Telework Guidelines for Summer 2023, and AY 2023-2024
I am pleased to inform you that the Division of Academic Affairs will continue to offer telework arrangements for applicable positions (noting that jobs that require a high-level of interaction with the public, coworkers, and students may not be conducive to telework). Below, please find a set of telework guidelines for the Summer 2023, and AY 2023-2024. As indicated, telework remains at the discretion of the employee’s supervisor as informed by unit-level policies. Telework agreements may change at any time in order to meet operational needs, address employee performance, or adapt to unexpected circumstances as they arise.
While this telework guidance is intended for staff, I want to acknowledge the importance of in person interactions among faculty as well. Most faculty roles require in-person teaching, conducting lab or field-based research, academic travel, and other on- and off-campus professional and service activities. Recognizing that faculty work has always required flexibility, I want to emphasize the value of faculty presence on campus for teaching, office hours, and meetings where in-person interactions can have important benefits for all.
This summer, I encourage all of you to take advantage of annual leave, and ask supervisors to be generous with flexible work options for employees. These options include flexible work hours, alternative work weeks (ie: four 10-hour days instead of five 8-hour days) and telework opportunities for eligible positions.
I appreciate your review of these guidelines and wish you all the best for a great summer!
Jennifer King Rice
Senior Vice President and Provost
SVPAAP Telework Criteria and Specific Guidelines
Summer 2023 and AY 2023-2024
These guidelines are to be used in conjunction with the University’s established procedures for telework (University Human Resources | » UMD Telework ). As currently prescribed by UHR guidelines, telework remains at the discretion of the employee’s supervisor as informed by unit-level policies. Formalized teleworking agreements can be offered based on the nature and scope of work for each position. When reviewing telework requests, supervisors should ensure that a schedule is in place so that campus offices are properly staffed in person during regular business hours, typically 8:30 a.m.- 5 p.m. Monday-Friday. Supervisors should also ensure through regular consultation that others in the unit who may rely on the presence of teleworking employees are not being adversely affected by any teleworking arrangement.
1. Consistent with the practice over the past year, the Division of Academic Affairs permits supervisors to grant telework for eligible staff positions no more than 2 days (or 40%) per week, understanding that some units, departments and colleges permit 0, 1 and 2 days of telework per week based on job responsibilities and operational needs.
2. A formal approved telework agreement must be completed for the period in which telework criteria and guidelines are provided by the Office of the Provost. Supervisors may elect to require telework agreements to be submitted each semester. Fully signed agreements should be kept on file in the unit. Adobe Sign or downloadable versions of the telework agreement can be accessed on UHR’s website. There are also a number of helpful resource documents for staff and supervisors on UHR’s website. Ongoing, frequent evaluation of how telework is impacting operations should be conducted.
3. Staff who telework may be requested/required to report to campus on a scheduled telework day. This may include in-person meetings.
4. Call forwarding should be enabled on telework days in order that the campus desk line rings and is answered in real time while teleworking. There are several set up options available. All calls are expected to be answered or returned in a timely manner.
5. During virtual meetings, employees are expected to turn on cameras (unless asked otherwise by the meeting host). Employees are expected to be dressed appropriately (i.e., comparable to what they would wear in the office) and should be engaged and active participants during virtual meetings.
6. Teleworking staff will commit to being reachable and accessible during set hours established in their agreement and as optimal for their work responsibilities (typically 8:30 a.m.- 5 p.m.).
7. Telework agreements may be changed at any time based on departmental need or supervisor’s request. Staff can also request a modification to the telework agreement. These agreements will be modified in the case of a performance review that does not rise to the level of meeting expectations.
8. As allowed within approved unit-level guidelines, exceptions to the 2-day limitation may be requested for review by an employee’s supervisor and authorized by unit the next level supervisor in the following circumstances:
- The positions involved are compatible with increased days of teleworking in effective operations, e.g., a staff member's duties call for limited, in-person interactions with the public, coworkers, and students;
- The exceptions can be applied fairly and consistently to similar cases within a unit; and
- Appropriate levels of staffing are available in the unit to meet the in-person needs of UMD’s students, staff, faculty, and community members.
9. Flexible work schedules (e.g., four 10-hour days, etc.) should not be conflated with telework eligibility and agreements, but can, in some cases, be approved by supervisors, where policies allow and when operationally feasible.
University approved accommodations are not subject to these guidelines. Continued telework options as a COVID-19 accommodation will be handled separately from longer-term teleworking arrangements through the University’s Accommodation process. Staff and supervisors should consult the information provided by UHR regarding disability accommodations for more information. in order to understand the Accommodation process.
Telework is not a solution to child care and elder care. Staff should refer to the University Human Resources benefits page to learn more about options for working caregivers.