Carnegie Mellon University

Supervisors: Managing Your Team's Flexible Working Arrangements

Beginning January 1, 2023, staff work arrangements should be either fully in-person or hybrid with staff in person at least three days per week. Any exceptions are subject to approval.

As a supervisor, you are responsible for:

  • Deciding the work arrangements for your team
  • Communicating the work arrangements and expectations to your team
  • Assessing work arrangements on a regular basis and adjusting as necessary

You may need to manage differently in a hybrid work environment, and your team may need to work differently. This includes making adjustments to meeting structure and assessment of work. Your HR business partner is available to assist with any part of the process, including unique and complex situations with an individual’s work arrangement.

Assessing Flexible Working Arrangements

  1. Review the Flexible Work Arrangements Guidelines [pdf] to become familiar with the types of arrangements available.
  2. For each role that reports to you, consider the desired outcomes and the tasks/processes that support the achievement of those outcomes along with the type of flexible work arrangement that best supports the task/process. Take into account the specific position requirements, the impact on the department, the employee’s performance and whether the employee can effectively perform the duties of the position while away from campus.
  3. For fully remote work arrangements or hybrid work arrangements less than three days in person per week, you must initially obtain approval by:
    1. Academic units: department head, dean, and the Flexible Work Arrangements Committee
    2. Administrative units: vice president and the Flexible Work Arrangements Committee
  4. Once decisions are finalized and required approvals are received, notify the staff member of the arrangement and ensure they understand the expectations.

Exception Approval Process

There are some positions which may be appropriate to be done fully remotely, or hybrid with less than three days in person per week. These positions must be approved by the Flexible Work Arrangements Committee. To submit a position for consideration:

  1. Complete the Staff Flexible Work Arrangement Request Form [docx].
  2. Prior to submitting the form, obtain approval by:
    1. Academic units: department head and dean
    2. Administrative units: vice president
  3. Submit the completed form to your HR business partner.

Communicating Flexible Working Arrangements

  • Schedule a meeting with the employee to communicate the opportunity for a hybrid working arrangement and to ensure the employee understands when they are expected to work on site and the relevant workplace expectations.
  • Identify clear scheduling and space management solutions for the team and employees.
  • Remind the employee that their primary work location is a CMU work location, and there may be times that they are expected to be on site on days when they otherwise would be telecommuting.
  • Discuss core business hours. Is there a need and possibility for flexibility of work hours (e.g., flexible shifts due to child care needs, commute, etc.)?
  • Discuss how the employee will engage with team members/customers who may be working in a different environment. Does the employee have the tools to effectively engage with a distributed team or stakeholders (e.g., webcam, headset, access to conference rooms, virtual collaboration tools, etc.)?
  • Once confirmed, work with your HR business partner to document the telecommuting agreement and upload it to Workday.
  • Schedule a meeting with the employee to communicate the on-site work arrangement.
  • Discuss core work hours and expectations for on-site work.
  • Discuss how the employee will engage with stakeholders who may be working in a hybrid or remote work arrangement, if applicable.
  • Schedule a meeting with the employee to communicate the opportunity for a fully remote working arrangement and ensure the employee understands expectations.
  • Review university’s Business and Travel Expense Policy.
  • Discuss core business hours. Is there a need and possibility for flexibility of work hours (e.g., flexible shifts due to child care needs, commute, etc.)?
  • Discuss how the employee will engage with team members/customers who may be in a different environment. Does the employee have the tools to effectively engage with a distributed team or stakeholders (e.g., webcam, headset, access to conference rooms, virtual collaboration tools, etc.)?
  • Once confirmed, work with your HR business partner to document the remote work agreement and upload to Workday.