» Coronavirus - Frequently Asked Questions by Staff & Administrators

General


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Do employees still need to report to work?

All employees will be working:  essential employees may be working onsite; non-essential employees may be working remotely as determined by your supervisor.  In both situations, please coordinate closely and frequently with your supervisor.

I or someone that I have recently interacted with have been diagnosed with COVID-19. Should I inform the University?

While under normal circumstances an employer is not allowed to ask an employee to disclose a medical condition, the Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act guidance issued by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) provides that during a pandemic, exceptions to the ADA's restrictions on employer health inquiries allow employers to inquire about an employee's potential infection with the disease and related travel. As such, we ask that if you or someone you have interacted with within the last 14 days have been diagnosed with COVID-19, you inform the appropriate people (indicated below) as soon as possible. This will allow us to inform potential colleagues who may have, in turn, been exposed. Please note that we will not disclose the identity of the infected person in this process nor will we provide information that will allow other employees to identify the infected individual.

Chapman students, faculty, staff, and administrators with a confirmed diagnosis: please contact Jacqueline Deats, Director of Student Health Center, at (714) 997-6851, as she is the central point of contact for all of Chapman community. Additionally, faculty, staff, and administrators should also contact Tim Frenchcampbell in the Office of Human Resources to arrange for necessary medical leaves.

My child's school is closed and I'm not able to work remotely because of childcare/home schooling issues. What can I do?

Employees should first talk to their supervisor about possible alternative work arrangements or schedule.  If no other arrangements can be made, the employee should record any hours/days missed for this reason using the Paid Not Working timekeeping code. The employee will still be responsible for completing their timesheet/ATO while using the Paid Not Working timekeeping code. 

If you are missing work for reasons unrelated to the current COVID-19 pandemic, for example, to bond with a newly born or adopted healthy baby under the age of one, a pre-scheduled surgery, or to care for an injured family member (injury not due to COVID-19), there are existing policies in place that should be used. Please contact Tim Frenchcampbell in the Office of Human Resources regarding Leave of Absence, Sick Leave, Family Sick Leave, and Vacation accruals, and/or other optional benefits such as State Disability and Paid Family Leave for self or family care issues unrelated to COVID-19.

Will employees experience delays in HR-related service offerings?

Probably, as will most departments operating – almost all for the first time – in a totally remote capacity.  Nonetheless, the Human Resources team is operational and will be able to offer its services:  some on-campus and most online/virtually.  We hope to keep delays at a minimum and will work closely with our campus colleagues should we encounter delays.  We are all learning together.

What is the best way to contact the people I work with in HR?

In the immediacy, we are recommending email as the best and most readily available means of connecting with all campus employees.  Once you hear back from your HR partners, they may advise you of additional means to connect with them.  Unsure of which HR service partner to contact?  Please use our Services Directory to assist you.

Will I have access to my office during this period of remote work?

Starting 2:00 pm on Tuesday, April 7th, until further notice, all building access will be restricted to assist in compliance with the shelter-at-home order. Please coordinate with your supervisor if you need to access your office.

What are the expectations for my work schedule/ hours?

Whether you are essential or non-essential, you are instructed to work closely with your supervisor.  Together, you will identify your hours, responsibilities (if reassigned), and other critical information.  Any overtime must be pre-approved by your supervisor.  At all times, you must report your hours in Chapman’s Self-Service timesheet.  Your pay will be interrupted if you fail to submit your timesheet.

For how long will non-essential personnel be working remotely?

We cannot predict at this time, but it is our sincere desire to resume campus operations before the end of the academic term (before May 31, 2020).

How do I know if my position is essential?

Your supervisor will advise you, consistent with Chapman’s Coronavirus Staff and Administrator Protocols available on the HR homepage. 

Health and Safety


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What should I do if I am working remotely and become too ill to work, or if I am caring for a family member that is seriously ill?

Inform your supervisor as soon as possible and use the Paid Not Working code on your time report to account for missed work days. If you cannot work due to a pre-scheduled or emergency surgery, or a health-related issue other than covid-19/flu-like symptoms, and will need more than five days, please contact Tim Frenchcampbell in the Office of Human Resources for additional guidance and to file a Leave.

What happens if I have a work-related injury while working remotely?

Employees who have work-related injuries must report those injuries to their supervisors as soon as possible.  The supervisor will then work with Tim Frenchcampbell in the Office of Human Resources to evaluate the claim in partnership with our worker's compensation insurance provider.  If the injury is severe, call 911 or proceed directly to urgent care.  If the injury is minor, for example, you can wait and can transport yourself to care, contact Tim Frenchcampbell to get authorized for care in the Concentra system, file a claim etc.  All injuries will require you to, fill out an online Risk Management incident report.

What if I’m injured while working remotely?

If the injury is severe, call 911 or proceed directly to urgent care.  If the injury is minor, for example, you can wait and can transport yourself to care, contact Tim Frenchcampbell to get authorized for care in the Concentra worker’s compensation system, file a claim, fill out an online Risk Management incident report, etc.

What should I do if I become hospitalized while working from home?

You or your designated representative should notify your supervisor as soon as practical.  Your supervisor will then discuss your situation with the appropriate parties in HR's Employee Relations department.

I have anxiety that is affecting my ability to work. What should I do?

We encourage you to contact the Life Assistance Program and/or seek medical guidance from your healthcare provider. For individuals who do not have health benefits or employee life assistance program benefits through Cigna but could benefit from talking with a qualified representative, the toll-free number, 866.912.1687, will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for as long as necessary. The service is open to anyone and free of charge to help people manage their stress and anxiety so they can continue to address their everyday needs. Callers may also receive referrals to community resources to help them with specific concerns, including financial and legal matters. You may also check out other free and low counseling options in Orange County.

I have/had medical accommodations on campus but need them while working remotely. What can I do?

Contact Tim Frenchcampbell as soon as you are aware of your need for accommodation. If possible, please provide a doctor's note with details of your accommodation request.  The note should not contain any privacy-protected information such as diagnosis, treatment plan, doctor's specialty, etc.

I am working remotely. Can I still have an ergonomic assessment done?

Our ergonomics expert from Hartfod has volunteered her services to perform remote ergonomic assessments of employees' home offices. These virtual consultations will help you use equipment that you already have at home to improve your positioning. If you are interested in setting up an appointment, please contact Tim Frenchcampbell in the Office of Human Resources.

Please note that while Chapman will not pay for ergonomic/home-office equipment, benefits-elegible employees can use their ThrivePass Wellness dollars to purchase inexpensive temporary equipment. Also, Discovery Benefits allows for reimbursement of a specialized or ergonomic chair with a doctor's note or prescription, or a medical necessity form.

How do I ensure my medical information is kept confidential, or what medical information to disclose if I experience coronavirus like symptoms?

Notify your supervisor if you are feeling unwell and stay home except to seek medical care. Your medical information is maintained confidentially consistent with the University's regular practices.

I’m having flu-like symptoms and cannot work remotely. What should I do?

You should self-isolate, stay at home, and contact your medical provider as soon as possible. Notify your supervisor and use "Paid Not Working" days as needed. Contact Tim Frenchcampbell for other resources if you miss more than 5 total days of work.

I’m having flu-like symptoms but can still work remotely. What should I do?

First and foremost, ensure that you are taking care of yourself by contacting your medical provider and following their guidance. If you are clear to perform remote work, your situation may qualify as a medical accommodation.  Contact Tim Frenchcampbell for more information.

When we go back to campus at some point will all the faculty and staff receive masks and wipes for classes and offices? (Town Hall Question)

We will follow applicable rules and recommendations from state and county health officials.

I have not been successful with moving around and exercising. Any way to set up a daily virtual workout or exercise routine we can do at home? Maybe this could be a live meeting to allow us engage other colleagues. (Town Hall Question)

We’re working on this now, and hope to have an online program ready soon. Stay tuned by checking the Working Remote Series schedule regularly. Also, consider taking advantage of the free mindfulness, meditation, and prayer sessions offered by the Fish Interfaith Center's Chapman Hope initiative.

Employment and Pay


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Will there be layoffs? Are my benefits or salary impacted?

Right now, we are committing to paying everyone through the end of May 31, 2020, and we believe campus operations will resume before then.  We will update you as things develop. During this time, both salary and benefits will continue.

When inputting "paid non work" on a timesheet, does this affect our sick or vacation PTO? (Town Hall Question)

When an employee reports paid time non-work hours, their sick or vacation accrual hours are not affected. The paid time non-work hours code should only be used when an employee is not able to perform work remotely. Currently, the code is available for use until May 31, 2020 only.

My job is not essential, and I can't work remotely, what happens to me now that our non-essential campus operations have gone fully remote?

Chapman University commits to paying you through May 31, 2020, or until the campus reopens, whichever occurs first.  We will continuously monitor the situation and provide updates on the Chapman Coronavirus website.

Will I still get paid if I’m an hourly employee and my internet connection goes down while I’m working from home?

Yes.  Please contact your supervisor for additional guidance on how to record your time to ensure payment during this outage.

Will I receive additional pay for any work I perform outside of my regular duties during a temporary campus closure?

Generally, no, but more individualized information is needed related to requests for additional pay. Please contact Abbie Kane to discuss further.

Will I experience a disruption to my direct deposit?

You should not experience a disruption to direct deposit. If you have recently updated information related to receiving funds electronically to your account(s), we recommend that you inquire with your banking institution directly.

Where can I pick up my paycheck if I don’t have direct deposit?

Physically picking up your paycheck is suspended temporarily.  All physical checks will be mailed to the address we have on file, please email payroll@chapman.edu if you have any questions. You can verify your current address in Chapman Self-Service. If your address is incorrect, please update it. It is also an opportunity to review your home phone number and emergency contacts.

Social Security Administration offices are closed due to the COVID-19 situation and I am unable to get an updated social security card that reflects my newly married status. Can I provide HR with my marriage certificate in the meantime instead of waiting on getting a new social security card? What can I do? (Town Hall Question)

Please contact the Payroll Office for guidance on this matter. And congratulations!

My contract with the university is usually renewed before the end of the fiscal year. Giving the hiring freeze in place, does my regular contract renewal has to go through the same process as the new hiring will be going through? (Town Hall Question)

The only contracts that are being renewed without question are those that are grant-funded.  If you are on a contract that is not grant-funded, please contact your manager and ask them to expedite the hiring pause exception process.

Working Remotely


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Where would I find additional information and resources related to working remotely?

Please visit IS&T’s Working Remotely and HR’s Guidance on Remote Work for Chapman Employees for information and resources.

Is there opportunity for permanent remote work, post-quarantine? (Town Hall Question)

While we will examine the possibility of extending remote work in some situations, we cannot make guarantees at this time.  We need to keep in mind that when normal operations resume, we will have in-person services for students, faculty, and staff.  What may work now may not work in the future.  Careful examination will be required, as will close consultation with the Department Head.

My supervisor is not answering emails or phone calls. How can I contact them?

Reach out to your next level supervisor and/or the lead administrative operations person in your department/school/college. 

Can our work hours be slightly more flexible during the quarantine? For those of us with kids at home, we need to cook meals, oversee online learning, acquire groceries, and assist elderly family members during business hours. It would help if we could use early morning hours and evening hours to do our jobs if needed. (Town Hall Question)

That is a discussion to have with your supervisor, particularly if you are an hourly employee.  Even when remote we must respect break periods, meal periods, and overtime approval processes. Employees and supervisors can contact Employee Relations if they'd like to discuss their particular situation further.

My job requires confidential conversations, and my remote working space doesn't allow for that. What should I do?

Utilize discernment and do your best within the context in which you are operating.  Consider headphones for video or audio calls, to keep the full conversation from being heard.

I don't have an internet connection at home, or my connection is lousy. What can I do?

Please visit IS&T’s Working Remotely page for information on free home internet offers.

Am I expected to use my personal cell phone for work while at home? If so, will I be reimbursed for this?

Given that we have email, VOIP, Microsoft Teams (that includes chat and video features), Skype for Business, and phone-forwarding, we do not anticipate such a requirement.

Coming/Returning to Campus


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Can I still come on campus if it's closed?

Starting 2:00 pm on Tuesday, April 7th, until further notice, all building access has been restricted to assist in compliance with the shelter-at-home order. However, we do understand the need for individual staff to process department mail, invoices, bills and paperwork.  If this is needed for your department, the department head should identify one individual and submit the required information to Sharon Krueger in Human Resources. For detailed directions, please refer to President Struppa's April 21st communication.

Will I receive a parking citation if I park in a structure that is inconsistent with the parking permit that I purchased?

Contact Public Safety, 24 Hour Dispatch at 714-997-6763

If Metrolink/OCTA stops service, and I need to work on campus, what should I do about parking?

Please register for the annual parking permit and select the payroll deduction payment option versus buying day passes.  If an employee transitions back to alternative transportation, they can e-mail parking@chapman.edu, and Parking Services will deactivate the permit and payroll deductions will stop.

If Metrolink stops service, will they give refunds?

Metrolink will start a reduced schedule as of 03.26.2020. They continue to work with public health officials and are monitoring the situation closely.

However, due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus), Metrolink is relaxing their Monthly Pass cancellation policy and will issue credit memos in the following instances:

  • If employees did not use their Monthly Pass in March, Metrolink will issue a credit for the full amount
  • If employees did use their pass for any part of the month, Metrolink will provide a prorated credit to be applied to your invoice for March passes

To receive a refund or credit, riders must provide rideshare@chapman.edu with the following information by April 1, 2020.

  • Date the Metrolink Monthly Pass was last used
  • In the case of paper tickets: write void and send a picture to rideshare@chapman.edu
  • In the case of Mobile App passes: provide the email address associated with the account

We will continue this relaxed cancellation policy until further notice. Metrolink is also posting updates to their website.

If I usually take Metrolink/OCTA and I want to drive instead to reduce potential exposure, what should I do about parking?

Please register for the annual parking permit and select the payroll deduction payment option versus buying day passes.  If an employee transitions back to alternative transportation, they can e-mail parking@chapman.edu, and Parking Services will deactivate the permit and payroll deductions will stop.  

There is a potential announcement that the President of the US is going to end stay-at-home practices early. If that happens, despite the continuous deaths and infection, will Chapman staff and students be required to return to campus? Do we risk losing our jobs if we feel unsafe to return until the virus impacts lessens? (Town Hall Question)

President Trump has recently acknowledged that the determination to end sheltering orders resides with the state Governors.  We will continue to work with state and county health officials as we assess operations.  As employees are recalled to campus, you will be expected to return.

At this point, by when should non-essential staff who are working from home be prepared to return to campus by? Is there a date that may be subject to change but that we can use to help prepare childcare, transportation, etc. (Town Hall Question)

We are working closely with state and county health officials and will update you as we learn more.  For now, the current campus restrictions remain in full effect.

Wellness and Benefits


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Can we still access our Wellness dollars through the ThrivePass program?

Yes, the portal is online and accessible. ThrivePass employees are working remotely and available during the shutdown for any customer service issues.

What if my gym closes and I’m on automatic payments?

Please contact your gym and ThrivePass Customer Service.  You may want to consider pausing or cancelling your automatic deductions, if that’s possible.

During these special circumstances, are any exceptions being made to how I can use my ThrivePass Wellness funds?

Yes. You are able to spend your current ThrivePass Wellness funds on these additional categories, effective immediately, until we resume regular campus operations.   These additional categories are temporary and will expire one we resume regular campus operations. 

  • Food Delivery: Grocery and food delivery service fees such as memberships fees or one-time fees. This does not include the cost for meals or groceries. 
  • Work from Home:
    • Home Office Equipment:  Equipment or gear for home office work such as desks, chairs, monitors, cords, keyboards, printers, and ergonomic accessories. 
    • Headphones: The cost to purchase headphones.  
    • Internet Stipend: Costs and fees associated with your home internet bill. 
    • Child Online Learning Tools: Costs associated with online educational curriculum resources to support children’s learning. This would not include games or toys. 

Are there funds available to purchase ergonomic chairs if we have issues with the types of chairs we have at our disposal at home? How about if we have had an ergonomic assessment done and we need a new equipment for our home-office? (Town Hall Question)

Chapman will not pay for ergonomic/home-office equipment. However, benefits-eligible employees can use their ThrivePass Wellness dollars to purchase inexpensive temporary equipment. Also, Discovery Benefits allows for reimbursement of a specialized or ergonomic chair with a doctor's note or prescription, or a medical necessity form.

Can we share accrued sick / vacation time with colleagues? (Town Hall Question)

No, we do not have such a program in place.

I had to cancel my vacation and I am at my max. Is there any thought to raise the maximum accrual for a while? (Town Hall Question)

The maximum vacation accrual remains 200.00 hours.  Employees approaching or exceeding that maximum have the option to take time-off during remote operations.

I have flex account for medical and day care, but schools are out and no expenses are being incurred to be claimed from Discovery benefit plan. How we can make use of these deductions? (Town Hall Question)

Both Healthcare and Dependent Care Plans operate on a 'use-it' or 'lose-it' basis. Funds must be used for charges incurred this calendar year. Both plans are available to update with a qualifying life event. To update your information, please contact Yesenia Castillo at ycastill@chapman.edu.

Can employees still take vacation days during this unique time? Any new protocol regarding vacation time? (Town Hall Question)

Yes, employees may use their accrued vacation hours. You should discuss with your supervisor and obtain permission to use vacation time first. This helps the supervisor assess business needs and to plan for your absence once approved.

Can we have Abbie's top 7 listed some place easy to access? (Town Hall Question)

The Total Rewards: Top 7 Things You Need to Know is now listed the main HR website, under Coronavirus-Related Information, within the Resources menu.

Has the University considered that if an employee is to be eligible for rehire within X amount of time, e.g. one year, they do not have to restart all of their vested benefits? (Town Hall Question)

Employees will be credited with prior service provided the elapsed time between separation from a regular status position and rehire date into a regular status position does not exceed 365 days, and the previous employment period was in excess of 180 days duration. Credit for prior service in such circumstances is implemented by advancing the previous hire date by the number of days equal to those in the break of service. For employees who return after 365 days, their rehire dates into a regular position will be their new service dates.

Summer Session


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Since Chapman is going to have online summer school, will staff continue to work remotely or will we be required to go back to office? (Town Hall Question)

We anticipate a fully remote environment for at least part of the Summer term.  We are working closely with state and county health officials and will update you as we learn more.  For now, the current campus restrictions remain in full effect.

Could it clarified what was meant about beginning summer sessions virtually? Not sure if this was referring to the first 6-week session from June 1-July 11? or the entire summer? (Town Hall Question)

As President Struppa advised the campus on April 10, summer sessions for both campuese will begin remotely.  We will assess if and when that could be modified.

Layoff and Furlough


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People are talking about some staff layoffs and some furloughs. What is the difference? Can you apply for unemployment if you are furloughed? If you are furloughed are you guaranteed your job back once a furlough ends? (Town Hall Question)

A furlough occurs when the employer requires employees to work less hours or take a certain amount of unpaid time-off.  Typically during a furlough, the employee retains health care benefits.  A layoff, on the other hand, is a temporary separation from employment.  The employee may retain health care benefits through COBRA coverage, and the employee may be eligible for state unemployment benefits.

If the University is forced to reduce staff, are we leaning toward furlough or lay-off? (Town Hall Question)

Regrettably, there is no way for us to answer this question at this time.

When can we expect more updates on what will happen after May 31st, specifically in terms of furlough or layoffs? (Town Hall Question)

As soon as we have additional information, we will advise.  President Struppa has committed to transparency on this subject.

How long will we continue to be paid when there is no work for us to do? (Town Hall Question)

President Struppa guaranteed all wages through May 31, 2020. What happens thereafter is still under consideration.

Miscellaneous


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The Independent Contract Agreement (ICA) request is pending with HR. Who may I contact?

Please contact Abbie Kane.

A campus event our department planned is now cancelled. The ICA I submitted for this future event remains pending in HR review. Are we still obligated to pay?

Please check with Legal Affairs regarding the agreement language. We recommend emailing Legal Affairs.

I am currently on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) through the end of next month. Will it be put on hold while I’m teleworking?

No. You are still accountable for meeting the performance expectations as outlined in the PIP.

My 180-day Introductory Period has been extended by 60 days. Will the days I am teleworking be counted towards the 60-day extension?

Yes

What is the status of the project evaluating titles, pay scales across the campus? When may we expect to learn about any changes? (Town Hall Question)

All consultant activity is frozen at this time.  This includes our compensation consultant. We hope to resume this effort when the interim measures are lifted.

Will HR sprint teams continue while in this remote environment? (Town Hall Question)

Although some of the sprint team design sessions have been delayed, we plan on starting those sessions in May.

Is HR going to do a survey to see what needs there are? (Town Hall Question)

HR uses a variety of formats to learn and adapt to campus needs.  While the format may not necessarily be a campus-wide survey, we will continue to assess our practices.