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Following the company policy

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Question: The policy on my job is that employees cannot be paid money outside of their regular salary. An employee will cater a training session, but because she is a regular employee, this is supposed to be a no-no. She will be paid through a separate check (other than her paycheck). It was pushed through the director and finance manager, even though they know the policy.

Now, I have to have a training session catered and I’m using an outside caterer. I now look like the bad guy even though I’m following the company policy. I'm looking for other employment, but how do I handle this situation?  -- Anonymous


I don't quite understand a policy that says an employee cannot be paid outside their regular salary. I work for a company that regularly has meetings that need to be catered. Sometimes, we use a caterer and sometimes we buy things and get reimbursed via an expense report. Buying the food directly usually saves money for the company and is a better way to go fiscally.

I think that you were correct to follow the high road. As I tell my children, "just because other people do it doesn't make it right."
Maybe you need your office to clarify what exactly they mean by their "policy on my job is that employees cannot be paid money outside of their regular salary." Do they mean that they will not reimburse for purchased food (as suggested by Bobbi)? Or do they not want to employ an employee to be a caterer. There are probably some insurance issues with an employee/caterer.

Our company does reimburse for money spent on company business. But to make things easier so that reimbursement checks aren't needed, I have a company credit card. Then whenever I purchase food items or other things, it gets charged directly to the credit card. All receipts are signed by me and given to the Accountant who keeps them with each bill. It works great for us.

This issue should probably be addressed thru the policy makers or what some companies call the chain of command, ask them to bring this to the attention of the decision makers. Ask them to send out a notice company-wide regarding using training sources and clarify the exisitng corporate policy.


What I meant is the employee is being paid as though she was a caterer. She in not just getting reimbursed for the food. She is being paid to caterer the affair. She cooked the food and will receive a check for other than expenses for cooking the food. It is a conflict of interest. They have employees' relatives doing jobs although if they are an employee they are not supposed to be eligible because of conflict of interest.

Sometimes, doing the right thing doesn't always feel right. Continue to do the right thing and it will pay off in the end. Keep up the good work.

Margaret from Cleveland

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