Time & Attendance Articles

How Does Tenth Hour Rounding Work?

Have you ever wondered how tenth hour rounding works on a time clock? Time rounding can be a confusing topic, so in this article we'll explore what time rounding is, why employers would use rounding and specifically how tenth hour rounding works.

What is Time Rounding?
The United States Code of Federal Regulations and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) allow employers to round employee start and stop times to the nearest 5-minute interval, the nearest tenth of an hour (6 minutes) or the nearest quarter of an hour (15 minutes). Additionally, time rounding must be applied impartially, meaning that start and stop times must be rounded both up and down depending on the punch time; rounding cannot be used to withhold pay from an employee by only rounding in favor of the employer.

It is important to remember that rounding applies to start and stop times. For example, employers can round a start time of 7:57am to 8:00am or a stop time of 5:03pm to 5:00pm. Time rounding is not applied to total hours worked, which means 8 hours and 7 minutes of work would not be rounded to 8 total hours worked. 

Why is Time Rounding Used?
Time rounding allows employees to clock in within a few minutes of their shift start or stop time and not be counted early or late for payroll. Rounding also helps employers prevent small amounts of overtime from adding up to count for daily or weekly overtime during payroll calculations.

How Tenth Hour Rounding Works
Tenth hour rounding rounds employee start and stop times to the nearest 1/10th of an hour. The chart below shows an example of how start times are rounded using tenth hour rounding during the hour of 8 o'clock. Remember, one tenth of an hour is 6 minutes.
Tenth Hour Rounding Chart
This chart illustrates that if an employee punches in early for work at 7:58am, their time will be rounded to 8:00am. If the same employee clocks in two minutes late at 8:02am, that time would also be rounded to 8:00am.

Virtual TimeClock
Virtual TimeClock is powerful, easy-to-use employee time and attendance software. Virtual TimeClock provides several options for time rounding which are applied automatically before totaling hours for payroll. For more information about Virtual TimeClock, drop us a note or get started with a free trial with no obligation.

This article is not meant to provide legal counsel. Please seek advice from a legal professional.