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Compensation & Benefits

Understanding and staying up to date with the University’s Total Rewards program will help you inform your employees and answer their questions about their pay and benefits.


If your employee has questions about their benefits, guide them to the Total Rewards website, which has information on Benefits plans and offerings. They can also contact the Office of Total Rewards at (585) 275-2084 or


Get detailed information related to compensation for your employees, from wage schedules and job descriptions, to the Pay Administration Guidelines.

Wage schedules

Wage schedules are published annually as part of the Wage and Salary program announcement in the spring, and are re-distributed if changes occur. They are sent to leadership for cascading to supervisors. To obtain the current wage schedule, please contact your HR Business Partner.

Job descriptions and evaluations

Jobs evolve, and when the responsibilities change significantly it’s important to revisit the job description and perhaps have it re-evaluated. Document the responsibilities in the job description form, following these tips for a job description that accurately captures the position requirements. Once complete, the new or revised job description should be shared with your leadership and your HR Business Partner. If you are requesting a re-evaluation, first obtain your leadership’s support and then your HR Business Partner can help begin the HR review process.


Timekeeping resources and policies

To ensure employees are accurately paid for time worked and the University is compliant with state and federal laws, it’s important that supervisors and managers are following all time reporting processes.

Timekeeping tips, policies, and resources for managers are detailed below. You can also download and print a PDF version of this timekeeping guidance.

Timekeeping tips

All hourly employees must track and account for all time worked and not worked in the Human Resources Management System (HRMS). This includes applicable University compensation-related policies such as: Call-In, On-Call, Shift Differential, etc. Hourly employees are eligible for overtime for hours worked in excess of 40 in a workweek. (Supervisor note, it is your responsibility to determine the method used to capture time for your department; web clock or badge reader and the location of badge reader if applicable).

Reference more timekeeping tips based on specific situations outlined below.

Overtime pay for hourly-paid employees

Overtime hours are based on work demands and require department heads or authorized representatives to approve overtime before overtime work is performed. Employees may not authorize their own overtime.

Overtime pay will be paid for all hours worked over 40 hours in the workweek. Overtime pay is one and one-half times the regular hourly rate of pay. All work performed for the University regardless of where it is performed must be accounted for and included in the overtime calculation.

Meal periods

New York State requires that employees take a minimum 30-minute uninterrupted meal period for shifts over 6 hours. During this meal period employees shall perform no work whatsoever. HRMS automatically deducts the designated amount for a meal period after an employee has worked more than 6 consecutive hours. (Supervisor note: You must determine and communicate the length of the meal period. This is either 30, 45 or 60 minutes.)

In the rare situation a meal period is not taken, the employee must be paid and an override in HRMS is required. If the employee’s original meal period was missed or interrupted, it must be documented on the University exception log and the employee must take at least a 30-minute uninterrupted meal period before the end of the scheduled shift. A shift should not begin or end with a meal period.

Remote access and mobile devices

It is important that employees do not work outside of their regularly scheduled hours unless approved to do so by their supervisor. In particular, they should not be using a smart phone or computer to perform work-related activities outside of normally scheduled work hours without prior authorization.

If employees do perform any work-related activities outside of the normally scheduled work hours, they must record the time and be paid for the time.

Unauthorized (unapproved) work

Employees must be compensated for all time worked, regardless of whether or not it was approved. If an employee works overtime without authorization (prior approval), he or she should be counseled on the proper procedure for permission to work overtime. If the employee continues to work overtime without authorization, it then becomes a disciplinary issue.

Travel time

Whether or not time spent in travel is working time depends upon the type of travel involved. Learn about specific situations in the drop-downs below.

Travel from home before the regular workday and returning home at the end of the workday is ordinary home-to-work travel and is not compensable working time. However, employees who drive vehicles which contain essential tools or equipment of the employer from their homes to worksites may be working while traveling.

If an employee returns home at the end of the workday and is subsequently called out at night to travel a substantial distance to perform an emergency job for one of the employer’s customers, all time spent on such travel is working time.

When an employee normally works at one location and is given a special one-day assignment requiring travel to another city, all travel time is compensatory. However, bona fide meal and the travel time from the employee’s home to the point of departure may be excluded.

Time spent by an employee in travel as part of the employee’s principal activity or in the course of a workday must be counted as hours worked. Examples include travel from job site to job site during the workday or an employee reporting to a company’s main site to obtain instructions or to load equipment before traveling to a job site.

Travel by car, train, or other public transportation that keeps an employee away from home overnight is travel away from home.

Travel away from home must be counted as time worked when it falls within the employee’s normal working hours (e.g., 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday). In addition, travel time corresponding to the employee’s normal working hours but falling on nonworking days (e.g., travel between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays, Sunday or holidays) is considered work time.

Bona fide meal periods may be excluded.

Time an employee spends traveling away from home outside of regular working hours as a passenger on an airplane, train, boat, bus or automobile is not considered compensable hours.

The time spent on work an employee is required to perform while traveling must be counted as hours worked. An employee who drives or is required to ride as an assistant or helper in a truck, bus, automobile, boat or airplane is working while riding or driving, except during bona fide meal periods or when the employee is permitted to sleep in adequate facilities furnished by the employer.

Any pre- or post-workday time spent in “walking, riding, or traveling to and from” the job location is excluded from work time unless otherwise provided by contract, custom or practice. Supervisor note: If you allow compensable pre- or post-workday travel by custom or practice, it may set an unintentional standard or expectation for employee(s). Please contact your Human Resources Business Partner for any travel time questions.

Training programs and similar activities are counted as working time except in certain limited circumstances (Note: all 4 must be met to be deemed UNPAID time):

  1. Attendance is outside the employee’s regular working hours
  2. Attendance is in fact voluntary
  3. The course, lecture, or meeting is not directly related to the employee’s job
  4. The employee does not perform any productive work during the meeting or training

Additional timekeeping resources and training

HRMS time and labor training

HRMS Time and Labor Training instructs users in the procedures and issues related to ensuring staff are paid correctly in compliance with all NYS laws and the Fair Labor Standards Act. Any employee with timekeeping responsibilities for their department is required to take this class prior to assuming those duties.

To register for the training, log in to MyPath and search for HRMS Time and Labor Training Class.

For questions regarding Time Administration procedures, please contact Ask-URHR.

HRMS Personnel Action forms training (PAF)

Staff who are responsible for completion of HR and HR-related payroll forms will want to contact their HR Business Partner for information on the correct procedures for completing Staff Data Changes (Personnel Action Forms) and Labor Distribution Changes (800 Forms, Salary Cap Forms, 211 Forms, etc.) as well as obtaining access to HRMS once they have been instructed in the proper procedures.

More resources

Visit the HR Compensation page for additional timekeeping guides, rules, and training.

For more information on policies or questions related to compensation of non-exempt employees, contact your HR Business Partner

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