Your Pay & Benefits

Your Pay & Benefits

Your Benefits in Brief (download a pdf file)  Non-Union employee           Union employee

Salary Administration

HomeWorks participates in annual compensation studies to assure that we are offering a competitive wage to our employees. We base adjustments on performance or market conditions. We usually evaluate your wage annually, by November 1; however, wage increases are not guaranteed.

Getting Paid

Pay periods are bi-weekly, starting at midnight on Friday and ending at 11:59 PM on Thursday two weeks following. Your earnings are deposited electronically into the account(s) of your choice no later than Tuesday following the end of the pay period. Pay summaries are available on the Employee Self Serve every Monday for the prior pay period.

See the Accounting Department to change any of your bank account, withholding and deduction information. See the Policies & Forms page for forms you can download and use.

We make every effort to ensure you are paid correctly. When mistakes do happen and are called to our attention, we promptly make any corrections.

Overtime Pay

If you are an hourly non-exempt employee, your overtime is calculated on a weekly basis. Any hours you work over 40 in a week are paid at time and a half.


Salaried and regular hourly employees will receive the following days off with pay:

New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. If you, as a regular hourly employee, are required to work on one of these holidays, you will be paid for eight (8) hours at the regular rate, plus one and one-half (1-1/2) times the regular rate for any hours worked.

When the listed holiday occurs on a Saturday, the preceding Friday will be observed; if on Sunday, the following Monday will normally be observed as the holiday. However, a different day may be chosen if it is in the best interests of the Cooperative.


Vacation shall be taken at the convenience of BOTH you and the Cooperative, as determined by your supervisor.

Vacation accruals for each employee will be posted to Employee Self Serve under Employee Information/Paid Time Off, in advance of the upcoming 12 months, on January 1 of each year. The total monthly accrual will be calculated on the basis of 1/12th vacation for each calendar month. Your monthly accrual will also receive seniority adjustments on your anniversary date. 

Paid vacation shall be as follows:

Graphic showing vacation days earned by years of service

Above graphic in text format:
1 year of service10 vacation days per year
2 through 5 years15 vacation days per year
6 through 9 years20 vacation days per year
10 through 20 years25 vacation days per year
21 years of service26 vacation days per year
22 years of service27 vacation days per year
23 years of service28 vacation days per year
24 years of service29 vacation days per year
25 years of service    30 vacation days per year

A maximum of 120 hours may be carried over on January 1 of each year. Any excess above 120 hours will be forfeited. 

Vacation shall be taken at the convenience of BOTH you and the Cooperative, as determined by your supervisor. You MUST receive documented approval of vacation in advance from your supervisor before taking leave. Vacation can be taken in half-hour increments.

NOTE: If you use all your vacation time and an emergency comes up requiring your absence from work, you may have to take unpaid leave, which will put your paid benefits, such as health care and retirement, at risk.

In cases of severe weather, you should attempt to report for work unless specifically instructed to stay home. If you are so instructed, you will be compensated for the day's work at your regular rate of pay. If you stay away from work when not instructed to do so, you will be charged vacation, if available. If not available, the time off shall be without pay.

You will not earn vacation if you are on Family Medical Leave for thirty (30) calendar days or longer. However, if full compensation is received during such leave, vacation shall continue to accumulate.

New employees shall accrue vacation on their first anniversary.  At the one-year anniversary date, we also add the accrual hours for the remainder of that calendar year. If you leave HomeWorks' employ before your first anniversary date, you shall not be entitled to receive any vacation pay. 

Since the vacation is accrued a year in advance, a terminated employee’s vacation accrual will be adjusted (prorated monthly) to reflect the date of termination. Any vacation taken, greater than the vacation accrual, will be deducted from the final paycheck or any other money owed.

Sick Time

The sick leave benefit provided by HomeWorks is intended to serve two purposes: 1) Provide income when you are unable to perform your regular duties, and 2) to serve as an income “bridge” to long-term disability coverage following a non-work related long term illness/injury. Long term disability coverage begins after twenty-six (26) weeks of disability.

Sick leave for each permanent full time hourly or salary employee is one day (8 hours) per month, and you are encouraged to accumulate sick leave to build your bridge to long-term disability coverage. You begin accruing sick leave the month after you complete your probationary period. Sick leave may be taken by the half hour.

Accumulated sick leave is available for absence with pay under the following conditions:

  • When you are incapacitated, contagious, or unable, on account of injury or illness, to perform your regular duties.

  • When you are unable to schedule, subject to supervisor’s approval, a medical or dental appointment during non-working hours.

  • When the employee’s spouse, children, or any person for whom you are legally responsible, becomes ill or is injured. You may use up to (5) five days per year of accumulated sick leave for this category.

You have the option of using accumulated vacation time in place of accumulated sick time if you choose.

You, or a family member, shall report your absence to your supervisor, or in absence of your supervisor, the office, on or before your starting time, unless physically unable to do so. Your supervisor may request a physician’s statement where determined necessary.

If your employment is terminated for any reason, except for discharge for misconduct as determined by the cooperative, up to 40 days of the sick leave you have accumulated shall be paid at the regular rate. If you have twenty (20) or more years of seniority under the cooperative’s retirement plan, you will be paid for up to 45 days you have accumulated, at the regular rate.

All unused sick leave will be paid in the case of permanent disability or death. In the case of death, the amount due shall be paid to your designated beneficiary.

You will not earn sick leave if you're on FMLA or sick leave for thirty (30) calendar days or longer.

Any full-time employee who has accumulated eighty (80) days or more of sick leave is entitled to donate up to a maximum of ten (10) days per year of their accumulated sick leave, as long as you don't fall below 80 days due to this transfer. Such donations of sick leave may be made to any other full-time employee who has exhausted his/her sick leave, is still in need of sick leave, and who would have qualified for sick leave had he/she not used up their own sick leave.


In the event of death in your immediate family or your current spouse, you may take up to five (5) working days without loss of pay for bereavement leave, to handle matters related to death and grieving. Immediate family includes:

  • Mother or stepmother (provided for only one set of parents)

  • Father or stepfather (provided for only one set of parents)

  • Spouse

  • Children and stepchildren

You may take up to three (3) working days, without loss of pay, to attend funerals for a brother/sister, or daughter-in-law/son-in-law, or you or your spouse.

You may take up to one (1) day without loss of pay to attend funerals for the following family members of you or your spouse: aunts, uncles, brother/sister’s spouse, grandmothers, grandfathers, or grandchildren.

For all other funerals, other than immediate family, you may take vacation or time off without pay, subject to your supervisor's approval. Funeral leave will not be granted if you are on Family Medical Leave at the time funeral leave is requested. Funeral leave is for bereavement purposes only, and days absent must be taken consecutively.

Jury Duty

If you are called for Jury Duty, you must immediately notify your supervisor and provide a copy of the notice. If you are required to be absent from work because of Jury Duty, you will be excused only for the period of time required. You must report to work immediately upon being released from duty.

You will be paid your regular salary when you are absent for Jury Duty, when you turn over to the Cooperative any amount you are paid by the court for your service, less any mileage reimbursement. You may elect to charge the time off as vacation, and keep the money paid to you by the court.


We are obligated by law to withhold any court-ordered wage garnishment. If we receive a garnishment order on you, we will notify you of the order prior to garnishing any monies.

Health Plans

Most benefits take effect after you complete a probationary period, as listed in your Benefits in Brief document, linked at the top of the page. Start by reading that document, and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Medical Plan summary (pdf file). If you want to know more, we encourage you to contact Human Resources for more details about each plan.

Other Benefit Plans

Flexible Spending Account (FSA) (pdf file)

A Flexible Spending Account (FSA) allows you to set aside pre-tax earnings each year to pay for certain medical expenses such as your deductible and co-pays, or licensed daycare expenses, incurred in that same calendar year.

Long Term Disability (LTD) (pdf file)

Provides a benefit in the amount of 2/3 of your annual base salary to you, if the unexpected happens and you become disabled and unable to work for more than 26 weeks.

Life and Accidental Death & Dismemberment (ADD) (pdf file)

Provides a benefit in the amount of 3x your annual base salary in the event of your death. If your death is accidental, it provides another 3x your annual base salary.

Business Travel Accident

The Cooperative will provide NRECA Business Travel insurance for each employee in the amount of $100,000.

Employee Assistance Program

We work with regional professionals who provide confidential counseling to all employees and dependents. For Portland: contact CARES. For Blanchard: contact Central Michigan Professional Counseling Associates at 989-772-5833 (download a pdf file describing their services).

Retirement Plans

We offer not only a Defined Contribution 401(k) Retirement Savings Plan that you can contribute to, but we also offer a Defined Benefit Plan, which is entirely funded by HomeWorks.


HomeWorks offers a 401(k) savings plan for you to invest in your future. You can begin putting aside either pre-tax or post-tax money into your 401(k) plan once you have met the waiting period. we will match a portion of your contribution. (Download a pdf file of your Summary Plan Description - non-union employees     union employees)

To change your current contribution, use this form: Word document  or  PDF file

Defined Benefit

Most companies offer some sort of Defined Contribution savings plan, like a 401(k), but not many offer a Defined Benefit Plan. A Defined Benefit Plan is a retirement plan that gives you a guaranteed amount of income at retirement based on a benefit formula which is calculated using years of service, average of your top high five salaries and the benefit multiplier defined in your plan. You are automatically enrolled in the Defined Benefit Plan after one year of service or age 21. (Download a pdf file of your Summary Plan Description - non-union employees     union employees)

Workers' Compensation

Workers' compensation is the system that provides wage replacement, medical and rehabilitation benefits to workers who are injured on the job. You can read the policy here. If you have specific questions, talk to Human Resources.

Michigan essentially has a no-fault system that requires an employer to compensate a worker for any injury suffered in the course of the worker’s employment, regardless of who was at fault. Under the state’s Workers' Disability Compensation Act, however, the amount that a worker can recover is limited.

Education Assistance

Sometimes your position requires further education or you simply want to develop your knowledge for promotional opportunities. In either case, we are here to support you. Upon approval from your supervisor and the general manager for the class you request, HomeWorks will reimburse 100% of your tuition and books as long as you meet the grade requirements. See the Voluntary Education & Training Policy, or ask your supervisor or Human Resources for more information. (Tuition Reimbursement Form as a pdf file.)


We want you to be healthy and stay healthy. Encouraging a healthy work environment actually benefits HomeWorks and you: we'll pay less in healthcare costs, you'll be more productive and enjoy coming to work!

In addition to offering different types of fitness challenges through the year, we also have an exercise room at each office for employees to use, during and after normal business hours (once you sign an exercise waiver which you can download here as a Word document or a PDF file.) Your family is also welcome to use it with you after business hours or on weekends. Contact Tanya Schneider for more information regarding current fitness challenges, special wellness offers, or to sign the exercise waiver.

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