COVID-19: Essential Information

2.9 Scheduling and Hours of Operation

The College has many functional units with diverse objectives and operational needs. Employees should work with their supervisor and department head to understand the scheduling needs of the department and individual procedures related to hours and scheduling.

It is expected that administrative offices are open from 8:15 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. During standard office hours, it is expected that coverage of the office or department will be in place. A minimum of 30 minutes of unpaid time is included in a typical administrative employee's schedule to allow for a meal period. The schedules of non-administrative departments are determined by work needs. Departments may also provide one 15-minute break each day, scheduled by the supervisor.

Work schedules are subject to change, given seasonal and weekend demands. Any variation in the standard schedule for a given position must receive advance approval from the supervisor, who will advise all employees of their working hours.

Flexible Working Arrangements

In order to provide a supportive and flexible workplace, and in accordance with applicable Vermont law, eligible employees may request flexible working arrangements.

A “flexible working arrangement” means intermediate or long-term changes in the employee’s regular working arrangements, including changes in the number of days or hours worked, changes in the time the employee arrives at or departs from work, work from home, or job-sharing.

People need breaks and lunchtime in the middle of the day; therefore, employees are discouraged from reducing the workday by permanently eliminating lunch periods and breaks from their schedules.

“Flexible working arrangement” does not include vacation, routine scheduling of shifts, or another form of employee leave.

The College will discuss a request for a flexible working arrangement with the employee in good faith. Both the College and the employee may propose alternative arrangements during the discussion. The College will consider an eligible employee’s request for a flexible working arrangement and whether the request could be granted in a manner that is not inconsistent with its business operations, or its legal or contractual obligations.

As used in this policy, “inconsistent with business operations” includes:

(A)  The burden of additional costs to the College;

(B)  A detrimental effect on aggregate employee morale unrelated to discrimination or other unlawful employment practices;

(C)  A detrimental effect on the ability of the College to meet external demands;

(D)  An inability to reorganize work among existing staff;

(E)  An inability to recruit additional staff;

(F)  A detrimental impact on quality of work or performance;

(G) An insufficiency of work during the periods the employee proposes to work; and

(H)  Planned structural changes to the College

Employees wishing to make a request for a flexible working arrangements should initiate discussions with their supervisor and Human Resources. Approval is at the discretion of the area Vice President. The College will notify the employee of the decision regarding the request. If the request was submitted in writing, the College will state any complete or partial denial of the request in writing. Any agreements regarding arrangements to work from home on an ongoing basis will be formally documented.

Subject to the nature of the approved scheduling change, if an employee reduces the length of his/her workday, the use of Combined Time Off (CTO) may be approved to offset what would otherwise be a short-term reduction in compensation. Example: If an employee receives approval under this policy to leave at 4:00 p.m. during January and February in order to drive home before it became too dark on potentially icy roads, the employee could use an hour of CTO time each day to reduce the workday.

The College will periodically review and analyze the impact an alternative work schedule has on service levels and the orderly work of the department in order to determine if the alternative work schedule remains consistent with the College’s business, legal and contractual obligations. In addition, employees who receive approval for an alternative work arrangement much understand that they may need to alter their alternative schedule for important departmental meetings or College presentations.

The College will not retaliate against an employee for exercising his or her rights to request a flexible working arrangement.