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UF/IFAS Human Resources, Diversity and Inclusion

UF/IFAS Human Resources, Diversity and Inclusion

IFAS Flexible Work Arrangements Policy

 


PURPOSE

To promote workplace satisfaction and efficiencies for the UF/IFAS community.


Policy

UF/IFAS recognizes the growing demands on staff and the increasing challenge of finding new and better ways to provide service and meet university goals. Workplace flexibility provides a way to successfully manage people, time, space, and workload. UF/IFAS supports flexible work arrangements to achieve a highly productive work environment that enables staff to balance work and personal needs while providing workforce predictability and stability. Workplace flexibility is a strategy for using resources most efficiently and providing the best environment for talent.


Definitions

Flexible Work Arrangements - Work schedules and/or alternative locations that fall outside of a unit’s traditional work schedule and are consistent. Examples are Flextime/Flexible weekly schedules, Compressed workweek, telecommuting/Alternate/Remote Work Location

Flextime/Flexible weekly schedules - Fixed starting/ending times that differ from the standard work schedule for your position. Example: Sunday – Thursday 7 AM – 4 PM instead of Monday – Friday 8 AM – 5 PM

Compressed workweek - 40-hour work week compressed into fewer than five workdays.

Telecommuting / Alternate/Remote Work Location - Some or all work hours are completed at a location other than the standard workplace. (Alternate Work/Remote Location Form required).

Unit appointing authority - Vice President/Dean, Director, Chair of the employing unit. Vice President/Dean or delegate has final signature authority.

 


Policy Details

This policy applies to flexible work arrangements for UF/IFAS staff.

 

  1. Flexible work arrangement requests are not the same as an occasional need for flexibility, or a permanent change to an employee's schedule.
  2. Eligibility

 a. All staff members employed by UF/IFAS (exempt/non-exempt TEAMS, and OPS) are eligible to request flexible work arrangements, however, not all positions lend themselves to flexible work.

b. The request for a flexible work arrangement must meet the needs, requirements, and constraints of both the unit and the staff member. Units should be consistent in the decision-making process regarding flexible work arrangement requests.

c. Individuals who meet or exceed performance standards are typically good candidates for flexible work arrangements. Individuals in corrective action or on a performance improvement plan may not be eligible for flexible work arrangements.

3. Guiding Principles

    a. Successful organizational leadership involves maximizing three top priorities regarding flexible work arrangements:

      i. Optimize and improve UF/IFAS operations and efficiencies

        ii. Shift to more progressive work culture to recruit and retain talent

          iii. Best practices for managing optimal office space

            b. A staff member’s first responsibility is to fulfill their job responsibilities. Performance expectations for staff members remain the same regardless of work schedule or location and supervisors have a responsibility for managing employee performance.

              c. Supervisors may collaborate with other supervisors in their unit to develop flexible work arrangements for individuals and units.

                d. Supervisors are encouraged to support staff pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees.

                  e. Requests for flexible work arrangements must be considered regardless of the reason for the request.

                    f. Supervisors cannot take adverse action against staff for asking for a flexible work arrangement or accessing the policy.

                      g. Flexible work arrangements are not guaranteed; they can be changed or be discontinued at any time.

                        h. Decision making processes regarding flexible work arrangement requests must be transparent.

                          i. Flexible work arrangements must be in compliance with university information technology security and data policies (https://it.ufl.edu/policies/), as well as all other university policies.

                            j. Staff members need the capability to use video conference technologies such as Zoom when they work at an alternative location and should follow an appropriate dress code (business casual).

                              k. Flexible work arrangements should not impact the total weekly hours worked by the employee. For temporary changes in employment status (e.g. reduction in FTE), please see http://hr.ufl.edu/manager-resources/recruitment-staffing/hiring-center/current- employees-status-changes/employment-status-modifications/.

                                l. Employees must ensure that the essential functions of the position can be completed in the remote work location, that the work space meets safety requirements and that confidential information is safeguarded.

                                m. This policy does not restrict the telecommuting option to certain days of the week. Supervisors should ensure that service levels are consistently maintained throughout the work week with no customer-discernable differences based on the day of the week.

                                n. Flexible work arrangements may be reviewed, revised, or in some circumstances revoked when a position, responsibilities, or supervisor changes.

                                o. University policies and standard workplace practices apply to flexible work arrangements, including those at a location different from the regular work site (e.g., UF/IFAS policies, department call-out for on-call employees, dress code, etc.)

                                 4. Equipment

                                  a. The telecommuting/remote work location option in this policy does not require the staff to use a UF owned device but it must be compatible with UF security requirements.

                                    b. It is not guaranteed that UF/IFAS will purchase equipment solely for remote This will be up to the discretion of the supervisor.

                                      c. A UF owned laptop or workstation can be used for telecommuting or for the Alternate Work Location. Please contact UF/IFAS IT support prior to taking the device off-campus.

                                        d. UF/IFAS IT is not responsible for the support of non-UF devices nor will they enter private residences (or locations not under the UF purview) to fix UF devices.

                                          e. It is the employee’s responsibility to bring UF devices back to campus for physical help. 

                                            f. UF/IFAS IT will not help with private internet connection services (ex: Cox, Comcast, etc.), that is solely the responsibility of the employee.

                                              g. Each staff member and supervisor must ensure their workstation or laptop is appropriate for telecommuting including video conference capabilities.

                                                h. Each staff member must ensure that equipment and files adhere to UF/IFAS security standards.


                                                PROCEDURE

                                                1. Establishing a Flexible Work Arrangement

                                                a. A staff member must submit a flexible work arrangement proposal to their supervisor. Supervisors should strive to review the proposal within two weeks of receipt.

                                                  b. The staff member and supervisor must discuss the flexible work arrangement request.

                                                   2. Determining Feasibility of and Approving Flexible Work Arrangements

                                                  a. Supervisors should consider the impact on the unit as well as other units’ workload and productivity; other faculty, staff, students, and customers; cost; and business needs.

                                                  b. Supervisors should communicate with the staff member(s) whether the flexible work arrangement is feasible and document the rationale for the decision within the two-week timeframe.

                                                  c. Once a flexible work arrangement is approved, supervisors should specify in writing when staff are expected to be present at the work site, how they are to be available during their offsite work time, and how they are to communicate their specific availability.

                                                  d. Upon approval by the supervisor, employee completes the alternate /remote work location form outlining the alternate work location arrangements. Forms are completed annually and may be designated for timeframes less than one year.

                                                  e. Supervisor should update the position description to reflect any permanent changes to the work schedule from standard business work hours. Temporary changes to the work schedule should be reflected in UF Engaged.

                                                  3. Managing Flexible Work Arrangements

                                                    a. Supervisors need to actively manage the flexible work arrangement to ensure success of the unit and the continued feasibility of the arrangement.

                                                      b. Supervisors should review the flexible work arrangement with the staff member at least once per quarter and document this review in the Quarterly Check-In.

                                                        c. Compressed and flexible work schedules may impact holiday and vacation time usage.

                                                        4. Discontinuing a Flexible Work Arrangement

                                                          a. Flexible work arrangements may be discontinued based on performance or the changing needs of the unit or staff member.

                                                            b. Flexible work arrangements may be reviewed and possibly discontinued based on feedback from team members in your unit.

                                                              c. When discontinuing a flexible work arrangement, please give at least four weeks’ notice if possible.

                                                               

                                                               

                                                              RESOURCES

                                                               

                                                              ALTERNATE WORK/REMOTE WORK LOCATION INFORMATION

                                                              The UFHR Alternative Work /Remote Work Location form is to be processed and approved according to UF policies for work conducted at remote work site locations. https://hr.ufl.edu/forms-policies/policies-managers/alternate-work-location/

                                                               

                                                              FLEX TIME INFORMATION

                                                              Information on UFHR’s flex time options: https://benefits.hr.ufl.edu/time-away/flextime/