Moonlighting or working side jobs after standard working hours is not a new concept.
But, with the rise of the gig economy and remote work opportunities, the practice has significantly changed in character.
Nowadays, employees are often juggling between employers, tasks, and coworkers. Overlapping and mingling of time and resources have also become unavoidable.
So, if you’re concerned that your employees are working another job on company time, you get the benefit of the doubt. Fortunately, you also have the means to determine the facts fast and keep your company’s resources under your control.
This article will explain the concepts of moonlighting and daylighting, how employees’ side gigs might affect the main job and your company, and how to prevent them from harming your business.
Generally speaking, moonlighting or having a second job apart from the primary job doesn’t violate any laws.
However, in certain circumstances, it might pose a breach of contract and lead to the termination of employment.
One such possibility is that an employer doesn’t allow moonlighting. If this is the case, the employer should specify it in the company policy and employment contract so that the employees know the potential risks of taking on additional job offers.
Another potentially problematic situation is the conflict of interest. Employees who are working in the same field as their current employer may be suspected of leaking trade secrets or customer data or other confidential information to competitors.
So, Is It Legal to Work Two Full-Time Jobs at the Same Time?
While moonlighting is legal, things are pretty shady regarding “daylighting.”
Working two full-time jobs at the same time, or more precisely, during the time an employee is on the clock for their primary employer, is profoundly unethical and poses a breach of trust. Furthermore, the practice is potentially illegal and can be pretty costly for you as the employer.
If your workers are engaged in earning extra income at your company’s time, using the steps we mention below, you will be able to gather enough reasons to let them go while ensuring your compliance.
However, you’ll need a more strategic approach and well-developed procedures to stop such situations from recurring and harming your employees’ morale and efficiency.
How Can I Prevent Employees From Working Another Job On Company Time?
If you caught your employee stealing equipment, you would consider it theft and consider termination. Working another job on company time is not that much different.
In a way, it can come down to the mingling of companies’ time and other resources and using them for the benefit of other employers.
But, as an employer, you have the means to end this practice and ensure your employees are not working another job on company time.
1. Use a GPS Time Clock Solution
If you’re still using paper timesheets and physical time clocks, you’re actually making it easier for your employees to commit time theft, providing them with numerous chances to spend their working hours finishing private errands or their second job tasks.
GPS time clock software allows you to monitor your employees' times and locations during their shifts and prevent such practices.
For example, Timeero lets you see all your employees’ whereabouts during their working hours. The GPS tracker app will record their location from when they first clocked in to when they leave and clock out.
If there are any discrepancies you should be aware of - let’s say an employee punches in late or out of the bounds of their workplace- the app will notify you immediately.
Using geofencing, you can set a virtual border around any location. It can be an office, a worksite, or a client's office - wherever your employee needs to perform their work. If they clock in or out of the bounds of that location, the app will flag their time clock entry.
Alternatively, for more control over where your employees can clock in and out from work, you can enable performing these actions only at geofenced locations. This way, if an employee is not at the work site, they won’t be able to punch in or out of their job. Using Timeero, you will actually be able to see where an employee who always has an excuse for being late is actually spending their time.
Furthermore, Timeero makes buddy punching virtually impossible. Using the Timeero Terminal feature, you can set up a face recognition and demand that your employees use it when clocking in or out from work.
Timeero also lets you keep track of your employees' routes while they are on the clock. If your employees spend a lot of their working hours behind the wheel, Timeero’s Suggested Mileage will ensure they’re not taking longer routes to finish their private tasks or work for other employers.
This feature will present them with the shortest route, and show how many miles they’ve saved using the route that was suggested.
Staying on top of your employees’ time and locations will help you make the best use of your resources, ensuring you maintain your labor budget and shed unnecessary overtime.
Although quite specific in its purpose, we can approach “daylighting” - or the practice of an employee working a second job on the clock from a similar perspective and try to prevent it using the policies we’ve established to stop employee overbilling or theft at the workplace.
The logical place to begin is the time and attendance policy. The best way to ensure your employees understand what kind of behavior is expected from them during working hours is to concisely and clearly spell out your time and attendance policies.
The first step to take is to check all relevant local, state, and federal time-theft regulations. You can also consult an attorney about developing clear clocking-in and out procedures, breaking periods, and other essential specifics, such as cell phone and social media use during the shift.
Your employees must clearly understand their work-related responsibilities and potential disciplinary measures if they don’t follow the guidelines.
Once you’ve established the procedures, incorporate them into your employee handbook. Have all your employees review and sign a document stating they have read and understand the policies in the handbook.
Depending on your business's industry and the number of employees actually working a second job, you may want to address this issue directly and establish a moonlighting policy.
After all, there are quite a few ways an employee’s second job may interfere with their employment in your company.
They may work long or late hours, so they are constantly tired and facing burnout, and their job performance falls.
Due to their obligations with another employer, it becomes increasingly difficult to schedule their shifts.
The employee is working a second job on the clock
The employee is working for the competitor, so there is a conflict of interests.
If you decide to establish a moonlighting policy, it doesn’t mean you must try to prohibit your employees from taking on additional jobs or regulate their off-duty conduct. If you try to forbid opportunities from earning additional income, you could end up losing some outstanding employees.
Focus on what matters to you as an employer - potential interference between the side gig and the main job, while allowing your employees to make extra money and develop their skills.
Your moonlighting policies should include statements addressing:
Interference with the primary job. In the employment agreement, you can set out your expectation that the employees will treat the job in your company as the primary job and that they won’t let other jobs affect their performance or working hours.
Conflicts of interest. Clarify your expectations that your employees won’t start working for your competitors while working for your business.
Your approval of additional employment. Although this may be effective to include in your policy, ensure it’s not too restrictive. Furthermore, if you include such a statement in your policy, you must apply it consistently to all your employees in similar circumstances.
4. Follow Through with Your Procedures and Disciplinary Actions
Taking disciplinary measures is costly and emotionally draining and can affect workplace morale. However, you need such measures in place should you discover that an employee is working another job on company time or find evidence of other fraudulent practices at the workplace. These disciplinary procedures should be part of your policy, and you should communicate them to your employees in your handbook.
The disciplinary action may start with issuing a performance improvement plan, or a written write-up, leading to suspension and termination.
However, just like when it comes to employee theft, it’s up to you to conduct a fair, accurate investigation and ensure compliance with all the relevant laws.
And in cases when employees are moonlighting, and you determine that a second job affects their performance with your company, sometimes an honest discussion with an employee can lead to solutions that will work for both parties.
5. Build employee morale to prevent daylighting
Employees working another job on company time can be a clear sign of poor workplace morale and low employee engagement.
Sometimes, the cause of such low morale at the company may lie in poor working conditions and unmanaged workplace stress, leading employees to question their trust in the company. High turnover rates often follow.
If they feel that their companies aren’t fair, employees are more likely to engage in fraudulent practices, one of them being working another job on company time. And when they see their coworkers getting away with such practices, others will follow, causing the morale to drop even more.
On the other side, if employees are engaged with their work, their loyalty and productivity will increase. To achieve this, consider establishing a system of employee rewards and recognition. For those excelling in their roles, you can grant time off, or add in some extra shifts, showing your staff you appreciate their efforts to achieve business goals.
You can also fight the low employee morale at the workplace by reimagining the workflow. Technology can help you achieve those efforts by creating a workplace culture that promotes fairness and transparency.
To Conclude: Safeguard Your Company’s Time With Timeero
An automated GPS time clock solution can be your powerful ally in creating a workplace culture built on transparency and trust.
Using Timeero to keep track of your employees' times, locations, and routes will give you an instant overview of your most essential resources - your employees and their working hours, helping you manage them more efficiently.
Ensure your employees are working their hours, not only logging them.
Natasa is a writer specializing in the IT and software industry with 6+ years of experience in content writing and online marketing. During that period, she wrote more than 1,000 articles and several ebooks. She majored in English language and literature and loves cats, sneakers, and candy. When she's not working, she's probably binge-watching Netflix.