University News

Update Related to Flexible Work

Earlier this week, human resources released an update on the university’s Modern Workplace Initiative and the effort to build a framework for hybrid and remote work. Last month, the Modern Workplace Initiative (MWI) Working Group submitted a report to the Chancellor, with recommendations outlining how flexible work can benefit the university and staff. The working group concluded that, with the implementation of guidelines and supports, a flexible work environment will better serve our employees while still enabling staff to provide top-tier services to our campus community. The working group, made up of staff members from across campus, including representatives of our AFSCME, PSU, and USA unions, spent several months evaluating best practices, examining peer institution processes, conducting a campus-wide survey of staff and supervisors and meeting with different campus populations to gain a better understanding of the benefits and impacts of flexible work arrangements (FWA).

The resulting report provides a number of recommendations that address issues of policy, equity, support, infrastructure and the need for ongoing review and assessment. I encourage you to review the highlights of the report, available on the MWI website, for an overview of the group’s recommendations.

After leadership approval, the next phase of the project will include building out an implementation plan, having in-depth discussions about flexible work with our staff unions, and creating guidelines around key aspects of flexible work, such as technology, workspaces and supervision. During this time, all current flexible work arrangements will be automatically extended through Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022. Temporary summer arrangements may be implemented during this time as well. New FWA documentation will only be required if the FWA is new or if there are changes to the arrangement. As a reminder, all FWAs are subject to conditions which should be reviewed by employees and supervisors.