My Boss Helps Her Best Friend Cheat The Company.

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about payroll cheating: I am beside myself thinking at the end of a year she has made 25k in OT by stealing.

My boss is in charge of the payroll department. Her best friend works in our department. They cheat the company on the clock, for overtime. Her best friend makes 31.50 per hr on OT. She is getting 20-40 hrs OT per 2 week pay period. They clock her in at 6am (2hr) before everyone gets there. They go to lunch and she doesn’t clock out.

They leave for an hour to and hour & half. Several girls in the office can verify they go to lunch daily. What do I do? To my boss’s friend I have mentioned that I feel lying about clocking in/out is stealing from company. This is especially a problem, since there was a girl doing that and the boss and her friend confronted the girl and docked her pay for almost 10 hours that pay period. The friend has no official authority. But the President,Vice President, and CEO, all love the friend and think she is great! I am beside myself thinking at the end of a year she has made 25k in OT by stealing.

Signed, Angry and Frustrated

Dear Angry and Frustrated:

I can imagine it would be very frustrating to think someone is making a tremendous amount of undeserved money. However, your options are rather limited, based on what you mention in your message. Before you go further with it, consider a couple of things:

1. Make sure you are correct in your assumptions about the co-worker’s pay. Unless you have seen her paycheck time after time, you are likely not fully aware of how many hours she is getting paid, and how much she is making overall. And, you may not know exactly what work she is getting paid to do.

2. Apparently this person is beloved by many. You may want to consider why that is the case. Rarely would the CEO, President, VP, AND payroll person all want to help someone financially to the point that they would condone lying, to the tune of $25,000. Perhaps there is some aspect of this you don’t know about. Or, perhaps nothing you say will change it. Certainly there is no one higher than the people you mentioned, to complain to! The one group that might be interested would be the board of directors, if your company has one.

3. Have you or others asked to work overtime? That might be one way to make it clear that everyone is aware of the situation. And, if there is actually OT to be worked, others could share in it.

4. Even if those at the top of the company are friends of the employee, perhaps they aren’t aware of the extent of the overtime. You could let them know anonymously, in person, or in an email. Or, if there is even one executive who might be concerned, maybe you can talk to that person. Maybe you can bet several people to go with you to complain about the unfair situation.Personally, I prefer an honest, directly approach most of the times. So, you may want to tell your boss about how frustrated you feel. Perhaps they will give you an explanation that helps.

5. If none of those things help you find out more, or help you start thinking of ways to make a difference, you have only two things you can do: Leave your job, and tell them why. Or, let it go and figure you are getting paid what you expected to get paid when you were hired, and that hasn’t changed. I can understand how infuriating it would be to think someone else is making much more money by lying. But, apparently those at the highest levels don’t see anything the matter with it–and they are the ones who control the budget. I’m afraid all of that isn’t much consolation! But, maybe once you examine what is only rumor or speculation and what you can prove, you will see a different picture. Best wishes!

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina had a thirty-three year career in law enforcement, serving with the Denver Police Department from 1969-1994 and was the Presidential United States Marshal for Colorado from 1994-2002. She provides training to law enforcement organizations and private sector groups and does conference presentations related to leadership, workplace communications and customized topics. Her style is inspirational with humor.