As smartphone technology and other electronic devices become more and more integrated into our workplaces, employers are placing a significant burden on their employees to promptly answer emails and complete other work-related tasks. The problem is that these requests often come during time off the clock. If your place of employment requires you to answer emails, upload or manage content, or monitor social media platforms after-hours, you are likely not being compensated for that time worked. Speak with a unpaid overtime lawyer in Tampa today to find out if you are owed additional compensation.
The Value of Smartphones
The technology behind smartphones has been a game changer for many industries. Smartphones and tablets make collaborating for work easier. Utilizing cloud-based systems, we can share files, documents, and other relevant work information more easily with our coworkers. We can also hold meetings sitting in traffic with applications like Skype and Zoom. During downtime, we can utilize software management programs to research data as well. Smartphones give us the technology to work anytime, anywhere.
The Problem With Smartphones
Of course, smartphones allow us to tackle a work project whenever we want, but this technology also allows employers to take advantage of their employees.The technology of smartphones can be considered extensions of work time. For many employees, they may be required to monitor emails and stay “in the know” on all of the developments of their workplace. Over the course of a weekend or weeknights, a mere 20 minutes per day can easily add up to several extraneous hours worked over the course of a work week.
The Gray Area of Smartphones at the Workplace
According to the law, “work time” includes any time that an employee is permitted to work. If an employer requests that their employees perform work outside of the office on their smartphone, this is in fact “work time.” In some cases, a simple task like responding to an email can become a long email thread that requires hours of additional time worked. If you are a non-exempt employee, you should be compensated at time-and-a-half for any time you work over 40 hours in a work week. This includes time you spend working from your smartphone.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.