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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Cow (FMLA) VS. The Herd (PPACA)

Over the past few weeks, I have had the pleasure (NOT!) of sifting through the piles and piles and piles of information about the Health Care Reform legislation. Most of which not really saying much because there is still so many unanswered questions. While my goal was to figure out what my fellow HR professionals need to know, do, and communicate in the very near to distant future, I discovered a couple very major things. Of course, I am like most of you waiting until I really had to dig in before I did anything about it. My nudge was two training sessions scheduled for this week and one today which will launch a big marketing push to deliver more programs on this topic.

My discovery:

1) WOW-this is BIG! It was kind of like the light bulb going on and my past 20 years shining very bright in my face. In my personal and professional opinion this legislation is the biggest thing HR has ever had to conquer in quite some time. Bigger than the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) I found myself sifting through and training managers on beginning in 1993.

2) I'm OLD! I suddenly realized I have been practicing, teaching, living, and breathing HR for almost two whole decades. That thought had never occurred to me before. I always thought in terms of years. It's kin to when both of my children were born and the first few years as moms and dads we speak in months until they become a toddler at 25 months old. Because you know we don't say two years we say 24 months. :)

I thought I was going to be studying for the GPHR over the next few months before HRCI changes the qualification rules. Well now I am not sure I have time. I think if I am going to be delivering training to my clients on this HCR topic, I am constantly going to be slammed with questions I don't know the answers to. Funny thing is I don't think there are answers to some of these issues and possibly never will be. Thus like most things in HR we do our best until Case Law helps interpet the nightmare of all those pages!

Over the past three days I have had the pleasure of piloting my HCR training program to a couple different audiences. Both had lots of questions and it's like I said to one of the participants who was very happy to have had the training but obviously overwhelmed: "It's like FMLA was the cow and PPACA is the Herd...a really big Herd!"

By the are we going "say it"? P P A C A or PACA? How about P PACA. We don't say the whole law ever in HR.