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Compensation for Training Time for Non-Exempt Employees

Training programs conducted during regular working hours constitute work time and must be compensated as such, according to the Fair Labor Standards Act. (Work time includes all time an employee must be on duty, on the employer’s premises, or at any other prescribed place of work, as well as any additional time the employee is permitted to work.)

After-hours training need not be compensated if:

  • Attendance is entirely outside normal working hours and is voluntary (attendance will not be found voluntary if the employee is led to believe that attending is critical to his or her job).
  • The training is not directly related to the employee’s present job.
  • The employee does not do any productive work related to the employee’s job during the program.

A training program is considered directly related to the job if the training is designed to help the employee handle the present job more effectively. Time spent in training for a new job or in the development of new skills is less likely to be classified as compensable work time.

Questions concerning training time should be directed to the Office of Human Resources. Assistance is available to review the training program, identify compensable time and provide guidance in completion of the time report to ensure compliance with Department of Labor regulations.