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Employer-Employee Relations Paper - Regular Employees Versus Independent Contractors

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Employer-Employee Relations Paper

Employment laws in any business, including health care are in place to protect both the employer and the employee. Johns Hopkins Health System Corporation (JHHSC) has one objective in hiring staff; to attract highly qualified employees worthy of retention. The purpose is to achieve corporate goals while maintaining a professional and caring atmosphere for patients and their families. The different types of employees include independent contractors, temporary, exempt and non-exempt employees. Each of the employee classifications have different requirements that JHHSC establishes. Johns Hopkins Health System Corporation must follow employment laws set by the state and federal governments. JHHSC human resources policy addresses employment at will and the exceptions that apply. JHHSC employs all of the different types of employees this research introduces. It is the responsibility of the human resources department to set employment policies and to ensure that the treatment of every employee is equitable and fair.

Regular Employees versus Independent Contractors

As with many hospitals the John Hopkins Hospital uses both "regular" employees and independent contractors. However, there are key differences in determining if a staff member is an independent contractor or a "regular" employee. First, a person must undergo an independent contractor test given by the administration of the hospital. If the person does not pass this test, the hiring of the employee will proceed as a "regular" employee or go through a temporary agency. Second, an independent contractor must not have been an employee of the hospital in the last 12 months. Last, in order for a person to be paid and treated as an independent contractor, one must provide both documentation and factual support. As with any other type of independent contractor one is responsible for one's own taxes and does not have a regular work schedule unlike "regular" employees. Also when an independent contractor is "hired" the involvement of many levels of the hospital's administration ensures the proper following of policies and procedures. According to The John Hopkins Health System Corporation (2010), "An independent contractor is a person or business which provides goods or services to Johns Hopkins Health System Corporation (JHHSC) or The Johns Hopkins Hospital (JHH) under terms specified in a contract. Unlike an employee, an independent contractor does not work regularly for JHHSC/JHH" (Policy, para. 1).

Regular Employees versus Temporary Employees

According to JHU personnel policy a temporary, classified staff employee, is one who works up to 37.5 hours per week for six months or less in a fiscal year. Temporary positions at JHU are often intra-staff services, which are administrative, e.g. accounting, phone services, and most nonprofessional staff (JHHSC, 2010).

The major difference between the regular and temporary employees is the level of benefit, which employees receive. Regular employees fall under the Fair Labor Standards Act, and they are paid overtime for all hours after they complete 40 hours in one week. These employees are non-exempt; receive benefits such as health care, and other financial alternatives not available for temporary employees.

Temporary employees are exempt from benefits and overtime. Temporary employees can work in several departments; however, each department is completely separate. For instance, if an employee works in the intake area for eight hours and then works in the cafeteria for five hours one does not accumulation the hours. Working hours in separate departments do not equate to overtime hour even if the hours combine exceed 40 because the employee has two separate jobs; however, both of them are for the same employer JHHR (JHHR, 2010).

Although temporary employees have many financial advantages, they also have the disadvantage of only a certain numbers of hours within each area of work. Temporary employees fill a necessary gap between professional staff and nonprofessional staff in which a fulltime employee would not be cost effective.

Exempt Employees versus Non-Exempt Employees

The work performed by each staff member is an important contribution to the hospitals core values of maintaining excellence in the care of the patient. The effectiveness and quality of the service provided by Johns Hopkins staff creates a foundation of excellence. It does not matter what position or department that a staff member works in, exempt or non-exempt the commitment to quality shapes the reputation that makes families trust their loved ones to Johns Hopkins Hospital care and expertise.

The federal and state government set regulatory guidelines for



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