I have 2 employees, both hourly workers. As you know, we had an epic snowstorm a week and a half ago. The snow policy that is delineated in the office manual is as follows:
All closings are at my discretion
We usually go with the Federal Government however, I reserve the right to make the final decision.
If we are closed for snow, staff will get paid for their usual hours.
Hours are not fixed and depend on the patient load; staff usually goes home early on Fridays if there are no patients.
With the large storm, the Feds closed at 12 on Friday. All of our Friday patients were moved to the morning and we finished by noon and all of the work was done. I told the staff to go home by noon since we had finished all of our work.
Monday, the Feds were closed. Both staff members stated that their streets were not plowed and they could not come in. I had them cancel the morning patients but I got to the office for the afternoon and saw the one patient that actually came in myself and did all of the usual paperwork etc myself.
Tuesday, we worked a regular day.
Both staff members claimed 1/2 day Friday and a full day Monday pay for snow days.
I told them that I would pay for 1/2 day Monday. Now everybody is upset
My feeling is that the snow day pay is to compensate them for the work they do at home when the office is closed. I am willing to pay 1/2 day Monday for cancelling the morning patients (although that took 30 seconds with our automated system) and for the telephone calls back and forth. However, the office was open Monday afternoon and I was there and working so I don’t see why I should pay them for sitting at home and doing nothing when I am there working. I appreciate that they were unable to come in but does that mean that I have to pay them? I feel that as hourly workers, if they want this time they should take PTO.
(As an additional note, I did previously offer to make one of the employees a salaried worker but she turned me down because she felt she made more money from overtime. As a salaried worker, she would have been paid for the day.)