Pay or Not?

Trying to make a consistent policy for all.

On all new hires, we send a "new hire packet" before the hire date, but ask that employees come by Human Resources on their first day to turn in the paperwork and get their ID badge made. We have tried to put this on the supervisors to get the paperwork to us, but they can't seem to grasp this concept. We found we were spending untold amounts of time trying to chase down employees to get this piece of paper or that piece of paper.

Some of our locations are away from the main office and employees want mileage to come to the main office (as well as being paid for their time). We also require employees to travel to the main office for mandatory orientation.

Question is: Do you feel mileage is warranted in this case or should this just be a cost of the interviewing/employment process? Some supervisors turn in mileage and some don't and we are just trying to make it consistent.



  • 11 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • If they are being compensated for the commute, you COULD pay mileage. There's no legal requirement to do so. Mileage reimbursement is a royal pain. The reimbursement rate can change from year to year. Tracking mileage is paperwork and authorization. The employee can; however, log the miles and claim it on their income tax as a miscellaneous expense. Let us know what you decide.
  • Instead of paying mileage, we have paid for additional time over the ee's normal commute to work, if at the direction of the company. So, if they have a fifteen minute commute to work, but it takes thirty minutes to get to the main office (or wherever they have to go) we have paid for the additional fifteen minutes. Keeps the headache of tracking mileage out of the equation. This has historically been in situations like depos, etc. and has to be approved.

    Normally, we do not pay mileage or time for someone that is traveling to a location within sixty miles of their home. If they go over sixty miles, they can count the time and mileage from home. Most ees come to their work location first, and then leave to travel to another location, if it is within sixty miles, so they receive pay for the travel time. When we noticed that ees were basically pulling into the parking lot and leaving, we started requiring them to come into the office to at least check email, etc.

  • I'm not sure if I'm agreeing with you or disagreeing ... but when a nonexempt ee reports to one work location and then travels to another site, you have to pay them for their time traveling to the second site.

    James Sokolowski
  • Why not just have an orientation prior to actually starting work where and when all the paperwork would be completed. They don't actually start work until completing orientation. I may be missing something.
  • Rockie:
    For what it's worth........... We have 26 physician office practices that are affiliated with the health system and we recruit for all of them. We handle the pre-employment "stuff" similar to what you now do and do not pay anybody for the mileage to satisfy the prerequisites for employment. Altho it's not an absolute, we tell new hires that failure to submit the necessary forms, etc. to HR on or b/4 their start date will delay their new hire orientation. It works reasonably well.
  • Delay their orientation? A quicker way to get their attention, and cooperation, is to tell them it will delay their paycheck!
  • Isn't I-9 documentation one of the things you'd do on the first day? So it seems they have to either bring their documents to HR within three days or pick up their final paycheck on the fourth day. x}>

    James Sokolowski
  • ROCKIE: We are pro-active in support of the operational departments which makes everything work and creates a need for all of us to have a job. I have always insisted that HR get off of our asses and go to the operational workforce to get the essential forms and records started. For the home office site and the departments located here again we support the operational aspects and make our needs known and executed, in suppoprt of their efforts. This HR policy is the beginning for the great establishment of a great working relationship with the operational activities. By doing so, when we have a special need to change some procedure like getting time in on Sunday so that we can get the paychecks out before Christmas or New Years days. We then get maximum support and appropriate correct action.

    HR should always be supportive of operational departments, even when they are services/support sections, themselves. Be PRO-ACTIVE for the team and you will find your employee relations will be much stronger. When I demand something everyone knows it is a serious matter and we get what we need, because we give what they need everyday as a matter of routine.

  • I'm still unable to grasp the concept of a new employee whom you cannot seem to pursuade to drop by the Human Resources office sometime during their initial two days of employment. The instruction contained in every offer letter should include the statement that they report to the HR Dept on their initial day at precisely 10 minutes before eight or seven o'clock for required paperwork in order to get them on the payroll and satisfy company document requirements. I cannot imagine an employee wandering in, reporting to a supervisor, being inducted into the department, beginning on-the- job-training and learning where the breakroom is, prior to satisfying HR requirements. HR must control the arrival and initiation to the company's requirements. Once that is accomplished, walk her to the department and hand her over to her supervisor.
  • Yep, Don. This is our procedure. We tried letting supervisors handle the paperwork for remote employees, but they couldn't seem to grasp how to use a fax machine or the courier to send us the necessary paperwork. After much frustration and cussing, HR starting requiring remote employees to also come by HR to complete their paperwork on the first day of hire.

    I don't really have a problem paying the employee to drive into our office for this - it costs a heck of a lot more in my time and my assistant's to try to chase people down for pieces of paperwork. Thank goodness, we don't have a lot of remote hires.

    Thanks for your comments.
  • Rockie, I agree with James on this on several points. If newly hiredemployees are not completing and bringing in info on time... why not just
    1. Have them report to the main office on their "starting date". Don't mail the paperwork to them ahead (unless it is something they have to discuss with someone.) Tell them to bring whatever ID they need. Do all the new hire paperwork, then "send them on their way" to their work location. You should then pay them for the time they are at the Main location and I would also pay them for the commute to the actual worksite (this one time.) Just have them complete an expense account (which you can give to them during the orientation.)
    I know this is a pain, but required. You are not supposed to complete I-9's ahead of time. Just set it up that all new hires are on Monday or Tuesday or whenever and have the "orientation" that day at a set time. You could have one person show up or several. This will save you and Supv. a lot of time in the long run. (I don't feel it is supv. responsibility to do all the paperwork (taxes, I9, etc.) or it won't get done. This really isn't a concern of theirs. They are just concerned with getting the job done
    E Wart
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