Discretionary Remote Work Procedure | KCTCS

Administrative Procedures

Discretionary Remote Work Procedure

Procedure Number: 2.21-P

Current Effective Date: 05/11/2021

Original Effective Date: 11/17/2020

Revision Dates: 05/11/2021

Revision Number: 1

Revision Summary: revision of some procedural items

Responsible Official: Vice President, Administrative Services

References: Administrative Policy 2.21


1. Purpose

This procedure implements Administrative Policy 2.21 Remote Work Policy.

2. Scope

This Procedure applies to all KCTCS employees and all KCTCS locations.

3. Procedure

  1. Remote Work Arrangements. The KCTCS President or the College President may permit remote work arrangements for employees in non-emergency situations.
    1. Remote work arrangements must be pre-planned and cannot be done randomly. Supervisors and employees should thoroughly analyze job descriptions, responsibilities, and how work is performed to determine if the position is suitable for remote work. Expectations should be clearly defined and signatures obtained on the Discretionary Remote Work Request Form prior to the beginning of a remote work arrangement. The remote work arrangement is subject to audit at least annually or more frequently if desired by the college.
    2. The employee’s remote work hours will conform to a schedule agreed upon by the employee and his or her supervisor. If such a schedule has not been agreed upon, the employee’s work hours will be assumed the same as before the employee began remote work.

    3. Remote work location must be approved by the supervisor. The typical remote work location will be employees’ homes.  However, the KCTCS President and/or the College President may direct or permit alternative locations for individuals based on the circumstances and the nature of work employees must conduct.  Supervisors will work with their direct reports to accommodate locations, but the best interests of KCTCS, the Colleges, students, employees, and our communities will dictate location.

    4. If remote work arrangements are approved for non-exempt employees, such employees shall follow all rules, regulations, policies and procedures related to wage and hour laws, including but not limited to taking meal breaks and rest periods.  Employees must notify their supervisors immediately if they are unable to take their meal or rest break in accordance with Administrative Policy 2.19 Attendance/Hours of Work.

    5. The remote work arrangement is not intended to replace the use of vacation or sick leave benefits.  When this policy is used to accommodate an employee’s medical condition, it must be done through the use of the interactive process under Administrative Policy 3.1.1 KCTCS Policy for Employing People with Disabilities. Employees who are sick should not work but should concentrate on returning to a healthy status.

    6. If the remote work arrangement is not effective or no longer feasible, the KCTCS President and/or the College President may terminate the remote work at any time. The institution shall make all attempts to provide reasonable notice of employees’ need to return to normal operating locations, but employees may not unduly delay or otherwise refuse to return once the remote work arrangement has ceased or subsided.  Employees who refuse to return, or who do not return in a timely manner, may be terminated.

    7. The employee requesting a remote work arrangement must:
      1. Submit a completed request for remote work using the prescribed Discretionary Remote Work Request Form; and,
      2. Have job duties that can, in the sole discretion of the institution, be effectively performed remotely while fully meeting the needs of all stakeholders; and,
      3. Not be working under a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP).
      4. Be able to make suggestions for change or request that the remote work arrangement be terminated.

  2. Employee Responsibilities During Remote Work.
    1. Employees must strictly comply with the work hours and work arrangements agreed upon with their supervisors. These expectations will be documented on the Discretionary Remote Work Request Form.

    2. Employees shall perform their duties in accordance with the guidelines and expectations of their supervisor during remote work.

    3. Employees are required to be on site for all department meetings, cross-department meetings, forums, and any other office gatherings as specified by the supervisor. Additionally, supervisors may require employees to perform tasks on site such as checking the mail, picking up or dropping off documents, etc.

    4. Employees working remotely must remain in communication with their supervisors and co-workers when work is expected to be performed. This communication may occur in the manner and using the technology available, such as: laptop or desktop computers, mobile phones, emails, messaging applications, or videoconferencing. Employees must maintain reasonable response times, the same as if they were working at their regular on-site work location.

    5. When employees are approved to work remotely, supervisors have an increased responsibility to ensure employees remain productive.

    6. All employees must be proficient with the technology required to complete their jobs at remote work locations. This technology includes but is not limited to learning platforms such as Blackboard, collaborative technologies, and any other resource essential to the continuity of services provided to students and other educational partners and clients.

    7. Employees remain subject to all applicable KCTCS policies and procedures during remote work arrangements unless specifically exempted by a directive of the KCTCS President or College President. Failure to follow policy and procedure or to meet work responsibilities may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.

  3. Discretionary Remote Work Request Form.
    1. Employees must complete and submit the Discretionary Remote Work Request Form to their supervisor.

    2. Supervisors will review the Discretionary Remote Work Request Form based on the continuity plans established by the unit and any directives of the KCTCS President and respective College Presidents.

    3. Employees’ supervisors will review the request and submit the form and their recommendation for approval or denial to their leadership/planning unit head for final review and approval.

    4. Once the request for remote work is approved or denied, the supervisor will communicate the decision to the employee. The approved copy of the Discretionary Remote Work Request Form will be provided to Human Resources for inclusion in the employee’s personnel file.

  4. Scheduling.
    1. The best interests of KCTCS, the Colleges, students, employees, and community stakeholders dictate the schedule employees shall work to ensure continuity of operations.

    2. Flexibility for both the unit and the employee are key. Remote work may be scheduled for the entire work week, for some days while other days will be in the office, and/or partial days remotely or in the office. These details will be established on the Discretionary Remote Work Request Form.

    3. Time and absence reporting shall continue in accordance with normal practices.

  5. Remote Work Workspace Configuration, Safety and Work-Related Illness and Injury.
    1. Employees working remotely are responsible for the configuration of and all expenses associated with establishing a remote workspace and all services for remote work unless other arrangements are made by the unit.

    2. The employee is responsible for providing adequate technology and infrastructure to perform requirements of the position. This is a non-reimbursable expense. Network personnel will grant Microsoft DirectAccess VPN accounts to those needing to access internal systems.

    3. The institution may provide specific tools/equipment for the employee to perform his/her current duties. This may include computer hardware, computer software, and other applicable equipment as deemed necessary.

    4. If the institution provides equipment, software, data supplies and/or furniture for use at the remote work location it is limited to authorized persons and for purposes relating to KCTCS business only. When the employee uses her/his own equipment, the employee is responsible for maintenance and repair of equipment.

    5. Office supplies will be provided by the institution as needed. Out-of-pocket expenses for other supplies will not be reimbursed unless by prior approval from the employee’s supervisor.

    6. The employee is solely responsible for ensuring the safety of the alternative work environment. This includes responsibility for creating and maintaining a safe and ergonomically appropriate space.

    7. If authorized for remote work, the employee’s remote workspace is considered an extension of the institution’s workspace. Therefore, KCTCS and its colleges may continue to be liable for job-related accidents and injuries that occur in the employee’s remote workspace during the employee’s agreed-upon work hours.

    8. KCTCS and its colleges assume no liability for injuries occurring in the employee’s remote workspace outside the agreed-upon work hours. KCTCS and its colleges are not liable for loss, destruction, or injury that may occur in or to the employee’s remote workspace. This includes family members, visitors, or others that may become injured within or around the employee’s remote workspace.

    9. Any employee who suffers a job-related injury or illness during remote work hours must report them promptly to their supervisor. Employees and supervisors are responsible for following their unit’s processes or procedures for reporting work related illness and injuries in accordance with Administrative Procedure 5.2.10-P.

  6. Information and Equipment Security.
    1. Regardless of location, Administrative Policy 4.2.5 Information and Information Technology Responsible Use Policy applies. Likewise, all other KCTCS and college policies and procedures for governing KCTCS work and workplace conduct remain in effect.

    2. Employees working remotely must follow appropriate policies and procedures to ensure the security and integrity of the information used in their work. Paper documents taken home must be securely maintained and promptly returned to the office when possible or according to the schedule established by the unit.

    3. Employees are responsible for observing computer and password security on their personal computers and remote internet access as well as any of the institution’s equipment taken to work remotely. Please refer to the Readiness for Remote Work guidance issued by KCTCS Technology Solutions.

    4. Failure to return the institution’s equipment may be cause for the institution to seek reimbursement for replacement costs or to take disciplinary action.