Fermilab Time and Labor

Questions & Answers about reporting hours as a monthly employee


Updated: August 6, 2009

Q. I am on-call 24/7 for a week or a couple of consecutive days. How is this reported?

A. On-call time not spent on work activities is not reportable. Time spent working in response to a call is reportable.


Updated: June 26, 2009

Q. What if I'm on travel? Does travel time count as "work"?

A. For exempt employees, if it is necessary to travel during your normally-scheduled work day, those hours count as reportable work time. In addition, time spent on reportable work activities while on travel status also must be reported. Other time spent while on travel status is not reportable as work time. The following questions address this in more detail.


Updated: June 17, 2009

Q. If, with my supervisor's approval, I work 2 extra hours on Monday and Tuesday so that I can leave 4 hours early on Wednesday, how is that reported?

A. If your schedule is approved by your supervisor, record the extra 2 hours worked on Monday and Tuesday and record 4 hours worked on Wednesday.


Updated: June 17, 2009

Q. Several people in my group work non-8-hour days (6 and 10 hours) as their regular schedules. I see reference to 4 and 8-hour increments only. What if your normal day is not a 4 or 8-hour increment?

A. Employees must report all hours worked. A 6-hour-a-day employee is part-time and would report vacation and sick time in half and full days. These employees would indicate in the comments area of the time card that they are part-time and give the percent of time they work.

Employees on a lab-approved 4x10 schedule would report vacation and sick time in half and full days (5 and 10 hours). They would indicate in the comments area of the time card that they are 10- hour employees. An employee should not have a normal schedule of some 6-hour days and some 10-hour days in a week as this is not a lab-approved schedule.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. Should I report hours over 8 per day and 40 per week?

A. Yes, the lab must capture all hours worked by exempt employees, not just 40 hours per week. So if you worked 10 hours per day Monday through Friday, you would report 10 hours on each of those days in FTL for a total of 50 hours worked.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. What hours do I count as "work"?

A. Most of the time, exempt employees know when they're working. Activities done within the scope of your duties and responsibilities as an employee of FRA/Fermilab for the benefit of FRA/Fermilab are work activities. Typically work activities have been assigned to you by your supervisor/manager.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. What if I'm working at home?

A. The location of the employee does not determine whether hours are reportable as work or not. Reportable work hours may occur at home, at a temporary duty station on official travel, at a short-term or long-term assignment location, or at another temporary location. The nature of the activity determines whether it is reportable as FRA/Fermilab hours worked.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. I do some of my best thinking in the shower or driving to work. Should I report those hours as time worked?

A. You should consult your supervisor/manager. It would be unusual for activities in the shower or while driving to constitute reportable work hours. If the activities are within the scope of your assigned duties and responsibilities as an employee of FRA/Fermilab then they should be reported. Most exempt employees engage in activities on personal time that benefit their work at FRA/Fermilab but are not reportable as work hours because they are not within the scope of employment.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. To what task do I charge my travel time?

A. Your Division/Section/Center financial manager or your supervisor should advise you of the proper task to charge for the program/project/activity benefiting from your travel, if you don't already know. If you perform work activities associated with a different program/project/activity during transit, the task associated with that activity should be charged.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. Example: Employee A has a normal work schedule of 8:00am 4:30pm. She is traveling to a meeting associated with Program Z, task 1.2.3. She worked at the Laboratory on Program W, task 4.5.6, from 8:00am 2:00 pm, then was in transit to her destination until 7:30pm to be there for her meeting the next day. She performed no work activities in transit or after she arrived at her destination. How does she report her time?

A.She would report 5.5 hours to Program W, Task 4.5.6 and 2.5 hours to Program Z, Task 1.2.3 for a total of 8 hours for the day. (Remember ½ hour each day is an unpaid lunch period.) In-transit time outside normal work hours is not reportable unless other work activities are performed. See Table 1 .


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. Same as above, but on the plane she worked from 3:30 to 4:30 on a document for Program W, task 4.5.6. In the hotel room that night, she worked two more hours on the Program W document. How does she report her time in this circumstance?

A. Total reportable hours is 10 in this case, 8 hours during Employee A's normal work hours when she was either working or in transit, plus 2 hours work in the hotel. One of the in-transit hours on the plane is now chargeable to task 4.5.6, not 1.2.3, because work activities not associated with the reason for travel were performed. She should report 8.5 hours to Task 4.5.6 (5.5 hours at the Lab, 1 hour on the plane, and 2 hours at the hotel) and 1.5 hours to Task 1.2.3 (2:00 – 3:30pm, in-transit time during normal work hours that was not spent on other work activities.) See Table 1.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. Not to be a pain, but what if she worked on the plane from 5:00 to 6:00 on the Program W document instead of during her normal work hours?

A. Good question. Employee A in this case would report 11 hours worked for the day, 8 during her normal work hours plus 3 hours of work after normal work hours. The additional hour would be charged to Program Z, task 1.2.3, because it was in-transit time during normal business hours in which no other work activity was performed. This situation should be rare, because typically supervisors/managers expect in-transit time during normal work hours to be spent on work-related activities if such activities are required on the travel day. See Table 1.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. What if I had a doctor's appointment and was absent half a day on Wednesday but worked 10 hours each day Thursday and Friday? Do I have to report the half-day of sick time on Wednesday?

A. Yes. Exempt employees must record absences of 4 or more hours during normally-scheduled work hours. Leave must be reported in 4 or 8 hour increments by day. Assuming normal 8-hour days on Monday and Tuesday, total reportable hours for this week would be 44.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. What if I had a doctor's appointment and was absent 2 hours on Wednesday and worked 6. I worked 8 hours on the other four days that week. What do I report on Wednesday?

A. Because your absence was less than 4 hours you would not report sick leave. You would report 6 hours of work on Wednesday for a total of 38 hours for the week.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. What if I had a doctor's appointment and was absent 6 hours on Wednesday, and worked 2. I worked 8-hours on the other four days that week. What do I report on Wednesday?

A. You would report 4 hours of sick leave on Wednesday and 2 hours of reportable work time for a total of 6 hours. Total reportable hours for this week would be 38.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. If I report less than 40 hours in FTL will my pay be reduced?

A. No. Exempt (monthly) employees are not paid according to hours worked. Exempt employees are paid to do a job regardless of how many hours it takes. Exempt employee pay can be docked in very limited circumstances, explained in the "Hours of Work" section of the WDRS web site.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. Who determines my "normal work schedule"?

A. Your supervisor is responsible for determining your normal work schedule. See the "Hours of Work" section of the WDRS web site. Normal work schedules may be adjusted based on changing work requirements.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. If I'm working 38 hours one week and 60 the next, how do the projects/programs/activities I'm working on get charged?

A. The calculations in FTL are fairly complex, and take into account time worked, number of days in the month, and leave taken. The hourly rate at which your labor is charged to programs/projects/activities fluctuates primarily based upon how many hours you've worked during a particular week, and to a lesser degree on the number of working days in the month. As you might expect, your hourly rate is lower in weeks in which you work more hours.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. If I work 8 hours on my regular task and 10 minutes on Special Project Q one day, do I have to record .167 hours to Special Project Q?

A. While the FTL system will accept such an entry, employees are not required to report to 10-minute intervals. Employees must report significant time spent on work activities in order to make a fair, reasonable, and proportional allocation of labor cost across the programs/projects/activities worked on that week. In most cases time spent of an hour or more is considered significant time spent. However, smaller increments could be significant in the aggregate if they are recurring. For example, 25 minutes spent each day on Project Q accumulates to over 2 hours per week and thus should be reported. Employees and their supervisors/managers must use judgment in order to achieve a fair, reasonable, and proportional allocation of labor cost each week.


Updated: June 11, 2009

Q. I'm a supervisor/manager; where do I go for guidance on actual-hours reporting?

A. The Accounting Department, in consultation with WDRS, is responsible for guidance on time reporting. Contact Mike Rhoades, Chief Accounting Officer, with specific questions not addressed here.


Last modified: 11/17/2011 |