Your Guide to Ohio’s Minimum Wage

Many states in the country are adjusting their minimum wage to keep up with the country’s ever-rising cost of living. The Buckeye State is no exception. The Ohio minimum wage was adjusted to keep up with inflation. This article tells you everything you need to know about the current status of the minimum wage in Ohio in 2022 and beyond, and what you can do to prepare for any changes.

What is the minimum wage in Ohio in 2022?

The current Ohio minimum wage is increasing to $9.30 for non-tipped employees and $4.65 per hour for tipped employees starting January 1,2022. There are a few exceptions to the state minimum wage, such as overtime pay in Ohio, which is time and a half per hour for any hour worked past 40 hours in a week. Only businesses profiting more than $150,000 are required to provide overtime pay at the rate of one and one half times the employee’s wage rate for hours in excess of 40 hours in one work week.

The minimum wage for employees at smaller companies and for 14- and 15-year-old workers is at least $7.25 — the federal minimum wage standard.

Are there plans to change the state’s minimum wage beyond 2022?

A 2006 voter-approved amendment to the Ohio Constitution ties minimum wage to inflation. So each year, the wage increases by a small amount to reflect the increase in the Consumer Price Index (which is used to calculate inflation).

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How should small business owners prepare for minimum wage increases?

Every business is different, so there isn’t one right way to prepare. Here are a few options you may want to consider:

  • Audit your expenses: Check your cash flow in detail and create a hiring plan you can afford. In some cases, you may find that hiring temporary workers or contract workers as needed is less expensive than taking on full-time staff.
  • Make sure you hire and keep the right employees: Replacing an employee costs a lot. You decrease the total cost associated with recruiting and training when you hire (and then retain) the right people. Look for candidates with good track records, who come recommended, and who fit in with the company culture. Once your employee is successfully onboarded, make sure you build a relationship and provide paths for growth; it makes it more likely that they will stay in their role.
  • Increase prices: This is a great way to increase cash flow. Customers are rarely happy with a price hike, but keep in mind that your competitors will be forced to do the same. Just make sure you keep track of trends, and don’t raise prices too high.
  • Update tech: Consider automating certain aspects of the work (like automatic payroll), and find ways to reduce production costs. Square Payroll software has a suite of custom payroll features to help reduce your overhead, all at small business pricing.

As always, to make sure your business is prepared and stays in compliance (get a free EIN), we recommend that you discuss these upcoming changes to the Ohio minimum wage with your accountant and lawyer. And be sure to check out our COVID-19 small business resources to help you and your staff navigate these uncertain times.

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