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Cross Country Healthcare Reports First-Quarter 2012 Results

Cross Country Healthcare Inc. News Release (05/09/12)

Cross Country Healthcare Inc. has reported revenue of $126.7 million in the first quarter ended March 31, a 4% increase from revenue of $122 million in the prior-year quarter and a 2% increase sequentially from the fourth quarter of 2011. The company incurred a net loss in the first quarter of 2012 of $0.6 million, which included income and non-income tax expenses related primarily to immaterial adjustments to prior-year amounts of $0.5 million after-tax. In the same quarter of the prior year, the company had revenue of $122 million and net income of $0.2 million.

Jobless Claims in U.S. Fell 1,000 Last Week to 367,000

Bloomberg (05/10/12) Lorraine Woellert; Timothy Homan

The number of Americans who filed requests for jobless benefits fell by 1,000 last week to 367,000, the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. Claims from two weeks ago were revised up to 368,000 from 365,000. The data is in line with the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey, and indicate the surge in claims in the first three weeks of April was probably tied to the timing of the Easter holiday rather than a deterioration in employment.

Free ASAPro Webinar Today—Selling to Price-Conscious Buyers

This afternoon from 3 to 4 p.m. Eastern time, attend the ASAPro Webinar “Sell Profitably to a Price-Conscious Buyer” and find out how you can keep and even increase your profits. This one-hour Webinar is designed to teach you to defuse rate and budget objections—even in an environment with clients that are more demanding and less loyal.

All ASAPro Webinars are free for ASA members. Register online at

Substantial Savings on Staffing World® 2012 for ASA Members

ASA members that register people for Staffing World 2012 by May 18 can save up to $400 per person.

ASA membership provides many benefits, including access to professional development, important industry data, legal and legislative updates, and marketing resources.

Attend Staffing World, the can’t-miss event of the year, and take advantage of premier education opportunities such as nearly 40 workshops and a keynote lineup that includes best-selling author and business consultant Jim Collins.

The ASA annual convention is Oct. 9–11 in Las Vegas. The Staffing World early registration deadline is next Friday, May 18. Learn more and see how you save up to $700 at

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam Signs Bill Toughening Standards for Receiving Unemployment Benefits

Tennessean (05/10/12) Brian Wilson

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam signed into law on May 9 three measures tightening eligibility standards for people to receive state unemployment benefits. The series of bills makes it more difficult for individuals fired with cause to receive benefits. It also requires unemployment recipients to apply for at least three jobs every week or go to a local career center and then submit detailed information to verify these applications. The system’s changes will greatly benefit small businesses, says the legislation’s main proponent, Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey.

OSHA Criticizes Safety-Incentive Programs, Encourages Whistleblowers

JDSupra (05/03/2012)

Companies may want to move away from safety-management programs that mainly track the program’s effectiveness based upon recordable injuries. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has criticized such programs and is encouraging whistleblowers instead.

Companies should carefully review the March 12 memo on “Employer Safety Incentive and Disincentive Policies and Practices.” OSHA considers “reporting an injury to always be a protected activity” and looks askance at companies that discipline, terminate, or take other adverse action against an employee who reports a workplace injury.

Is the Scope of Protected ‘Opposition’ Shrinking?

Lexology (05/01/12) Theodore A. Olsen

Employees are protected from retaliation when opposing illegal discrimination or participating in a proceeding that claims discrimination under Section 704 of Title VII and other employment discrimination laws, but the courts have long ruled that they are not protected when complaining about working conditions not associated with prohibited discrimination. However, there have been several surprising decisions in “opposition” cases recently. In Brush v. Sears Holdings Corp., for instance, the plaintiff claimed she was terminated after investigating an employee’s sexual harassment claim because she complained that the company was not sufficiently addressing sexual assaults of female workers, but the court ruled that her complaints did not constitute “protected opposition.” According to the court, complaints about internal grievance processes and challenges to these grievance systems are not protected opposition under Title VII, because employers are not legally required to have such processes and the absence or inadequacy of such systems does not violate the law.

Five Quick Tips on Handling E-Discovery in Employment Litigation

Lexology (04/30/12) Adam C. Losey; Scott Callen

A greater focus on electronic discovery has made employment litigation more costly and time-consuming, but there are several things employers can do to handle e-discovery efficiently and effectively. They should implement a legal review process to determine whether e-mail and other electronic information should be preserved and then keep these documents safe, and they should implement a document-retention policy detailing the management, storage, and deletion of data. Employers should understand that electronic information includes not only e-mail but also timekeeping systems, payroll systems, and data stored in the cloud. Finally, they should consult an e-discovery professional to ensure they are not spending too much on discovery requests, and they should consider using review technology to identify relevant documents in litigation.

New U.S. Commerce Department Report: Manufacturing Jobs Provide Higher Pay, More Benefits

MarketWatch (05/09/12)

Manufacturing jobs are becoming more skilled and heavily reliant on science, technology, engineering, and math fields, according to a new report from the U.S. Commerce Department’s Economics and Statistics Administration, and the compensation reflects this. “The Benefits of Manufacturing Jobs,” an analysis of wages and benefits of manufacturing workers, finds that total hourly compensation for manufacturing workers is 17% higher than for non-manufacturing workers.

In addition to higher compensation for manufacturing jobs, the share of manufacturing workers with more than a high school degree has been steadily increasing, and now more than half of all manufacturing workers have at least some college education. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, manufacturing employment has expanded by nearly 500,000 jobs, or 4%, since January 2010—the strongest cyclical rebound since the wake of the dual recessions in the early 1980s.

Skills That Health Care Employers Require of Occupational Therapists

Wanted Analytics (05/09/12) Abby Lombardi

Employers placed more than 9,400 job ads online for occupational therapists in April, a 41% increase compared with the same month in 2011. An examination of the nationwide hiring demand and talent supply indicates that these positions are likely to be very difficult for recruiters to fill. Recruiters in the health care space leave job ads for occupational therapists online for an average of 47 days.