Applying rules to real-life situations might be tricky sometimes – because rules are supposed to stay the same, while the circumstances are always changing. In this way, compliance is about finding a balance between these two aspects. For the reason just mentioned, compliance is complicated enough in its own right. However, when the rules themselves are not comprehensive enough or not taken seriously by those who ask others to follow them, the situation might get out of control. This was exactly the experience of one Redditor, u/bolshe-viks-vaporub – who was forced into taking measures of malicious compliance to prove his point and get the benefits he was legally obliged to get.

More info: Reddit

New legislation from the government turns the tables to the benefit of employees; this man, however, had to go the extra mile seeking to receive his benefits

Image credits: nd3000 (not the actual image)

People from the HR department looked at the man like he had two heads when he informed them, refusing to adjust his PTO accruals based on hours worked

All the employees of the company the man was working for were asked to mark their working hours

Image credits: cbiztimesolutions (not the actual image)

He noticed that no matter the working hours he marked, his amount of paid time off stayed the same

Image credits: ARTFULLY79 (not the actual image)

Upon getting 120 extra hours in his account, he said: “We all eagerly awaited our paystubs to see all that extra PTO accrued and… nope”

Image credits: seventyfourimages (not the actual image)

Image credits: u/bolshe-viks0

Requests were ignored by HR, until the men informed them he would be escalating it to the labor board. He received a “panicked phone call within about 5 minutes”

The issue, discussed on Reddit, started with the publicly traded company the Redditor was working for getting traded to a DoD contracting company; that is, a company that has a contract directly with the US Department of Defense. As a consequence, certain rules had to be implemented following the regulations of the US Department of Defense. One of these rules is that employees of such a company are obliged to charge their time to specific project codes.

The Redditor claims that the HR department responsible for compliance in their company decided that not only employees working on those specific projects, which was around 50 people out of over 1000, but all the employees of the company had to mark the time they worked.

However, this seemingly redundant requirement was of consequence for some employees once the new legislation went into effect. From then on, for every 40 hours worked, 1 hour of sick leave had to be given to the employees by the employer. The man explains that once the new rule was in place, he finally started marking his true working hours. However, he noticed that no matter the working hours he marked, the amount of paid time off he had stayed the same.

Not seeing a change, he approached HR and the answer he got was that he was a salaried employee: “They looked at me like I had two heads when I informed them they were not adjusting my PTO accruals based on hours worked.” People from HR argued that since he was a salaried employee, he was paid for 40 hours regardless of the actual hours, which was a correct statement; however, beside the point.

Due to the job requiring employees to travel a lot, the Redditor got 120 extra hours in his account. However, no extra PTO was added to his account. He explains: “We all eagerly awaited our paystubs to see all that extra PTO accrued and… nope. ”

The man’s effort finally paid off when he got paid for PTO in full with a little extra on top. His colleague, meanwhile, turned the HR department in

All of the Redditor’s repeated attempts to solve the issue with HR ended with HR promising to contact the company attorney and come back with a solution, but never actually doing it.

Finally, the man lost patience and wrote an email to HR informing them he would be escalating the issue to the labor board if not given the required compensation for the earned PTO. This time the reaction was quick, he received a “panicked phone call within about 5 minutes.”

The HR person, on the flip side, was still trying to argue his way out of paying for the employee’s PTO; however, the Redditor explained he had already brought up the issue with the company’s general counsel and was expecting to be paid in full for all the back-owed PTO. Otherwise, he was ready to report to The Department of Labor And Industries.

Finally, the whole thing was resolved with the Redditor getting paid for the PTO in full. His colleague, on the other hand, did not stop there and reported the company to the labor board, which ended up causing a stir in the HR department.

One could think that PTO is something beneficial only to the employee; however, that is not the case. As listed by S. Dolbel, there are several aspects that make PTO of great value to the employer, as well. Most importantly, psychological health should be of interest to the employer if they want to keep up their good results for a long period of time. Employees who take their days off are less stressed, happier and more productive. Additionally, the benefit helps to attract and retain high-quality staff, not to mention that in most industries, the cost of onboarding a new employee is quite high.