When it comes to employee-employer relationships, there are a few agreed-upon standards. Typically, the employee expects the employer to pay them for every second they work. However, some employers fail to meet this simple standard. When they fail, their employees are the ones who suffer. While employees may be afraid of speaking up for fear of retaliation, the Department of Labor (DOL) isn’t afraid to say something.
Recently, the DOL busted Alliance RV for not paying their employees what they earned. Let’s look at the situation and how they had to write a fat check!
What Is Alliance RV?
Alliance RV LLC makes RVs like travel haulers, towable trailers, and fifth-wheel campers. They entered the scene in 2019 and have three brands under the Alliance RV brand: the Paradigm, the Valor, and the Avenue.
They have quickly earned a positive reputation in the RV community as some of the finest RVs on the market. They’re more than capable of handling trips for weekend warriors or full-time travelers.
The Paradigm fifth wheels are Alliance’s top-of-the-line models. They have fancy features and maximum comfort.
The Valor toy haulers are the middle child that you shouldn’t overlook. You can find the Valor in fifth-wheel and travel trailer versions.
The Avenue is Alliance’s most budget-friendly option, providing many features and quality owners love about Alliance RVs without the price tag.
Who Are Alliance RVs Made By?
Alliance RVs manufactures its three lines Paradigm, Valor, and Avenue. They state their goal is to create “a product driven by our customers, through their experience and input, and execute on those ideas at the highest level.”
Where Are Alliance RVs Made?
Where Alliance RV is headquartered and manufacturing their RVs should be no surprise. The company’s founders, Coley and Ryan Brady, were born and raised in Elkhart, Indiana, the RV capital of the world.
They practically grew up in the RV industry, and they produce all Alliance RVs on 110 acres of land in Northern Indiana.
Get to know more about the town where about 80% of all RVs are made.
Why Is Alliance RV Paying $1.1 Million in Back Pay to Employees?
Federal Investigators found Alliance RV guilty of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act. The investigators discovered that Alliance RV had been miscalculating overtime wages for nearly two years, resulting in the company owing $1,158,536 in back wages to 710 employees.
The situation arose because Alliance RV pays the assembly line employees piece-rates. The DOL stated Alliance RV “paid less for each piece in weeks when workers worked more than 40 hours.”
When employees work more than 40 hours, an employer must pay a minimum overtime bonus. Unfortunately, Alliance RV underpaid their workers for nearly two years. Luckily, the DOL caught the error and ensured Alliance RV gave the employees the monies they had earned.
What Does ‘Piece Rate’ Mean?
Workers on a ‘piece rate’ do not receive a flat hourly wage. Instead, the workers receive compensation by how many goods they produce during work hours. However, piece-rate employees must receive at least the minimum wage and overtime requirements.
Many manufacturers find that paying a piece rate instead of an hourly wage motivates employees to work harder and produce more goods. When employees work efficiently, they produce more and make more money.
However, piece-rate employees are likely to come in when they’re sick or injured, rush the manufacturing process, and cause issues in quality control.
Is Alliance RV Now in Compliance With the U.S. Department of Labor?
Alliance RV must not have enjoyed the negative publicity or writing a $1+ million check. Jessica Looman, the principal deputy wage and hour administrator, stated, “We are glad that Alliance RV has now changed its practices to ensure they pay their workers correctly.”
Hopefully, this will ensure that they comply with labor laws in the future.
How Many Employees Does Alliance RV Have?
Alliance RV has yet to state how many employees they officially employ. According to Zoominfo.com, the company has 58 employees at its corporate office. The total employees is likely significantly higher than this.
We know Alliance RV made the back payments on overtime wages to 710 employees, but this would likely include previous employees and wouldn’t account for salary or non-line workers.
Is Alliance RV a Good Company?
Alliance RV is one of the best-known RV manufacturers in the industry. While they may need to work on their accounting, they have earned a reputation in the RV community for making high-quality RVs.
The company’s founders have taken their knowledge and experience having worked with other large RV manufacturers in the past. They’ve created a new and exciting brand that’s shaking things up in the RV industry. This accounting error isn’t a small mistake, but it shouldn’t change the perception of the luxurious RVs they create.
What do you think of Alliance RV’s oversight?
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