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Different jobs on different days: How do we pay?

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

Q. Can we ask an employee to work one day at a certain position for $25 per hour and the next day work a different position for only $21 per hour? Employees on a rig crew switch positions many times, so one day they may be a rig operator, and the next day a derrick hand. — Santana, Texas

A. Yes, absolutely. But there are challenges in employing people at different rates of pay for different work. Employees are entitled to overtime pay for hours worked in excess of 40 in a workweek. You must accurately calculate the overtime rate using either a blended rate based on hours worked in each position or by paying time and one half at the appropriate rate for all hours worked after the employee has worked 40 hours that week.

The net result is that typically the employee will have a different overtime rate of pay each week, so careful attention to detail is required.

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