Payroll Services and Pay Practices

Payroll Services

Payroll Services is under the supervision of the Director of Payroll Services in Accounting and Business Services (ABS) whose primary mission is to actively promote and monitor compliance with appropriate State and Federal tax laws and regulations and ensure that all payroll transactions are properly recorded in the University’s accounting system. For more information, visit ABS’ Payroll Services web page.

Pay Practices

University business hours are generally 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The workweek begins at 12 a.m. on Sunday morning and ends at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday night. Each workday begins at 12 a.m. and ends 24 hours later. Work hours and schedules may vary depending upon position. Union employees should refer to their collective bargaining agreement for information on business hours and standard workweek.

Supervisors are responsible for establishing and informing employees of specific work schedules, including start times, rest breaks, meal periods, and normal ending times. If employees’ work schedules must be changed, supervisors will provide advance notice. The operating requirements of the department are the primary consideration in establishing work schedules. However, supervisors may also consider the personal requests of employees when making such decisions.

Non-exempt employees are permitted at minimum a 10-minute rest break for every 3.5 hour period of work. Non-exempt employees are not required to clock in and clock out for rest periods because this time is considered “time worked” and is compensable. Exempt employees, as they are paid a weekly salary regardless of the hours they work, may choose to take breaks as needed. Union employees should refer to their collective bargaining agreement for information on rest breaks.

Non-exempt employees who work at least five (5) consecutive hours will be provided a meal break not to exceed 60 minutes. The meal period must be provided no later than the end of the employee’s fifth hour of work. The meal period will not be included in the total hours of work per day and is not compensable.

Non-exempt employees are to be completely relieved of all job duties while on meal breaks. Non-exempt employees can opt to waive the meal period if they do not work more than six (6) hours in the workday. Non-exempt employees who feel that they are unable to take their required breaks or meal period must contact their supervisor before the scheduled break or meal period.

As an example, this table demonstrates the number of rest and meal breaks provided depending on the duration of the non-exempt employee’s shift:

Shift Duration (hours) Rest
(at minimum 10 minutes)
meal
(at minimum 30 minutes)
0 – 3.49 0 0
3.5 – 4.9 1 0
5 – 7.9* 1 1
8 2 1

* Employees can opt to waive the meal period if they do not work more than six (6) hours in the workday. Waiver must be written mutual agreement between employee and supervisor.

Neither the lunch period nor the rest break(s) may be used to account for an employee's late arrival or early departure or to cover time off for other purposes—for example, rest breaks may not be accumulated to extend a meal period, and rest breaks may not be combined to allow one half-hour long break.

A “recovery period” is defined under CA law as a cool down period afforded an employee to prevent heat-related illnesses. Non-exempt employees are entitled to a recovery period of at least five (5) minutes if they believe that they are suffering from a heat-related illness or need to take a break in a shaded area or cooling station to prevent heat exhaustion.

Overtime will be paid to all non-exempt, non-union employees for all hours worked over seven and a half (7.5) in one workday or thirty-seven and a half (37.5) in one workweek or for the first seven and a half (7.5) hours worked on the seventh consecutive day worked in a workweek. Overtime pay is paid at a rate of 1.5 times the non-exempt employee’s regular hourly rate. Overtime hours in excess of twelve (12) in one workday or over seven and a half (7.5) on the seventh consecutive workday are paid at double-time; two (2) times the non-exempt employee’s regular rate of pay.

Overtime may be assigned to non-exempt employees by the University in its sole discretion. At this request, employees must discuss scheduling conflicts directly with supervisors. Employees who anticipate the need for overtime to complete assigned work must notify their supervisor in advance and obtain approval before working hours that extend beyond their normal schedule.

Exempt employees are expected to work as much of each workday as is necessary to complete their job responsibilities. No overtime, compensatory time, or additional compensation is provided to exempt employees.

Union employees should refer to their collective bargaining agreement for information on overtime pay.

Non-exempt employees who are requested to report to work, and do so report, but then are not provided with work, shall receive reporting time pay for half of the scheduled workday or not less than two (2) hours of pay and not more than four (4) hours of pay as applicable. This does not apply to circumstances in which operations are shut down due to threats made by employees or a labor organization, a public utility failure to supply necessary water, power, or sewage services, or that are a result of an “act of God” as defined by California law. Union employees should refer to their collective bargaining agreement for information on reporting time pay.

The University does not provide compensatory time to non-exempt employees. Union employees should refer to their collective bargaining agreements for information on compensatory/make-up time pay.

The University pays all necessary, appropriate, and reasonable business-related travel and entertainment expenditures incurred by its employees and by other designated individuals on its behalf. For more information, please view Accounting and Business Services’ Travel and Entertainment Policy.

Please review Accounting and Business Services’ Moving Reimbursement Policy for information about the reimbursement of moving expenses.