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Seeking Free Posters? The Myth of One-Stop Shops for Mandatory Workplace Postings

8/17/2018
Free workplace posters oftentimes can cost businesses time, effort and resources to stay in compliance

When it comes to mandatory workplace postings, there’s no “one-stop shop” to visit or “free lunch” to be had. To meet all federal, state and legal posting requirements, and to stay current with recent labor law changes, you need to look beyond your workers’ comp provider and the government.

That’s right: These trusted resources are not the be-all-and-end-all when it comes to accuracy. Instead, it’s in your best interest to choose a reputable service that both covers and guarantees your compliance.

Why Your Workers’ Comp Provider Isn’t the Solution

It is true that many workers’ comp insurance providers do supply targeted posters as a convenience. But it’s not enough. These providers typically distribute only a few of the required federal postings, such as OSHA’s safety poster. However, they won’t address state or local postings — a fast-growing, constantly changing area of posting compliance. Even worse, they rarely supply updated postings that address employment law changes.

Think about it: Do you really want to put your company at risk for liabilities and fines because you rolled the dice with a service that doesn’t provide complete protection and guarantees?

No One-Stop Shop for Free Government Posters

Okay, so your workers’ comp provider isn’t the answer. What about the government? Well, not exactly. Did you know that federal, state and local agencies often don’t work together? This means there’s no government agency that acts as centralized resource for all the necessary posters you must display in the workplace or that acts as a resource that outlines any recent changes to labor laws.

In fact, about 175 agencies across the U.S. are responsible for issuing at least 380 mandatory posters. On top of this, around 22,000 U.S. cities and counties have their own governing agencies, many of which issue required postings.

How “Free” Workplace Postings Cost You Time, Effort and Resources

If you decide to wrangle posting compliance resources on your own, be prepared to:

  1. Determine names and contact information for each government agency responsible for issuing posters. It’s up to you to figure out which agencies are responsible for enforcing each posting requirement applicable to your business — and where/how to contact them.
  2. Contact multiple agencies and follow up to obtain postings. Once you know what posters you need and the agencies that provide these, you must contact each agency to request the postings. Most postings can be downloaded from government websites, but others must be requested by phone and received by mail.
  3. Make adjustments to comply with size/font requirements. If you download postings from government websites, be prepared to research and confirm that all printouts generated comply with legal requirements for size, font, color and layout.
  4. Post individual paper sheets and maintain posting centers. Once you’ve obtained the required postings and confirmed required sizes, fonts, etc., you need to mount the individual paper sheets at each posting location throughout your business, including applicant areas and employee break rooms.
  5. Continually monitor laws and government websites for posting changes. In addition to securing the appropriate postings, you regularly must check with the issuing agencies to determine when/if the posters change. Government agencies release new and updated postings frequently, and these agencies don’t notify businesses when employment law changes occur.
  6. Determine whether posting changes are mandatory. Whenever you discover a posting change, you must determine if the change is “mandatory” (requiring a new or updated posting) or “non-mandatory” (a nice-to-have, but not legally required). Agencies rarely make this designation for you on their websites.
  7. Pinpoint effective date of new posting requirements. Government websites don’t always indicate when a poster change goes live. If the effective date isn’t listed on the posting itself, you must research the underlying posting law to clarify the effective date of the law and the posting requirement (which may be two different dates!).

Head spinning? The maze of doing-it-yourself for compliance becomes amplified when you consider that larger businesses with multiple locations have even more postings and changes to contend with.

As you can see, something you thought was “free” is anything but. Government posters are not free when you consider the significant time, effort and resources needed to manage posting compliance on your own — especially when your business operates in multiple states. Calculate how much time you’ll need to manage this responsibility, and you’ll quickly realize the soft costs are astronomical.

Take Back Your Time by Turning to the Compliance Experts

Time savings, efficiencies and peace of mind are on your side with Poster Guard® Compliance Protection service. This all-inclusive posting service constantly updates and releases every required federal, state and local labor law posting — no matter how many employment law changes occur during the year.

Plus this all-inclusive poster set provides the mandatory Spanish-language postings, and you have the flexibility to determine which of your multiple locations need foreign language postings based on federal and/or state laws.

With a guarantee for 100% compliance, and backed by an expert legal team who monitor thousands of agencies and regulations year-round, Poster Guard Compliance Protection service does all the heavy lifting — saving you countless hours and effort that could be better directed toward your employee management, revenue and strategies.​