Outlined below are the basic procedures for proposing and managing flexible work arrangements. Regional campuses and departments may have additional procedures that must be followed, so check with your Dean or department head for unit-specific guidance. All FWA forms are administered through DocuSign.
1. Employee proposes arrangement using the Flexible Work Arrangement Request Form
Any eligible Kent State University employee may submit a request form for a flexible work arrangement to their supervisor. It is important that employees wishing to utilize a flexible work arrangement consider the impact and benefit on position responsibilities, business needs, and impact on colleagues/customers. Generally, the most successful flexible work arrangements are those that have been established with thoughtfulness and a plan to address concerns in advance. Access the FWA Request Form via the FWA landing page at www.kent.edu/hr/benefits/flexible-work-arrangement.
2. Supervisor reviews proposal
The supervisor reviews the proposal and consults with others for guidance when necessary (i.e. department/unit head, manager, HR-Employee Wellness representative). Employees must be meeting workplace expectations in order to be considered for a flexible work arrangement. Additionally, employees should demonstrate strong communication skills and the ability to perform work independently and accomplish tasks as assigned in a timely manner to be considered.
3. Supervisor and employee review the proposal together and make any adjustments as needed
To answer remaining questions and address any concerns, the supervisor and employee review and discuss the proposed arrangement. Particularly, they should discuss the employee’s duties and the expected results, including deadlines to complete tasks, expected quality and other criteria that might affect the successful completion of duties. The supervisor should also ask for clarification on the employee’s request if it is not specific enough.
4. Supervisor makes a determination and communicates decision to employee
The supervisor makes a determination. If the determination is to deny the request, the supervisor must first consult with an HR-Employee Wellness representative for review and guidance before issuing the denial. Once a decision has been reached, it is not grievable by the employee. An employee whose request is denied should ask questions to understand the reason for the decision and learn what adjustments may be needed in terms of work or performance, if applicable. The supervisor may set goals for the employee to reach and/or a timeframe to wait before submitting another request for review.
5. Supervisor and employee document the arrangement by finishing the Request Form in DocuSign
The supervisor and employee work together to complete the Flexible Work Arrangement Request Form in DocuSign, including indicating the employee’s new schedule. Both the employee and supervisor will provide electronic signatures and may print the final FWA for their records. An automated copy of the FWA will also be uploaded to the employee’s personnel record. If the employee is classified staff, the supervisor must update the timekeeping system to reflect their new schedule.
The supervisor and employee should consistently review the arrangement and make adjustments to address challenges. Establish regular intervals to evaluate the effectiveness of the arrangement. Schedule regular meetings to assess needs, discuss concerns and make any necessary adjustments. These reviews must be scheduled routinely (no less than annually) and may occur more frequently at the beginning of an arrangement. The arrangement may be discontinued at any time.
6. Procedures for requesting a new flexible work arrangement
An employee participating in a flexible work arrangement may want to make adjustments to that arrangement or request a new schedule entirely. In this instance, the employee should submit a new Flexible Work Arrangement Request Form, following steps 1-5 above. There is a prompt on the form for the employee and approver to indicate that the new arrangement will replace all previous FWAs. If the employee is classified hourly staff, the supervisor must update the timekeeping system to reflect the new schedule.
7. Procedures for terminating a flexible work arrangement
If an arrangement becomes unfeasible at any time, it may be discontinued at the discretion of either the employee or his/her supervisor, with reasonable notice thereof. If an employee or his/her supervisor makes a determination that the employee should return to the customary schedule for his/her position (i.e. the traditional hours for that position), a Flexible Work Arrangement Termination Form must be completed in DocuSign to establish a record of this change. This will effectively end any and all FWAs. If the employee is classified hourly staff, the supervisor must update the timekeeping system to reflect the customary schedule.