Distance-working arrangements effective immediately

Dear Faculty and Staff Colleagues,

Yesterday afternoon, Governor Roy Cooper announced that all K-12 public schools in North Carolina will close for an undetermined time period, beginning tomorrow (Monday, March 16). Wake Forest has actively been preparing for this situation and will immediately move to a distance-working arrangement for all colleagues whose work can be performed remotely.

Employees needed on campus to perform essential services will be contacted by their supervisors. Such essential employees are designated by the relevant vice president or dean, and individuals will be communicated with regarding their situation as decisions are made. Decisions regarding essential staff are subject to change as circumstances evolve. These colleagues will follow staggered schedules and workplace arrangements that promote appropriate social distancing, and they should discuss child care needs with their department.

All employees who are not designated to perform essential services, and whose work can be performed remotely, should work from home.

Employees who are not designated to provide essential services, and whose work cannot be performed remotely, should nonetheless remain at home. However, such employees may be asked to temporarily perform new duties, which may include essential services. Supervisors of these employees should contact staff members to confirm work expectations.

If you are uncertain about whether to report to campus, or if you are unable to work remotely effectively, discuss your individual circumstances with your unit head (e.g., department chair, dean, director, vice president).

While forms are customarily required to initiate remote work, they are being waived during these unprecedented circumstances. Staff who work on-site to provide essential services and those who can work remotely should continue to record their work time as usual. If a staff member is not providing essential services on-site and cannot work remotely, Wake Forest will keep the individual in a paid status based on regular work hours. Time should be recorded as regular work time.

In the coming week, our top priority will be supporting our faculty as they prepare to deliver courses remotely starting March 23. Deans are aligning various University resources to meet this need while practicing social distancing. Faculty, working with their dean’s office, should make arrangements that best enable them to meet their needs for preparing their courses for remote instruction.

Colleagues should follow the guidelines outlined on Information Systems’ IT Resources for Working and Teaching Remotely webpage and coordinate plans with their unit head (e.g., department chair, dean, director, vice president) or manager. Additionally, the “Keep Teaching” website is a valuable resource for faculty.

Expectations for all employees, whether essential and on campus or working remotely, are to maintain normal University working hours. Exceptions can be made by the appropriate vice president or dean.

The University remains open as there will be students who live off campus or have been approved to remain in campus housing accessing campus facilities. As such, core facilities will remain open but hours and access could be limited. Check the coronavirus website for more details.

We anticipate that circumstances will continue to change over the coming weeks, and we will need to make further decisions as conditions evolve. These arrangements will continue until further notice. Official policy concerning announcements in this message and additional information will be forthcoming on the Human Resources coronavirus webpage. We continue to support Wake Forest families and promote the health and safety of the University community. Thank you for your flexibility, patience and support.

Regards,

Hof Milam
Executive Vice President

Rogan Kersh
Provost