New to the 2017-20 Collective Bargaining Agreement with Metro is an addition to Article 24: Inclement Weather that provides for staff to telework during a weather event with authorization from management. Below is the article and tips and advice for starting the conversation with your manager and telework ideas.
Unfortunately not every request will be approved. Your union is here to help and we can provide coaching and advice on how to talk to your manager. And, please let us know if your request is denied – we can help then too!
Note: Management cannot require staff to telework due to building closure or inclement weather. This is an employee-driven request.
Have the conversation now.
A conversation and authorization to telework during an inclement weather event needs to happen in advance of the actual weather event. Agreement to work remotely should not happen as cars are sliding off roads and sidewalks are icing over.
Computer? Check. Internet access? Check.
You will be responsible for ensuring you have the equipment, tools and resources to work remotely without any cost or risk to Metro.
Come prepared to talk in detail of work to do remotely.
Lots of different kinds of tasks and work can be done remotely:
- report writing
- reading and feedback
- training and online learning
Salary and hourly staff can work remotely, both require accountability. When proposing tasks and projects to work on, provide an estimate of time you think is required to do the work. If request is approved, you should report back to your manager (with some detail) the work you completed and how many hours spent.
Follow network and public records rules.
Consider carefully how information is handled when you work remotely. Make sure all work products are saved on Metro servers and no unauthorized online tools are used to transfer files (sorry no Dropbox or other file sharing sites). Access to Metro networks from a remote location is not necessary for all types of work, but you must be aware of and follow public records rules and Metro policies. Likewise, Metro email must be used for Metro business.
Ask for approval in writing (like an email)
Once you have the conversation with your manager and approval is provided, make sure to document the agreement via email and ask for an approval in reply. Outline the work and tasks you propose to complete and how you will report hours worked and progress made. Include how you will notify your manager when you decide to work remotely (once request is approved in advance).
Checklist for inclement weather telework requests
- Confirmation you have equipment and resources needed.
- Outline work to be completed, estimate of hours and how you will report back.
- Amount of notice provided (for example, via email, night before, no later than 9pm)
- Assurance that network and records policies will be followed.
- Approval and information documented and agreed.
Article 24: Inclement Weather
Section 24.1 Upon determination of the Chief Operating Officer or the Chief Operating Officer's designee, that inclement weather conditions exist, and such determination results in the decision to open later than regularly scheduled hours or close any Metro site to send the staff home before the end of their normal shift, those employees shall receive pay for a regular shift. Employees who are absent or are scheduled to be absent on an approved leave when their worksite has been closed or opens later than regularly scheduled hours due to inclement weather will be subject to the use of such applicable leave.
Section 24.2 If an employee reasonably decides that weather conditions make it unsafe to report to their worksite, the employee may use accrued vacation, personal holidays, or unpaid leave for that shift.
Section 24.3 The employer may authorize teleworking in the event of an inclement weather event that does not require a closure of the employee’s worksite at management’s discretion.
Section 24.4 Employees who are designated as essential personnel, and are required to report to work when their worksite has been closed due to inclement weather, shall be compensated for hours worked at the overtime rate for a minimum of four (4) hours per incident, in addition to their regular pay.