HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy

UPDATE JUNE 30, 2021

Greetings Faculty and Staff,

As announced in the June 18 HMC Campus Reopening plans, the College recognizes potential benefits in offering greater flexibility in telecommuting in some areas. As a result, the College has developed a new six-month HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy and Program to assist in areas where remote work is possible and can be helpful to our community and our operations. The pilot program is effective July 1, 2021, and will remain in effect through December 31, 2021, at which point an assessment will be performed to determine the effectiveness and long-term future of the program. This program is intended to allow for remote work flexibility in various offices, where the nature of the work is conducive and potentially allows for better service options. Please note that there are many positions throughout the College where remote work will not be possible given the nature of the work required.

The existing COVID-19 Telecommuting Policy discontinues on June 30, 2021. Below are a few highlights to be aware of regarding this discontinuation:

  • The COVID-19 Telecommuting Allowance will end in August 2021, since the decision to work remotely will be completely voluntary by that time. Final COVID-19 Telecommuting Allowances will be paid on the August 26 paycheck for monthly paid faculty and staff and will be paid on the September 3 paycheck for bi-weekly staff.
  • All HMC equipment (chairs, computers, printers, desks, college office supplies, etc.) will need to be returned to campus by August 2, 2021. Staff members should work directly with their supervisors to plan, as necessary.

The new HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy and Program will be subject to specific parameters, including approval by supervisors and the area vice president, as well as a requirement that all staff members work on campus at least one day each week. Employees approved to work remotely are expected to comply with established College policies and management directives, which will include, but are not limited to:                                       

  •       Performing work on campus at least one day each week.
  •       Attending in person meetings as requested and/or required.                                
  •       Conducting regular ongoing communication with the supervisor and department members.  
  •       Fully participating in staff meetings (via phone or in person).                                                                  
  •       Submitting periodic written activity/status reports, as required by the supervisor.

Typically, employees will need to wait until after the successful completion of six months of service before being considered for a remote working arrangement. Such employees, who are approved for remote work by their vice president, are required to complete the remote work request form and obtain approval, prior to starting a remote work arrangement. Area vice president and HR approval is required for an exception to the requirement for six months service for new hires, prior to beginning a remote work arrangement.

Remote work is typically reserved for employees in exempt positions. However, in limited circumstances, nonexempt employees may be granted approval from a supervisor and area VP or President to work remotely. A nonexempt employee may work remotely with the understanding that the employee continues to be responsible for accurately recording daily work hours, start and stop times for meal periods and otherwise comply with College policies regarding employment and work hours such as rest breaks and overtime.

Harvey Mudd College retains the right in its sole discretion to determine if a position is appropriate for remote work and whether or not to approve an employee’s request.  Remote work is not an entitlement and the decision to grant an employee’s request is determined and approved on a case-by-case basis.  Prior approval to work remotely provided to an employee does not guarantee future requests will be approved. 

Next Steps/Action Required: We understand that many employees are telecommuting at the moment. Unless you hear otherwise from your supervisor or cabinet member, continue telecommuting for now. Having said that, if you are interested in participating in the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy and Program, please submit a new remote work agreement and obtain vice president approval as policies have changed. 

 If you have any questions, please contact your supervisor or vice president.

HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy

INTRODUCTION

Purpose

The purpose of the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy & Program is to provide guidelines for both supervisors and employees interested and approved to work remotely. The pilot program is subject to specific parameters, including approval by supervisors and the area vice president, as well as a requirement that those who work remotely must work on campus at least one day each work week. The exact number of days working on campus will be determined by each vice president.

Definitions

  1. Remote Work Arrangement: A remote work arrangement at HMC is an arrangement in which an employee performs their regular work at a remote workplace, for a specified portion of the workweek. The program may be utilized at the departmental vice president’s discretion and is not an employee benefit or right. The remote work arrangement is not a substitute for dependent care. The College expects that remote employees will arrange for dependent care at times they are scheduled to work remotely. It is the employees’ responsibility to ensure that they are fully able to complete their work assignments and to interact with the HMC community and others in an uninterrupted environment. In limited circumstances, nonrecurring remote work could involve ad-hoc special projects. As such any temporary arrangements for a remote work schedule may be handled informally by the department supervisor and vice president.
  2. Worksite: On the day(s) that employees are assigned to work on campus, the campus will be considered the worksite and on the days they are assigned to work remotely, the remote location will be considered the worksite.

Pilot Period

This six-month HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy and Program is anticipated to run from July 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021. Ongoing assessment will be performed to determine the effectiveness and long-term future of the program. The program will allow for remote work flexibility in various offices, upon approval of the vice president, where the nature of the work is conducive to remote work and potentially allows for better service options. 

DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY TO WORK REMOTELY

It is the responsibility of department managers and vice presidents to determine which employee positions are eligible for the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy and Program. Remote work is not appropriate for all employees and jobs, nor for all employees in the same or similar jobs and should be considered on a case-by-case basis. Student employees, temporary employees, and other similar positions are not eligible to work remotely under this policy.       

Some offices may choose to have an on-campus presence to provide operational support. Employees in these offices who are permitted to work remotely may be called back to the office to help provide short-term or rotational support at the supervisor’s discretion and consistent with applicable current health and safety guidelines. 

Remote work is typically reserved for employees in exempt positions. However, in limited circumstances, nonexempt employees may be granted approval from a supervisor and area VP or President to work remotely. A nonexempt employee may work remotely with the understanding that the employee continues to be responsible for accurately recording daily work hours, start and stop times for meal periods and otherwise comply with College policies regarding employment and work hours such as rest breaks and overtime.

POLICY OVERVIEW                                     

Employees interested in participating in the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Policy and Program must complete the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Agreement and submit for approval prior to starting a remote working arrangement. Typically, employees will need to wait until after the successful completion of six months of service before being considered for a remote working arrangement. Such employees, who are approved for remote work by their vice president, are required to complete the remote work request form and obtain approval, prior to starting a remote work arrangement. Area vice president and HR approval is required for an exception to the requirement for six months service for new hires, prior to beginning a remote work arrangement.

Employees must agree to comply with College rules, policies, practices, and instructions and understand that violation of such may result in the ending of the remote work arrangement and/or disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.  Employees who work remotely will be subject to the same policies as other employees, including policies relating to information security and data protection, as articulated in the Appropriate Use Policy. The staff policy handbook applies equally to staff working remotely and on campus.

Accidents, Injuries, Insurance and Workplace Safety

The employee must ensure that the home office is a separate space set aside to allow the employee to work efficiently. The employee is solely responsible for ensuring the safety of the alternative work location.  The remote work agreement requires an employee to confirm that the alternate work location is, to the best of the employee’s knowledge, free of recognized hazards that could cause physical harm. Employees are expected to practice the same safety habits they would use while at the College and to maintain safe conditions in their alternate work location. 

The College reserves the right to periodically inspect the employee’s alternate workspace. Any such inspection will be preceded by advance notice and an appointment will be scheduled.

Employees who work remotely are covered by the College’s Workers’ Compensation insurance if injured while performing official duties on campus or at the alternate work location. As such, employees are required to immediately report any injuries that occur while working by completing an accident report form available at www.hmc.edu/hrforms.

It is our expectation or understanding that you are not interacting with individuals in person at the remote work location in order to conduct College business. However, if this needs to occur, please seek approval in advance by your vice president. The employee shall be liable for any injuries that occur to third parties at or around the employee’s alternative work location. 

Employees who work remotely from their home should consult with their insurance company or broker to learn how working from home may affect their homeowner’s or renter’s insurance coverage.  Such coverage may not apply to work or business-related activities.  

For additional information and/or assistance in identifying risk factors present at your workstation as well as specific recommendations on how to address them, contact Theresa Lauer, Senior Director, Facilities, Emergency Preparedness and Safety. Email her at tlauer@hmc.edu or reach her by phone at 909.621.8226.             

Changes in Employment

The remote work agreement does not automatically transfer or continue with an employee who (a) accepts a different position at the College, (b) has a change in job duties, work schedule or other job-related functions/requirements, (c) apply to a position that is vacated and was previously approved for remote work, or (d) when there is a change in supervision. When there is change in supervisor or VP, the remote work arrangement will be reviewed by the new supervisor and VP to determine if the remote work arrangement will continue. Written approval by the new supervisor/new VP will be required.

Communication

Employees must have a method of receiving and responding to communications (messages, mail, etc.) from other staff, supervisors, and when applicable, students and/or the public. The employee must remain accessible during work hours (e.g., phone, email, video, chat etc.) and should establish and maintain effective communication and workflow among coworkers, department supervisor and customers or other constituents (e.g., students, faculty, etc.). 

The employee and the department supervisor should establish procedures for effective communication, including frequency of e-mails, other electronic communication and/or telephone contact. Supervisors should hold virtual work and social meetings to facilitate communication, teambuilding, and workflow. Supervisors should arrange for in-person meetings such as staff meetings to be held virtually also, so employees working remotely are not excluded. However, teleworking agreements should allow for the possibility that management may occasionally require everyone to be physically present.                    

Home Equipment and Expenses

The College does not pay for costs associated with working at home (e.g., electrical, gas, water, phone, internet, printing, etc.). It is our expectation that no HMC owned equipment or furniture be located at the employees’ home, except as otherwise authorized and approved by the supervisor and area vice president. 

If the employee determines that additional equipment is needed connected with this voluntary decision to work remotely, they are responsible for purchasing and maintaining this equipment.  Personal owned equipment must be configured in accordance with requirements and recommendations of CIS. HMC will not be responsible for operating costs, home maintenance, or any other incidental costs connected with the use of the employee’s residence as a remote work location. An employee who uses their own personal equipment for remote work purposes acknowledges and releases the College and their department from any and all responsibility for or liability regarding such personal equipment. Damage to any personal equipment being used remote work is generally the responsibility of the employee. Normal wear and tear on personal equipment being used for remote work is the responsibility of the employee. 

The employee may be entitled to reimbursement for authorized expenses incurred while conducting business for HMC, as provided for by applicable policies and regulations, and as approved by their supervisor and area VP. 

Hours of Work

Unless otherwise agreed, an employee’s regular hours and days of work will not change. The employee and their supervisor will agree on the number of days or hours of remote work to take place each week, the work schedule the employee will customarily maintain, and the manner and frequency of communication. When possible, flexibility in work schedules may be accommodated. 

The employee must agree to be accessible by phone or electronically within a reasonable time period during the agreed-upon work schedule. Other than regular brief breaks employees would likely take if they were on-site (generally less than 10 minutes, e.g., to use the restroom or stretch their legs, etc.) Remote workers must not report any period of time at home or elsewhere spent in activities other than work as work time; such a circumstance may constitute falsification of time records to receive pay for time not worked (theft of time) and could be grounds for immediate termination of employment. 

If an employee needs to modify the agreed-upon schedule, the employee must notify the supervisor in advance of the change. The employee is expected to perform duties and responsibilities during arranged work hours as he/she would do if the employee was on campus. Authorized campus closures or early release programs and their terms apply to eligible employees who work remotely. 

Departments are required to coordinate with the Human Resource Management contact for their department/business unit when considering remote work arrangements for an employee currently on leave. Employees on protected leave under state or federal law will be prohibited from working remotely.

Performance Evaluation

Performance expectations and evaluations are neither changed nor waived because of a remote work arrangement. An employee’s job performance will be evaluated in accordance with College guidelines and procedures.

As part of the on-going supervisory and management activities, the employee will discuss with their supervisor the specific work assignments, time expectations for completion of such assignments, and will review these goals and objectives as necessary. The employee’s assigned work will be completed according to procedures agreed upon by the supervisor in accordance with guidelines and standards set forth in the employee’s performance evaluation document, and in accordance with departmental and College policies and procedures.  

Privacy

The employee acknowledges that the College-provided electronic mail, all forms of electronic data communication systems, voice message systems, electronic storage systems, and computer systems utilized for College business are not private and may be monitored, reviewed, or searched by the College. 

Remote Work Out of State or Out of the Country

There are significant legal and tax implications when the worksite is outside of California and outside of the United States. The College does not currently permit remote work arrangements for out of state or out of country residents. 

Salary and Benefits

An employee’s salary, benefits, and job responsibilities will remain unchanged. In addition, employees approved for the program agree to comply with all existing position requirements of their regular onsite office setting as well as any newly established requirements in the future. There may be times employees will be asked to come to the office on a day when they are scheduled to work from home. Some of these instances include departmental staff meetings, training sessions, etc. Employees are required to attend these events on the College campus.                                                                                           

Security and Confidentiality of Information

Employees working in an alternate work location and their supervisors must adhere to all applicable security procedures in order to ensure confidentiality and security of data.  An employee’s work computer shall follow College guidelines for uses of hardware and software including virus protection software, licensing provisions, system security and passwords. The employee will protect all confidential College documents from unauthorized access. All products, documents and records that are used, developed, or revised while working remotely remain the property of Harvey Mudd College. 

Employees are responsible for appropriately securing their computers, when they step away from them in the event there are other people in the house that could access sensitive information, such as sensitive information (including Personally Identifiable Information) located on Workday. In accordance with the College’s Conflict of Interest Policy, an employee who works remotely is expected to use records, and materials for purposes of College business only, and to protect them against unauthorized or accidental access, use, modification, destruction, or disclosure. If there is unauthorized access/data breach, the employee is required to immediately notify their supervisor, area VP and the Administrator for Business Affairs and Risk Management.  

Sensitive College information should not be removed from any campus facilities without explicit written authorization by appropriate College management. Such information includes, but is not limited to paper files, paper employment and paper financial records. Sensitive information is governed by various state and federal laws and regulations as well as College policies, and includes any and all information that, if released, could cause harm to the College by virtue of such release. Therefore, employees, without exception, must adhere to such policies and regulations and maintain confidentiality of such information at all times.

Tax Implications

The employee is responsible for any tax and insurance consequences associated with the remote work agreement and for observing any municipal zoning ordinances regulating the performance of work at home for remote work purposes. The College will not provide tax guidance, nor will the College assume any additional tax liabilities on an employee’s behalf. Employees are encouraged to consult with a qualified tax professional to discuss these matters in greater depth.

Use of Leave

The employee is responsible for reporting absences and submitting requests for leave in accordance with department procedures and College policy.  Remote work is not to be used in place of using vacation, personal holiday, or sick leave to cover an absence.  However, in consultation with Human Resources, a supervisor may choose to offer remote work arrangements as an opportunity to accommodate an employee’s partial or full return to work while on or after a medical leave based on College policy and the criteria normally applied to decisions regarding the approval of remote work and requests for reasonable accommodation due to pregnancy and/or disability. 

REQUEST AND APPROVAL PROCESS

The employee obtains verbal approval from the employee’s immediate supervisor and Vice President.  The employee completes and submits the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Agreement. 

Human Resources staff will review and forward the agreement to the Vice President to confirm their approval or denial of the request. HR will notify the staff member once the agreement has been approved or denied. Final approval rests with the Vice President with the concurrence of the supervisor.  

AGREEMENT AND AMENDMENTS 

Conditions and terms of employment will not change for an employee participating in a remote work arrangement. Salary, benefits, vacation, leaves, and other rights and responsibilities will be equal to those of an employee working onsite. 

Remote employees are subject to and must abide by all College and departmental policies and procedures. College policies governing the use of College equipment, facilities, including but not limited to software, support services, internet, telephones, vehicle, etc. shall apply at the remote work site.  

Agreement

Nothing in this agreement shall be deemed to create any right, interest, or expectancy of continued employment.           

Amendments

The remote assignment may be amended, modified, or supplemented by the department or College, as necessary, to conform to the department’s needs or desires in connection with the remote employee’s alternative workplace arrangements, to conform to changes in the policy or procedure, or as otherwise necessary to address business needs or to comply with laws, rules, or regulations.                                                                          

ENDING OF A REMOTE WORK AGREEMENT 

The College reserves the right to change or end a Remote Work Request and Agreement at any time, without cause or advance notice.  Likewise, an employee may end a remote work agreement at any time by providing written notice to a supervisor.  An employee must return College equipment, records, and materials within three days of the ending of a remote work agreement.

HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Request Form

Upon obtaining written approval by your immediate supervisor and vice president, complete and submit the HMC Staff Pilot Remote Work Agreement. 

Human Resources staff will review and forward the agreement to the vice president to confirm their approval or denial of the request. HR will notify the staff member once the agreement has been approved or denied.

Final approval rests with the Vice President with the concurrence of the supervisor.  

COVID-19 Telecommuting Policy (Inactive June 30, 2021)

In recognition of the fact that many of our staff continue to telecommute, the Cabinet approved offering a new COVID-19 telecommuting allowance during the pandemic. The COVID-19 telecommuting allowance of $35 per month, is intended to help telecommuting staff to partially offset their personal costs used for business such as phone, internet, utilities, and the use of non-HMC owned peripherals, such as printers and other devices. The Allowance is taxable and will be included in the individual’s paycheck, processed through Workday.  Both exempt and non-exempt staff are eligible. 

Due to the California stay at home orders and the desire of the College to minimize presence on campus since March, we are making the allowance effective retroactively as of March 2020.  If you currently receive a mobile device allowance, this allowance will be discontinued effective November 30, 2020 and replaced by the COVID-19 Telecommuting Allowance. The COVID-19 Telecommuting allowance will be discontinued at a future date to be determined based on campus circumstances.

In order to receive the new COVID-19 telecommuting allowance, retroactive to March 2020, you must submit the new COVID-19 Telecommuting Request form by December 2, 2020. If you previously submitted a telecommuting agreement, you will still need to complete this new one because the policies have changed to authorize this new allowance

Thank you for your ongoing efforts throughout this challenging time. 

HMC’s COVID-19 telecommuting policy is a temporary arrangement whereby, during a crisis or emergency situation at the College, an employee is permitted or is asked to work from home or elsewhere off-site to provide for continuity of the College’s operations.

Criteria used to determine telecommuting may vary based on the nature of certain crises and the ultimate need to maintain business continuity.

DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY TO TELECOMMUTE

COVID-19 telecommuting is applicable for both exempt and non-exempt employees with job responsibilities that do not require them to work on-campus. However, a nonexempt employee may telecommute with the understanding that the employee continues to be responsible for accurately recording daily work hours, start and stop times for meal periods and otherwise comply with College policies regarding employment and work hours such as rest breaks and overtime.

Offices and department heads, in consultation with the appropriate Vice President, should determine which employees are eligible for COVID-19 telecommuting arrangements. Considerations for determining which positions are eligible for telecommuting include:

  • Whether the services an employee provides to the College can reasonably be provided when working off-site;
  • Whether requests for immediate on-campus assistance can be addressed on days on which the employee is telecommuting;
  • Whether an employee can carry out key duties without extensive face-to-face contact with supervisors, other employees, clients, or the public on campus;
  • Whether an employee can perform key duties without access to equipment, materials, and files that can only be accessed on campus;
  • The extent to which an employee can be effective and productive using technology, equipment, or other job aids to carry out their responsibilities from an off-campus location;
  • The extent to which an employee working off-site will not affect the ability of other College departments or offices/units within a department to provide services, instruction and/or to conduct business;
  • Whether an employee has emergency management responsibilities that require an on-campus presence; and
  • The extent to which security issues require the key duties to be conducted on campus.

Generally speaking, an employee will not be eligible to work offsite if they are required to be on-campus to carry out their job responsibilities.

Some offices may choose to have an on-campus presence to provide operational support. Employees in these offices who are permitted to telecommute may be called back to the office to help provide short term or rotational support at the supervisor’s discretion and consistent with applicable current health and safety guidelines.

Telecommuting is normally reserved for employees in exempt positions. However, a nonexempt employee may request and receive approval to telecommute with the understanding that the employee continues to be responsible for accurately recording daily work hours, start and stop times for meal periods and otherwise comply with College policies regarding employment and work hours such as rest breaks and overtime.

REQUEST AND APPROVAL PROCESS

  1. The employee obtains verbal approval from the employee’s immediate supervisor and Vice President.
  2. The employee completes and submits the Telecommuting Request and Agreement available at https://hmc.formstack.com/forms/covid19_telecommuting_agreement
  3. Human Resources staff will receive the completed form, review it and do the following:
    1. Send it back to the employee if more information or corrections are needed before the agreement is final.
    2. Confer with the Vice President if there are questions.
    3. Forward the agreement to the Vice President to confirm their approval or denial of the request.
    4. Forward the final agreement to the employee and confirm that the agreement has been approved or denied. Final approval rests with the Vice President with the concurrence of the supervisor.
  4. Harvey Mudd College retains the right in its sole discretion to determine if a position is appropriate for telecommuting and approve an employee’s request. Telecommuting is not an entitlement and the decision to grant an employee’s request is determined and approved on a case-by-case basis.  Prior approval to telecommute given to an employee does not guarantee future requests will be approved.

DURATION AND CONTINUATION

A request to telecommute may not exceed 6 months in duration from the date on which an approved agreement commences. Continuation of a telecommuting arrangement beyond the approved end date is neither automatic nor guaranteed and is subject to the processes outlined in section III – Request and Approval Process, unless otherwise communicated by the Office of Human Resources.  The employee will receive an email prior to the expiration of an agreement.

The College may call back employees to work on campus, at its sole discretion, once COVID-19 subsides or guidance from the appropriate public authorities allow for such a return

TERMINATION OF A TELECOMMUTING AGREEMENT

The College reserves the right to change or terminate a Telecommuting Request and Agreement at any time, without cause or advance notice.  Likewise, an employee may terminate a telecommuting agreement at any time by providing written notice to a supervisor.

An employee must return College equipment, records, and materials within three days of the termination of a telecommuting agreement.

GENERAL CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT WHILE TELECOMMUTING

Compliance with Policies – Employees must agree to comply with College rules, policies, practices and instructions and understand that violation of such may result in the termination of the telecommuting arrangement and/or disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal. Employees who telecommute will be subject to the same policies as other employees, including polices relating to information security and data protection.

Hours of Work – Unless otherwise agreed in the COVID-19 Telecommuting Request and Agreement, an employee’s regular hours and days of work will not change. If an employee needs to modify the agreed-upon schedule, the employee must notify the supervisor in advance of the change. The employee is expected to perform duties and responsibilities during work hours as he/she would do if the employee was on campus. Authorized campus closures or early release programs and their terms apply to eligible employees who telecommute.

Work Environment and Dependent Care – It is the responsibility of the employee to ensure that a proper work environment is maintained (e.g., dependent care arrangements are made so as not to interfere with work; personal disruptions, such as personal telephone calls and visitors are kept to a minimum, etc.). Furthermore, telecommuting is not intended as a substitute for child care or care for another adult. If a child or adult needs care during work time, another responsible individual is expected to be present. If dependent care circumstances change, the employee is required to notify the supervisor.

Attendance at Meetings – The employee is expected to attend all required meetings (telephone or web-based) and may be required to report for work-related events on or off-campus or to meet with the supervisor in the alternate location, if needed.

Performance Expectations – Performance expectations and evaluations are neither changed nor waived because of a telecommuting arrangement. An employee’s job performance will be evaluated in accordance with College guidelines and procedures.

Salary and Benefits – An employee’s salary and benefits will not be affected by telecommuting.

Tax Consequences – The employee is responsible for any tax and insurance consequences associated with the telecommuting agreement and for observing any municipal zoning ordinances regulating the performance of work at home for telecommuting purposes.

Use of Personal Vehicle – While telecommuting, an employee may not use his/her personal vehicle for College business unless specifically authorized by a supervisor.

Use of Leave – The employee is responsible for reporting absences and submitting requests for leave in accordance with department procedures and College policy. Telecommuting is not to be used in place of using vacation, personal holiday or sick leave to cover an absence.  However, in consultation with Human Resources, a supervisor may choose to offer telecommuting arrangements as an opportunity to accommodate an employee’s partial or full return to work while on or after a medical leave based on College policy and the criteria normally applied to decisions regarding the approval of telecommuting and requests for reasonable accommodation due to pregnancy and/or disability.

Changes in Employment – The Telecommuting Request and Agreement does not automatically transfer or continue with an employee who (a) accepts a different position at the College, (b) has a change in job duties, work schedule or other job-related functions/requirements, (c) apply to a position that is vacated and was previously approved for telecommuting, or (d) when there is a change in supervision.

Communication Responsibility – Telecommuters must have a method of receiving and responding to communications (messages, mail, etc.) from other staff, supervisors, and when applicable, students and/or the public.

Commuting Distance – While telecommuting, employees are expected to remain within normal commuting distance and not otherwise be traveling unless expressly permitted by supervisor and Vice President.

EXPENSES, EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES 

During the COVID-19 telecommuting period, employees will receive a taxable allowance of $35.00 per month, to cover the costs associated with cell phone, internet, utilities and the use of non HMC owned peripherals, such as printers and other devices. The amount of the allowance will be the same for all employees and is based on HMC’s analysis of services fees charged by vendors, adjusted by an estimated percentage of personal vs work use. The Allowance is taxable and will be included in the employees’ pay check, processed through Workday.

  1. Equipment may be owned and maintained by the employee or by the College. HMC will not be responsible for operating costs, home maintenance, or any other incidental costs including cost of utilities, associated with the use of the employee’s residence as a telecommuting location.
  2. The College will reimburse the employee for business supplies necessary for performing work assignments at the telecommuting location in accordance with College Policy and provided advance authorization has been obtained.
  3. In accordance with the College’s Conflict of Interest Policy, an employee who telecommutes is expected to use college-owned equipment, records, and materials for purposes of College business only, and to protect them against unauthorized or accidental access, use, modification, destruction, or disclosure. The employee is required to notify a supervisor of loss, damage, or unauthorized access at the earliest reasonable opportunity.

SECURITY OF INFORMATION

  1. Employees working in an alternate work location and their supervisors must adhere to all applicable security procedures in order to ensure confidentiality and security of data.
  2. An employee’s work computer shall be in compliance with College guidelines for uses of hardware and software including virus protection software, licensing provisions, system security and passwords.
  3. The employee will protect all confidential College documents from unauthorized access.
  4. All products, documents and records that are used, developed, or revised while telecommuting remain the property of Harvey Mudd College.
  5. The College may provide hardware and software support; however, internet connection is the responsibility of the employee.

TELECOMMUTING SAFETY

The employee is solely responsible for ensuring the safety of the alternative work location. The COVID-19 Telecommuting Request and Agreement requires an employee to confirm that the alternate work location is, to the best of the employee’s knowledge, free of recognized hazards that could cause physical harm.  Employees are expected to practice the same safety habits they would use while at the College and to maintain safe conditions in their alternate work location.

The College is legally obligated to provide its employees with a workplace that is free from hazards that might cause serious harm or injury and, therefore, the College reserves the right to periodically inspect the employee’s alternate work space. Any such inspection will be preceded by advance notice and an appointment will be scheduled.

Employees who telecommute are covered by the College’s Workers’ Compensation insurance if injured while performing official duties on campus or at the alternate work location. As such, employees are required to immediately report any injuries that occur while working by completing an accident report form available at www.hmc.edu/hrforms.

The employee shall be liable for any injuries that occur to third parties at or around the employee’s alternative work location.

SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. Provide clear direction and deadlines, interim check points and regular feedback.
  2. Schedule team meetings to include all telecommuters, considering the following:
    1. Frequency of team meetings
    2. Preferred methods of communication
    3. Progress reports
  3. Establish protocols for:
    1. Out-of-office messages
    2. Checking voicemail
    3. Use of tools such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams
    4. Response time to internal and external customers

COVID-19 Telecommuting Request Form (Inactive June 30, 2021)

The COVID-19 Telecommuting Request and Agreement form is available at: https://hmc.formstack.com/forms/covid19_telecommuting_agreement

In order to receive the new COVID-19 telecommuting allowance, retroactive to March 2020, you must submit the new COVID-19 Telecommuting Request form by December 2, 2020. If you previously submitted a telecommuting agreement, you will still need to complete this new one because the policies have changed to authorize this new allowance.

If you submit the new Telecommuting Agreement by December 2, 2020 then in your December paycheck, you will see an amount reflecting the December allowance. If you have not already been receiving a mobile allowance larger than $35 a month, you will also be receiving a one-time catch-up payment for March to November 2020 to account for any remaining amount due.

Going forward you will receive an allowance each month on your paycheck until we notify you of the discontinuation of this benefit.

Telecommuting Policy (Inactive)

SCOPE

Telecommuting provides employees with an opportunity to work from an alternative work place instead of their primary location at Harvey Mudd College. Telecommuting should be voluntary on the part of the employee (unless it is a condition of employment), must not interfere with regular office or department functions and services, benefit the department and College, and requires management approval. The quality of an employee’s work and services must not be compromised as a result of telecommuting.

Student Employees, Temporary Employees, and other similar positions are not eligible to telecommute.  All requests require Supervisor and Cabinet Member approval, prior to beginning any telecommuting arrangement, and at least 30 days in advance of the beginning date of the agreement.

DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY TO TELECOMMUTE

Telecommuting is normally reserved for employees in exempt positions. However, a nonexempt employee may request and receive approval to telecommute with the understanding that the employee continues to be responsible for accurately recording daily work hours, start and stop times for meal periods and otherwise comply with College policies regarding employment and work hours such as rest breaks and overtime.

REQUEST AND APPROVAL PROCESS

A. The employee obtains verbal approval from the employee’s immediate supervisor and Vice President at least 30 days in advance of the beginning date of the agreement. Depending on the employee’s position, a request to telecommute may require review by the President’s Cabinet to assess impact and determine whether the position is appropriate for a telecommuting agreement.

B. The employee completes and submits the Telecommuting Request and Agreement available at  https://hmc.formstack.com/forms/telecommuting_agreement.

C. Human Resources staff will receive the completed form, review it and do the following:

1. Send it back to the employee if more information or corrections are needed before the agreement is final.

2. Confer with the supervisor and/or Vice President if there are questions.

3. Forward the agreement to the supervisor and Vice President to confirm their approval or denial of the request.

4. Forward the final agreement to the employee and confirm that the agreement has been approved or denied. Final approval rests with the Vice President with the concurrence of the supervisor, subject to approval by the President’s Cabinet as considered necessary.

D. Harvey Mudd College retains the right in its sole discretion to determine if a position is appropriate for telecommuting and approve an employee’s request. Telecommuting is not an entitlement and the decision to grant an employee’s request is determined and approved on a case-by-case basis. Prior approval to telecommute given to an employee does not guarantee future requests will be approved.

Telecommuting Request Form (Inactive)

The Telecommuting Request and Agreement available at  https://hmc.formstack.com/forms/telecommuting_agreement.