Whether you run a food service establishment, retail operation or seasonal business, chances are you rely on minors to provide temporary or part-time work during the summer and throughout the school year. Employing minors as young as 14 can be a great way to build your workforce with employees who are flexible, energetic and ready to learn.
However, due to detailed child labor laws, employing minors requires extra steps compared to adults. To achieve maximum success when employing minors, it’s essential to have the right technology to streamline and simplify your scheduling activities.
Overcome Scheduling Challenges for Minors and Reap the Benefits
One of the biggest challenges related to managing minors is navigating their work availability and scheduling their hours in compliance with local and federal laws. For example, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) sets strict requirements for when 14- and 15-year-olds can work. In addition to limits for working overnight hours, minors at this age may not work beyond the following limits:
- 3 hours on a school day
- 8 hours on a non-school day
- 18 hours in a school week
- 40 hours in a non-school week
Staying in compliance with FLSA requirements doesn’t just help you avoid overworking your minor employees. It can also help you avoid costly non-compliance penalties. Depending on the nature of the offense, violations of FLSA child labor restrictions can result in fines of up to $10,000. In addition to the FLSA, you also need to understand working hour limits in each state you hire minors. Although the FLSA does not set limits for 16- and 17-year-olds, many states do.
Just as workforce scheduling for adults has requirements for working hours, overtime and required break times, so does scheduling for minors. However, scheduling for minors must also account for variations in school calendars, so the risk for non-compliance can be even greater.
Thankfully, you can use the Humanity Scheduling solution to overcome scheduling challenges and take advantage of the following benefits:
- Automated tools and notifications to avoid manual scheduling and work-arounds.
- More transparent views of minor employee availability on every day of the year.
- Time savings when building and maintaining employee schedules.
- Improved capability to manage compliance risk.
How Humanity Scheduling Streamlines Scheduling for Minors
In many ways, Humanity Scheduling is a workforce scheduler for minors that you can customize to fit your scheduling process and practices. Using its tools and customization features, you can remain in compliance with FLSA and state laws and avoid over- or under-scheduling your employees. Whether it’s spring break, a public holiday, or a typical school day, you will know just how many hours your minor employees can work.
TCP’s Humanity Scheduling solution helps you manage schedules for minors by combining built-in scheduling rules with their school schedules and dates of birth. Here are the key capabilities you can expect from this dynamic workforce scheduling solution:
Easier Scheduling Based on School Calendars
When you have several minors on your payroll who attend school in different districts, you don’t have time to manually check which days are school days and which aren’t for each employee. Humanity saves you time by automatically applying preloaded school calendar days into your scheduling workflow. With this capability, you will know if your 15-year-old employees can work a maximum of three hours (a school day) or eight hours (a non-school day) on any day of the year.
Adjustment of Working Hours Based on Date of Birth
You may have employees of different ages working a shift on any given day. But when you set schedules, you need to account for the working hour limitations applicable to 14- and 15-year-olds. And depending on your state, even your 16- and 17-year-old employees have some limitations. Humanity Scheduling helps simplify the scheduling process by showing employee work availability based on their date of birth. As soon as an employee has a birthday, the system automatically adjusts their availability based on FLSA and state requirements.
Custom Scheduling Rules
Manual workforce scheduling is time-consuming and keeps you reliant on spreadsheets and cumbersome calculations. It can also result in overscheduling, poor overtime tracking, and unintended labor law violations. Conversely, with the help of Humanity’s custom rules solution, you can create schedules that conform to the rules you establish. Any time there is a scheduling conflict, the system will notify you. If your policies or processes change, you can also change or disable rules and any associated calculations based on them. With this kind of flexibility, you have a scheduling “fail-safe” for preventing compliance hiccups and more control over how you manage minor employees.
An Example of Humanity Scheduling for Minors in Action
To illustrate how Humanity Scheduling simplifies scheduling for minors, here’s an example that could mirror the experiences of many kinds of employers.
Consider a national ice cream chain. Ice cream shops have many opportunities to hire minors, particularly in the summer months. And because it is a national chain, there may be dozens of restaurants in a single state, resulting in high demand for staff each summer.
Although each restaurant manages its own scheduling, manual processes can make it difficult to know if every restaurant is compliant with child labor laws across the country or region. Moreover, because state laws vary, some restaurants can be in compliance while others are in violation.
Because restaurant managers are often busy and are not compliance experts, there needs to be a way to track minors’ schedules at the regional and national levels. Moreover, restaurant managers need easy-to-use tools that manage their workforce without wasting time or money.
Using the Humanity Scheduling solution, the ice cream chain can empower each restaurant manager to enter minor employees’ dates of birth into the system. As a result, managers will know when and how many hours minor employees can work each day.
For minors who continue working during the school year, the ice cream chain can apply availability templates based on the school year calendar. This shows restaurant managers how many hours minors can work on school days and non-school days. Lastly, the chain can create its own custom scheduling rules to ensure employee schedules stay within the parameters of restaurant and company policies.
Improve Efficiency and Compliance with Humanity Scheduling for Minors
Although FLSA and state labor laws can be complex, scheduling minors doesn’t have to be stressful. You don’t have to rely on manual methods for setting work hours, monitoring schedules, and ensuring you haven’t exceeded the legal limits. Instead, you can employ a modern technology solution that does the legwork for you.
Humanity’s workforce scheduling solution not only lets you know how many hours minor employees can work, but also notifies you when any schedule violates applicable laws and internal rules you establish in the system. As a result, you get the peace of mind you need to schedule employees efficiently and in alignment with federal and state law. To learn more about TCP’s Humanity workforce scheduling capabilities, schedule a demo today!