Many times, call centers compensate their employees based on the concept of “shift time.” In other words, an employee may be paid for the period of 9:00-5:00, but may be working hours that differ from this time. For example, if the employee is required to attend pre-shift meetings about the day’s activities, he or she may not be getting paid for that time.
In other circumstances, employees may be paid from the time they log into the timekeeping program on their computer, until the time that they log off the program, but not for the time required to prepare their workstation and/or work programs, including pre-shift meetings, turning on their computer, and any other similar time.
Under Federal law, employees must be paid for all hours worked, including preparatory time, if that activity is integral and indispensable from their primary job duties. If your employer does not pay you for all the hours that you have worked, your employer may owe you back wages. If the time you worked exceeds 40 hours in a workweek, that time over 40 hours may be payable at 1.5 times your regular rate of pay.
For help in determining whether you should be getting paid for work you perform outside your normal work day, you should consult a wage and hour attorney.