March 16 Message to Faculty/Staff: Remote Work Guidance and Practices

To Our Faculty and Staff:

As noted in previous messages from the president and provost, Case Western Reserve is working to protect the health of the campus community during this rapidly expanding outbreak.

Part of that effort is transitioning every possible university function to remote operation. By significantly reducing the number of people in university buildings, we hope to lower the likelihood of transmission and, in turn, reduce (or at least delay) continued spread in our region.

We appreciate the extraordinary efforts that so many of you are making to help achieve this goal—and, at the same time, continue our mission of education and research. We realize these adjustments add to the already-high stress that COVID-19 has created, and urge that each of you do what you can to maintain your own well-being. We will be providing additional resources toward that end later that week.

For now, we want to provide specific guidance and information regarding this period of largely remote work. As of now, it applies through the end of the semester, but its length may change based on subsequent developments.

[Note: This guidance applies to all employees, regardless of funding source. This is an update from our March 16 email (as of March 17).]

Supervisor Responsibilities:

  • Decide whether employees’ duties require that they work on campus.
  • If they do not need to be on campus to perform their duties, communicate with employees regarding whether the nature of their duties require that they work remotely nearby (e.g. within Northeast Ohio) or whether their duties can be completed from an alternate location;
  • Communicate clearly the expectations for each employee working from home;
  • Confirm that employee assignments and other duties are completed well and on time;
  • Ensure the maintenance of an accurate account of hours worked (including that HCM is updated on those days where an employee works less than a full day);  
  • Ensure that non-exempt employees working on campus know that any overtime worked must be pre-approved in writing by supervisors; and
  • Ensure that employees are aware that Vice President for Human Resources Carolyn Gregory must pre-approve in writing any overtime for non-exempt employees working off-campus.

Employee Responsibilities:

  • Communicate with supervisors to ensure clarity regarding expectations;
  • Notify supervisors promptly of any changes that affect their ability to meet one or more expectations (e.g. illness, injury, power outage, etc.);
  • Communicate with supervisors if they would like to work somewhere other than Northeast Ohio before relocating for any period of time;
  • Enter an accurate count of hours worked; if less than a full day, be sure to update HCM promptly to reflect the hours worked;
  • For non-exempt employees working on campus, ask your supervisor about working overtime before doing so; and
  • For non-exempt employees working off campus, email your request to work overtime directly to Vice President Carolyn Gregory (, copying your supervisor on that message, before working overtime hours.


Exempt Employees (paid monthly):

  • Campus-essential employees (employees whose duties require they work on campus)
    • Receive compensatory time at a 1-to-1 basis (e.g. an exempt employee working eight hours on campus would receive eight hours of compensatory time as well).
    • This compensatory time is not vacation time. It will not be added to the employee’s vacation bank, nor is it considered “accrued.” Therefore, compensatory time will not be paid out if the employee leaves the university.
  • Employees working off campus
    • Receive regular pay.

Non-Exempt Employees (paid semi-monthly):

  • Campus-essential employees (employees whose duties require that they work on campus)
    • Receive compensation equal to 1½ of their regular pay (e.g. if an employee works for eight hours, compensation will be for 12 hours).
  • Employees working off campus
    • Receive compensation equal to their regular pay.

We recognize that both supervisors and employees will have questions about this guidance and other aspects of this transition. Please start by reviewing the Frequently Asked Questions page on the Human Resources website; if you have additional questions relating to remote work, please email or call 216.368.6964.

Carolyn Gregory
Vice President for Human Resources

Elizabeth “Libby” Keefer
Senior Vice President for Administration