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Remote Work Guidance

In the post-COVID workplace, Idaho State University has seen an increase in remote work requests and approvals. To help ISU employees and supervisors better understand the current policy and procedure for our university, the Human Resources team has prepared the following guidance. If you have any questions regarding this guidance or process, please contact HR (hr@isu.edu, (208) 282-2517).


Remote work options available at ISU
As determined by leadership and following the ISU Remote Work Policy (ISUPP 3120: Telecommuting), employees may be eligible for remote work, as defined below: 

  1. Full-time remote work: An employee works every workday at an alternative work location.
  2. Part-time remote work: An employee works one or more workdays at an alternative work location and the remainder of the week’s workdays at a ISU location (e.g., M-W alternative work location from home; Th-F work from ISU workplace). The schedule should be the same each week to facilitate meeting schedules and other office activities.
  3. Flexible remote work: An employee varies their work location throughout the week based on business and/or personal work/life needs. 


Remote Work Request Process
The process for requesting a remote work is intended to support the employee, supervisor, and leadership in:

  • Evaluating the suitability of a given role for any type of remote work, 
  • Determining the likelihood that the employee and team will be successful given a remote work scenario, and 
  • Facilitating a dialogue and agreement between an employee, supervisor, and the management chain about the expectations for the proposed remote work arrangement.


Additional things to consider for the employee and/or supervisor prior to submitting or approving an application for remote work:

  • If the request for remote work is due to a disability or medical condition, please contact Karina Mason Rorris, Disability Services Director, 208-282-2294 or karinarorris@isu.edu prior to submitting/approving the application.
  • Are the roles and duties of this position well suited for flexible, part-time or full-time remote work? 
    • Examples of roles and duties conducive to remote work: independent projects, minimal face-to-face communication requirements, ability to control and schedule workflow, etc.
    • Examples of roles and duties not conducive to remote work: frequent face-to-face interactions, direct (in-person) customer service, required physical presence in meetings or other collaborative efforts, care for or maintain campus, etc.
  • Are the needs of the position, employee, students, colleagues, and department fulfilled by this proposed remote work schedule? Consider the possible impact on team morale, flow of communication, and ability to collaborate with select team members telecommuting as a factor in decision making.
  • What equipment will be needed to complete necessary tasks off campus? 


Roles and Responsibilities for Employees, supervisors and leadership throughout the remote work request process include: 


  • Review the ISU Remote work policy (ISUPP 3120: Telecommuting) to familiarize yourself with remote work expectations, eligibility criteria, and limitations. 
  • Reflect on the demands of your position and preferred work environment - a helpful telecommuting self-assessment guide can be found below under Additional Resources.
  • Employees must consider direct impacts (ability to perform tasks required on campus, access to and data security, the needs of the unit, available technology, etc.), and indirect impacts (impacts to communication with team, ability to collaborate effectively with colleagues, ability to be reached during business hours, etc.). 
  • Prior to completing the Remote Work Application and Safety Checklist, HR suggests having an initial exploratory conversation with your supervisor to discuss your proposed remote work request. 
  • Complete the Remote Work Application and Safety Checklist and the form will automatically route to the supervisor you entered under PowerForm Signer Information for review and approval/denial. 



  • Review the ISU Remote work policy (ISUPP 3120: Telecommuting) to familiarize yourself with remote work expectations, eligibility criteria, and procedures. 
  • A supervisor’s role and responsibility in this process is to evaluate the request of the employee based on the suitability of the role and employee to be successful with a remote-work approach, and to consider if approving the request would continue to meet the mission of the unit and university without having a negative impact on the team and customers. As part of your review, some considerations include:
    • The suitability of the tasks and duties associated with the role for remote work
    • The impact the remote work arrangement may have on the team (productivity, communication, service delivery, etc.)
    • The technology needs of the position
    • Employee performance and likelihood of success in a remote work environment
    • Your ability to accurately supervise and measure the employee’s performance, outcomes, and time worked in a remote work setting?
  • Review the application, preview of the form linked here, and approve or deny the request based on eligibility criteria established in V.A. of the Telecommuting policy, ISUPP 3120. If you have concerns prior to approval, supervisors are encouraged to consult with their leadership regarding the request prior to making an approval/denial decision. 
  • If you approve of the proposed remote work arrangement, please sign the application and it will automatically route to hr@isu.edu for processing. 
  • If you have concerns about the proposed remote work arrangement or plan to deny the request, HR strongly recommends having a conversation with your employee to discuss your perspective, concerns, and/or your reasoning for the decision. 


Leadership/management chain: 

  • After receiving an approved Remote Work Application and Safety Checklist, HR will prepare and route a formal Remote Work Agreement (with the attached application including the proposed details of the arrangement) to the leadership chain, up to VP level, for final review, approval, and signature (DocuSign). 
  • The Remote Work Agreement will be routed based on leadership chain members submitted on the application by the direct supervisor. 
  • If the application or agreement is declined at this point in the process, please consult with the direct supervisor and  the requesting employee to give feedback on the decision. 


If the request is formally approved with a Remote Work Agreement signed by leadership: 

EmployeesAdhere to the agreement as approved, and communicate frequently with your supervisor on any upcoming impacts to the agreed upon schedule. Please keep in mind, as stated in the agreement, the approval to work remotely can be canceled at any time based on the needs of the employee or department.

Supervisors: Ensure good, quality communication and department updates are provided to all employees, including those working remotely. Touch base with your remote employee and regularly provide feedback on what is and isn’t going well. Formally review the agreement on an annual basis with the employee and other management as necessary or as decided by the department.

Please contact Human Resources, hr@isu.edu or (208)282-2517, for additional information and guidance. 


Additional Resources:

Telecommuting Self-Assessment
IT Knowledge Base -  Employee Remote Access Resources
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Leave of Absence Options