I and the company I work for are in the state of Utah.
I work for a company as a full-time, salaried, exempt software engineer. On occasion, this means that I will be putting in a lot of hours when we need to do a push. Sadly, it seems we are always doing a push. :-) Much of the company’s revenue comes from other companies paying them hourly for work done, so we are required to log all of our time. If our hours each week ever fall below forty hours, we get grief from the executives for our lack of performance. If we put in a lot of hours in a week, though, we don’t see any benefit. Again, such is life in the trenches.
But a couple of issues have cropped up. The company’s employee handbook is pretty vague on these (and other) issues. I’ve sent HR several emails trying to clarify the sundry issues, but they haven’t generated any response or results. (Perhaps because they want it to be vague? the paranoid part of my brain thinks.)
So here are my questions:
Question 1: My company provides me with a laptop and a cell phone, which means I am always on call. It seems to often be the case that when I am taking a sick or vacation day, I will get a call and be asked to help solve an issue, either verbally over the phone or by logging in remotely on my laptop. As a salaried employee, how should I log my hours? Say that I work on my vacation day for an hour. Do I log seven hours of vacation and one hour of work? Or as a salaried employee, does the hour of work mean I can treat the entire day as a full day of work?
Question 2: Recently, in order to generate some additional revenue, I was assigned to do contract work at another company site, which we will call Company B. This means I still act as a full time employee, but they bill Company B so many dollars per hour for the time I spend working there. Fine, I get that.
Recently, I believe due to a past situation*, I received a memo outlining a few new policies the company was putting in place. One part states that I am required to be at the customer’s site between 8am – 5pm. In addition, they state that I am required to log 40 billable hours a week. Other than the fact that this grinds on my soul like sand in the suntan lotion, can they legally do this, i.e. require a salaried employee to put in a certain number of hours?
Okay, so the wrap up here is that I need to find a new job. Tell me about it. But where do I stand legally regarding this other stuff? Can I make a stink and be standing comfortably on legal ground? What are my rights as a laborer?
* My wife recently had surgery (to remove a gall bladder) and was restricted from driving for a couple of weeks. I was able to wrangle a week’s worth of time off (with the above issue of phone calls and urgent emails still cropping up, of course), but was required to be at Company B’s site a week after surgery. We have a child that needs to be picked up from school at 4:00pm. each day. I decided I could manage that by getting in early so I could leave in time to pick up my child. The company was aware of this situation and were okay with it since they wanted me on-site ASAP. Everything was fine, until a VP from my company decided to make a surprise call on Company B near closing hours and noticed I was not there. This upset him.