Information for staff

The information on this page relates specifically to staff at the University.

Key information

  • HR has published arrangements for pay during this period
  • Most non-residential buildings on campus have been closed and almost all our staff are required to work from home, excluding those already identified by Deans and Heads of Professional Services. Following the Prime Ministers announcement on 10 May regarding easing lockdown restrictions, there are currently no changes to these arrangements. Please continue to operate as you were until further notice.
  • Most on-campus facilities and services are closed while others are operating a reduced service. For details, see campus facilities
  • All teaching for the remainder of this academic year will be delivered online and no in-person exams or assessments will take place this academic year

The rest of this page and additional pages linked below have full details and lots more information.

Top tip: there’s a lot of information on these pages, so remember you can use ctrl-F (Windows) or cmd-F (Mac) to search within the page for the information you need.

University information for staff

Additional information available for staff on this site:

If you have responsibility for supervising or supporting students, you should also read our information for students and specific guidance for:

For specific information and resources on teaching, learning and student progress, see guidance provided by the Academic Contingency Planning Group.

External information sources

In addition to University sources, you should also consult these official sources of information:

Pay

We have asked the majority of staff to work from home from now onwards.

  • If your role allows you to work from home, this will be recorded as working from home and you will continue to receive normal pay.
  • If you can’t work from home because of your role or technology, this will be recorded as Special Leave - Covid-19 and you will receive normal pay. Please fill in the online form, and be prepared and available to work from home if required and if equipment can be sourced.

If you are self-isolating but not unwell

You may need to self-isolate if you are displaying symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19), if you are in a high-risk category or if you care for a dependent in a high-risk category (see our self-isolation information below).

If you are well and in a role where you are able to work from home you will be expected to do so.

If you have been asked to continue working on campus to maintain essential services but need to self-isolate, liaise with your manager about what work can be undertaken at home.

You will be paid as detailed above but if sickness symptoms develop this should be reported to the University and recorded as sickness.

Please fill in the online form to let us know that you are self-isolating.

If you are ill with case of coronavirus (COVID-19)

This will be recorded as sickness and there is no expectation that you will work.

You will receive sick pay. If full sick pay allowance expires, continue on full pay (please note sickness directly related to COVID-19 will not be taken into account for sickness absence triggers under the Managing sickness absence policy).

Please fill in the online form to let us know that you have been diagnosed as having coronavirus (COVID-19). The information will be used for sickness reporting, and you will not need to complete the usual sickness absence forms, or obtain a fit-note from your GP.

If you cannot attend work because normal caring arrangements are interrupted, eg closure of a child's school or nursery

If you have young children at home when the schools are closed or have other caring responsibilities and are working from home, we know that you may be unable to commit to a full day of work, however if you are well and in a role where you are able to work from home we would ask you to do as much as you can.

You should, as far as practicable:

  • make alternative caring arrangements where possible
  • share caring responsibilities with others
  • undertake as much work as possible, around your caring responsibilities

You will be paid as detailed above.

The University recognises that normal school holiday arrangements will be disrupted, however we would continue to encourage staff to book and take full days of annual leave as they usually would throughout this period, as this is essential for your health and well-being.

If you have a front line role

We are continuing to ask the majority of staff to work from home.

However, we still have a need to provide some essential services on campus to support our students and other core services such as campus infrastructure, cleaning, security, catering and care support. If you are in one of these roles you will be provided with a letter to confirm this, that you can show to the authorities in the event you are stopped when travelling to and from work. It is essential that you also travel with your University ID badge so this can be verified against your letter. The letter is for your sole use and is limited to travel to and from work and should not be used for any other purpose.

Do not worry - you will continue to be paid whatever the situation.

The health and wellbeing of our staff and students remains a priority to us, and so if you have a front line role, but are classed as at increased risk of severe illness from Coronavirus please see 'If you are self-isolating but not unwell' above.

If you do not fall into this category but you have concerns about coming to work, please discuss this with your line manager or Head of Department. If you are worried and need to talk to someone confidentially, you can also contact Health Assured, our employee assistance service which provides advice and confidential counselling via a 24 hour helpline.

If you have a concern that you don’t feel comfortable discussing with your line manager you can contact HR on hr-enquiries@york.ac.uk, we will try to help you.

If you are still unsure if you need to come to work on campus, please speak to your line manager.

Working from home

We have published Guidance for working from home which includes information on:

  • software, hardware and internet connection
  • connecting to University services
  • advice for specific tasks eg recording a lecture, running a meeting
  • health and safety

Please also see HR’s guidance on working from home and resources to support your wellbeing while working remotely

We are continuing to ask the majority of staff to work from home.

  • If your role allows you to work from home, this will be recorded as working from home and you will continue to receive normal pay.
  • If you can’t work from home because of your role or technology, this will be recorded as Special Leave - Covid-19 and you will receive normal pay. Please fill in the online form, and be prepared and available to work from home if required and if equipment can be sourced.

IT Services are putting in place additional laptop support.

If you need to purchase equipment to work from home

If you need specialist equipment which you don’t have at home

If you are comfortable to work for short periods of time at home and take regular breaks, then please do so.

If you are unable to undertake your work from home, you should talk to your line manager in the first instance to see if any solutions can be found. If following this you cannot work from home and no alternative arrangements can be made, see the section on pay.

If you have a disability and using online tools is hard for you

We want to support all of our staff, and recognise that for some people we will need to make additional arrangements over this difficult period. Please discuss your needs with your line manager in the first instance. For example, it may be that a change to working arrangements is needed, or additional equipment, and your line manager may suggest a discussion with our occupational health service to ensure we consider how best to support you.

If you are unable to undertake your work from home, you should talk to your line manager in the first instance to see if any solutions can be found. If following this you cannot work from home and no alternative arrangements can be made, see the section on pay.

Self-isolation and staying at home

If you have symptoms of coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home and do not leave your house or flat for seven days from when your symptoms started.

Symptoms are defined by the Government as follows:

  • a high temperature
  • a new continuous cough

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital

You do not need to contact NHS 111 to tell them you're staying at home. You may be eligible for testing under the new Government requirements.

If your symptoms worsen during isolation or are no better after seven days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999. If you are a student on campus and you have an emergency please call (01904) 32 3333 (3333 from a university extension).

Further Staying at Home Guidance has been published by Public Health England including how to effectively manage self-isolation in different living environments. This contains important information to support the well-being of anyone self-isolating and those around them so please read this guidance.

Measures for those at increased risk

The recent Government advice for those aged 70 or older, those with underlying health conditions and those who are pregnant, continues to be that they should take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their household. Government Coronavirus FAQs

There are some clinical conditions which put people at even higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19, and PHE are strongly advising these individuals to rigorously follow shielding measures in order to keep themselves safe. Shielding is a measure to protect people who are clinically extremely vulnerable by minimising all interaction between those who are extremely vulnerable and others. For more information see the guidance on shielding and protecting people in this category.

Online form to report self-isolation

If you are self-isolating, please fill in our online form to allow us to gather data and understand the impact of COVID-19 more quickly than our standard absence reporting procedures allow. The form will not ask for any medical information, but will ask you to give dates you believe you will be self-isolating and whether you are well and able to work from home. The information will be used for business continuity and sick pay purposes. As the Government has relaxed the requirements for fit notes in relation to self-isolation and Covid-19, you will not be required to provide a fit-note and this form will be used in its place. Should this situation change the university webpages will be updated.

If you don't feel safe at home

Teaching, learning and assessments

All teaching for the remainder of this academic year will be delivered online and no in-person exams or assessments will take place this academic year. We have also taken the decision to cancel all first year undergraduate examinations.

Moving to online teaching

We are working towards updating and moving teaching materials online. We are also in the process of assessing the best digital tools in order to deliver seminars and tutorials via online platforms.

We will be working with all departments to assess how we can move to an online assessment process. We are committed to ensuring that all students can complete their academic programme and graduate or progress on time. We have advised students that they should continue to work on any assessments that have already been set and they should continue with their studies and revision as normal.

We have published information for students on our plans for online teaching and assessment

Ensuring quality

During our contingency planning, ensuring the quality of our degrees and awards is not impacted is a key consideration and we are doing all we can to maintain the value of the awards received by our students and they are in no way disadvantaged.

We are also working, through frequent engagement with UUK and the Russell Group to ensure that all relevant professional bodies understand and agree with any assessment alternatives we offer in order to meet their standards and requirements. Staff and students at universities in the UK and around the world are experiencing similar changes at short notice and we have been consulting with colleagues in Australia and Asia who have been experiencing this level of disruption and change so that we can ensure that we learn from their experiences.

Research

As a research intensive university, our community remains committed to the quality of our research, which is carried out to the highest standards. For many, the major difference will be online, home working. Please visit the dedicated staff research pages for more information.

We are seeking advice and clarification from all of our main funders, and you can visit our links to the latest information that funders are providing.

Researchers on a fixed-term contract related to a research grant

We would like to reassure staff that, to date, no funders have indicated an intention to terminate or curtail any such grants. All staff on research grants will continue to receive their salary in line with their current contract of employment. As background, we have created a table of information from research funders linking to the latest official guidance.

We appreciate that for some staff whose contracts depend on research grants, the requirement to work remotely has the potential to delay the completion of work eg laboratory-based research, research by public performance, etc., within a fixed overall window of external funding.

Research and Enterprise will continue to liaise with funders of research to clarify their intentions in respect of grants and staff affected in this way, and share all information as soon as we receive it on our staff research pages.

Please also see the email sent to all staff from the Vice-Chancellor on Thursday 23 April regarding fixed-term contracts and research grants.

Casual workers

You may have accepted a casual assignment through the Dashboard system but are unable to complete it because:

  • you are self-isolating in line with government guidelines, or
  • the University is not operating as normal and you are therefore unable to undertake the work

If this is the case, you will still be paid for the hours you were booked to work. We will check with your department how many hours they anticipated you would have work during your isolation, and you will then be paid for these hours.

Please note that this is only in relation to Covid-19. The normal sickness absence process remains in place for all other sickness which should be reported as usual and will be paid in accordance with your terms and conditions.

Please also see the email sent to all staff from the Vice-Chancellor on Thursday 23 April regarding fixed-term contracts.

Wellbeing

People and Organisational Development have pulled together resources to support your wellbeing while working remotely.

We understand that this is a very stressful situation for many people. We are monitoring the changing situation closely, providing regular updates to staff and implementing the Government’s medical recommendations. Accordingly, as the national picture evolves we will continue to provide an appropriate and proportionate response in line with Government advice.

If your concerns are medical please contact your GP/medical specialist or call NHS 111.

If you have any non-medical concerns, please discuss this with your line manager or Head of Department in the first instance. You may also wish to talk to Health Assured, our employee assistance service, which can provide advice and confidential counselling via a 24 hour helpline.

If you have a concern you do not feel comfortable discussing with your line manager then you contact HR on hr-enquiries@york.ac.uk.

Travel

We strongly recommend that you follow the latest government advice and do not travel unless it is essential.

Should you decide you still wish to travel overseas you will need to follow usual arrangements for booking time off. However if you don’t follow advice and find yourself unable to work as a consequence please be aware that this will have to be covered by annual leave or unpaid leave.

Business critical spend

In light of the financial challenges posed by Covid-19, we have shared our principles and assessment processes to guide how we manage our finances in the coming months. It follows a policy framework agreed at University Executive Board to limit spending to areas of critical need.

For more information see our Buying goods, services and equipment webpage and the email sent to all staff from the Vice-Chancellor on Thursday 23 April regarding expenditure control.

Additional contacts