In Villarreal,the Court of Appeals reversed a 2015 decision of a three-judge panel of the court. A majority of the full court reached an opposite result from the panel and determined that the governing provision of the ADEA barring disparate impact age discrimination by employers does not permit job applicants to bring claims of age discrimination under the ADEA against prospective employers. Disparate impact claims would arise in situations where an employer’s policies and procedures lack a discriminatory intent and are purportedly neutral on their face, but nevertheless have a discriminatory effect.
Corporate Affairs, Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainability, Sustainable Business Practices, Risk & Compliance, Environmental Management, Environmental Resource Management, Energy Management
Last year the world waited to see if the hype surrounding COP21 in Paris would produce a global commitment between heads of state to help stem the tide of rising temperatures. Since that historic week in Paris, 86 of the 197 countries who are party to the newly produced Paris Agreement have achieved ratification.
Risk & Compliance, Corporate Security, Travel Security, Risk Management, Business Continuity Planning, Business Interruption Planning, Crisis Management
While the events most often planned for are site- or natural disaster–related, businesses should also include workplace violence, terrorism, and cyberattacks in their business preparedness efforts. This is especially true given the nature of black swan events as those that (1) take place outside of regular expectations, (2) carry an extreme impact, and (3) seem obvious, explainable, and predictable in hindsight.
Relatively strong post-recession employment growth is not a statistical anomaly, though only a small portion of the gain is coming from internet and telecommunications jobs. GDP is underestimated, but it is consistently biased, and the gig and free economies are too small to explain the productivity gap. Rather than blaming statistics, analytical effort is better spent determining the root causes for slow productivity growth.
Leadership, Human Resources, Employee Relations, Employee Engagement, Risk & Compliance, Employee Health Management, Employee Wellness, Safety Management, Employee Safety
Evidence shows that good physical condition, good mental health, and an absence of chronic illness correlate to low injury rates. Programs aimed at prevention, early detection, and managing conditions also improve safety. However, a growing body of research has found that companies that integrate health, wellness, safety, and benefits in a holistic approach can improve health, decrease injuries, and improve productivity by building a culture of workforce resilience.
Growth & Innovation, Research & Development, Research, Innovation, New Product Development, Operations, Manufacturing, Production
Virtual reality has many applications beyond video games, particularly for manufacturing. Companies are leveraging this technology for product development, prototypes, training, and factory floor layout. Ford and BAE Systems already have reputations for using virtual reality to shorten product design cycles and save costs.
Global Economy, Economic Environment, Regional Economic Integration, Money & Finance, Currency, Government Finance
The European Central Bank is making another attempt at stability through dramatic measures. Europe's falling prices, currency, punitive rates on bank profits, and convoluted politics all complicate the effects of policymaking. Recent data on industrial production and GDP have been promising, however.
Leadership, Human Resources, Benefits, Health Benefits, Risk & Compliance, Legal, Labor & Employment Practices
In a decision that adopts the minority position of two courts of appeals out of a total of eight that have ruled on the issue, the Supreme Court held that ERISA health benefit plans may not seek reimbursement from third-party settlements plan participants receive when the participant has spent the funds on nontraceable items. While the case in question concerned a health benefit plan, the implications for other types of ERISA plans, including pension and disability plans, is unclear.