- On 11/02/2020
Why do Americans work a month less in a year
In the United States, there are ten official annual federal holidays, when you get day off at a high probability. But each state independently regulate the number of these holidays. Only six holidays are national. But even for these six holidays, not all companies will let you go, but the probability is really high.
All the federal holidays in the USA for 2020:
Wednesday, January 1 — New Year’s Day.
Monday, January 20 — Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
Monday, February 17 — Washington’s Birthday.
Monday, May 25 — Memorial Day.
Friday, July 3 — Independence Day.
Monday, September 7 — Labor Day.
Monday, October 12 — Columbus Day.
Wednesday, November 11 — Veterans Day.
Thursday, November 26 — Thanksgiving Day.
Friday, December 25 — Christmas Day
Very often employers provide extra days off. For example, Thanksgiving always falls on Thursday, and Friday becomes automatically a day off.
In Russia, there are 15 official annual national holidays. It is important to understand that they have almost all the holidays concentrated in January and May. In the USA, holidays are evenly distributed throughout the year – and often not on a specific date, but on Monday, that is, as a result, you have a long weekend.
It is often said that there are too many days off in Russia. But it’s important to remember that because they don’t pay the hour spent for lunch, and in the USA they pay for a half an hour, as a result, they work one hour less every day. The working day in Russia is from 9:00 to 18:00, and they have from 9:00 to 17:00.
If we calculate the time spent in Russia at work, including lunch time, and count it in hours, it turns out that for 247 working days in 2019 in Russia there were 2223 hours, and in the USA for 256 days only 2048 hours. It turns out a huge difference of 175 hours, and this is a whole working month!
On average, Americans have a vacation of 10 days a year (if working for government,, vacation is generally longer). To these ten days you can add national holidays, which allow you to increase the duration of the vacation.
Moreover, although the company is required to provide a vacation by law, it does not have to be paid. Paid one is called PTO – paid time off. At the moment, many companies from the IT sector practice unlimited PTO, which is is paid leave without a time limit.
In many companies in the USA, you can start working without a vacation at all, and you will have a one added each year, that is, for example, after seven years you will have a vacation of seven working days.
In Russia there are 28 calendar days that are laid down to all by law. According to estimates, we rest on average 18 days more (162 hours), which almost completely eliminates the difference in 175 hours that we received earlier.
There is no bureaucracy in the American Direct Line Development offices regarding vacations: no statements should be written, all done by oral agreement of the parties. In the Russian office, of course, there should be a piece of paper for everything. By the way, I have never heard of such a thing as vacation payment in the USA. Just salary is paid instead.
The procedure for salary payments
In Russia, you must pay a salary and an advance, due to which employees receive money twice a month. In the United States, this is not regulated at all: someone is paid once a week, and someone – once every two weeks. I didn’t hear about someone getting paid once a month. The standard, probably, is a payment every two weeks.
In Direct Line Development, we pay twice a month, plus one more bonus payment for the previous month. Several people, when applying for a job, immediately said that it was inconvenient for them to receive a payment in this way, and they simply could not plan their budget if they did not receive the expected amount of money into their accounts every Friday.
In our Russian and American companies, all salaries are “white” only. In general, salaries in envelopes in the USA are something unrealistic, although they are very common on construction sites, farms, and generally low-paid jobs, and, of course, where illegal immigrants work.
Both in the USA and in Russia, they have the law-setted minimum wage. In Russia, the minimum wage is a little higher than 11 thousand per month, but in the USA it varies from state to state.
E.g, in Texas they have $7.25, in Massachusetts – $11, and in New York $15 per hour! If we convert it to a monthly payment, for example, in Texas, then we get about 75 thousand rubles. By the way, I have never seen such a salary, even Amazon pays its packers $ 15 per hour. In general, you need to try hard to find a job with a payment below $ 3000 (about 200 thousand rubles) per month.
Under US federal law, an employer must provide 12 weeks of leave at birth or adopt a child, but he is not required to pay this time, and this is important. This law applies to the primary caregiver,eo ipso, it can apply to both the father and the mother of the child.
This contrasts very much with Russia, where a “pregnant woman’s sick leave” lasts 140 days, that is, almost five months. Such a vacation will be fully paid, and then you can take paid leave for another year and a half!
In the USA, they have an at-will contract that allows the employee to leave us at any time, and for us to dismiss him without giving any reason in the first 90 days. Then it is desirable to explain the reason and part amicably. But an employee on dismissal may ask for unemployment benefits if he has no other job.
Every month, a company is required to pay unemployment benefits. This money goes to the state fund.
The problem is that the more former employees at your company do this, the greater the percentage that you pay each month. You can get money for unemployment for as long as 25 weeks! This can be avoided if an employee leaves his own free will.
In Russia, upon dismissal, it is necessary to explain the reason immediately, without a 90-day period. As a rule, everyone agrees and breaks up amicably at their own request, otherwise they will have to be fired for some reason with an entry in the work book.
Questions you cannot ask at the job-interview in US
I have never heard about the fact that in Russia you can’t ask anything at the interview (correct me if I’m wrong). In the USA, this is very strict: there is a list of topics that you, as an employer, do not have the right to relate to an interview with a future employee.
Everything is complicated by the fact that in different states the laws are different. There are things we can ask in Pennsylvania, but can’t ask in Colorado, and we need to rephrase the it in Texas.
Name, Origin, Nationality
Did the candidate work under a different name.
Do you need any further information regarding changing the name or using the intended name or nickname to verify your work record? If yes, provide the details.
What name (s) is indicated in your working documentation?
You may also claim that employees must be eligible to work in the United States.
Do you have a legal right to work in the United States?
Place of residence.
Duration of stay in the city.
Questions about the name, which are aimed at obtaining information about the family background of the candidate.
Questions about a name change in connection with a court decision, marriage, or otherwise.
Questions about the Maiden name of the married woman.
It is also illegal to ask where the candidate’s family and relatives come from.
Place of birth of the candidate.
And which country are you a citizen? Regardless of whether the candidate is naturalized or a native citizen, the date on which the candidate acquired citizenship.
Citizenship of the spouse or parents of the candidate.
For example, what nationality is your family? Where you’re from? Where are your parents from? What is your legacy? What language do you speak at home?
What can you ask:
About race, skin color, eyes or hair. Or other questions that directly or indirectly indicate race or color. For example: what race are you? How has your race, gender, nationality influenced your work experience?
Height or weight when it is not related to work.
General questions (“Are you disabled?”) That may reveal a disability or health condition that is not related to being fit for work. For example: do you have a disability? Have you ever been treated for any of the following diseases? What is your medical history? How does your condition affect your abilities?
You can find out if the candidate meets the minimum age requirements or indicate that evidence may be required when applying for a job.
Are you 18 years old or more?
You can ask a candidate questions about his or her ability to perform work-related functions.
Is there any reason why you will not be able to perform duties in this position?
What education do you have?
Do you have licenses and certificates for this work?
You cannot require a candidate to indicate age or date of birth if he is under 18 years of age.
You cannot require an applicant to have an age certificate in the form of a birth certificate, naturalization documents, or a baptismal record.
Any question that might reveal that the candidate is over 40 years old.
For example, in what year did you graduate from high school, college? How old are you? What is your date of birth? How old are your children, if any?
The gender of the candidate cannot be used as a factor in determining whether the candidate will be “suitable” for a particular job (for example, because the job involves physical labor, leaving home, or is traditionally referred to as “male work” or “female work”).
Any request that indicates the gender of the candidate.
Questions about sexual identity, orientation, or preference. What is your sexual orientation? Do you want to be called Mrs.? Or miss?
Can a candidate adhere to specific work schedules?
This is a typical schedule for this post. Is there any reason why you will not be able to work on this schedule?
Note: these requests are valid provided that they are made for both male and female candidates.
The name of the candidate’s relatives already working in this company.
This position requires travel. Are you ready to travel?
This position may require overtime. Are you available for overtime?
Any question about the candidate’s responsibilities for care (for example, what measures would you take to care for a child if you proposed this position?).
Name, age, place of work, address or other information about the spouse, children or relatives.
Are you married? You’re lonely? Divorced? Widow? Do you have a boyfriend, girlfriend? Since you have children, does this mean that you cannot work overtime?
Any question regarding pregnancy, birth control or fertility.
Advocating for any form of birth control or family planning.
Verification of candidate membership in organizations may be requested after hiring.
Any issue requiring the religious belief of the candidate, religious affiliation, as well as church, parish, pastoral or religious holidays.
A candidate cannot be told: “This is a (Catholic, Protestant or Jewish) organization.”
For example, what religion are you? What religious holidays will you take off from work? What church do you go to? Do you regularly go to church?
To ask which organizations, clubs and societies a candidate belongs to who are not related to his or her ability to perform work (political, social, religious, etc.)
Request for conviction of a crime related to qualification of work.
Have you ever been convicted of any crime other than petty traffic violations? If yes, please describe (no candidate will be denied a job due to conviction for a crime, if there is no direct link between the crime and the position, or if hiring will not constitute an unreasonable risk).
If necessary for employment, you can ask about the military experience of a candidate in the US armed forces.
Do you have a valid state driver’s license?
It is forbidden to require a candidate to present a driver’s license.
Do you have a car? Mode of transportation.
Whether the candidate owns or rents a house.
Require or the opportunity for the candidate to attach a photograph to the employment form at any time prior to employment.
Ask for arrests. For example, have you ever been arrested? Have you ever spent the night in jail?
Any question regarding the military experience of the candidate.
Search for employees
In Russia, we use the hh.ru platform, and in the USA, Indeed.com and LinkedIn.com. If you need a highly paid candidate with good experience, then it is best to search on LinkedIn. Here payment is per click, on average, we spend from $ 500 to $ 1,500 per person.
Indeed, the key factor is the ability to post vacancies for free if you periodically delete and fill the ad again, so in general you will have enough feedback.
The comparison results aren’t certain. On the one hand, in the Russian Federation there are more holidays and longer holidays, but in the USA, the working day is shorter and the holidays in the year are evenly distributed. In the USA there are more laws and regulation of work issues, and we have more freedom, which, on the one hand, makes life easier, and on the other, less protects both the employee and the employer.