Working Hours

Establishing clear and reasonable standards.

Gap Jeans label

One of the compliance issues we frequently encounter relates to worker overtime, which fluctuates but remains an issue of concern year after year. Overtime is a complex challenge to address: Many workers want to request overtime because they seek hours in order to earn premium overtime pay, while facilities seek to optimize their production capacity across multiple buyers. In addition, buyers themselves, including Gap Inc., can negatively impact work hours when requiring changes that increase or decrease the size of an order.

We continue to address the role that our buying practices have on overtime hours, including through Better Buying, an initiative to understand the impact of our business planning, as well as other aspects of the design and development process. After we received our results, we shared our findings with our sourcing teams, enabling them to examine how their planning affects lead times and our visibility into our suppliers’ capacity to fulfill orders. Gap Inc. sourcing teams are working to develop systems that can more appropriately place orders depending on our suppliers’ capabilities to fulfill them; these learnings are helping us implement improvements while we continue to solicit supplier feedback.  

We impose several requirements that address working hours: 

  • Workers must be allowed to refuse overtime without any threat or penalty of punishment.
  • Workers must not be required to work more than six days in a row. 
  • Facilities must take corrective actions to limit excessive overtime, which can include analyzing the root causes of issues, adjusting production schedules and improving management systems.

Based on each country’s laws, we set the total number of allowable working hours per week, including overtime. Our facility ratings system identifies and implements consequences for serious overtime violations.