Flexible Work Policy


Benefits Eligible Employees

Policy Statement

Syracuse University recognizes that the implementation of a flexible work arrangement can often optimize the needs of the University and our staff and supports flex work arrangements where possible. The availability of flexible work arrangements varies by school, unit, and position based on business and operational needs; the approval or denial of a request for a flexible work arrangement is at the supervisor and senior leader’s discretion.

Supervisors are encouraged to work with staff and the deans of their school/college and/or senior vice presidents of their administrative unit to develop effective FWA plans that support the functions of the unit, department, school and University. The Office of Human Resources will partner with departments to coach and guide supervisors as well as eligible staff through the process.

The University expects and requires no reduction in service, quality of work or productivity due to the implementation of flexible work arrangements. The University reserves the right to approve or deny any flexible work arrangement and to modify or revoke such arrangements once approved. Any staff employee who is represented for collective bargaining purposes by a labor union shall only be eligible for a flexible work arrangement to the extent permitted by the collective bargaining agreement between the applicable union and the University.

The types of Flexible Work Arrangements available include:

  • Flextime/Staggered Shifts is an arrangement that allows flexibility for the working hours of eligible staff members. Staggering shift start and end times can help reduce office density throughout the day as well as allow staff members to alter the start and end times or lunch time of her/his work day around the standard University core hours. Flextime does not reduce the total number of hours worked in a given workweek.
  • Remote Work is an arrangement that allows eligible staff members who have demonstrated the ability to perform productively to work from a remote home location. These arrangements can be made in full or for partial days/weeks.
  • Compressed Work Schedule is an arrangement that allows eligible staff members to work a traditional 40-hour week over a shorter period of working days. The most common compressed workweek is a four-day, 10-hour schedule (4 days/40 hours or 4 days/37.5 hours).  Departments may consider compressed work weeks for their staff to further reduce office density.
  • Alternate-Day Arrangement is an arrangement that allows eligible staff members who can only do part of their job remotely to work in the office in partial on-site staffing arrangements on alternating days and/or weeks (e.g. half of a department’s staff will work on-site one week and remote the following week or alternating days such as half of staff on-site Monday, Wednesday and Friday and half of the staff in the office on Tuesday and Thursday).

Supervisors of non-exempt employees who are authorized to work remotely must accurately record hours of work for those employees, including start and stop times and meal breaks. Non-exempt employees cannot work over their approved hours unless they have supervisor pre-approval. Overtime must also be carefully documented to ensure compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and overtime regulations.

Out-of-pocket expenses for supplies available through the staff employee’s department will not normally be reimbursed. Therefore, when considering the implementation of a flexible work arrangement, supervisors must determine in advance, what resources the employee would require to perform their functions remotely, and confer with their Sr. HR Business Partner on whether and how to meet those resource needs, in order to ensure compliance with applicable state and federal regulations covering work-related reimbursement.  Supervisors should also consider any other applicable additional costs or liability in remote working from locations other than the University main campus in Syracuse when considering the implementation of a flexible work arrangement.

Eligible staff employees who are granted a remote work arrangement as part of a flexible work arrangement, must abide by all University policies, including but not limited to the University’s Guidelines for Ergonomic Workspaces; Hazardous Materials Considerations and Prohibitions; Computing and Electronic Communications, and Secure Remote Access policies; Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) Policy; Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA); and all policies that relate to confidential information; and take all other steps requested by the University in order to protect its interests and facilitate eligible staff working from home. Violations of this policy may result in revocation of the arrangement and/or disciplinary action by the University, up to and including discharge.

Policy Administration

Links to Procedures and Related Information

Date: April 2005
Amended: August 2008

                                                                                                                                                              Amended: August 2020