Lectures and Meetings in the Workplace
Providing employees with further education and training is one of the best ways to motivate people to really engage in their jobs. When a person feels confident in their skills and abilities, they are free to really expand the work they can do and what they can accomplish. Meetings, lectures and training programs are all useful and beneficial ways for employers to help their employees. These types of events often have specific regulations outlined in the Fair Labor Standards Act that must be acknowledged.
There are four distinct regulations that determine whether or not an employee should be compensated for their time spent in a meeting or training program. As distinguished by the FLSA, if other work is being performed concurrently while a person is engaging in a lecture, meeting or training program, an employee must be compensated for their time. So if an employee is asked to continue to perform part of their normal tasks while engaging in a lecture, they must be compensated for that time, just as they normally would be.
Also, if a meeting or training occurs during an employees normal working hours, they must be compensated for this time as well. Employees schedule their time in order to maximize their income. If a company asks an employee to shift that schedule for a meeting, they must be compensated for that time.
Finally, a meeting or lecture must be considered paid time if it is work related or mandatory. If a meeting is not work related and is voluntary, an employer is not obligated to pay its employees for this time. Also, any employee who is exempted from FLSA standards because of their title does not have to be compensated for this type of activity.