Senior Lecturer Cristina Banks was recently honored with an Innovative Practice Award Presidential Citation from the American Psychological Association for her work in the application of psychology in consulting.
Banks was recognized for her work in determining whether jobs are properly classified as "exempt" from overtime pay. In 1997, Banks created a new methodology to determine proper job classifications. Over the last 12 years, she has performed more than 100 studies applying this methodology to the workplace to help mediate and resolve wage and hour lawsuits.
This new application of job analysis has resulted in millions of dollars of savings to employers as well as millions of dollars of compensation to employees who were inappropriately classified as "exempt," says Banks, a member of the Haas Organizational Behavior and Industrial Relations Group.
Banks’ job analysis uses observational studies to track tasks performed and time spent on tasks approach and questionnaire studies to gather self-reports of time spent on tasks.
"This methodology allowed precise calculations of percent time spent," Banks explains. "It essentially gave employers a defense for these class-action lawsuits, and it also gave employers a way to conduct self-audits to avoid litigation."
(Republished with the permission of writer Stephany Schings, Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology.)