Yes, Math Will Be Required for Life

by Evil HR Lady on February 6, 2018

Our company was recently bought out and my annual salary per my contract is $53,300, we used to get paid on a different pay period and therefore calculation.  Now we are paid bi-weekly.  I asked my hr person because I have a $202.40 discrepancy now.  They are paying $28.91/hour instead of $29.02.  The higher up has explained that it is because the money doesn’t actually get paid all in the same year so it’s 26.1 pay periods?  It seems to me my hourly rate is $53,300/1820 hours per year, how can it not be?

To read my answer, click here: Yes, Math Will Be Required for Life

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Annie February 6, 2018 at 3:39 pm

At my job (for a large gov contractor) we have to keep up with our time to the 10th of an hour (6 min increments). I am salary, but if I don’t log 40 hours it is deducted from my PTO. After my PTO is depleted any time shortages are LWOP. In this instance, although we are salaried, it is important for us to know our hourly rate.


Nanc February 6, 2018 at 6:17 pm

Back in the late 1970s (!) when I was a Liberal Studies major we had to take Math for Humanities majors in order to graduate. The first day, the TA took roll, strolled over to the door, closed, locked it, flung herself dramatically across the door frame and announced “this is the one math class you must all take in order to graduate and it will consist entirely of word problems, with the exception of one week of writing basic computer programing. Do exactly as I say and you will all get As.”

She then proceeded to show us how to figure out what a word problem was asking for and plug in the formula. Area, volume, distance (those pesky two trains problems!) and just weird stuff where you had to figure out what you had and exactly what you were looking for. I wish I had learned how to work work problems that way in grade school.

I’ve spent the last 35 years writing about technology and I can still cross-check the math in the background info.

Wherever you are, Monica Olds, thanks for your hard work! We all got As!


Maria Rose February 6, 2018 at 7:43 pm

Too many people can’t even understand simple math with single numbers so the only way around this for HR is put pay in as simple explanation as possible i.e annual salary broken down to hourly rate times hours worked per paycheck times number of paychecks per year equals salary for the year. This is particularly helpful for those who don’t get a weekly paycheck. Since the year is more days than even weeks, somehow that day has to be rectified but when the business year ends for business to explain payroll economics.
I personally don’t particularly care for a biweekly paycheck because bills and budget for the month don’t match up properly. You are always running on a deficit unless you set up budget with a savings cushion. But I learned to deal with it by paying bills differently within my budget.
Because people don’t understand the schematics of how pay is determined, most people feel that they are owed money, especially when first paycheck is delayed ( because of administrative recording task, never understand why it took so long for processing a simple entry into payroll system).


Jill February 6, 2018 at 8:29 pm

I remember my freshmen year of math in high school someone asking why our school made us take four years of math to graduate. “Because it teaches you how to think” was the answer. We all rolled our eyes and groaned.

But holy cow. That was no joke. Even if you don’t work in a field that directly requires math, even if you have a computerized device to perform your calculations, learning math really does teach you how to think linearly and logically and to follow a process.


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