By Jeff Todd

DENVER (CBS4) – A series of laws intended to help employees took effect as 2021 began. Family medical leave for state employees, sick time for even part-time employees, and new requirements of employers all began Friday, Jan. 1.

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New rules around job postings will play an important role as Colorado looks to recover from COVID-19 job losses.

“This is a significant change and it is also something that is long overdue,” said Andrew Hudson, the CEO of Andrew Hudson’s Jobs List. “For both internal and external job postings Colorado employers are required to list the salary range and a general description of the benefits for the position.”

Hudson’s popular website has thousands of posts each month, and newsletters reach tens of thousands of Coloradans each week.

“The biggest frustration I hear from job seekers is putting the blood, sweat and tears into a job and not knowing what that salary range is. You might even get a job offer before you even understand that that salary range is not what is necessary or something you would take,” he said.

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Now companies could face up to a $10,000 fine if salary ranges aren’t part of a posting. Employers can also no longer ask for a prospective employee’s salary history. The Equal Pay For Equal Work Act from 2019 is intended to create more equal hiring and compensation between genders.

“It really is about fairness and equity and transparency and all three of those things are going to be good not just for the job applicant but the employer as well,” Hudson said.

He said he started noticing companies posting more salary information onto his job board website a few months ago to begin the process of complying with the new law. In turn, companies have told him they’re finding better applicants.

“This level of transparency is a good thing because job seekers are now going to have that much more power and they’re not going to be wasting their time applying for jobs not knowing what that salary is going to be,” he said.

The year 2021 begins with 6.4% unemployment in Colorado. The new laws could help job seekers when a stronger economic recovery is expected later in the year.

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“A year ago, we were almost at full employment in Colorado and today the unemployment rate is a lot higher than it’s been in several years as a direct result of COVID,” Hudson said. “The new year is always a great time to apply for a new job anyways, but as we see the economy rebound and we see jobs come back, this is a really good time for this to be happening.”

Jeff Todd