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HR Tip of the Month

Rounding employees’ time is legal under the Fair Labor Standards Act as long as doing so doesn’t result in the employee being shorted pay over an extended time. Although the Department of Labor doesn’t specify how many pay periods over which timekeeping must even out, employers who round should spot check at least every four pay periods or two months, whichever is shorter.

To ensure that rounding is fair, time should be rounded both up and down, and to an increment no larger than 15 minutes, e.g., rounding time to the nearest quarter hour or ten minutes. Keep in mind that rounding only works for an employee’s regularly scheduled workday or shift. It does not allow employers to disregard time spent working if that time is less than a certain number of minutes. For instance, if employees spend seven minutes a day checking their work email after hours, employers would not be allowed to round that time to zero and avoid payment. Be sure to check state rules for any variances.

Content provided by TPC HR Support Center.