The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has compiled laws on child labor to ensure that the well-being, health and education of teenage workers are not compromised. There are different laws for each industry and at different ages that employers must follow.
In many industries, 14- and 15-year-olds can only be employed for a certain period of time per day. According to the US Department of Labor's fact sheet, for example, 14- and 15-year-olds employed in restaurants and express service facilities can work a maximum of three hours on a school day and a maximum of eight hours on a non-school day. Working hours are also limited to between 07:00 and 19:00. except during the summer. Depending on the type of business you own, there are pros and cons to hiring teen workers based on child labor laws.
Read " Workplace Injury Prevention for Young Workers. "
Pros & Cons of Hiring Teen Workers
As an employer, you can see reduced payroll costs by hiring teens. Depending on the age of the teenager, they are usually not able to work full time, which ensures that there are no overtime costs. If the teenager works less than 30 hours per week, you are not obliged to offer health insurance. Most teenagers enter the workforce for the first time and will not have long experience. As a result, the salary may correspond to the lower level of experience, but make sure that your state's payroll and hourly department checks the minimum wage requirements.
2nd Pro: Teen Workers Have More Flexible Schedules
When extra hands are needed for certain seasons, teens usually have flexible schedules during the summer and during the holidays. Hiring teen workers to get you through the hectic season provides the necessary staffing and gives you the opportunity for a short-term employment commitment.
Read, "5 Tips for Hiring Seasonal Employees."
3. Pro: Pool of incomplete workforce to choose from
Hiring teens to perform unfinished tasks allows your full-time crew to be open to making big pictures and higher priority tasks. In addition, former teenage employees are a good source of rehire.
4th Con: Lack of experience
Teenagers are teenagers and do not have much, if any, experience in the workplace. It requires extensive training and you will probably need to do a lot of training in the beginning. Be patient and ask teens how they can best learn.
5th Disadvantages: Teenage workers usually cannot work full time consistently
Depending on your needs, the availability of your teenage worker may be limited. In general, teenagers are available after school or during long breaks, so if seasonal employment is not something you need, you may want to look elsewhere for staffing. Labor legislation also requires teenage workers, depending on their age, to work at certain times during the day. This ensures that the teenagers get enough rest and have enough time to complete their schoolwork.
How to Find Teen Workers
Most teens are active on social media. Consider posting an employment invitation on your social media platforms and ask current employees to share it with their networks. Keep in mind that word of mouth in smaller communities is just as valuable (if not more). Be the company known for treating teenage workers with respect and dignity. If you are looking for college workers, check with local universities how they recommend sharing job openings with students.
Key Takeaway for Hiring Teen Workers
It is important to verify laws so that you do not end up in a fight or face a hefty fine. Do not let the laws scare you from hiring teenagers – use teenage workers for short seasonal employment to reduce wage costs, only be informed about occupational and availability restrictions based on age. Also check with your state employment department for specific information on child labor laws regarding your business.
Contact an agent today to inquire about the community's major differences coverage ] or read our HR blog series for additional resources and information on hiring seasonal employees.