Break Policy for PT Couriers: Thoughts & Advice

Discussion in 'FedEx Discussions' started by alpha x, Nov 1, 2015.

  1. alpha x

    alpha x New Member

    I've searched and haven't found any threads relating to this particular issue, but I apologize if I've missed them.

    I'm wondering about PT couriers and what they think of the mandatory break policy (which requires a 30 minute unpaid break in a shift of 6 hrs or more). It makes sense for full-timers, since they almost always work 8+hrs and DOT requires them to take a break. But for PT, a lot of times you might work 6hrs and 1 minute––and then have to take a break at the station (because you thought you'd be done in time). But then you're not supposed to take a break in your last hour worked...but you have no choice.

    It's really frustrating to be forced to just THROW AWAY a full half hour of YOUR time, unpaid, just because you worked a few more minutes than expected. Over time, that adds up, and I'm not sure it is worth the potential extra money from the extra hours. I mean, that's 2-3hrs/wk of UNPAID time that Fedex is taking from you (depending on how many days you work over 6). I know some people want the money and they don't mind the wasted time, but if you're in school, working another job, working toward another career on the side, or just trying to spend time with family, that time is REALLY valuable.

    There have been multiple cases of PT couriers I know of (besides myself!) who have specifically told management they couldn't work past 6hrs, but then been loaded up with far more stops than was possible to get done and ended up having to miss doctor's appointments, class, etc...

    If you're PT, aren't you only *required* to work until 10:45 or 11am (just under 6 hrs)? And isn't the additional time *voluntary*?

    What should you do if you've told management you can only work until x time, but you find yourself not being able to finish all the stops they gave you before that time comes up?

    I know a guy who recently got sick of them not respecting his time (he's in school and the job has been affecting his grades). He told a manager he couldn't work past his 6 hours, and then they gave him way more than he could finish in that time period. So when it got close to his 6 hours, he just brought the rest of the stops back to the station, notified dispatch about where it was at, and then clocked out. The next day, they did the same thing to him, except this time they told he *must* deliver all the stops and he *must* take a break if he went over 6, so he took his break in the middle of the P1 cycle (meaning he would have some lates) in order to follow the policy "not to take your break in the last hour worked". I think he got in some pretty big trouble though....

    Anyone else have problems like this, though? Or thoughts?
  2. Purplepackage

    Purplepackage Well-Known Member

    Well depending on your management going over 6 hours by 1 minute isn't really that big a deal.

    Also what the courier in your story did was pretty much asking for discipline. Instead of taking the extra work out with you just leave it on the floor, tell them I need to be off in 6 hours so I dropped the amount of stops nessecary to do that.

    And yes working over 6 hours is voluntary for a part timer. Management will try to push the work on anyone who will take it, and honestly some pters from my station aren't even allowed to work past p1 so they would jump at that chance.
  3. Operational needs

    Operational needs Well-Known Member

    Let the policy be your friend. Fedex management can only do what you allow them to do if you hold them to policy. That being said, Fedex is constantly changing policy, so I'm not sure what it is TODAY for part timers. When you get to work, look it up and print it. If it says that PT couriers can't be forced to work past 6 hours, refuse and show the policy to mgmt. There is nothing they can do to you if you stand your ground on policy. They may try, but you will win. Grow some cajones. You need them at FedEx.

    And the break thing is what it is. It has always been like that.
  4. Express Courier

    Express Courier Active Member

    I know some PT guys that will not work past a certain time. It's known. Management can't make them do more. They HAVE to leave.
  5. Purplepackage

    Purplepackage Well-Known Member

    Honestly being able to work 6 hours without a break is a plus. I have worked places where you needed to take a half hour break after 5 hours of work
  6. alpha x

    alpha x New Member

    What is the POINT of a mandatory unpaid break after 6 hours though? And which policy should you obey? The one that says you can't take a break in the last hour worked, or the one that says you have to take a break––even though the only time you have is in the last hour...?
  7. Operational needs

    Operational needs Well-Known Member

    Who knows what the point is? It's just another silly rule that we have to follow. Put the ball in management's court. Ask them when you are supposed to make it happen.
  8. alpha x

    alpha x New Member

    The PT couriers that I've talked to most about this (including myself) are "baseline"/ "slash" couriers who are basically the ones that everyone else drops *to* and we don't even get *informed* that we're going on road, let alone where the freight is, or what truck we can use, until after most regular couriers have left the building. On top of that, we usually don't know the areas we're going to very well (because it's constantly changing) so it's hard to judge how long it will take you. 20 stops could take 1.5 hours (about as much time as they give us, since we don't leave the building till around 9am) or it could take 3 hours if it's spread out (which it usually is if multiple couriers have dropped to you without coordinating with each other).
  9. Purplepackage

    Purplepackage Well-Known Member

    Multiple couriers are dropping to you because they learned how to play the fedex game. Now it's your turn to learn how to play the game, that's all this job is one big game of management seeing how far and how much you will do
  10. dex 84

    dex 84 Active Member

    When you realize that finishing your work might put you over 6 you should call your manager and ask him if he wants you to have a break violation or if he wants you to bring work back to the building with you.

    If it's only by a minute or two you could just not punch out and ask a CSA to put you out at 6 hours exactly. That might not be an option if your station is really uptight about that kind of thing though.

    I think the last hour of the shift rule might be just a FedEx rule while the break in any shift over 6 hours is the law.
  11. Cactus

    Cactus Just telling it like it is

    Good for him though. The managers deserved it since they'd been pushing their luck with this guy a little too long. Eff 'em.
  12. dezguy

    dezguy Well-Known Member

    The solution is simple; Figure out what you can realistically do in 6 hours and leave the rest on the belt. Make sure you cover your ass and tell a manger before you leave the building. If management gives you a hard time about it, simply tell them you have stuff to do after work and if they want to force you to work over 6 hours, make you full time.
  13. alpha x

    alpha x New Member

    No, it's not a law. Senior manager finally told me straight up it wasn't (other managers have tried to say it was even though I looked it up and it's not). The only law is DOT which requires a break for an 8 hour shift.

    Most likely he's going to tell me to deliver past my 6, then take a break when I'm done (violating the last hour policy)––but that means that I end up getting off of work at least an hour (usually more) later than what I planned. That shouldn't happen to PT employees who are PT for a reason (i.e. they have other things in their lives besides FedEx that need to be attended to in a timely manner).
  14. dex 84

    dex 84 Active Member

    It might not be the law for you but it is state law in my state that any shift over 6 hours requires a half hour break and any shift over 12 requires an hour.

    Like I said though, just give him two choices. Break violation or unfinished work. You can't be required to work more than 6 anyways since you're PT so you're within your rights here.
  15. Express Courier

    Express Courier Active Member

    The break in the last hour thing isn't a big deal for PTers at my station I don't think. Also for years I only took a half hour break but this last year they really made a focus on taking the full hour. No exceptions. I don't need a friggin hour of sitting in the Fedex truck. Would be cool if my route was in my neighborhood tho.
  16. ILuvPandas

    ILuvPandas New Member

    In my state the meal break law states that you can waiver your half hour break for a shift over 6 hours but that you must be paid for that time.
    Although you can't be forced to skip your break legally.
    FedEx Express just wants to avoid law suits and their own policies are so inconsistent catering to their own needs when convenient to management.
  17. dex 84

    dex 84 Active Member

    They use the break policy as a means to save hours. They want you to go faster so you don't have to take a break or so you can only take a half.
  18. Myort

    Myort Member

    I remember running into this issue on Saturdays. We would start around 6:30am and you would have enough stops to take you right up until noon. I would call a manager around 11:00 and ask if he wanted me to take lates and take a break before noon, or go a few minutes over 6 hours without a break? He always said go over 6 without a break.

    On the break thing, if they force you to take a break in the station before you leave, demand they allow you to stay on clock over an hour after break is complete.
  19. 59 Dano

    59 Dano Well-Known Member

    You'd be surprised at how many people don't have sense enough to do that.
  20. Cactus

    Cactus Just telling it like it is

    You act like your some kind of model employee or something. Do you really believe your own BS? Sad.