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Setting Up the Auto Lunch Policy for ExakTime

Lunch breaks can be automatically deducted from your employees' time card with the auto lunch policy. Once the employee has worked the minimum amount of hours to receive the auto lunch, it will be deducted at the end of the employee's workday or at a specified time. 

 Consult Legal Counsel

If you are unsure of the legality of any of these Policies or what is expected for your region/union, it is advised to consult with your legal counsel prior to enabling any of them.

  Additional Information

While this article covers our auto lunch policy, we have a dedicated article for all employee policies.

If you would prefer to have your employees manually track their meal breaks, you can refer to our dedicated article for manual meal breaks

Setting Up The Auto Lunch

  1. Go to Manage and click on Policies


  2. Select the policy group on the left that will be receiving an auto lunch or create a new policy group.


  3. Enable Meal Breaks and select Meal Breaks so the policy options will appear towards the right. 


  4. Enable Auto Lunch and review the settings.


    • Specify how long an employee must work before the auto lunch will be applied and how many minutes should be deducted.
    • By default, the auto-lunch will be deducted at the end of the day once the employee has clocked out and worked over the required amount. The auto-lunch can be specified to appear at a certain time.
    • Use custom Auto Lunch policy comment allows you to specify the comment listed beneath Auto Lunch records when they appear on the Time Card Details screen. To edit, check the box and type your desired comment.
  5. When done adjusting your policy, press Save at the bottom.

Using the Auto Lunch Policy

The auto lunch policy should automatically deduct time from your employee's time card without your involvement. Once they have reached the minimum required hours, the auto lunch will appear on the time card based on your settings.


Additional Considerations

Location & Cost Code

The location & cost code used for the auto lunch by default will go to the most used location and cost code for the day. If an auto lunch is assigned to a specific cost code, the auto-lunch will use the specified cost code, but the location will be the same location used for the longest time record. 

In our example below, the auto-lunch is set to deduct at a specific time. The time record for auto lunch will instead auto-populate with the location and cost code of the longest time record of the day.


If an employee were to work at a singular or limited number of locations throughout the day, this may not be an issue. If the employee were to work at multiple locations throughout the day, however, this can cause confusion with any detailed job costing that you go through.

In the report example below, the time card report will consolidate all hours of time records that have the same location and cost code, even if the time card detail for the employee does not show this.


If accurate job costing is needed, it is best to have the employee clock out for lunch and clock back in to continue working. 

Deduct From Overtime/Doubletime First

If an employee were to receive overtime/doubletime, the auto-lunch will deduct from the most "expensive" time first, regardless of the location/cost code it has. If there is not enough time to deduct the full auto-lunch amount, it will go towards the next "expensive" time, and so on until all the auto-lunch time is deducted.

Removing an Auto Lunch Deduction

Auto Lunches cannot be deleted. If an auto lunch needs to be removed, the time can be modified and zeroed-out so no time deductions are made.

  • Look for the auto lunch record that needs to be removed. Click the stop time for the auto lunch.


  • Enter the stop time so it matches the start time of the auto lunch.


  • Click Save.
  • After the time card recalculates, the auto lunch record will not show any time deduction. 


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