Information and FAQ for managers and supervisors related to managing employees during COVID-19.
See https://covid19.ubc.ca/ for university wide updates.
Top 3 points for managers to consider
- Review, share, and seek information regularly. https://covid19.ubc.ca/ is the authoritative source of information, updates, and communications from the University to the community regarding COVID-19. This page provides additional information for managers and supervisors.
- Employees have the right to education about safe work. If an employee expresses concern about workplace safety, please contact your HR Advisor, Faculty Relations Senior Manager, Safety and Risk Services or Okanagan campus Health, Safety and Environment for guidance.
- Continue to follow guidelines from public health authorities. Promote and practice good hygiene habits, including hand washing. Convey the importance of staying home if ill.
Here are the latest updates from HR, including relevant UBC Broadcasts and updated FAQs.
- November 13, 2020: FAQs for students, faculty and staff updated to include new information about the status of events.
- November 10, 2020: UBC Broadcast: COVID-19: Update on Public Health Orders
- October 5, 2020: FAQs updated to include information about the notification process for confirmed cases of COVID-19.
The specific circumstances that may arise in your unit or department are contextual and may not be captured within these FAQs. Please contact your HR Advisor or Faculty Relations Senior Manager with further questions.
Right to refuse work
All employees have a right to refuse to perform unsafe work as long as it is based on a reasonable belief. However, should an employee advise you that they feel their working conditions are unsafe, please contact Safety and Risk Services or Okanagan campus Health, Safety and Environment prior to granting any accommodations or making adjustments to the employee’s work situation.
Temporary remote work arrangements
When considering a remote work arrangement with your employee, factors to consider include but are not limited to whether there is enough productive work that can be performed remotely; the impact to customer, student, and client services; and the impact on co-workers and direct reports. If only a fraction of the work cannot be completed remotely, managers may want to consider the feasibility of a rotating roster system where employees attend work to complete what cannot be done remotely. Anyone who is unable to work remotely should come to work as normal.
When working remotely employees are permitted to work anywhere within the province. Our obligations as an employer under the Occupational Health & Safety Regulation and the Workers’ Compensation Act extend to the workplace of an employee, including when they are working remotely. Please review the resources below.
View the Remote Work Arrangements page for guidelines, checklist agreement, and additional FAQ for employees.
Review these guidelines with your employee to ensure our obligations with respect to employee safety and information security are met. Guidelines apply to all employees, including those in the Okanagan, at Robson Square and at the hospital sites.
- For key technical resources, visit the UBC IT Guide to Working off Campus.
- For guidelines on proper workstation setup, visit the Working Remotely Ergonomics and the Supervisor’s Guide for Home Office Ergonomics.
- View additional questions relating to working from home with loaned equipment, purchasing new equipment, and T2200 Tax Forms.
Vacation and leaves
With the university’s remote work arrangements in place, and as COVID-19 related travel restrictions and physical distancing protocols continue, supervisors may need to consider how best to manage vacation requests, including any requests to cancel pre-scheduled vacations. Read the full memo from Marcia Buchholz, Interim Vice-President, Human Resources, that was distributed to the HR Networks community of practice on April 15, 2020.
For employee who will be away from work to care for family members with COVID-19, the provisions for paid leave to care for dependents can be found in the various employment agreements. You can also contact your HR Advisor or Faculty Relations Senior Manager.
Business continuity planning
UBC Safety and Risk Services are able to support you with your business continuity planning.
If your continuity planning requires work that is specialized, or requires your employees to be certified such that you will need to contract the work out if your staffing levels fall short of the identified critical service levels, please immediately contact Human Resources through your HR Advisor or Faculty Relations Senior Manager.
If the critical services you provide do not require trained or certified staff, and you are not able to re-deploy others within your unit to reach the appropriate critical service levels, you can contact UBC Hiring Solutions at 604.822.8107 for assistance in accessing additional staff. In the Okanagan, contact your Human Resources Advisor.
- HR Contacts
- UBCO Campus Operations and Risk Management
- UBCO Health, Safety and Environment
- UBCO Human Resources Advisors
- UBCO Workplace Reintegration and Accommodation Program
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