Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Hourly v. salared exempt


My entire career in information technology, I was salaried and exempt. The colloquial definition is “you don’t punch a time clock” but the real meaning is you work the hours until the job is done, and you provide on-call support on your own time. In some installations, management uses log on time onto a computer network (and logoff time) as official arrival at and departure from work. The comfy buzzword back in the 70s was “salaried professional.”

Most W-2 contracts are “hourly.” The client pays the personnel staffing company for billable hours, and all time is supposed to be compensated. Clients may reasonably expect billed hours to be productively spent. Overtime in W-2 contracts is usually “straight time” although sometimes it is more. However, in some arrangements, contractors are paid only for forty hour weeks as if they were salaried that is always the case with corp-to-corp.

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