Between rising costs and a difficult labor market, employers already have enough on their plate to worry about.
Unfortunately, no one can claim ignorance when it comes to labor laws. It’s on each and every employer to know and abide by the laws in their area. Failing to do so can leave their business open to lawsuits and costly fines.
Among employers who don’t use TimeForge, we typically find them in one of 3 stages of labor law noncompliance:
- Unaware of the labor laws or avoiding the issue
- Actively dealing with a lawsuit their previous solution left them unprepared for
- Drowning in complicated rules and looking for a way forward
Luckily, TimeForge helps you pay your employees correctly and automates many aspects of compliance.
Whether you’re an existing customer or new to TimeForge, we’ve got you covered and can help you work through your labor compliance requirements.
Below, we discuss each stage of noncompliance and how our software and our implementations team can help get you on the right track.
First Stage of Labor Law Noncompliance: Unaware of the labor laws or avoiding them
We meet a lot of employers in this stage. With the Great Resignation and everything else going on, business owners and operators are often already overwhelmed.
Even so, it’s important to stay on top of labor regulations; if you don’t, you could end up in stage 2 (dealing with a lawsuit).
If you haven’t already, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with labor laws affecting your city, region, or state.
Some key topics to look at include:
- Overtime rules
- Meal penalties
- Close-open shifts
- Predictive scheduling
- Fair workweek
- Tip rules (if you’re a restaurant or bar)
Once you’ve determined which laws apply to your business, the TimeForge implementations team can help you configure your account.
(And if you’re not sure whether and how the laws apply, we’ve got SHRM certified operations experts on our team who can help with that, too!)
Our implementations team will walk you through each setting and scenario so that you fully understand how the software helps you maintain compliance.
We can also help set up alerts and reports to proactively help you manage your labor.
For example, TimeForge can automatically alert you ahead of time if employees are approaching overtime. TimeForge can also prevent managers from posting noncompliant schedules and automatically pay out compensation when unavoidable, last-minute changes must be made to the schedule. (A big deal if you operate in a fair workweek area.)
As you schedule employees and record attendance, our team is available to answer any questions about the hours you pay out.
Second Stage of Labor Law Noncompliance: Dealing with a lawsuit
Employers who stay in the first stage and fail to make themselves aware of the laws, or abide by them, ultimately end up in stage 2: dealing with a lawsuit.
In this stage, the employer is starting to realize the importance of adhering to the rules – and the high costs of failing to do so. Often, they are scrambling to adjust their processes and systems in order to abide by the laws moving forward.
Customers who come to us in this stage typically do so because they’ve discovered that their current labor management system can’t track or handle all the aspects of labor compliance.
We’re here to help.
When employers face labor-related lawsuits, their legal team needs as much information as possible. This includes records of employee attendance, scheduled shifts, or write-ups during the time of employment.
Fortunately, TimeForge safeguards your employee information and keeps accurate audit trails.
In fact, our software prevents managers and supervisors from deleting past posted schedules and editing attendance entries from approved pay periods. This prevents users from entering conflicting pay or scheduling information that could harm the employer in court.
How does TimeForge help with paper trails?
Since TimeForge stores all of your employees’ attendance and shift records securely in the cloud, you won’t have a physical paper trail to keep track of.
By simply going to your Reporting page, you can search for the information you need using the pre-built scheduling and attendance reports available.
Our Daily Log can also help keep track of day-to-day activity at your location. The Daily Log is divided into three different sections: Manager, Staff, and Audit Log.
If you use the Manager Log, you can leave notes on your location’s daily activities. You can add more detail to your notes by uploading a file and assigning the note to a specific employee profile. Your employees can submit their own daily notes if you open up access to the Staff Log.
Along with our reporting tools, you can use the Audit Log to view Attendance edits and changes made to a schedule after it was posted:
Third Stage of Labor Law Noncompliance: Confused or unsure about the rules
In the third stage of labor law noncompliance, the employer now understands the costs and consequences of noncompliance.
However, they don’t necessarily understand the rules they’re supposed to be following. They may be unsure of how to proceed or where to make changes that won’t ruin their business.
And we get it: it’s a tough balance. You want to be compliant, but you also want to avoid overpaying your staff, as well.
Compounding this problem is the fact that labor laws and minimum wage laws change.
What was true a year ago, two years ago, might not be true today. (Example: meal break rounding rules in California.)
As the laws in your area evolve, you may need to revisit your account settings and revise your strategies. We want your attendance and scheduling features to work hard for you. If a new rule impacts your labor management, or if you want to review your current account settings, you can always use our team as a resource.
Seriously, we’re happy to help.
If you need a primer on fair workweek regulations, check out our Fair Workweek eBook. It’s packed with helpful info to get you started, and it’s written in human-readable English.
What does it mean to be proactively compliant?
It’s important to realize that TimeForge is much, much more than a tool for keeping an accurate paper trail.
Where our software really excels is proactive compliance.
Meaning, it prevents many of the situations that would result in fines or fees. Automatically.
The idea is that if you avoid breaking the rules in the first place, you’ll save money on things like predictability pay.
Find yourself in one of the scenarios covered in this article? Email us at [email protected] or call us at 866-684-7191 to see how we can help you become – and stay – labor law compliant.