Remote work policy


I. POLICY STATEMENT

MSU is a world class University with a broad, diverse and talented workforce.  MSU is also a residential university and as such, operates with many positions that require work to be performed at an MSU work site, and/or require in-person interaction with students, other employees, and/or members of the community.  Thus, many positions at the University will not be appropriate for a remote work arrangement.  However, where appropriate, and based on University-related business need, MSU supports a flexible workplace and will consider an employee’s reasonable request to work remotely as described in this policy.

II. SCOPE

This policy applies to: support staff, temporary/on-call employees, and student employees as well as prospective employees in these categories whose remote work site will be within the State of Michigan.  All remote work agreements where the remote work site is located outside the State of Michigan must be reviewed and approved under the Remote Work Outside of Michigan Policy before the Remote Work Agreement is submitted for review and approval.

III. DEFINITIONS

Remote Work Arrangement – any work arrangement where an employee performs work on a regularly scheduled basis at a pre-designated and approved Remote Work Site.

Michigan State University (MSU) Work Site – any university designated facility, or a university owned, leased, or operated facility.

Remote Work Site – the location at which the employee designates or identifies, and which will be the primary work site when not working at the MSU work site.

IV. POLICY

Where appropriate, and based on University-related business need, MSU supports a flexible workplace and will consider an employee’s reasonable request to work remotely as described in this policy. In situations involving employees requesting to work outside the State of Michigan, a separate approval process must be completed prior to the approval of the Remote Work Agreement. 

Remote work arrangements must be approved by the employee’s supervisor prior to the employee working at a designated primary remote work location.  Remote work arrangements must be documented with the completion of a Remote Work Agreement (link coming soon) and signed by both the employee and the supervisor.  Employees requesting to work outside the State of Michigan must receive additional approvals.  All pre-existing Remote Work Agreements of any type remain valid but should be replaced with agreements under this Remote Work Policy not later than July 1, 2022.

All remote work arrangements must follow the process outlined within this policy.

V. POLICY PROCEDURES

  1. The employee makes a request for a Remote Work Arrangement to their supervisor.
  2. The supervisor assesses the request and makes a final determination based on University-related business need. The supervisor should use the discussion guides to assist with this process.
  3. The employee and the supervisor each review the Remote Work Agreement and discuss the details of the remote work arrangement.
  4. The Remote Work Agreement is completed and agreed to by both the supervisor and the employee via the EBS system. Record of the agreement is maintained in the system as a part of the employee record.
  5. All remote work agreements where the primary remote work site is located outside the State of Michigan must be reviewed and approved under the Remote Work Outside of Michigan Policy before the Remote Work Agreement is submitted for review and approval.
  6. NOTE: A unit may implement internal processes requiring additional approvals.


TIME TRACKING

All non-exempt employees working remotely must continue to follow the applicable policy related to time tracking (i.e., the Support Staff Overtime and Time Tracking Policy) while working remotely.  Remote work arrangements do not alter the terms of such policies. 

TRAVEL

Departments should be aware that some travel time may be compensable under the FLSA between the remote work location and campus.  Supervisors of non-exempt employees should carefully consider how travel time will work for such employees and what will need to be paid when agreeing upon a remote work schedule.  In addition, some travel can also constitute taxable income regardless of exempt or non-exempt status under the FLSA.  Check here for guidance

REMOTE WORK AND ACCOMMODATIONS FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES
Any employee who believes they need an accommodation due to a disability under applicable law and university policy should contact the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities (RCPD) and register to begin the accommodation process.  See also: Disability and Reasonable Accommodation Policy.

REMOTE WORK SITE

It is imperative for the university to know the employee’s primary remote work site for both legal and compliance purposes.  It is the employee’s responsibility and obligation to maintain their approved primary remote work site in accordance with the Remote Work Agreement and will not change their primary remote work site without prior approval.  If the employee seeks to change their primary remote work site, the employee must seek the approval of the change with their supervisor.  Any change to a primary remote work site will require a new/updated Remote Work Agreement to be completed, approved, and signed by the supervisor and the employee.

It is the employee’s responsibility and obligation to promptly update their information in EBS and to notify the Payroll Office of their remote work site for both legal and compliance purposes.

 

RECORD RETENTION

All remote work agreements must be retained according to the university’s Human Resources Records Retention Schedule.

 

VI. VIOLATIONS

Failure to follow this policy and University expectations may result in ending a remote work arrangement. Employees who violate this policy may be subject to discipline.

 

VII. RELATED INFORMATION

 

VIII. HISTORY