With July 4th just around the corner, I asked the TimeForge team to share their advice on scheduling minors. Minors are an important source of help for many retail and hospitality businesses. This is especially true during busy seasons and holidays, when extra hands are needed.
Keep reading for tips and tricks on how to schedule minors effectively while staying compliant with applicable labor laws. These tips are useful for scheduling seniors as well, though the restrictions will be different.
Tip #1: Make sure you’re up-to-date on the local and state laws
“Companies that employ minors will need to follow some specific rules for those employees,” says Daniel, our Senior Software Engineer. “TimeForge has features that can help managers schedule minors according to the rules. However, the first step is to make sure management is aware of them.”
Keep in mind that the rules can vary depending on the age of the minor and the type of work. Check the DoL’s Youth Labor page for details and resources, including industry-specific guidelines. You can also find a list of federal and state laws here.
Tip #2: Use employee availability and min/max hours settings in TimeForge
“One of the easiest ways to maintain compliance while scheduling minors is through the employee’s availability,” says Mike Hetisimer, our Implementations Specialist. “This will ensure they don’t work during certain hours or on certain days. Additionally, in the employee profile, you can define the minimum and maximum hours they’re allowed to work each day, week, or month. Setting these limits is a great way to ensure employees aren’t scheduled more than a certain amount of hours on a given day of week.”
To set these limits, navigate to the Basic Employee Information section under the Employee tab:
Tip #3: Plan ahead and incorporate the rules when scheduling minors
Audrey Hogan, our Chief Operating Officer, says, “The 4th of July can be really crazy for some restaurants and especially grocers. Like any peak sales day, it’s important to plan employee availability and time off well ahead of time.” This will help you avoid last-minute pitfalls.
“If your minors are going to help fulfill customer demand on Independence Day, it’s critical that you have Minors Rules set up inside TimeForge. The Rules will ensure that you’re compliant with your local and state guidance on employees who fit age restriction requirements around hours and shifts. There are two different ways to configure the Rules, so let our support team help you if you get stuck!”
To begin, see our guide to creating and modifying Age Rules.
Tip #4: Be aware of important school dates
Erik van Gilder, our Chief Technology Officer, points out, “Rules on hiring minors usually revolve around school, so check with the local school district for dates for when school is in session. Often, state and local regulations set the hours that minors can work to a limited number of hours between a defined set of times. Normally, minors cannot work night-time hours. And when school is in session, the hours are more limited.” But things can get even more complicated!
“Hours may differ when the day is before a school day versus non-school day,” says Erik. “Plan ahead for when school starts. If a minor is in a vocational track, the hours may be less restricted if the work is training-related. The employee and employer can benefit from exemptions in certain cases.”
Again, don’t forget to check this page, which lists laws by state. Then, make sure to drill down to the local level. If you need any help at all, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our support team at [email protected]. We’re here for you!