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EIU Office of Internal Auditing

#191 - Remote Work Policy for Non-Negotiated Employees

Approved: November 7, 2022

Nomenclature changes: December 1, 2023

Monitor: President

Remote work strategies are intended to support the mission of the University and promote operational efficiencies. To achieve these goals, vice presidents and supervisors may develop strategic position-specific remote work assignments. When reviewing remote workplace proposals, vice presidents are required to prioritize the following guiding principles: 1. Student needs and services; 2. Operations & productivity; 3. Employee wellness & retention; and 4. Equity & Fairness.

Proposals must ensure that all offices are open and accessible for in-person activity during normal business hours and that an in-person supervisor be on campus (where appropriate). In addition to guiding principles, remote work plans need to address potential data/security risks, as well as the technology needs of a position or existing off site technology resources that are available to an individual employee. Further, the University recognizes that many duties and positions are inherently ineligible for remote work by the nature of their day-to-day responsibilities and in person obligations. As an example, personnel whose job functions involve high levels of personal interaction with EIU's core constituencies (students, faculty, staff, families, and the general public) will be required to work "in-person" on-campus (or at their assigned headquarters). Additionally, employees requiring direct supervision and/or employees with on-going performance concerns, including disciplinary issues, are ineligible to participate in remote work.

Remote work initiatives must be developed using existing resources as the University will not provide financial support for off campus internet access, wireless hot spots, and/or any home office expenses required to facilitate an appropriate work environment. Approved plans will need to demonstrate: 1.) employee accessibility during standard business hours, 2.) employee has access to a safe, suitable, and dedicated off-site workspace, 3.) university technology, records, and supplies are secure and university assets to be used at remote work site identified, 4) All or significant components of their daily work can be completed from a remote location, and 5.) The work being performed is considered official University business and demonstrates equal or greater productivity than that which occurs on campus. Please note that remote work is not intended to be a substitute for childcare, dependent care, or elder care. The employee shall continue to arrange for child or dependent care to the same extent as if the employee was working at the primary workplace.

The University currently recognizes two scenarios for implementing remote work: Off-site Designated Remote Headquarters and Short-term Remote Work. These two types of assignments are discussed below. In emergency or weather-related situations, existing IGPs or negotiated agreements provide specific guidance.

Compliance with University Policies & Board Regulation

All employees with approved remote work plans are required to comply all relevant Internal Governing Policies and Board Regulations including, but not limited to, timekeeping, leave reporting, inventory controls, appropriate use, and data security. Following standard practice, non-exempt employees participating in approved remote work shall not work overtime without prior approval.

Use of University Resources While Working Remotely

  • Neither confidential information nor original University records should be taken off campus.
  • Access to University resources through the EIU network should be done through an approved and secure method such as VPN.
  • A record of University-owned equipment used by the employee remotely should be developed and retained by the supervisor for inventory and control purposes.
  • Employees designated by the University administration may, with 24 hours' notice, visit the remote work site to examine workplace safety, University equipment, supplies, and records in possession of the employee.

Employee Responsibilities for University Equipment, Supplies, or Records at the remote location

  • Care of the University-owned equipment, supplies, and records is the responsibility of the employee.
  • Equipment owned or provided by the employee is used at no cost or risk to the University and is maintained by the employee. Exceptions to this should be prearranged, documented, and approved by the supervisor and the appropriate vice president.
  • The employee is responsible for operating costs, maintenance, or any other incidental cost (e.g. utilities) associated with the use of their residence or other location.

Lost, Stolen, or Damaged University Equipment

  • If University equipment is lost, stolen, or damaged, the employee agrees to participate in any investigation and to include the University equipment in their homeowners' insurance claim.

Injury During Predetermined Telecommuting Schedule

  • Workers' Compensation laws may apply if the employee is injured in the course of performing official duties at the alternative work location. The University is not liable for other property damage that results from participation in a telecommuting arrangement. Employees must submit the employee Remote Work Documentation Form in IGP #191.2 to receive authorization to engage in short-term remote work. These forms are submitted to the supervisor and to the respective Vice President.

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