver’s helpers, loaders and mechanics are exempt from the overtime pay provisions of the FLSA if employed by a motor carrier, and if the employee’s duties affect the safety of operation of the vehicles in transportation of passengers or property in interstate or foreign commerce. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Farmworkers employed on small farms are exempt from both the minimum wage and overtime pay provisions of the FLSA. You may also wish to review the specific regulation.

Young workers employed on small farms, with parental consent, are also exempt from the child labor provisions of the FLSA. For more information on exemptions from the child labor provisions of the FLSA in agriculture, click the underlined text. Other farmworkers are exempt from the FLSA’s overtime provisions. You may also wish to review the specific regulation.

Salesmen, partsmen and mechanics employed by automobile dealerships are exempt from the overtime pay provisions of the FLSA. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Seasonal and recreational establishments: Employees employed by certain seasonal and recreational establishments are exempt from both the minimum wage and overtime pay provisions of the FLSA. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Executive, administrative, professional and outside sales employees: (as defined in Department of Labor regulations) and who are paid on a salary basis are exempt from both the minimum wage and overtime provisions of the FLSA.

For more information about commonly used exemptions, visit www.dol.gov.

Source: US Department of Labor elaws – Fair Labor Standards Act Advisor

[stextbox id=”grey”]Learn more about nonexempt vs. exempt employees at Compensation.BLR.com.[/stextbox]