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Sharpening Your Skills for Skilled Nursing and Long-Term Care Payrolls


Payroll management is a crucial aspect of any business, and this is especially true for senior care facilities. With numerous employees and a complex payroll structure, it's essential to hone your payroll skills to ensure compliance with laws and regulations, avoid costly errors, and attract and retain top talent. In this blog, we'll cover some essential insights and tools that you may need to sharpen your payroll skills for your facility.

Payroll-Based Journal (PBJ)

Let’s start with Payroll-Based Journal (PBJ). PBJ quarterly electronic reports are required by CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) as part of ACA legislation. Data reported includes dates, hours, and job description worked by each direct care employee. Failure to provide complete and accurate data can result in negative ratings in the Nursing Home Five Star Quality Rating System, which consumers use to evaluate and choose facilities. To complicate matters, files must be submitted in XML format, and reporting quarters follow a fiscal year schedule and don’t correspond to standard payroll quarters.

Using the 8/80 Rule

The 8/80 rule is a federally-approved overtime calculation option that may benefit skilled nursing and long-term care facilities. Under this rule, employees are eligible for overtime pay only if they work more than eight hours in a single day or more than 80 hours in a two-week period. To use the rule, employers 1) must have an agreement in place with employees before the work is performed, 2) can’t switch back and forth between standard over-40-hours overtime and 8/80 to avoid paying overtime, and 3) must check state requirements for each facility’s location. Also, choose wisely; the 8/80 rule can prove disastrous to your bottom line. For example, if your nursing staff typically works 12-hour shifts, you’re likely better off with standard overtime calculations.

Click here to see some examples in our webinar.

Being Alert for State Nuances

States have varying labor laws, regulations, and case precedents that impact payroll operations. Some states have specific requirements for daily overtime, spread-of-hours and split-shift pay, meal and rest breaks, and 7th day premiums. Some states require employers to enroll their workers in retirement plans and contribute to medical ad family paid leave programs. It's essential to stay up to date with state labor laws and consult with legal experts to avoid audit exposure and costly penalties.

Payroll Trends to Keep in Mind

The senior care industry is continually evolving, and future trends in payroll and staffing legislation may impact your bottom line. For example, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of digital solutions, which can impact payroll operations and workforce management. CMS continues to seek to reduce SNF pay rates, and reporting of staff turnover rates may soon become another kingpin in consumer evaluation metrics. It's essential to stay up to date with the latest payroll trends and consult with legal experts to ensure compliance and optimize your operations.

How Viventium Can Help

Human capital management (HCM) software can streamline payroll operations and help attract and retain top talent. At Viventium, our solutions can help you automate payroll and overtime calculations, track employee time and attendance, generate Payroll-Based Journal XML files, and manage benefits to keep in compliance. You’ll be able to stay compliant with labor laws and regulations and gain insight into workforce trends and analytics with our Payroll Dashboard KPIs. And be sure to attend our compliance webinars, like this one.

Payroll management is critical to the success of senior care facilities, and honing your payroll skills is essential to complying with regulations, avoiding costly errors, and attracting and retaining top talent. Staying informed and implementing an industry-specific HCM solution can help you save time and money, optimize your payroll operations, and focus on your core mission of providing excellent care to your residents.


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