Cutting Hours Is Not The Answer

It’s become incredibly popular during this recession to furlough employees or cut their hours with an equivalent decrease in pay. (The difference is a furlough is usually taken as a lump of time all at once, where cutting 10% of one’s weekly hours for 10% of one’s pay is more of a gradual approach.)

But do these tactics work? Tim Sackett, an HR pro in Michigan, says NO.

“For salaried workers, cutting hours now gives them an hourly working mentality. Think about it—you tell them you’re going to cut 10% of their hours and 10% of their wages, and they instantly will know that is a half day a week. They then begin counting hours—where prior they probably worked more then 40 hours and never gave it a thought—you can now plan on no extra discretionary effort.”


More than that, cutting hours is a way of “spreading the pain,” he says, even though it’s HR’s unenviable job to trim the fat. “Your high performers will respect you for it…and your middle performers will make sure they don’t become low performers [to keep their jobs].”

For two more reasons why cutting hours is counterproductive, check out the full piece at Fistful of Talent.