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IPG launches decorative concrete line of tapes

BY Ken Clark

Tape and film manufacturer Intertape Polymer Group is targeting the decorative concrete industry with a new line of products.

The Decorative Concrete tapes are specifically designed to meet the needs of contractors, installers and DIYers, the company said.

“Whether it’s working with stains and dyes, microtoppings and overlay, or exterior stucco and plaster, IPG has a solution for that application,” said Tim Brown, VP consumer sales.

The DC line consists of five products. DC Ultra2in1 is a new double-sided masking tape designed to initially act as a barrier to an overlay (a bonded layer of material placed on existing concrete surfaces for restoration or beautification purposes) application. DC Blue is IPG’s blue masking tape specifically designed to prevent chemical bonding resulting in sealer failure. DC Orange is a heavy duty, clean removal duct tape designed to work on rough surfaces, DC Grout is reinforced tape for strong grout line pulls, and DC Drape is a compact, durable film that prevents overspray and provides solvent resistant protection.

“Our new DC product line is the result of extensive market research and industry collaboration. We are excited to be the first company to offer tape solutions specific to the needs and challenges of the growing decorative concrete industry,” said Brandon Paas, IPG market research analyst.

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Survey: Managers should be trained on domestic violence

BY Roy Maurer

Management-level employees and human resources staff should be trained on the workplace impact of domestic violence, sexual violence and stalking, a vast majority of respondents told the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) in research findings released Feb. 1, 2013.

The Workplace Impact of Domestic and Sexual Violence and Stalking found that 91% of organizations indicated that HR staff should be trained on these topics. Ninety-five percent think that training is necessary for managers; 82%, for executive-level employees; and 74% think that it is needed for nonmanagement-level employees.

The survey also revealed that 16% of organizations have had a domestic violence incident in the past five years, 19% had an issue in the past year, and 22% did not know.

Fewer organizations reported having a workplace incident related to sexual violence: 11% in the past year and 9% in the past five years. About one-quarter of respondents reported having incidents of stalking either in the past year (14%) or in the past one to five years (14%).

The survey was fielded Oct. 22-Nov. 9, 2012, with 787 HR professionals from a randomly selected sample of SHRM’s membership participating. It found:

• 54% of organizations have a policy that addresses sexual violence, and about one-third have a policy that addresses domestic violence (35%) and stalking (31%). According to a previous SHRM survey, many companies have a workplace-violence policy in place.

• 36% of organizations offer training that addresses sexual violence, and one in five offers training on domestic violence (20%) and stalking (20%).

• Training on domestic violence is mandatory for 56% to 73% of employees, depending on their level in the organization. Sexual violence training is mandatory for most employees, ranging from 73% to 87%. About three-quarters (70% to 80%) of workers are required to participate in training about stalking.

Asked about the ideal format for a training program on domestic violence, sexual violence and stalking, about one-half (50% to 58%) of respondents said they prefer in-person training through an employee assistance program (EAP) provider or HR, depending on the employee level. One-quarter (22% to 27%) indicated that a webinar or online group course would be ideal. Asynchronous e-learning is preferred by 16% to 28% of respondents, depending on the employee level.

The ideal training length would be from 30 to 60 minutes across all employee levels, a majority of businesses indicated.

The most common reason (53%) given for not providing training on the impact of domestic and sexual violence and stalking in the workplace was that the topics are covered in sexual harassment or other training. Thirty percent indicated their company had too many other priorities or not enough time, and one-quarter (26%) said they expect their EAP to handle these issues.

Thirty-eight percent of organizations said their EAP provider offered training; only 8% said they did not. However, more than a third of organizations (36%) did not know whether their EAP offered training. Another 18% did not have an EAP provider.

Among organizations with EAP providers that offer training, 65% provide onsite training in person, and 56% offer Internet-based training. One-quarter (26%) provide other training formats, such as individual consultation, as needed.

Roy Maurer is an online editor/manager for SHRM. Follow him on Twitter @SHRMRoy.

©2013 SHRM. All rights reserved.

Have HR-related questions and concerns? Get access to essential forms, policies and guides, plus a live call center, atToolkitHR.com, powered by HCN and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

 

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AHMA hot topics: Sales, health care and international business

BY Ken Clark

The American Hardware Manufacturers Association says fewer members reported higher February sales.

Manufacturers also reported plans for increasing international sales and a strong need for more affordable health care, according to the Schaumburg, Ill.-based association.

In comparing current sales levels with year-ago levels, 48% of respondents said sales were higher in February versus year-ago levels, down from 62.5% in January. For February, 43% reported sales were even, and 9% said sales were below year-ago levels.

“Despite a very challenging macroeconomic environment and the lack of a clear future cost structure in terms of taxes, health care costs, etc., most of our members continue to produce positive sales results,” said Timothy Farrell, president and CEO of the AHMA. “With economists predicting very slow growth for 2013, our members are concentrating on maximizing profits by managing their businesses as efficiently as possible.”

The AHMA also released results from its hot-topic survey on international sales and health care. Members were asked: “Do your plans for 2013 include increasing international sales?” The response: 57% “Yes,” 24% responded “Not Sure,” and 19% responded “No.”

A second question about health care was unanimous. A full 100% responded “Very important” to the question: “As a manufacturer, how important is it to your business that health care costs stop rising and become more affordable?”

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