Respirator Safety: When You Need One and Respirator Types

May 22nd, 2017

respirator safety

Respirator Safety and Protection

Your body works hard to protect your respiratory system from airborne contaminants.  Your nose begins the job by filtering out large particles and warming and moistening the air as it enters your body.  A blanket of mucus lining the tubes to our lungs traps smaller particles, which are moved back up toward your throat by the action of tiny hairs, called cilia that line your air passages.  Your cough reflex completes the task of getting rid of contaminants.  That’s why smoke and dust make you cough – your body is just doing its job.  Your lungs then move the 20% of the air that is pure oxygen into your bloodstream where your body can use it.

When You Need a Respirator

But what if your body’s air filtration system is attacked by too many contaminants?  When your air passages are overloaded, they will not be able to prevent this material from getting to your lungs.  Contaminants can have an immediate and noticeable effect when they irate your lungs, but much more dangerous are the long-term effects of a buildup of contaminants over time.  Often, a victim of this sort of hazard is not aware of the problem until the lungs are permanently damaged.  Fortunately, respirators can prevent this kind of damage by filtering out these particles for you.

Air-Purifying Respirators

If you are working in an environment that produces dusts, fumes or harmful mists, you should be using an air purifying respirator containing a filter designed for screening out these contaminants.  These may be simple disposable face masks or rubber masks fitted with disposable or cleanable filters.

 Cartridges and Canisters

Gases and vapors make up another group of health hazards.  These substances are not really particles – they are dissolved in the air, so your air passages have no way of getting them out.  Furthermore, such gases can pass through your lungs to enter your bloodstream, damaging your body and brain.  When working around these hazards, you need an APR fitted with a cartridge or canister that absorbs or chemically reduces dangerous gases.  The type of cartridge or canister you use must be specific for the gas in your work area – the wrong one will have no safety effect at all.  And it must be replaced according to manufacturer’s guidelines when it is used up.

Supplied-Air Respirators

Remember how much oxygen there is in pure air?  About 20%.  If the atmosphere in your workplace has such a high level of contaminants that there is not enough oxygen left in the air to support life, it will not do any good to filter the air.  You need to replace that air with an outside source.  Supplied-air respirators (SARs) connect the user, by means of an air hose, to an outside source of clean air supplied by a compressor or compressed-air cylinder.  You may also need this type of respirator if the contaminant in your workplace cannot be filtered or absorbed by ordinary APRs.  Other situations requiring SARs are oxygen deficient environments and environments that are dangerously hot or cold or so toxic that they have been identified as “immediately dangerous to life and health” (IDLH).  Under IDLH conditions, you must use a respirator that provides positive air pressure so there is no chance of contaminants being drawn into the mask when you inhale.

Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus

Sometimes, working conditions do not permit the use of air lines.  With a self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), you carry a supply of air in a portable tank on your back.  Use SCBAs when you need great mobility, when falling objects or machinery can damage an air hose, or when the job to be done takes 30 minutes or less.  They may also be used when you are first entering an environment in which the air quality is unknown.

Do You Need To Wear A Respirator?

Do you need respiratory protection? If you’re not sure, check with your supervisor. If you know your job requires you to wear safety equipment like a respirator while on assignment with ABR and you do not have it, report it to your supervisor and your  local ABR Employment Services office immediately.

This blog about Respirator Safety was written by Safety Management Services Company. It is being shared with permission. 


Forbes Inc. Names ABR To Best Professional Recruiting Firms List

May 16th, 2017

Best Recruiting Firms

Best Professional Recruiting Firms: ABR Ranks #50 on Forbes’ List

There are 20,000 staffing agencies in North America. Who are the top firms? Forbes, Inc. compiled a top 250 ranking of the best recruiting firms based on recommendations from thousands of recruiters, employees, and hiring managers.

Working with analytics firm Statista, Forbes set out to identify the most well respected recruiters in the U.S.

Surveys were sent to:

  • 18,000 external recruiters for peer review
  • 3,000 candidates and employees of recruiting firms
  • 50 HR managers that had been clients of recruitment firms in the past three years.

Interviewees could name up to 10 recruitment firms per category, either with the help of a long list of more than 4,000 recruitment firms or as a free nomination.

ABR Makes the Top 50 Best Professional Recruiting Firms!

ABR is ranked number 50 on the list. Of the 250 recruiting firms named, only four are Wisconsin based. Of the Wisconsin based firms, ABR received the highest ranking.

CEO Jim McNett and everyone at ABR couldn’t be more proud.

“It’s great recognition for everyone’s hard work and dedication to making ABR a great organization. We are all proud of this accomplishment and our ability to connect people to jobs and provide workforce solutions to companies in Wisconsin.”

Thank you to everyone who helped us win this ranking! See the full list from Forbes here.

There Is a Better Way to Give Employee Feedback

May 15th, 2017

Employee Feedback

It seems fairly universal that most employees face their annual performance with an underlying sense of dread. Little do many employees know that managers often feel the same anxiety and worry over digging into a year’s worth of feedback in a single session. Department managers need to consult with the human resource manager to make sure they have filled out all the appropriate paperwork and are approaching the employee feedback meeting according to protocol.

If you are trying to find a better way to help your managers and their employees, there is a better way. Entrepreneur cites a study commissioned by Adobe stating that 80 percent of office workers would rather have on-the-spot feedback instead of traditional periodic reviews.

Why Are Formal Periodic Reviews Falling Out of Favor?

For decades and decades, companies have used periodic reviews to connect with employees and let them know how they are doing. You probably know from experience that this method puts unnecessary stress on both the employee and their manager. There are many reasons that this long-standing approach to employee engagement is used less and less. Take a look at the top 3 reasons why you might consider moving on from this type of employee evaluation:

  1. They Are Time-Consuming to Organize. Research in the January 2017 Adobe survey reported that managers spend an average of 17 hours organizing a periodic employee review. Even worse, employees report that their periodic review had no effect on their work.
  2. The Anticipation Is Stressful and Distracting for Employees. Annual performance reviews are so stressful to millennial workers that nearly 60 percent surveyed state that they would prefer to search for a new job with a company that did not have periodic performance reviews.
  3. They Create Negative Fallout by Dredging Up Old Issues. One out of five millennial workers admits to having cried after a performance review. These types of reviews carry the risk of alienating valued employees since they cover material over such a large span of time. The rest of the year might have been filled with stellar productivity and results, but to hear about some ancient misstep can be demoralizing.

Why Is the Industry Moving Toward On-the-Spot Employee Feedback?

More than 55 percent of office workers and two-thirds of office managers state that they would prefer to toss out the traditional performance review format and time frame to adopt something that better reflects the modern workplace and its workers. Following are just a few reasons that on-the-spot employee feedback is essential to cultivating a happy and productive workplace:

  • Employee Assessment More Effective in Real-Time. When given feedback right away, employees can act on that feedback, making the necessary corrections. Also, with the right approach, employees feel less worry and resentment over meaningful and actionable feedback.
  • Positive Feedback Is Welcome as Often as Possible. Positive reinforcement helps managers nurture a positive working relationship.
  • Regular Observations Can Help Boost Collaboration. Employees feel more like a they are part of the team when a manager regularly brings them up to speed on important matters that can help them improve. Polite, genuine, and well-framed comments that serve to improve the department can have a positive impact.

Are You Ready to Introduce On-the-Spot Employee Feedback to Your Organization?

At ABR Employment Services, we understand that the field of staffing and HR is complicated, at best. If you need any help finding new ways to help your management team navigate these choppy waters, contact us.

ABR HR Insights Magazine Spring 2017

May 8th, 2017

Click to Read ABR HR Insights Magazine

Facebook Is Another Valuable Tool for Your Job Search

May 8th, 2017

Find Jobs on FacebookFind Jobs On Facebook

The way people use social media continues to change. Job seekers are using it to find jobs especially on Facebook. Chances are you have have seen a ‘now hiring’ ad or update from a friend or family member mentioning a company that’s hiring.

Start Using Facebook to Find Your Next Job

Even if you do not regularly sign into your Facebook account it is worth giving it a try to supplement your job search.

Take a look at the following 5 steps to conduct a job search using Facebook:

  1. Review Your Facebook Page and Do Any Necessary Clean-up. It is important to make sure your page is in good shape. Remove any negative posts you have made about former employers or friends. You might also want to delete posts that refer to alcohol, drugs, or illegal activities. Remember to remove any cringy photographs.
  2. Open Up Your Privacy Settings. Whether you have never explored your possible privacy settings, or you haven’t reviewed them in a while, now is the time to make some updates. Once you have cleaned up your page, open up your privacy settings to the public so everyone can see your posts. The prompts will ask you things like “Who can see my stuff?” and “Who can contact me?” The more open you are with your posts at this point, the more potential you have to reach potential employers.
  3. Join Job Groups to help Find Jobs on Facebook. Enter your job title and other related words into Facebook’s search panel to see what pops up. If you see groups that attract people in your field, hit the “join” button. Become an active member by sharing your information. Group administrators often create a status post that welcomes newcomers and gives you a chance to introduce yourself. If you do not see groups in your industry, “like” pages that relate to your job field.
  4. Network with Friends, Family, and Recruiters. You never know who might have a lead at a local company. Visit your high school, college, or technical school’s page and start following it so you can re-connect and let people know you are conducting a job search.
  5. Search for Local Companies in Your Field. Do a search for local companies where you would like to work and “like” their page. Monitor their activity and “like” their posts.

We Can Help You Use Facebook for Your Job Search

At ABR Employment Services, we believe in the power of social media. The added exposure will help you cut down your search time and keep you in practice at networking. Visit the Jobs tab on ABR’s Facebook Company Page and friend these ABR recruiters. Use Facebook to your advantage along with all the other tools ABR offers to help you find a great job!

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Sonoco Paper Mills General Production De Pere WI

May 3rd, 2017

Sonoco Paper Mills General Production De Pere WI

Sonoco Paper Mills General Production De Pere WI

Direct Hire – $18.09 to Start – Up to $20.09 at 6 Months

These well-paying general production positions at Sonoco are available due to employee retirement.

If you have a strong work ethic, solid work history, and are able to perform physically demanding work, apply in person by 12 Noon Friday, May 12 at:

ABR Employment Services
550 N. Military Ave, Suite 12
Green Bay, WI

Late applications will not be accepted. Questions? Call 920-592-9393

Sonoco Paper Mills General Production Employees will work on rotating shifts of 4 days on, 4 days off. The hours are 6:30a.m. to 6:30p.m. and 6:30p.m. to 6:30a.m. Hours may vary during the training period, your first few months of employment.

To learn more about Sonoco and the benefits offered, visit their career page.


Manufacturing Jobs Lewiston MN: Machine Operation & Assembly

April 28th, 2017

Manufacturing Jobs Lewiston MN

SMT Machine Operators, Electronic Assembly

ABR is a no-cost job placement resource that helps job seekers get noticed and land positions at employers that are hiring. We’re currently helping a Lewiston, MN contract manufacturer of  electronic and electro-mechanical assemblies hire for the following manufacturing jobs in Lewiston MN:

Surface Mount Technology Machine Operators

Electronic Assembly

These positions are ‘try-before-hire’ which mean after working a certain number of hours, you may transition from being an ABR employee to our client’s employee.

Easily Apply:

Upon hire, the following benefits are offered:

  • Health Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Disability Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • 125 Pre-tax Spending Plan
  • 401K Plan
  • Tuition Reimbursement
  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
  • Prescription Safety Glass Program
  • ESD Shoe Program

Employee Rating

People that work here provided a ‘3 out of 5 star’ rating on One reviewer said, “Awesome work environment, excellent training and work direction.” The company describes their mission as “To provide unsurpassed manufacturing services while striving to improve daily”. The company mission statement is “To grow revenue and make a fair profit by forming strong partnerships in electronics contract manufacturing and related services”.

Let us help you find your next job. We hire for positions in the industries of electrical components, electrical manufacturing and machine shops. Apply for a position in electrical assembly, quality assurance, material handling, shipping/receiving, machine operation or CNC. We’ll find a position that meets your skills.

Schedule an Interview with Michelle

Work with our recruiter, Michelle, to get hired faster and start earning a paycheck more quickly. For more information about this company, just ask Michelle!


Now Hiring in Manitowoc for KI

April 26th, 2017

KI: Great Environment, Outstanding Benefits, Employee Owned Company

That’s how employees describe KI on Glassdoor.

KI manufactures innovative furniture and movable wall system solutions for education, healthcare, government and corporate markets. ABR Manitowoc is currently hiring 1st and 2nd shift Assembly Line Workers and 1st and 2nd shift Paint Line Technicians for KI’s Manitowoc, WI plant.

The Paint Line Technician positions are ‘Try-Before-Hire’ which mean you have the potential to get hired on by KI with full benefits after working a certain number of hours. Competitive benefits offered upon hire include a reimbursable pet adoption program up to $100 for a cat $150 for a dog!

What makes KI a company of choice?

KI strives to reward employees for their contributions in many ways with competitive compensation, career opportunities, and training. ABR Manitowoc is your path to get noticed by KI making it easier for qualified applicants to get hired.

Easily Apply Now For Openings with ABR Manitowoc/KI  

Questions? Give us a call at 920-684-8324 or message us on Facebook.



ACA Is Still In Effect: Now What?

April 24th, 2017

ACA is Still in Effect: Now What?

The stop-and-start and vacillation regarding health care reform produces confusion: for those on the Hill, for businesses, for lawyers, for individuals and for those in the health insurance business itself. For now, however, the ACA remains the law of the land.

For companies, the “play or pay” provisions of the ACA apply only to “Applicable Large Employers” (“ALEs”), generally those with 50 or more full-time employees in the prior calendar year, including full-time equivalent employees. A company with fewer than 50 full-time employees, including full-time equivalent employees, is not an ALE subject to the ACA (and not subject to the employer shared responsibility provisions or the employer information reporting provisions). Those companies that are not ALEs may be eligible for the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit and should seek advice to determine how the ACA affects them.

• We often see clients encounter problems in determining “full-time” employees and how “full-time equivalent” plays into the calculation. Knowing the difference between those terms and what the ACA requires is why a company, who may have 80 full-time equivalents, has to offer health care to only its subset of 40 full-timers, as the ACA imposes a penalty only for the failure to extend an offer of coverage to full-time employees, but not those who are counted as part of the full-time equivalent formula.

• We also see clients considering shifting their employees between related companies (to a parent company, a subsidiary, or a company owned by a spouse), so that each company has an employee count below the ALE threshold of 50 full-time equivalents. For the most part, such maneuvering will not work, as related companies are generally grouped together as one ALE under ACA controlled group rules.

• We also caution against simply reducing an employee’s work hours to below 30 hours (the hour requirement for an employee to be considered “full-time”), in an effort to avoid having to offer health care to that now lower-hour employee. Since the enactment of ACA, there has been a rise in claims from employees who were denied health care because employers reduced their hours, under what ostensibly could have looked like a viable business solution.

Generally, ALEs must either (a) offer “affordable” “minimum essential coverage” that provides “minimum value” to “full-time employees” (and offer coverage to the full-time employees’ “dependents”) or (b) pay an employer shared responsibility excise tax. All the quoted terms have complex meanings, and compliance often requires a company to coordinate with outside experts to ensure that any offered health care program meets applicable requirements. Even when a company unequivocally has the requisite “affordable” “minimum essential coverage” with “minimum value,” if the company fails to offer such health coverage to enough of its full-time employees, there can be a substantial penalty. We also have clients who decide simply not to offer health care at all to their employees, choosing instead to pay the non-deductible employer shared responsibility tax. With the ACA still in effect, so too are the IRS mandatory health insurance reporting requirements. For employers, this generally includes reporting the value of the health insurance coverage provided to each employee on Form W-2 and certain information regarding health insurance offerings to full time and other individuals on Forms 1094-C and 1095-C. The IRS uses the information provided on such information returns to administer the employer shared responsibility provisions.


Under the ACA, individuals must report qualifying health coverage for themselves, their spouse (if filing jointly), and any of their dependents on an individually-filed federal tax return, or pay a penalty. In fact, Line 11 on Form 1040-EZ and Line 61 on Form 1040 asks for self-disclosure:

Health Care [Tax]: individual responsibility. . . Full year coverage [check for yes; pay tax if no]

IRS Enforcement of ACA

President Trump’s very first Executive Order “Minimizing the Economic Burden of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Pending Repeal,” released on the day of his inauguration, mandated:

Sec. 2. To the maximum extent permitted by law, the Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary) and the heads of all other executive departments and agencies (agencies) with authorities and responsibilities under the Act shall exercise all authority and discretion available to them to waive, defer, grant exemptions from, or delay the implementation of any provision or requirement of the [Patient Protection and Affordable Care] Act that would impose a fiscal burden on any State or a cost, fee, tax, penalty, or regulatory burden on individuals, families, healthcare providers, health insurers, patients, recipients of healthcare services, purchasers of health insurance, or makers of medical devices, products, or medications.

Now that initial repeal and replace efforts have failed, and the ACA remains governing law, focus turns to whether we will see relaxed enforcement as a response to the President’s Executive Order. It is unclear how and when the IRS and other agencies will act to “exercise authority and discretion available to them to…reduce [the ACA’s] burden.”

Because there is nothing published indicating how the IRS will respond to the Executive Order, companies should continue to comply with their obligations under the ACA. With respect to individuals, the IRS has already indicated that it will accept electronic and paper Forms 1040 and 1040-EZ returns for processing even if those forms not indicate compliance with the individual health care coverage requirement.

The content of this blog originally appeared in the April, 2017 edition of ABR Employment Services e-newsletter,  HR Insights. It was written by Jackson Lewis P.C.

Busted! Job Placement Agency Myths: The Real Truth

April 17th, 2017

In addition to your own attempts at finding employment, you might consider consulting a job placement agency. You might have heard some information about staffing agencies—in spite of their ever-increasing popularity—that would rate a place in the job search filing system under “myths.” Like most job seekers, though, you do not have time for myths.

Busting Job Place Agency Myths and Replacing Them with Facts

We understand that you want to reach out to an employment agency you can fully trust. You are putting your best foot forward in your job search, and you deserve to find a professional staffing firm that does the same on your behalf.
Our service-oriented recruiting team tossed around some ideas and came up with the five most common job placement agency myths. We want to sift through these well-known job placement industry myths to help give you the confidence to reach out for the help that might just help you find your ideal job.

Myth 1: Job Search Candidates Need to Pay Recruitment Fees

Hiring managers reach out to employment staffing firms to help fill positions with the best possible job candidates. Employers find that they save on hiring costs when using recruiting agencies, thanks to their access to the best talent for the needed positions, which makes the fees well worth it.

Myth 2: Job Placement Agencies Only Recruit for Specialized Positions

In most areas of the country, there are often several types of recruiting agencies in a region that serve industries that include finance, banking, medical, industrial, and manufacturing. Further, there are usually at least a few employment agencies that have business connections to serve job candidates who are searching for light industrial, call center, administrative, and skilled industrial positions. Call a few different employment agencies in your area to make sure they can help you find a suitable position.

Myth 3: Employment Agencies Are Only Interested in Collecting Fees and Forget Employees Once Placed

While this myth may be true with some employment agencies, there are many staffing agencies that truly care about building long-lasting relationships with employers and job seekers. Most top recruiters with high ratings from clients and placed employees truly care about your happiness in your new job position. During your first phone call or meeting with an employment agency, make sure to ask whether they measure temporary and full-time employee satisfaction upon placement. If they do not offer this service, move on to the next staffing firm.

Myth 4: Recruiting Firms Only Find Job Positions for Temporary Job Seekers

The current model for most top job placement agencies features a blend of temporary, full-time, and direct-hire services. Discuss the type of position you ultimately want with your professional staffing expert. You might also let your staffing partner know if you are willing to take temporary assignments in your area of interest with the possibility of a job offer later. Much of your success in dispelling this myth will come from solid communication and cooperation with your staffing agency team.

Myth 5: Job Placement Agencies Are the Only Job Search Resource You Need

As invaluable as a top job placement agency’s services are in your job search, you should never limit your possibilities. While staffing experts do their best to find the right position for you, it is important that you continue doing your own independent search. Reach out to your own professional network, job boards, and industry associations, in addition to using the resources of a reliable staffing agency. Any agency that advises you to only rely on their services may not have your best interests in mind.

With the Myths Out of the Way, Reach Out to an Award-Winning Wisconsin Job Placement Agency

At ABR Employment Services, we believe in providing top-notch service for all of our employers and employees. Contact us today to learn more about our myth-free approach to providing you with our award-winning job placement services.