Alternative Work Schedules
Date of Current Revision: July 2011
Responsible Officer: Director of Human Resources
The university is receptive to alternative work schedules that allow for the effective delivery of academic, student and administrative services. The purpose of this policy is to improve the quality of work life for university employees by allowing the exploration of work schedules that allow balancing work and family/personal responsibilities. It is also important to understand that, in all cases, the accomplishment of university-related work must be considered first in determining when, and if, alternative schedules may be used. It is possible that in some units, workloads may not permit flexible schedules or allow flexibility on a limited basis.
According to the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management, each agency head has the authority to "schedule reasonable and flexible work hours for employees as well as to provide convenient and consistent hours for citizens to transact business with the Commonwealth." The president of the university has delegated the authority to determine alternative work schedules to unit heads and assigned the responsibility to manage the university's policy regarding scheduling to the Human Resources Department.
Alternative Work Schedule:
For full-time, classified employees, a work schedule other than January through December, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Employees working less than 12 months which usually parallels the academic semesters.
Two classified employees voluntarily share the work responsibilities of one full-time, classified position.
Full-time schedule that allows flexibility and does not typically match the university's standard schedule of Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
This policy applies to all classified employees.
A unit head, dean and/or vice president shall make all decisions regarding the applicability of a flexible schedule. University management has the responsibility to identify positions as being designated for a less than 12-month schedule or for job sharing based on the financial, physical and service needs of the unit. For positions that may be best suited for telecommuting see JMU Policy 1332 Telecommuting.
Unit heads may allow employees to have flexible work hours providing that employees work at least 40 hours each regular workweek. Unit heads are responsible for ensuring office coverage during the university's ordinary business hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Unit heads have the authority to implement flexible work hours within a workweek based on the needs of the unit. Compressed, four-day workweeks or other alternative work schedules may be implemented as long as coverage is maintained.
5.2 Alternative Work Schedules
Only those units that must routinely provide services outside the traditional 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. work schedule may vary their weekly work schedule. Work schedules in these units may change from week-to-week, with employees having different days off during different weeks. Before implementing an alternative work schedule a unit head must first obtain approval from the division head.
6.1 Less Than 12-Month Schedules
- The employee's annual salary will be pro-rated for a less than 12-month schedule based on the length of the employment term.
- The employee will be paid over 24 pay periods to accommodate deductions for benefits during the non-working months.
- The employee who separates from the university or changes employment status before the end of the schedule must repay any overpayment of salary.
- The salary of an employee placed in a less than 12-month schedule must be at least equal to the legal minimum wage.
- Employees will continue to be eligible for healthcare benefits during the 12-month period. The university will pay the employer share of premiums and the employee portion will be processed as a payroll deduction; thus, full, half-monthly premiums will be deducted from the employee's salary each pay period.
- The employee will earn 12 months of retirement service credit and contributions will be made at the pro-rated salary rate.
- Life insurance will be in effect.
- All leave balances are frozen and there is no accrual of leave during the non-working period designated in the Less Than 12-month Schedule Agreement. .
- Current performance planning and evaluation policies will apply to these employees and salary increase eligibility will not be affected.
- Optional deductions continue as long as there are sufficient earnings to cover the deductions.
6.2 Implementing the Less Than 12-month Schedule
- A supervisor shall designate positions in a unit as less than 12-month schedules to provide flexible work scheduling and to maintain efficient operation of the university.
- The supervisor shall designate employees to be placed in a less than 12-month schedule based on the unit's needs.
- Layoff rights are not triggered by the conversion of positions to less than 12 months since the positions are not being abolished but are being changed to reflect the operational needs of the university.
- The supervisor, the employee and unit head, dean or vice president must sign the Less Than 12-Month Schedule Agreement before it can be implemented.
- Less Than 12-Month Appointment Agreement stating the beginning and ending dates of the term, along with a PAR Form must be sent to Human Resources to effect the change. The non-working months must fall at the end of the period. (i.e. working period September - June (working months), July and August (non-working months))
- Positions designated as less than 12-months should be determined before the beginning of the academic year. The employee should be informed as soon as possible, and not less than, 30 days before the effective date of the change.
- Units may not fill less than 12-month positions with wage employees during the non-working period of the less than 12-month employee.
- Employees placed in less than 12-month positions may accept wage employment at the university for a very specific purpose and for a period not to exceed two weeks.
- Employees placed in a less than 12-month position may not return to 12-month status until after the full term of the less than 12-month schedule.
6.3 Job Sharing
- Positions best suited for job sharing are those that can be broken into a series of tasks or projects that require limited coordination between the job sharers; however, any position may be individually assessed to determine its suitability for job sharing.
- In selecting positions for job sharing, evaluation and consideration should be given to the impact it will have on internal and external customer service, continuity of university operations, and impact to supervisors and other employees.
- Both parts of job sharing positions must have the same minimum qualifications and both incumbents must be able to meet all requirements.
- Positions proposed for job sharing must be reviewed and approved by the unit or division head.
Recruitment and Selection
- The recruitment notice shall specify that the position is 50% and scheduled for 20 hours per week.
- Applicants deemed fully qualified must be able to perform all the duties associated with the full position description and not selected responsibilities.
- The selection process for filling a job sharing position is the same as for filling a single-incumbent classified position.
- New employees entering a shared position will be employed under the starting pay guidelines at 50% of the approved rate.
- Current employees entering positions approved for job sharing will be paid 50% of their current annual rate.
- Non-exempt, classified employees in shared positions are subject to provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and must be paid accordingly.
- Job sharers earn a pro-rated amount for holidays and annual leave.
- Job sharers are given a pro-rated amount sick, family/personal leave and short- term disability benefits under the provision of the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program.
- Job sharers are eligible for life insurance and retirement.
- Job sharers are not eligible for health insurance.
- Employee Work Profiles must be created and given to each job sharer. The development of job standards and completion of performance evaluations must be completed for each employee in accordance with established policy (reference JMU Policy 1305 Performance Evaluation for Classified Staff).
Implementing Job Sharing
- All requests for job sharing must be initiated by the supervisor and submitted to the unit head, dean and division head as appropriate for approval.
- Employees who apply and are appointed to a shared classified position will work 50% of the time or 20 hours during the regular workweek.
- Employees appointed to the shared classified position will be covered by the rules applicable to the Virginia Personnel Act, including rights and privileges together with any limitations on less than full-time employment.
- This policy does not affect the status of filled part-time classified positions that are currently authorized at less than 40 hours per week.
- Wage employees are not eligible to participate in a shared position while continuing to work as a wage employee but may apply for any posted shared positions.
- Classified employees in shared positions cannot be hired as wage employees while participating in this program.
- Shared positions may return to full-time status at the discretion of the unit head, dean or division head. The full-time position must then be advertised and incumbents must apply through the normal recruitment process.
Division heads, deans, AVPs and unit heads are responsible for the application of this policy in their areas of responsibility.
The Director of Human Resources is responsible for overseeing the use of this policy and assisting division heads, deans and unit heads with its implementation.
Supervisors are responsible for periodically reviewing job-sharing arrangements to determine if they are meeting the needs of the employee while at the same time providing acceptable operational standards in the unit.
Sanctions will be commensurate with the severity and/or frequency of the offense and may include termination of employment.
This policy does not apply to faculty members.
The authority to interpret this policy rests with the president and is generally delegated to the Director Human Resources.
Previous version: August, 2009
Approved by the President: April, 2002
Alternative work schedules
Less Than 12-Month Schedule Agreement