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LOS ANGELES, Nov. 30, 2016 — A spot survey of U.S. retailers by the Korn Ferry division of Korn Ferry (NYSE:KFY) finds that more than half (56 percent) of respondents plan to comply with the planned Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime rule for exempt employees on the date it was to go into effect, despite a Nov. 22 injunction that puts the plan on hold.
The overtime rule, which was set to go into effect Dec. 1, would have had an immediate impact on exempt employees who earned less than $47,476, as these employees would now be eligible for overtime time-and-a-half pay.
“This injunction came just eight days before the ruling was to go into effect and many retailers had already either communicated or implemented plans, so turning back was not an option,” said Craig Rowley, Korn Ferry Senior Partner, Retail and Consumer. “This minimum pay was not driven by market practice and represents a significant cost to many retailers. The retailers that do not plan on making immediate changes are in a ‘wait and see’ mode.”
Nearly one quarter (24 percent) of respondents say they will not implement changes due to the injunction and will wait for the ruling, and 21 percent say they will make changes on a case-by-case basis.
The survey found that nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of those who had planned to increase exempt employees to the $47,476 salary threshold still plan to do so, with 35 percent saying they will wait for the ruling.
Also, when considering what they will now do with exempt employees they planned to make non-exempt to comply with the ruling, 35 percent say they will keep them exempt and not pay overtime, and 65 percent say they will make them non-exempt and pay overtime.
More than half (51 percent) of respondents say that despite the injunction, they will still offer new exempt employee hires the FLSA minimum rate of $47,476, even if the new hires were in jobs that previously earned a lower base salary.
“With 59 percent of respondents saying the ruling will impact a moderate to significant amount of employees, this is a big issue for retailers,” said Rowley. “It has yet to be seen how exactly this will change the industry when and if the ruling goes into effect.”
About the Survey
The Korn Ferry survey of 68 retailers representing nearly $1 trillion in revenue was conducted from Friday, Nov. 25 through Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016.
What is your company planning to do with the implementation of the new FLSA regulations in light of the November 22nd injunction?
For exempt employees who you were planning to increase their salaries to the new FLSA rate of $47,476, what action will you now take?
What is your company planning to do for new exempt employees you hire who are in jobs you previously paid less than $47,476 in light of the injunction?
How big of an impact will the new FLSA regulations have on your organization?
For those exempt employees that you were planning on making non-exempt, what action will you now take?
About Korn Ferry
Korn Ferry is the preeminent global people and organizational advisory firm. We help leaders, organizations, and societies succeed by releasing the full power and potential of people. Our nearly 7,000 colleagues deliver services through our Executive Search, Korn Ferry and Korn Ferry divisions.