ABR Closed December 23 and December 26

December 23rd, 2016

All ABR offices are closed on Friday, December 23rd, 2016 and on Monday, December 26th, 2016, in observance of Christmas. All offices will re-open on Tuesday, December 27th at 8:00 a.m.

Seasons Greetings

Moved to Tears: Free Rent and a job! Winner

December 21st, 2016

This is sure to be a memorable holiday for Corey and his family. Everyone at ABR is humbled and moved by Corey’s reaction upon learning he is our most recent $1,000 Free Rent and a Job! winner.

Corey moved to the Wausau, WI area from North Dakota at the urging of his brother. He applied for work with ABR Employment Services Schofield location. In August 2016, he began working at Applied Laser Technologies in the Panel Assembly department.

Corey’s supervisor said, “He is a great employee, his attendance is excellent and he always does more than what is asked of him”. In addition to receiving $1,000, Applied Laser hired Corey on as their employee. Congratulations, Corey!

Looking for a new job in office or manufacturing? #SayestoABR and YOU could be ABR’s next Free Rent and a job! $1,000 winner. Search our opportunities now.

Hand and Portable Power Tool Safety

December 19th, 2016

Hand and Portable Power Tool Safety

Hand and portable power tool safety is important to practice in your everyday work life.  It’s easy to forget that they can be dangerous, if used improperly.  For example, a simple screwdriver can slip and cause a puncture wound, and an unguarded electric drill can cause serious shock.  You probably already know how to operate most hand and tools.  Now, take a moment to make sure you know how to operate them safely.

Play it Extra Safe With Power Tools

Power tools make it possible to do many tasks quickly and efficiently.  But, because they use electricity and have fast-moving parts, you must exercise caution when using them.  In addition to standard safety-tool practices, follow these tips when working with portable power tools:

  • Dress for safety.  Remember, your hands and eyes are your most important tools.  When you use saws or grinders, wear protective clothing to prevent cuts and burns.  Always wear safety glasses when there is danger of flying wood, metal, or particles.
  • Inspect and test.  Before you use any power tool, check it for broken parts or loose bolts.  If you’re using a tool with a sharp edge, use a scrap of wood, not your fingers, to test its sharpness.
  • Start from “off.”  Before plugging in a power tool, check the power switch to make sure it is in the “off” position.  It’s dangerous to plug in a tool when the switch is “on.”  When you are through, be sure the tool has stopped before unplugging it or putting it down.
  • Prevent shock.  Be sure your tool is properly grounded and double-insulated.  Keep cords away from heat, sharp objects, and chemicals which could damage their insulation.  Keep your work area dry.  If you must work in a wet area, keep the power cord clear of wet surfaces or use a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).

Tool Safety Rules

Hand and power tools are designed to work for you and make your job easier.  When used properly, they will help minimize errors, and maximize safety.  There are some basic safety rules you should follow when using power tools.  These rules will help protect you:

  • Use the right tool for the job, and make sure it’s the right size for the job. When you use a wrench as a hammer, or a knife as a screwdriver, you risk damaging the tool, the material being worked on, and yourself.
  • Keep your tools in good condition. A clean, sharp tool is a safe tool.  Tools with greasy handles or dull cutting edges can slip and cause injury.
  • Learn the correct way to use a tool. There is typically one right way—and many wrong ways—to use any tool.  Don’t assume you’ll know how to use a new or unfamiliar tool correctly.  If you don’t know, ask!
  • Follow common-sense tool rules. Always cut away from yourself.  Pull on a wrench; don’t push it.  Never modify a tool to increase its leverage or force.
  • Use tools thoughtfully, with awareness and patience. Don’t rush, don’t daydream, and don’t horse around.
  • Carry and store tools safely. Carry tools with the sharp parts pointed down and away from you. Store tools in a clean, dry place to keep them free of grease, dust, and rust.

Report Workplace Injury
If you are injured while on assignment with ABR, report it to your supervisor or  local ABR Employment Services office immediately.

This blog about Hand and Portable Power Tool Safety was written by Safety Management Services Company. It is being shared with permission. 

5 Tips to Keep Your Job Search on Track Over the Holiday Season

December 12th, 2016

5 Tips to Keep Your Holiday Job Search on Track

When it comes to the holidays, a lot of people put their job search on hold. This is ripe opportunity for job seekers because a job search during the holidays means you face less competition with people applying for the same job.

How to Stay Engaged in Your Job Search During the Holiday Season

As long as you have the time and drive to stick with your job search over the holidays, there are plenty of ways to do it. You might even find a new position before the end of the year with this approach, so take a look below and see what you can do over the holidays:

  1. Tighten Up Your Resume. 
    Take some time to sit down and work on your resume over the holidays. During the fall flurry of applications and resume submissions, you might have also taken a few classes or gotten a certification or two. Add any new training or experience you picked up. Also, you will probably pick up new terms for tasks and skills from hiring managers during interviews. Since many human resource managers scan for specific keywords, noting these words—and substituting them in your resume for future submissions—could make a big difference in your holiday job search and beyond.
  2. Talk About Your Job Search at Holiday Parties. 
    Don’t hide away during your job search, and don’t avoid talking about it. Attend as many holiday parties as possible, and talk about your job search. Most people understand the challenges of finding a job—even over the holidays—and they will want to help you if they can. You never know who might have a solid lead, and you don’t want to miss a single opportunity.
  3. Sign Up for Training Related to Your Desired Position. 
    Whether you want to sharpen your Excel spreadsheet skills, or you want to safely learn to operate a forklift, additional education and certifications go a long way. You may even meet new connections during class who know about an available position and can offer submission recommendations, or even a reference. Most of all, learning something new in your field gives you one more boost in confidence to help keep your job search spirits up over the holidays.
  4. Take Temporary Assignments. 
    There are many great reasons to take on temporary work over the holidays, including earning income. You also have the chance to stay busy, meet new people, learn new skills, and do some professional networking. Even better, especially if you enjoy your seasonal job, you might get to keep it. When possible, employers often try to keep a few temporary holiday employees on full-time. Treat your temporary position like your permanent job to show your commitment, and you may get an invitation to make it permanent.
  5. Send Out Traditional Holiday Cards. 
    Prepare holiday greeting cards to mail out to prospective employers as a reminder of your thoughtfulness. It is also a way of reminding them that you have sent a resume, or that one is on the way soon. Plus, it’s a great tactic to help you stand out from the competition.

Contact a Staffing Agency to Help to Make the Season Bright

The staffing team at ABR Employment Services can share even more ways for you to stay active and engaged in your job search over the holidays. Contact any ABR office and we’ll help you keep your job search going strong during the holidays and beyond.

Employee Motivation During the Holidays: How to Keep It

December 5th, 2016


The holidays have a way of distracting pretty much everyone at work. Even team members who do not officially celebrate the holidays often succumb, to some degree. This may leave HR scrambling to regain some semblance of workplace cohesiveness.  Given all that’s on your human resources, recruiting/staffing, compliance and benefits plate, how do foster employee motivation during the holidays?

Employee Motivation: Tackle Holiday Season Challenges Head-On

According to Beekeeper, half of all employees do their holiday shopping online while at work. This statistic is a strong indicator that employee focus and attention are on other things. Even though the holiday season can be distracting for employees, don’t give up trying to keep them motivated and productive. There are plenty of ways to keep employees happy while still keeping them active and focused on their work to help your organization meet its goals.

Here’s three ideas you can implement to keep the holidays festive and productive:

Communicate Expectations
It is a good idea to talk about your expectation of focus and commitment throughout the holidays. Finding the right balance between expressing expectations honestly and firmly while not feeling like a modern day Ebenezer Scrooge may seem tricky, but finding the right voice and approach may serve as the very anchor employees need to divert their attention from their own holiday stresses. Try to reinforce their good performance with words of encouragement.

Bring in the Holiday Cheer
The holiday season provides the opportunity to lighten up the work week. Encourage employees to come to work in ugly Christmas sweaters one day, better yet, make it a competition. If your employees are comfortable with it, decorate the work place and bring in some holiday treats one afternoon. There are simple and easy ways to embrace the holiday spirit that can keep your employees excited to be at work during that time of year.

Recognize Employee Achievements
Set aside time during the holidays to recognize your employees for their hard work throughout the year. For example, you could give out awards for employees with a great safety record. You could give out an award to an employee for being a good team player or to an employee with a strong production level. If you do not have a ‘swag’ budget, you can let employees know how much you value them for their work year-round. Doing something as simple as buying “thank you” cards, sending congratulatory emails, or even verbal recognition can go a long way toward helping employees maintain focus. ABR awards branch ‘Employees of the Quarter‘ — a framed certificate along with a $25 bonus added to one’s paycheck.

Reduce Your Own Stress by Planning for Out-of-Office or Distracted Employees

As your organization’s HR leader, you probably have plenty of coals in the holiday fire. If your company’s managers have reported a large volume of reasonable employee requests for holiday vacation time, and you worry that your organization’s skeleton crew may struggle to meet goals, reach out to a reliable employment services team to help you meet your production goals and client’s expectations. You deserve the chance to relax and enjoy the holidays, too.