March 9, 2021

Union CBA Compliance Made Easy

For decades, collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) have played a central role in helping employees secure contractually guaranteed pay and benefits in industries such as manufacturing, education and construction. As a written contract governing the employment relationship, your organization’s CBA also sets requirements for working hours, time off and other scheduling parameters.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 16 million employees (about 12 percent of the U.S. workforce) are represented by labor unions. Whether you employ hundreds or even thousands of unionized employees, having a reliable tool for automating employee time and attendance helps you meet your contractual requirements and provides you with data and reporting for effective workforce management.

CBA Compliance Is Critical to Your Business Operations
Staying in compliance with your organization’s CBA has implications for employee productivity and short- and long-term labor planning. For example, your productivity data may show that some employees can complete their weekly tasks in only 32 hours a week, but the CBA may require you to schedule those employees for 40 hours a week. To prevent waste, you’ll need to design each position to ensure employees are productive for a full 40 hours.

In addition to requirements for providing employees with a certain number of working hours each week, your collective bargaining agreement may also set specific contractual requirements related to the following:
● Pay rates: setting employee pay rates according to the type of work or task performed
● Shift differentials: adjusting pay rates for employees working evening or midnight shifts
● Overtime: calculating pay for standard overtime and double time
● Time off and leaves: providing contracted vacation and sick time, as well as Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave and other leaves

Not only do you need to keep track of multiple pay and scheduling requirements, but you may also be working with more than one CBA. You may also need to balance scheduling across unionized and non-unionized employees. Unintended CBA breaches such as overscheduling, underscheduling, or inequitable overtime assignments are costly, and can increase the risk for lawsuits, worker strikes, reputational loss or punitive action by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). As a result, it’s essential to have an automated solution to help you create and track employee schedules across multiple job functions, work sites, and types of employment agreements.

How TCP Solutions Support Union CBA Compliance
TCP offers customizable and scalable solutions to help you effectively manage labor costs, increase employee productivity and mitigate labor regulation compliance risk. Our automated scheduling and leave management platform helps you stay in compliance with labor laws such as the FMLA and the Fair Standards Labor Act (FLSA), while also helping you set scheduling parameters in line with one or more CBAs. And, when it’s time for the next round of CBA negotiations, our scheduling and time-tracking system provides you with actionable data to help you negotiate fair and cost-effective contract terms.

TCP’s scheduling and time-tracking solutions empower you to take the following actions:
● Set employee schedules and assign shifts in compliance with CBA work-hour minimum and maximum thresholds
● Align employee hours to internal cost codes for more transparent budgeting
● Process shift differentials to accurately pay employees according to the time of day or night they are working
● Ensure mandated breaks meet timing and length criteria
● Create shift exception rules that will warn or prevent employees from clocking in if they have not met the minimum rest period
● Auto-calculate overtime and double time
● Monitor work schedules to ensure you meet the required prevailing wage rate for specific work locations
● Calculate labor costs for specific projects and tasks
● Track and accordingly adjust pay rules for work done on 6th or 7th consecutive days
● Equitably offer overtime to employees in accordance with CBA guidelines

Staying in compliance with labor laws and your organization’s collective bargaining agreement is easier when you ditch manual time tracking in favor of advanced scheduling technology. With a robust solution for managing the complexities of employee scheduling and leave management for your unionized and non-unionized employee population, you can manage compliance risks and track employee time more efficiently. You can find additional tips in our guide, Union Collaboration: Boost Efficiency and Productivity.