‘Making me’ may sound extreme, but I feel like it’s true.

I am on duty to close down the building once a week after work. It’s mostly all manual activities but there is a long list of them including locking up the fire exit, all shutters down, switching off all computers etc.

However our phone and doors stay on/open until the second we close. And I don’t get paid after we close. You can’t request overtime, my manager must arrange it in advance to get paid. So needless to stay I try to close up what I can while there’s still another member of my team in the building, but some things just have to wait till all clients and staff are gone.

So at closing time I’m doing a mad dash round all the list. Woe betide if I miss something on this long list. I can do free overtime for 10 minutes or so but I have somewhere to be, and also I’m not getting paid, so I emphatically do not want to linger any longer than I have to.

However several of the big bosses (who my manager reports to) are coming out with instructions/requests/general complaints all in the last 15 minutes and sometimes beyond. They no doubt are getting paid to stay late. (I should add that they have keys to get out if they’re staying very late).

How can I handle this? They seem to have no sense that I’ve finished work and am doing a favour by running around packing up unpaid. Should I speak to my manager first? Raise it in a meeting? Or is there a more productive way I can pack up/respond to their interruptions?

I’m on my own the last half hour, so I can’t leave the phone/front desk area during this time till we officially close.

  • 1
    Who assigned these responsibilities to you?
    – sf02
    Commented Mar 28, 2019 at 18:59
  • My manager. I’m covering for someone who’s going to be off for weeks, possibly who will quit.
    – Oorni
    Commented Mar 28, 2019 at 19:18
  • 1
    How much overtime? 10 minutes once a week? Commented Mar 28, 2019 at 19:21
  • 7
    You should indicate the country you are in. Employment laws vary significantly between countries. Also indicate the nature of your employment. In the US salaried employees do not have set hours for example, but hourly do and are required by law to be paid for all hours worked. Commented Mar 28, 2019 at 19:33
  • You could always just ask to come in late to make up for leaving late.
    – Trevor
    Commented Mar 28, 2019 at 20:00

2 Answers 2


Is that legal in your country/city/state? You could report them to the appropriate authority.

Or, you could simply do it, and rearrange your personal schedule.

Or, you could simply tell your boss you HAVE to leave when your shift ends. Do it again, and again, and he may get the idea.

Or sit down with him and simply tell him you're not being paid for the time, you don't feel they should expect unpaid time from people. Maybe suggest coming in late on the days you have to close up?


Talk to your manager.

Explain to them that you have other obligations outside of work that make it impossible for you to continue to stay after your regular working hours. Ask your manager to find someone else to cover for the other employee because you will not be able to continue to stay late. Make sure beforehand that what you are demanding is in accordance with your employment contract.

If not having to stay late is that important to you, I would not budge at all if the manager refuses but keep in mind that such a stance and actions could have negative consequences on your employment at that company.

  • I don't want to downvote, but regardless of whether or not the poster has obligations, expecting "off the clock work" seems to be the central point of the post. Commented Mar 29, 2019 at 15:07
  • @WesleyLong You are correct, but the OP has already agreed to this off the clock work because he has been doing it and now wants to stop. So the OP can talk to the manager and try to reason with them to correct the situation amicably or he can simply leave once his hours are up.
    – sf02
    Commented Mar 29, 2019 at 15:25
  • 1
    That (already agreed) is not an inference I'd draw. Being coerced and acceding at the moment in no way indicates agreement. Commented Mar 29, 2019 at 15:26

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