CHE was not aware, and had not approved, of incremental overtime worked by its Nursing Department personnel. CHE nursing personnel can accumulate overtime by clocking in early before shifts, clocking out after scheduled shifts, and/or not clocking out for unpaid meal periods; in this report, we refer to this as incremental overtime. We analyzed all 20,664 of the premium overtime transactions paid during the audit period and found that 9,804 (totaling $223,136) were incremental overtime, representing 2 hours or less that was worked the same day as 8 or more regular hours. CHE was unaware of, and did not authorize, this overtime and therefore could not substantiate that it was essential for veteran care. Thus CHE may have incurred unnecessary overtime costs.
CHE’s “Overtime Request/Approval Policy” states, “The Supervisors will be responsible for the prior approval of time requested as well as the approval of time worked associated with the request.”
Reasons for Inadequate Documentation
CHE lacked policies, procedures, and processes to ensure that incremental overtime was preapproved. Moreover, CHE management was unaware that nursing personnel were incurring unapproved incremental overtime.
CHE should enhance its overtime policies, procedures, and processes to apply the same rules to incremental overtime that apply to other overtime.
CHE will update its overtime policy to clearly reflect that employees are not permitted to clock in before the start of their scheduled shifts and/or clock out after the end of their scheduled shifts without advanced approval to incur incremental overtime. All employees will receive a copy of the revised policy. Reminders of the policy will be posted at the time clock devices. Supervisors responsible for approving time will continue to monitor time clock device punches to determine if incremental overtime is being incurred without advanced approval. Overtime review meetings will resume and the reports will be sent to the Nursing Supervisors to review. CHE Budget Director and HR will review the incremental overtime with managers through the many tools offered through SSTA.
|March 30, 2021