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Work-At-Home

[Policy] Last Updated: October, 2016

I. PURPOSE

Provide guidelines for departments which permit civil service and supportive professional staff employees to work from home.

II. POLICY

General Provisions

It is important that clear guidelines and expectations be established between the department and employee prior to the start of the work from home arrangement. Employees approved to work-at-home remain obligated to comply with all University rules, policies, practices, and procedures. Violation of such rules, practices, and procedures may result in immediate termination of the arrangement and possible disciplinary action. For the purposes of this policy, work-at-home is defined as a situation where circumstances are deemed appropriate by the relevant University department and Human Resource Services for an employee of the University to be compensated for performing assigned responsibilities in a non-campus, non-University affiliated environment, typically their place of residence. Departments should consult with the Provost Office to determine if an undated TA-2 form is required and the Controllers Office for questions regarding travel reimbursement for conferences or meetings while working from home.

Guidelines

  1. Prior to establishing a work-at-home arrangement, the department should ensure that all of the following conditions are met:
    • There is a mutual agreement between the employee, supervisor, and applicable vice president
    • Those required duties of the job, as determined by the department, can be done at home
    • The operational needs of the department will still be met
    • The work required is considered official University business
    • The department has developed the required documentation outlined below in coordination, and with final approval by, Human Resource Services before the work-at-home arrangement begins
  2. To establish the work-at-home arrangement, the documentation outlined below is required and should be coordinated, with final approval by, Human Resource Services. A copy must be on file with Human Resource Services:
    • The duration of the arrangement, including dates and times. Since different scenarios necessitate the work-at-home arrangement, supervisors must adhere to University policy when it comes to creating schedules or the amount of time worked each day
    • Address and phone number of where the work will be performed so that the employee can be reached by the supervisor or colleagues for work-related issues
    • A description of the work being performed at home, including the type of information the employee will have access to from home
    • Confirmation that the employee has been made aware of the university Information Security Policy and applicable state and federal information security and privacy laws (e.g. FERPA and HIPPA) and the requirements to safeguard university information and that employee agrees to safequard the information in accordance with an information safeguard plan developed by the supervisor and employee and in consultation with IT security
    • A written explanation on how the supervisor will monitor and evaluate the work product and productivity of the work being performed
    • If University owned equipment is used at home, a record of the equipment submitted on the proper form to Inventory Control in Materials Management and a copy retained by the supervisor

      In the written explanation on how the supervisor will monitor and evaluate the work product and productivity the expectations regarding productivity, volume of work, quality, deadlines, and check-in requirements should be clearly communicated in writing and signed as part of the agreement.

  3. All initial written arrangements and paperwork must be completed, approved by both the employee and supervisor, and on file with Human Resource Services prior to any work beginning. Likewise, Human Resources should be notified by the supervisor of the extension, conclusion, or termination of the arrangement. This can be done by a memorandum to Human Resource Services. No work-at-home arrangements can be made that conflict with law, University Policy or Procedure, or that conflict with any Bargained Agreements or other terms of employment.
  4. As part of the approval process, Human Resource Services is responsible to ensure that all initial paperwork is completed correctly and notify the affected parties when work can begin. Human Resource Services will maintain all paperwork in the employees personnel file for record keeping and audit purposes.
  5. Additional expectations during the arrangement include the following:
    • The supervisor is responsible for monitoring and evaluating of the employee while the arrangement is in force
    • The supervisor is responsible for ensuring that all steps of the process are being followed and that appropriate documentation has been forwarded to Human Resource Services
    • The employee is required to complete the assigned work within the required deadlines
    • Employee may be required to be available and to participate in meetings and other official university functions related to their employment during the course of this arrangement. The University will make reasonable attempts to give the employee advance notice if he/she will need to be available for a meeting or other University function. Such reasonable notice should provide as much advance notice as possible., Determinations of whether circumstances were impractical to provide reasonable advance notice can be appealed to the applicable Vice President for this arrangement
    • The supervisor should provide regular feedback and communication to the employee
    • The employee should provide progress reports on a regular basis to their supervisor
    • In accordance with the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act, employees must document all hours spent on state business. Salaied employees working less than the required hours must document the appropriate benefit usage (e.g. sick or vacation time)
    • If the employee is hourly, the supervisor must accurately track hours worked and approve any overtime or compensatory time prior to the employee accruing the time. University policies provide that overtime or compensatory time occurs when an employee works over 7.5 hours in a day or 37.5 hours in a week. Hourly employees working less than the required hours must document the appropriate benefit usage (e.g. sick or vacation time)

      At the conclusion of the arrangement, an evaluation of the performance and effectiveness of the arrangement must be documented and included in the employee regular evaluation.

  6. A work at home arrangement may be amended or revoked by the University if it is in the best interests of the business and operations of the University. The University shall make reasonable efforts to give the employee advance notice of the amendment or revocation of the arrangement. Such reasonable notice should be no less than 10 days in advance, unless circumstances dictate that such advance notice is impractical. Determinations of whether circumstances were impractical to provide reasonable advance notice can be appealed to the applicable Vice President for this arrangement.

Recording of Hours Worked and Benefit Usage

Hourly and salaried non-exempt employees are required to record their hours worked on the Hourly Time Sheet and Benefit Usage Report and submit it to their supervisor for approval. The supervisor is responsible for certifying that the time submitted accurately reflects the hours worked. Request for time off and utilization of benefits must be requested and recorded in accordance with department requirements.

Salaried employees are required to record their benefit usage on the Salaried Employee Benefit Usage Form in accordance with University policy and submit it to their supervisor for approval. The supervisor is responsible for certifying that the usage reflected is accurate. Request for time off and utilization of benefits must be requested and recorded in accordance with department requirements.

Utilization of University Equipment, Supplies, and/or Records Off-Campus

If University-owned equipment is used at home, a record of the equipment will be submitted on the proper form to Inventory Control in Materials Managementand a copy retained by the supervisor. Originals or copies of university records must not be taken off campus without supervisor approval and without documenting the contents and the need. Supplies taken for use at home must be recorded for control purposes. If University equipment, data, or files are lost, stolen, or damaged, the employee agrees to immediately notify both the supervisor and Human Resources and participate in any investigation and, when appropriate, to include the University equipment in any associated home owner's insurance claim. Other costs associated with the arrangement will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

The University reserves the right to conduct and or require physical inspection of equipment, supplies, and/or records being used in the home. Upon reasonable notice, the employee may be required to arrange to bring the items in to the designated representatives for checking. University equipment, records, and access utilized by the employee during the arrangement are the responsibility of the employee. They must be safeguarded to ensure unauthorized disclosure, loss, or damage. Records and equipment no longer needed must be returned to the campus location and documented by the supervisor. If the individual resigns or terminates while on a work-at-home arrangement, it is the supervisor's responsibility to ensure return of all records and equipment.

Non-University equipment owned or provided by the employee is used at no risk to the University and employee agrees to maintain such equipment in accordance with University security standards if used for University business purposes. The employee is also responsible for all operating costs, home maintenance, or other incidental costs associated with working from the location in the home.

Injury During Work-at-Home Schedule

Workers' Compensation laws may apply if the employee is injured in the course of performing official duties at the work location in the home. The University is not liable, to the extent provided by law, for other property damage or bodily injury that results from participation in a work-at-home arrangement.


References

State Employees and Officials Ethics Act

State Property Control Act