How to Live Off the Median Wage

How to live off $16.34 an hour in Utah

utah median wageAccording to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the median hourly wage in the state of Utah is $16.34. According to another website,, the cost of living in Salt Lake City is 32.39% lower than in New York City.

What does that mean?

Well, they estimate that monthly expenses for a single person, not including rent and transportation, are about $750. For a family of four the cost jumps to $2700. A 1-bedroom apartment in the City Centre is on average $1065 a month. For a 3-bedroom apartment in the City Centre it jumps to $1746.

Crunching the numbers of a single person living in Salt Lake City with a full-time job would bring home $31,387.18 per year after taxes. That’s $2615.60 per month. Considering the average monthly expenses and housing costs of $1815, that single person would have $800.60 left over. This does not include transportation, with transportation, food, entertainment, shopping, eating, etc. I estimate this single person would have less than $300 left over.

If someone gave me $300 I can think of a dozen things that I could spend it on. What I’m getting at is that someone making an average wage, living in Salt Lake can easily spend more than they are making. When this happens, some people will use a credit card or pull money from their savings account to make it until the next pay check. It doesn’t take long to exhaust savings accounts and max out credit cards which in turn bring stress and doom.

The one piece of advice I wish to give is:

live within your means salt lake cityLive Within Your Means

How do you live within your means?

There are one thousand and one different ways to manage money but none of them matter. What matters is that you are simply managing it. Do you know where every dollar you make is going? If the answer is yes, then I bet you are less stressed then the guy in the back that said no.

Some say that money is the root of evil. I’m not a priest, but if you can manage your money effectively and don’t obtain it illegally I believe money can actually bring some happiness. Being debt free and knowing that all of your hard-earned money is being put to good use is almost guaranteed to induce happy thoughts and lower stress levels. In return it will be easier to find joy in other aspects of life.

Managing your money means that you have a plan for all of it. I highly recommend the money managing suggestions of Dave Ramsey. He doesn’t claim to be new or groundbreaking and yet his plan works. The steps are simple, easy to understand, and execute. There are many other plans to choose from, do your research and pick one that best aligns with your needs. Remember, sometimes less is more.

For most people money doesn’t come easily. It requires hard work, sacrifice, and determination. For every second that we work we get something in return. Don’t let that return be spent on something meaningless that will be forgotten and worthless five minutes after it is purchased. When you spend money consider how long it took you to earn that money and determine if what you want to spend it on is worthwhile.

Trevor Hansen
Finance Manager
Your Employment Solutions

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How To Keep a Staffing Company in Check

How You Keep a Staffing Company in Check, Controlling Budgets in an Ever-Changing Staffing Workplace

utah employmentThe staffing industry is unique in many ways. Not a lot of companies have thousands of temporary employees. Typically if a business has thousands of employees then that business is most likely on the S&P 500 and it is most certainly not considered a small business. Your Employment Solutions on the other hand has thousands of employees, is considered a small business, and is most defiantly not on the S&P 500, yet (you never know).

Growing up my father worked in construction, I worked for my dad from about 9 years old up until my mid twenties. I had a number of other jobs when I was going to college but in those years of working I never realized the costs associated with having employees. Employees can be very expensive, there are many more costs then just cutting a paycheck every week. Whatever employees pay in taxes on each paycheck the employer has to pay the same thing. On top of those taxes there are also federal unemployment taxes, state unemployment taxes, federal withholding taxes, state withholding taxes, to name a few. Not to mention the team of people it takes to pay all the employees and all the taxes.

But wait there’s more. To have thousands of employees for our clients we need buildings, electricity, Internet, computers, software, furniture, cars, cell phones, telephones, printers, fax machines, I think you get the idea.

The perfect reader would now be asking himself or herself, wait, with all these expenses…

How Can Your Employment Solutions Possibly Keep Its Doors Open?

Well, I’m glad you asked! The answer can be summed up in two words, lean and tight.

lean-businessLean Business

The definition of lean is, efficient and with no waste. This is the goal with any expense that can be controlled. Take Internet service for example. When I move somewhere new, one of the first things that I do is make sure I have the Internet set up the day I move in. Prior to doing this I shop around with two things in mind, cost and speed.

This is something that we have to consider at all times in our business, what do we NEED in order to conduct business and how much can we afford to spend. This same question is asked about every business expense. We revisit this question regularly to ensure that we are lean. If we are overpaying we are loosing money. If we are paying for something we don’t NEED or use, we are loosing money.

Tight Business

tight business philosphyBy tight I mean to maintain a close watch on who owes us money and when that money is due.

At YES the employees work, YES pays the employees, then the client pays YES. So, between YES paying the employees and when YES gets paid our money is on loan, interest free to our clients. The more employees we have the more money that we are “loaning” out. If we don’t keep a tight grasp on our money and we “loan” too much of it then we won’t have enough to pay our employees. It’s a nasty cycle that can get out of hand pretty fast if we don’t have a tight grasp on our money and a tight leash on our clients.

In staffing there are large portions of money that come and go everyday. To keep the business running lean and tight, one has to know where every penny is going and when every penny is coming.

Trevor Hansen
Finance Manager
Your Employment Solutions

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Winning With Teamwork

The Winning Power of Teamwork

teamworkMichael Jordan once said, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” Apply this ideal to our lives and we learn that teamwork will make us successful everyday.

Very few people don’t have an opportunity to work as a team on a daily basis. If you are employed you have a team, if you are married you are part of a team, if you have any political opinion at all, there is a team out there for you. A team is when two or more people come together to accomplish a goal. It is my opinion that teamwork can make us better at everything that we do.

Let’s take Your Employment Solutions for example. We are a small staffing agency that is growing with the help of our great staff. If every person that works YES doesn’t understand the importance of teamwork and the role they play, then we could not continue to grow and help more people find work. I am able to succeed at YES because the team of co-workers that I have to support me. The teamwork at YES is what makes it an amazing company.

The most important aspect of teamwork is recognizing that there are other people who are better than you at certain tasks. It will be scary at first, because teamwork forces you to rely and trust other people. Once a team gives into the trust that team will become unstoppable.

Do you know what John F. Kennedy meant when he said, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” He was trying to tell all of us that we are on the same team, that we should be more concerned about what we can do together to make this county great and less concerned about what hand-outs we can get from our government. There is no “I” in team. I promise you will see more success and your life will be a lot less stressful if you learn to work with a team.

tandem teamworkThink of teamwork as tandem bicycle, two people are working together towards a goal. Each person is relying on the other to pull their own weight, even when it seems like one person isn’t able to pull their weight, the other should be there to pick up the extra slack. This is teamwork in it most simple form, where physical effort is felt and appreciated by the other team member. There are teamwork situations where the effort of other members might not be so apparent at first. Trust your team, it’s the only way you will all grow and become better people.

In summary I challenge us all to work smarter and not harder. That means work as a team. We have opportunities to work in a team everyday. Lets learn from those experiences and grow.

Lets become someone that every team wants.

Trevor Hansen
Finance Manager
Your Employment Solutions

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Integrity on the Job

On Practicing Honesty and Integrity at Work

The last time I published an article on the blog it was about getting promoted or “moving up” at work. I’ve come to realize that there is one thing that I neglected to mention that can set you apart from the rest. Integrity. The Oxford Dictionary defines integrity as, “the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness.” Or “the state of being whole and undivided.”

We all know what it takes to have integrity but why am I writing about it and what does it have to do with work?

Being honest at work can sometimes be a challenge. There are so many temptations and ways you can bend the truth to make yourself look good and make others look bad. Mark my words, that type of person doesn’t always make it far in the business world.

Yeah, sure there are some extreme examples of liars and cheaters making their way to the top. Eventually though, karma will come around and bring them all the way back to the bottom where they belong. Remember Enron? Perfect example.

Think back in your life and try to remember someone you have met who had integrity. What is your opinion of that person? Do you look up to someone like that? How do you think they got integrity in the first place?

I believe that you can have integrity just by choosing to have it. You have to make a life decision and make a promise to yourself that from this point on you will tell the truth. Once you have committed to being honest people will notice a difference. They will see something in you they didn’t before. Just like you saw something different in that person from your past who you looked up to.

integrity at workDeciding to be honest doesn’t just apply to your job or between certain hours of the day. Integrity is a lifestyle change. It is something that you have to live all day every day. It’s not a hat you can take off and leave at home. It’s a surgically implanted wig, it stays with you wherever you go.

Having integrity is becoming more and more rare. It seems like the whole world is becoming lax and careless about moral values and having personal standards. Believe me if you are a person of integrity people are going to notice. After integrity comes trust. When your manager has a special project that needs to be done who will they go to? Joe the liar and cheat or you, the honest Abe?

Trevor Hansen
Finance Manager
Your Employment Solutions

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One Rung at a Time

How to Work Your Way Up the Corporate Ladder!

We all want to be successful, and it seems like some people have figured out some sort of secret that the rest of us don’t know. I can assure you that even though you don’t realize it you know the secret too.

climb the corporate ladderThis article is geared toward someone who wants to implement some positive work habits in order to get a promotion and work their way up the corporate ladder, one rung at a time.

Alone at the bottom?

Virtually everyone who is successful now had to start somewhere and most of those people started from nothing. Included in that list of people are:

Some of these people started in the poorest conditions we can think of and despite that, they were able to overcome their situations and work their way to the top. There is a famous quote by Zig Ziglar that says:

“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.”

Truer words could not be said when it comes to your career and advancing at work.

What’s the secret?

Now, it seems like the people I mentioned above know something that we don’t. How did they get to where they are now? What is the secret sauce? What is the recipe? I can almost guarantee that if we were to ask, their answers would be the following:

  • Work harder than your paycheck.
  • Volunteer for things that no one else wants to do.
  • Never stop learning and becoming more valuable to your employer.
  • Be a team player.
  • Think outside the box and don’t be afraid to pitch your ideas.
  • Don’t get involved in office gossip.
  • Be everyone’s backup – in other words, be the one person that everyone can rely on to get the job done.

Did you know these things would help you get a promotion? It makes sense, right? We all know what our job duties are and what we could to do go the extra mile. So why don’t we do that everyday?

What is holding us back from getting that promotion we are after?

I’m my opinion it all boils down to motivation and how badly we want something. When I picture a young Steve Jobs, before Apple was even thought up, I picture someone who had an idea and then never slept until that idea became a reality.

We are all motivated differently so the best advice I can give is to be honest with yourself. Know your limitations and weaknesses and make a plan to overcome them. If you are a chronic texting machine or an instagram phenom and you know these things are getting in the way of your productivity at work, make a plan to get rid of the distractions. Turn your phone off while at work, put it on silent and put it away. The fact is that you know what you need to do to take it to the next level.

I challenge you to take it there and beyond! There is no telling where you might end up.

Trevor Hansen
Finance Manager
Your Employment Solutions

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