Flex time for exempt employees

I am trying to find information regarding flex time for exempt employees.  My boss said I can't offer it, but other places I've worked it's been allowed.  I don't see a definition any where I'm looking.  I've heard that if you take the flex time within the pay period it is legal, if outside of the pay period it is not.  Any advise on how to further search this?

 Thank you.


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  • I have worked for several Fortune 100 & 500 Companies and at each we had exempt employees on flex time.  The FLSA issue is with the duties of the position.  I would go to the DOL site for more specific infomation.

  • As an exempt employee, that employee is paid weekly under the FLSA and that employee is paid if they work even one minute of that week (of course there are exceptions); therefore it is not an issue of the legality but the management of it that becomes a problem. As long as the job duties qualify for exempt status then you are free legally to let an exempt work whenever and wherever they want.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

    Flex time can be a great benefit if managed properly, but can also turn into a management nightmare if it is not. I would check with your boss to see what his or her issue with flex time is and see if it can be addressed from a management standpoint.


  • I wonder if your boss is confusing the terms "flex time" and "comp time".
  • Flex time (the ability to have a flexible schedule) is legal for both exempt and non-exempt employees in that there is no law that says you can't do it. 

    Comp time (the ability to take overtime worked and apply it to time off later) is legal for exempt employees.  It is not legal for non-exempt employees unless you take the time within the same work week.  It is not legal with the pay period, only the same workweek. This is from a federal standpoint.  In states where OT is calculated on a daily basis, comp time is illegal even within the same workweek.

    The reason Comp time would be legal for exempt employees is because you are going to pay them the same rate of pay whether or not they work less or more than their scheduled time.

  • -->Are you asking about exempt employees working less than 40 hours per week?

    It is my understanding (based on the fact that I work 30 hours a week and am exempt) that a flexible position such as mine can be exempt.  The company still does have to pay the minimum of $455 per week -- it can not be prorated.  However in negotiations, the salary for my position was calculated at 40 hours per week and then prorated to get my current salary.  I get 75% of what a 40 hr a week employee doing my position would make.   If I were to want to go to 40 hours per week, my salary would need to be renegotiated.  Neither side can require a change without that negotiation.

    Our vacation/sick time policies also call for prorating.  So I get 60 hours vacation (rather than 80) and 30 hours sick (rather than 40)....actually I just jumped a level but I wanted you to see basically how it is done.

    --> If you are asking about flexing over different hours but still working 40+ hours, that is a scheduling issue and is up to company policy.  Especially for exempt employees.




  • Lady Ann has said exactly what I would have said but, since she already said it, I'll just add this: If we are talking about comp time and not flex time for exempt employees, everything she said is correct but I would have this concern: if an exempt person exchanges long hours in one week for time off in the following week but the person then takes personal time off for the rest of the week that would otherwise be uncompensated, you need to be careful about what you do with that person.

    Let's look at an example: consider John the M-F scheduled director of attendance monitoring who puts in a long week of keeping track of people.  Under the company's policy or practice of extending comp time to exempt individuals, John has earned Monday off.  Unfortunately, John is not able to come to work Tuesday through Friday for reasons that result in unpaid absences.  On one hand, you have a person who has done no work for the company for an entire week, exempting the Company under FLSA from the necessity of having to pay him.  On the other hand, regardless of whether or not poor John could have actually worked on Monday, the fact is he didn't have to come in because he was extended comp time.  If he doesn't get paid, does he have a wage claim?  Personally, I avoid complicated situations like this.  If someone is working well beyond what should be expected, then they need help or something's wrong with process or competency.  However, if this is something you are contemplating, I would consider working comp time into something like suddenly accrued PTO to ensure these types of situations don't happen.  I've seen some pretty strange things happen when payroll or office management sees something like this and takes action without consulting HR management.  Here's a catch phrase from one of those situations, "She can't go full time because of that heart attach she had on our insurance a couple years back."  Thankfully that wasn't at our Company!

    On HRforME's item, I also agree with what's (s)he's said about flex time.  However, I would avoid ever couching salary pay in terms of hours worked.  The pay should be commensurate with the duties expected.  That the duties can be fulfilled in 30 hours is a separate matter from the fact that the compensation is tied to the duties and not the time.  That's actually a specific item that has been used to challenge exempt standing before in the case of a person whose pay was reduced when their working hours reduced even though their duties remained the same.

  • i agree that flex time is allowed because you aren't subtracting from exempts' pay but that it can create some headaches as far as tracking it and making sure it isn't being abused.  i have worked for an organization that had a flex time policy that relied on the honor system.  since it was a small organization it was easy to see if it was being abused.
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