A quota is a work performance standard a worker needs to meet or they may suffer an adverse employment action, like being written up or fired. A quota may require employees to perform tasks at a specified speed, perform a quantified number of tasks, or handle an amount of goods within a defined period.

Quotas can be aggregate, team, or individually based. Quotas need to allow enough time for workers to:

  • Take rest breaks.
  • Use the restroom.
  • Reasonable travel to and from break locations and restrooms.
  • Access and use necessary tools or safety equipment.
  • Perform an activity required by the employer to complete the work subject to a quota (for example, clocking out/in).

A performance standard doesn’t have to be called a “quota” to be subject to these rules. An employer may use terms such as “rate” or “production expectation.” No matter what it is called, if the work-rate standard shares the characteristics of a quota, it is subject to the warehouse quota rules.

Written quota descriptions
Employers must provide every employee subject to a quota a written description of the quota. Written quota descriptions must be in an employee’s preferred language and include:

  • A written description of each quota that applies to the employee.
  • Any potential adverse employment actions that could result from failing to meet the quota.
  • Any incentives or bonuses associated with meeting the quota.

Written descriptions should be clear, concise, and easy to read. They should use common words, rather than jargon, acronyms, or unnecessary legal language.

Initial written quota descriptions
Employers need to provide every employee with an initial written description upon hire or, for existing employees, by July 31, 2024. The initial written description must be in the employee’s choice of:

  • English.
  • English and one of the top six other languages spoken in the state, (Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Tagalog, and Russian), as selected by the employee.

If an employee requests a description in a preferred language other than English or the top six other languages, the employer needs to provide the description in the requested language within 15 calendar days.

Changes to quotas
If an employer changes a quota, they need to notify employees verbally or in writing about the new quota as soon as possible. Employers must notify employees of the change before they can be subject to the new quota.

An updated written description must be provided within two business days. The updated written description needs to be in the employee’s choice of:

  • English.
  • English and one of the one of the top six other languages spoken in the state, as selected by the employee.
  • English and a previously disclosed preferred language outside of the top six other languages spoken in the state.

Break violation pay
Employees are entitled to additional compensation, called “break violation pay,” if their quota violates warehouse quota standards and it results in a meal or rest break violation. Each day there is a break violation caused by a quota that violates warehouse quota standards, the employee must receive one additional hour of pay at their regular rate. Employers must pay an employee’s break violation pay on their next regularly schedule payday.