LinkedIn Corp. (LNKD:US)’s mission is to “create economic opportunity for every professional.” The U.S. Department of Labor has determined that the company isn’t doing the same for some of its own employees.
The world’s largest professional social-networking company agreed to pay almost $6 million in unpaid wages and damages to current and former employees in California, Illinois, Nebraska and New York, the government agency said in a statement today.
“Talent is LinkedIn’s number one priority, so of course, we were eager to work closely with the Department of Labor to quickly and equitably rectify this situation,” Shannon Stubo, a spokeswoman for Mountain View, California-based LinkedIn said in a statement.
Founded in 2002, LinkedIn connects people who have jobs or businesses and also shares information about jobs and opportunities. Recruiters pay fees to find job candidates via the website, which has 313 million members. LinkedIn has been expanding its workforce of about 5,700 employees and recently agreed to lease a new office tower in San Francisco that can accommodate 2,500 workers.
LinkedIn failed to record and pay for all hours in a workweek, including overtime, to 359 employees, the Labor Department said. The total includes $3.35 million in overtime back wages and $2.51 million in damages. LinkedIn is also providing compliance training for its workforce and distribute its policy about working overtime.
The shares of LinkedIn rose less than 1 percent to $202.50 at the close today, leaving them down 6.6 percent this year.
“This was a function of not having the right tools in place for some employees and their managers to track hours properly; prior to the Labor Department approaching us, we had already begun to remedy this. LinkedIn has made every effort possible to ensure each impacted employee has been made whole,” Stubo said, adding that the affected workers were mainly in sales. The money was paid in the second quarter, she said.
Susana Blanco, district director for U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division in San Francisco, said: “‘Off the clock’ hours are all too common for the American worker.”
“We urge all employers, large and small, to review their pay practices to ensure employees know their basic workplace rights and that the commitment to compliance works through all levels of the organization,” Blanco said.
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