Introducing Absence Mentor: You’re not in Kansas, anymore! (yet)

by Nell Walker, Esq. - Managing Editor

August 13, 2023


Lumen with MegaphoneI remember it like it was yesterday, sharing a glass of wine with my colleague Marti Cardi, talking about the amazing things happening at Reliance Matrix. Fast forward and here we are, with several milestones between now and then:

  • Marti announced her quasi-semi-finally-ready-to-probably-start-her-retirement.
  • In related news, I succeeded Marti in her role leading the distinguished Product Compliance team she built.
  • We published our 6th annual Workforce Accommodations Benchmark Analysis Report.

Oh, and now this!

Way back in 2015, Marti almost singlehandedly started the Matrix-Radar blog. It grew into a robust, respected and yet refreshingly conversational place where non-legal people could learn just the right amount of employee disability, leave and accommodations regulations. Like the Baby Bear: Where other resources for this important information are too intimidating or too fluffy, Matrix-Radar was Just Right.

As she was planning her escape, Marti joined us all in a discovery process to determine what we wanted Matrix-Radar to be when it grew up? There were some major themes:

  • Let’s expand our mission from just getting the information on people’s Radar - literally - to being a well-rounded source of guidance and insight.
  • Let’s leverage our all-attorney team and put them front and center as the experts they are.
  • Let’s link the accessible commentary of our blog to an updated reference center for ALL state disability and paid leave plans in every phase of implementation.
  • Let’s make the whole thing easy to read on your smartphone!

And voila, I am pleased to introduce you to Absence Mentor, the newly-evolved, highly anticipated successor to Matrix-Radar. Ticking all our important boxes, Absence Mentor provides information, insight, and clarity on the dynamic landscape of employee disability and leave legislation, precedent and practice.

If you’re a Matrix-Radar subscriber, I have good news: You don’t need to do anything to maintain your subscription. (Other than make sure, and [email protected] are whitelisted in your organization’s email platform.)

If you’re not a current subscriber, do yourself a favor and click that subscribe button at the top now, while you’re thinking about it. It doesn’t cost you a dime and you’ll be glad you did. For the Neil Young fans in the crowd, leave never sleeps. It seems like not a week goes by in which a state plan isn’t proposed, debated, passed or challenged. Not a week goes by without a precedent setting lawsuit, or a new DOL interpretation. Not a week goes by in which important things aren’t happening that could very well impact your workforce. Which means your organization.

Now, like I said, one of the core beliefs we’ve held from Day One is you shouldn’t have to be an expert – we’re the experts. And we’ll use our expertise to help you know what you need to know, as much as you need to know – as much as you want to know. But mainly we will keep you armed with real-world strategies to cope with the dynamic regulatory landscape around you. Since your workforce is your first or second most costly asset, figuring out how and when they should be away from work (and what to do when they are) should be a pretty big priority. We get it. We can help.

We have more enhancements in store, which I will keep for another time. But for now, join me in a celebratory farewell toast to Radar Guy, our former avatar and mascot. On behalf of the team, I’m sorry we left him to languish with such a simplistic name for all those years. He deserved better.

And let me introduce Prof. Lumen (What do you think? We’re still mulling it over to be truthful, but I figured, let’s try it out.), our new source of enlightenment. Together we will do our best to keep you alerted to the regulatory challenges, trials and tricks lying in wait, and how to navigate them safely, effectively and maybe even in good humor.

I look forward to taking the ride with you.