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Remote Work

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that, in many cases, flexible work arrangements such as working remotely can allow employees additional flexibility while continuing to meet Indiana University’s needs. Therefore, as IU returns to a more typical academic year in the fall of 2021, campuses and units may consider continuing remote work for some employees. If approved to do so by unit leaders, employees can work with their leaders to ensure remote work is successful for employees and the university by assessing flexible workplace options, managing expectations, and maintaining open communications.

The Frequently Asked Questions below answer basic questions regarding remote work options for staff and temporary employees. This page will be updated as needed.

Documentation of requests, approvals, and arrangements to work remotely beyond July 31, 2021 is required. The Remote Work Arrangement (RWA) System is used to request and document all remote work arrangements for staff and temporary employees across all campuses. Employees should review the Remote Work Policy and discuss remote work plans with their supervisor BEFORE submitting their remote work arrangement request.

RWA System FAQ

Please note the RWA System is not used to submit requests for remote work related to ADA accommodations. Requests for remote work as an accommodation for a disability will be addressed through the university’s accommodations request process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who determines whether remote work is an option?

Per the Remote Work for Staff and Temporary Employees policy, senior executive officers (the president, vice presidents, chancellors, the provost, and the CEO of the IU Alumni Association) make the overall decision as to whether and to what extent remote work is an option for their respective campuses or areas of responsibility. In addition, senior executive officers provide implementation guidance to unit leaders within their campuses or areas of responsibility.

Senior executive officers may delegate decision-making authority to deans, directors, or unit head leaders, who will then make decisions for their schools, programs, or units.

If my unit utilizes remote work, will everyone in the unit be eligible?

Remote work will not be available to all employees, either across campus or within a unit. The unit’s operational needs and the nature of each position within the unit will determine whether remote work is an option for an individual employee.

Why isn’t remote work an option for every employee?

Many positions are not suitable for remote work as it is either infeasible or does not deliver the same experience or service level as it would if it were performed on campus. For example, most research, instruction, clinical, performance, athletics, student- or public-facing activities, residence and dining, and buildings and grounds work will need to occur on campus and in person.

In addition, some campuses, schools, and unit leaders may determine that all or most of their employees need to work on campus to support team dynamics and a sense of belonging, or to preserve the fundamental in-person character of the university.

Can I perform some work remotely and some on campus?

If approved by your senior executive officer or those they delegate to, a hybrid of remote work and on-campus work is available. It is anticipated that the majority of employees who work remotely will do so in a hybrid fashion.

I worked remotely before March of 2020. Do I need to request to work remotely now?

Employees working remotely before March 2020 may be required by their unit to make a new request for a remote work arrangement.

Can I work remotely while providing care for my child or loved one?

Remote work is not a substitute for child or other dependent care. Remote employees must make or maintain childcare, adult care, or similar personal arrangements to allow them to focus on work assignments in the designated workspace during their established work hours.

Can I work remotely from another state or country?

Working from another state other than Indiana or from may have legal and tax implications. Please contact your supervisor to discuss this.

If an employee is physically working outside of the state of Indiana for more than 90 consecutive days within a 12 month period, the employee should notify and receive approval from their supervisor. The supervisor should then notify the department’s HR representative who will facilitate the processing of an eDoc to ensure proper out-of-state compliance for taxation, labor laws, etc. Certain states do require tax withholding for individuals living and working physically in their states once a certain time period has passed. Simply updating your mailing/home address via one.iu does NOT change physical work location for tax withholding purposes.

If you are working or plan to work remotely outside of the U.S., approval must be obtained from the General Counsel Office.

See more information about working outside of Indiana at the HR website.

What if my Internet connectivity is not reliable? Will I still be able to work remotely?

To be approved to work remotely, an employee must have reliable Internet service to support their work activities. Although a great deal of latitude was necessary while the campuses were impacted by the pandemic, employees who experienced Internet service problems should plan to work on campus once normal operations resume in the fall.

Will travel, utilities, data plans, phone service, parking, etc. be reimbursed if I work remotely?

Your unit will identify what, if any, expenses will be reimbursed within the parameters below:

  1. Daily mileage to/from work for employees who are less than 100% remote will not be reimbursed unless required by the state law where the employee works.
  2. All other travel reimbursement will be addressed in accordance with FIN-TRV-01, Travel.
  3. IU will not reimburse and units may not provide a subsidy for a remote employee’s utilities, data plans, or phone (cell or landline) except under applicable state law for remote employees who work outside the state of Indiana.
  4. IU will not reimburse and units may not provide a subsidy for a remote employee’s parking expenses. See campus-specific parking operations websites for options.

Can I be reimbursed for my mileage?

Mileage reimbursement is not required but is at the discretion of the department. Be sure to speak to your supervisor about travel time for meetings.

What is and what isn’t compensable travel time

If you are a non-exempt employee who is working remotely and there is a requirement for you to come to campus during your workday, the travel is considered work time and will be counted as hours worked. 

Travel time is compensable if your work occurred immediately before and continued immediately after the travel.

If you conduct any personal activity—running personal errands, running to the store or going to lunch during the travel time—the travel time is NOT compensable.

I have a question about equipment related to remote work, who do I speak to?

The Remote Work Policy can help employees and supervisors understand basic equipment needs that support remote work, but ultimately each unit determines the equipment supplied for remote workers. Please discuss equipment needs with your supervisor.

What if I’m an H-1B employee and I change work locations?

H-1B employees who are permitted to work remotely from a location other than initially reported in the H-1B petition should contact OIS for guidance on if an amendment to the H-1B petition and LCA are necessary due to the location change.

Do I have to submit a request to work remotely?

Documentation of your request, approval, and arrangement to work remotely is required. The first step is to discuss remote work opportunities with your unit leader. Employees should then enter their request using the Remote Work Arrangement System. An FAQ about the RWA System is also available.

Remote Work Arrangement System FAQ

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