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Concerned for my employees Texas

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  • Concerned for my employees Texas

    I am the local manager for a satellite office of an integration company. I have two salesmen, both on salary, as am I. My compensation is a base salary, plus I earn bonus based on business performance and other metrics. My sales staff are both salaried and earn bonus based on performance/profitability.

    This is kind of a small firm, and most companies I've worked for have been much larger, so I've had the benefit of working with HR departments that fully understood the laws. When I joined this company, I was surprised to be told that I, as well as my staff, had to log-in to a time-tracker for payroll. Seemed a bit odd to be tracking time on salaried employees, but... it was already in place.

    Recently, the sales director sent an email out to all sales staff and management that the company's pay plans are all based on getting at minimum 46 hours a week from everyone. I was surprised. I usually put in 50 to 60 hours anyway, I've never felt that monitoring sales staff for hours was necessary, since performance is usually indicated by sales numbers, anyway. It got me to checking, and it appears to me that not only my sales staff, but also myself, would not be considered "exempt" employees.

    I have no real authority except to oversee this office and keep the staff motivated and focused. I cannot make any high level management decisions that have financial impact. The sales staff also are similarly in the same situation. While they must see clients "outside", they are not "Outside Sales". In fact, much of their work, as well as mine, is computer-based, having to price projects, download files and content and scour the web for opportunities. Also, they are required to come into the office and attend meetings over the phone or by webinar.

    So, my question is this: does the email from the director of sales stating that 46 hours is considered the minimum constitute enough evidence that the company is seking to gain additional hours of work without paying for it, or is an "expectation" of hours worked every week for a salaried employee appropriate? Personally, 46 hours is not a big deal, but the expectation that it is a requirement and could lead to friction/problems if not adhered to is concerning to me. I like my staff. They work hard and I don't want to see them penalized in any way.

  • #2
    The key phrase is that these employees are "considered" to be Exempt. Why? By whom?

    I am not saying that these employees either are or are not exempt. I am saying that if at some later date the government considers these folks to be non-exempt, then you are talking paid overtime. Maybe penalties. Maybe a lot of things.

    You need to find out if these people are really Exempt. And if so, under exactly what classification. If you know the classification, then you know the rules associated with THAT classification. Exempt status is a function of the job duties and sometimes the industry. The most obvious classifications would be one of the so-called White Collar exceptions.
    http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/fairpay/main.htm
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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