Should You Provide Paid Time-Off for Your Employees to Vote? (The HR Famous Podcast)

Kris Dunn Benefits, Organizational Development, PTO

It’s an interesting question – should you provide paid time off for your employees to vote?

I’ll be honest – I’ve been around mostly exempt workforces in my career and consider flexibility to vote a given. I’ve never been in an office where I didn’t think I could do what I need to do during the day to cast a vote.

Of course, it’s been a long time since I was an hourly employee, and I was non-exempt at an early stage in my career. While it’s fairly common to not count hours for the salaried individuals in your office, I’m sure most hourly workforces with scheduling requirements aren’t used to this time off to vote perk.

Which is while the news from Apple last week is a big deal – the company most of us know and love is providing paid time off to vote or volunteer, but the big news is they’re offering it to their retail workers and other hourly employees as well as white collar, salaried professionals.

It’s admirable, which is one of the reasons we talk about it on this week’s episode of The HR Famous Podcast. In addition to covering the news, we also dig into the amazing amount of leverage that companies are going to discreetly put on their employees come November. Big companies of the socially active type will send subliminal messages to vote Democrat. SMBs that are led by a founder will generally push their employees to vote GOP.

Me? I think both sides are full of it and leverage should never be part of the equation.

Enjoy the time off to vote, Apple associates. I’m betting you’re not wearing a GOP pin back to the office. Just like our small company friends probably aren’t wearing a Biden t-shirt to the office in early November.

Full podcast rundown below – time off for voting discussion starts at 10:30 – give it a listen.

And as Jessica Lee says in the podcast – War Eagle, Mr. Tim Cook!


In episode 25 of The HR Famous Podcast, long-time HR leaders (and friends) Tim Sackett, Kris Dunn and Jessica Lee discuss Jlee and KD’s return to the office, Apple’s paid time off for employees to vote, and President Trump’s new plan for skill-based hiring in the federal government.

Listen (click this link if you don’t see the player below) and be sure to subscribe, rate, and review (Apple Podcasts) and follow (Spotify)!


2:00 – Have you returned to your work office yet? Jlee returned to her office for the first time since March. She had to get approval to go into the office and thought it was a very bizarre experience. KD also returned to his office and he thought it was something out of a zombie movie. 

6:00 – Jlee missed her typical office amenities when she went back in and had to bring her own coffee, water, and snacks. Also, she had to change all of her calendars to the right month and throw away her old coffee cup (from March)!

9:00 – Nike released a video about the new protections they’re implementing for their offices in Asia when employees come back to work. 

10:30 – First BIG topic of the day – Apple is giving all employees paid time off to vote or volunteer at a polling place in upcoming US elections. Tim gives his employees time off to vote within reason and he commends Apple for allowing retail workers to have time off to vote.

14:20 – Tim Cook and Auburn University shoutout from KD!

15:00 – KD doesn’t think that Apple’s decision is that out of the box. He brings up the potential logistical concerns in manufacturing or other settings where scheduling could be an issue. 

16:00 – KD and Tim discuss the potential influence of who to vote for from company execs. Tim talks about how his Mom used to share wisdom on who to vote for and why. 

18:00 – Tim and Jlee think Apple should have released to the public the memo on PTO to vote for good employment marketing. 

20:30 – Jlee is planning on taking a PTO day for the day after the election hangover. How late are you willing to stay up to watch election results?

22:00 – HR Famous supports Apple CEO Tim Cook and Auburn University (at least KD does). If you’re reading this Tim, we would love to have you on the pod!

22:30 – Second BIG topic of the day – President Trump signed an executive order in late June ordering the federal government to revise their qualifications for jobs, in hopes to prioritize jobs skills over college degrees. Ivanka Trump is leading this initiative to help those without higher education get good federal government jobs.

24:30 – Tim praises the federal government for catching up to private industry and taking out unnecessary job qualifications for certain jobs. 

26:30 – Tim and KD worry that this news coming from the Trump administration will be discounted because it’s coming from President Trump and both of them think it’s a pretty progressive move. 

31:00 – Tim talks about how he used to require all of his recruiters to have a college degree and the determination it shows to finish a degree. He has changed his requirements since and he’s seen some of his best recruiters come in without a degree. 

33:20 – Tim asks Jlee and KD what percentage of jobs they think actually require a degree. What do you think?

36:50 – One final War Eagle and Tim Cook shoutout!