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Secure Scheduling: Is your organization ready for Predictability Pay?

Secure Scheduling: Is your organization ready for Predictability Pay?
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Kim Wennerberg, a Kronos consultant with over 15 years of experience, dives deeper into the Secure Scheduling Law and how Predicitability pay may affect your organization. 

You thought the California Meal Penalty was a challenge? Coming soon to you (if not already!) may be schedule-related laws generally called “Secure Scheduling” with the consequence being “Predictability Pay” to employees, and fines to government agencies. 

The City of Seattle is one US city which recently implemented their version of a Secure Scheduling law. This put new requirements in place which compensate hourly employees who work at large retail establishments and food services for employer-initiated schedule changes. The result of this Seattle law creates what is known as Predictability Pay.  

Seattle isn’t the only city making moves towards Secure Scheduling. In the past year alone, several states including Oregon, Connecticut, Minnesota, Maryland, Massachusetts, Indiana, and Michigan have introduced or adopted some sort of Secure Scheduling legislation.  It also appears in various forms in California, New York City (December 1), and Chicago (pending). Additionally, the U.S. House and Senate have each introduced some form of predictable scheduling legislation.  

Is your organization ready for Secure Scheduling? 

What does this mean for your organization? Here your general heads up. If your legal counsel is not on this, they should be. 

Predictability Pay Definition: 

Pay due to an employee when changes are made to the employee’s schedule.   

The changes are usually PER CHANGE, meaning if a schedule is changed five times after posting there are a total of five penalties calculated and paid to each employee affected by the changes.  This can be true even if the final schedule is identical to the originally posted schedule. In addition to these schedule change penalties in some of the new laws, there are specific rest-between-shift requirements with significant monetary penalties.   

Predictability Pay dollar amounts:

Because Predictability Pay appears to be due every time a schedule is changed, if a schedule is changed five times after posting, five separate penalties are calculated, totaled, and paid to the employee. Some schedule change penalties are a flat amount (like a bonus) to the employee while some laws describe a bonus plus an amount per hour of the amount of the change.  The amounts are not trivial--for example $10 - $75 per schedule change per employee in New York City.  Details are entirely location-specific and subject to interpretation, so research and validate with your own legal counsel.  

Employees Covered: 

The employee population covered tends to be retail, with a focus on the fast food industry.  It aims to cover “large employers”, but applicability can vary by city.  For example, though the law describes “food service” some have interpreted this to be food manufacturing or even food preparation off site.  

Key Challenges and Observations:   

Implementation can be described as “ugly” and “impossible” to configure within the core Kronos product.  Even in an interface, this tracking and measuring of every schedule change is a complex challenge. There are incredible record-keeping requirements and fines for any transgressions.  

  1. This is reminiscent of the early days of California Meal Penalty: Confusion and lack of compliance to be expected. 

  2. If your corporate counsel is not involved, get them involved! This will save you the trouble and costs.

  3. Record-keeping of every schedule-related action or change may be required going back to 3 years (in Seattle), and possibly other cities in the future.

  4. In addition to paying each employee for measured specific violations, there are possible fines payable to the city.  In Seattle, for example, if an employer fails to publish schedule two weeks in advance, they can be subject to a $500 fine, payable to the city. 

  5. Tracking of schedule changes (and they paying based on those changes) is not what your Kronos application was intended to do… Basing pay on changes to a schedule separate from time clock punches is unprecedented. 

Do you have questions about how to best prepare for Secure Scheduling and Predictibility pay? Our team of consultants can help your organization create the best solution within your Kronos application. 



Guest Author: Kim Wennerberg is an independent Kronos consultant who has worked with the Kronos software doing implementations for large corporations for over 15 years.




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