How to figure time card hours by quarter hours

Written by grace ferguson
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How to figure time card hours by quarter hours
The DOL allows you to round employee time to the nearest quarter-hour. (Quarter Time image by MrGreenBug from Fotolia.com)

Employees punch a time clock using a time card. If the employer does have a time clock and few hourly workers, it may require employees to write their hours down on a standard time card or time sheet. The United States Department of Labor says that either method is fine as long as it’s correct and complete. Furthermore, it’s OK to round time-clock hours up and down to the nearest five minutes, one-tenth or quarter-hour. The latter is a strategy many employers use when figuring timecard hours.

Skill level:
Easy

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Calculate from the start of the hour if the employee arrives or leaves work between 00 to 07 minutes after the hour. Example: 9:07 a.m. would be 9 a.m. Notably, the quarter-hour occurs in consecutive 15-minute increments. Example: 9 a.m., 9:15 a.m., 9:30 a.m., and 10 a.m.

  2. 2

    Calculate from quarter past the hour if the employee arrives or leaves work between .08 to 22 minutes past the hour. Example: 9:08 a.m. would be 9:15 a.m.

  3. 3

    Calculate from the half hour if the employee arrives or leaves work between 23 to 37 minutes past the hour. Example: 9:23 a.m. would be 9:30 a.m.

  4. 4

    Calculate from three quarters after the after the hour if the employee arrives or leaves work between 38 to 52 minutes after the hour. Example: 9:38 a.m. would 9:45 a.m.

  5. 5

    Calculate from the start of the hour if the employee arrives or leaves work between 53 to 60 minutes past the hour. Example: 9:53 a.m. would be 10 a.m.

Tips and warnings

  • Always remember to round the first seven minutes after the quarter-hour down to the nearest quarter-hour. For example, you would round 7:02 a.m. down to 7 a.m.
  • Round the next eight minutes up to the nearest quarter-hour. For example, you would round 4:38 p.m. up to 4:45 p.m.
  • Rounding can cause the employee to gain or lose time slightly.

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