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Employment Standards Averaging of Hours Permit


The Saskatchewan Employment Act and regulations set out the minimum employment standards in the workplace. Permits allow for certain employment standards to be varied on a case by case basis. Permits can be approved, rejected, revoked, or altered by the Executive Director of Employment Standards.

Employees affected by the permits are still entitled to all other requirements of The Saskatchewan Employment Act, including overtime, annual holidays, and public holidays.


The Averaging of Hours Permit allows employers to condense employee work time for shift cycles requiring a longer day or a longer period of averaging, than allowed in a Modified Work Arrangement. Section 2-20 of The Saskatchewan Employment Act outlines the requirements that allow these permits. This permit requires the support of a majority of the employees.

Work Schedules

A typical work schedule of the affected employees for one averaging period is to be attached to this permit application. The schedule must include days of work and hours of work per day. The permit will be based on this work schedule.

Permit applications will not be processed unless a schedule is attached.

The employer must continue to provide employees with work schedules that are at least one week long.

Note: Most averaging work schedules can be accommodated by a Modified Work Arrangement.

How to Apply

Employment Standards only issues permits to employers. Non-unionized employers must obtain a permit from the Executive Director of Employment Standards. Unionized employees receive overtime under the terms of their collective agreement. Self-employed persons do not require permits.

Applications must be completed, signed, and returned to the Employment Standards Division for approval.

To ensure fairness, the Executive Director may require separate permit applications for each:

  • Job site or business location; and/or
  • Category of employee, within the same organization, where jobs performed by each category or employee are different.

To allow for sufficient processing time, employers should submit their permit applications at least two weeks before they are required. Permits will not be issued retroactively except in exceptional circumstances.

Employee Consent

All permit applications require the written consent of the affected employees or a representing union. By providing their signature, employees show that they support the application for a permit.

The Executive Director may accept a permit application in which not all of the affected employees have signed the permit if a majority of the employees who are impacted have indicated their support. Affected employees may choose (or the Executive Director may order) a secret ballot vote to ensure there is support for a permit application.

Safety Considerations

Where a job requires heavy physical or a higher than normal mental effort and due care, non-standard and extended work shifts can affect workers' levels of alertness and their performance towards the end of an extended shift. This can result in a greater chance of an incident or injury during the extended portion of the shift.

Therefore, a higher than average time loss work injury rate may be a consideration when determining if an application is to be approved for shift arrangements longer than 10 hours.


Download the Averaging of Hours Permit

Please mail or drop off all documents and the completed application form to:

Employment Standards Division
Ministry of Labour and Workplace Safety
300 - 1870 Albert Street
Regina, SK  S4P 4W1

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