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Employment at Smith (Chapter 2)

Work Schedules (Section 204)

Weekly Work Schedules

Positions are classified according to the number of hours worked each week. The following describes the usual weekly work schedules:

Full-time: Most full-time exempt administrative and non-exempt/administrative support positions at the college have a regular work schedule of 35 hours per week; however, some positions call for regular schedules of up to 40 hours a week. A staff member working 35 hours or more per week is considered "full-time."

Regular part-time: Staff members in this category work regular schedules of 17.5 or more hours per week—that is at least half of the normal full-time schedule of 35 hours per week. Even though the normal full-time schedule for similar positions may be 40 hours per week, any staff member working a regular schedule of 17.5 hours or more per week is considered regular part-time.

Less than half-time: Staff members in this category work regular schedules of less than 17.5 hours a week.

Annual Work Schedules

The operation of the college requires various annual work schedules based on the needs of each office or department. The following describe the usual annual work schedules:

Fiscal-year (12-Month) positions: Staff members in these positions are scheduled to work 12 months (52 weeks) from July 1 through June 30.

Academic-year positions: Staff members in academic-year positions work approximately nine months while the college is in session. The academic year begins the week before classes start in the fall and ends one full week after Commencement (generally 39 weeks).

Other: Most college positions have either fiscal-year or academic-year schedules. However, based on the special operational needs of specific offices or departments, a few employees work 9-1/2, 10, or 11 months (i.e., 40, 44, or 48 weeks) per year.

Normal Work Hours

The normal business hours for administrative offices are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. However, there are some departments in which the workday may begin at 8:00 a.m. or end at 5:00 p.m. All administrative offices are expected to be staffed and open for both phone and inperson visits during office hours. The normal work schedule is a seven-hour day (35 hours per week) with an unpaid lunch hour. Employees in some departments work a standard eight-hour day. For additional information, please refer to the section Flexible Work Schedules later on in this section.

Non-exempt (hourly) staff: The demands of the academic year or unusually heavy office workloads will, at times, require overtime work. Employees may be required to work overtime during such periods. Work performed by non-exempt staff beyond the normal daily work schedule must have the prior approval of the supervisor or department head.

Supervisors may on occasion require that employees change their normal weekly work schedule to accommodate the work load. When such adjustments are necessary, supervisors are expected to give reasonable advance notice.

Exempt (salaried) staff: Administrative positions, by the very nature of their duties and responsibilities, often require irregular and heavy work schedules. Occasional service in excess of the regular workweek and, in some assignments, regular service on evenings and weekends, may be expected, to meet the responsibilities of the position.

Administrative staff are expected to devote whatever time is necessary beyond their normal work schedule to complete their assigned duties, and are not normally eligible for compensatory time for hours worked in excess of 35 per week.

Summer Hours

The normal summer workday begins at 8 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m. Summer hours begin the second Monday after Commencement and end the week before the opening of college in September. However, some departments may continue to be open until 4:30 p.m. The Office of Human Resources publishes the specific dates of summer hours each year.

Attendance, Punctuality, and Reporting of Absence

You are expected to be present and on time at the start of your scheduled workday. If you are unable to report to work, or are going to be late for any reason, you should notify your supervisor promptly and advise him/her of the duration of your absence. Except in the case of serious illness or injury, you are expected to call your supervisor each day you will be absent. Frequent tardiness and unscheduled absences from work will be cause for disciplinary action.

If you are absent for more than five consecutive days due to illness, accident, or surgery, or at other times at the discretion of the college, the college reserves the right to require you to submit a doctor's statement or other medical evidence indicating your degree of fitness and your ability to resume the full duties of your position.

Lunch Hours

For full-time staff members there is a daily one-hour unpaid lunch break scheduled by the department head as determined by the needs of that office. The standard lunch-hour period falls between 12 and 2 p.m. Where possible, lunch periods are staggered to provide continuous coverage in offices that must be open all day. Lunch hours may not be shortened or accumulated for additional time off.

For staff members who work a daily part-time schedule, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts mandates that a 30-minute unpaid break must be made available after six hours of work.

Rest Periods

Although department policies vary, mid-morning and mid-afternoon rest periods of 10 to 15 minutes are normally provided for employees whose work does not allow them to move about freely. However, scheduled rest periods are not considered necessary for employees who are free to move about, obtain refreshments, or attend to comfort needs at will. Check with your supervisor about the rest period policy in your department.

Paid rest periods or breaks are no more than 10 to 15 minutes; supervisors are responsible for scheduling breaks convenient to department operations. There should always be adequate coverage of the phones in the office during break times. Breaks may not be used to extend a meal period nor can they be taken at the beginning of your work schedule. If you are unable to take a break, you cannot accumulate the time for use at a later date.

Release Time for College-Related Activities

With the approval of your supervisor, you may be granted a reasonable amount of time off with pay to attend committee or informational meetings, community forums, training workshops, and other college-sponsored events that are held during your regularly scheduled work hours. Released time for college-related activities must not interfere with your ability to complete your work assignments or adversely affect department operations.

Working at Home

Non-exempt employees generally may not take college work home or work at home, either during or after regular work hours. Exempt staff may, and are sometimes expected to, take work home to meet the responsibilities of their positions.

Flexible Work Schedules

The college encourages flexibility in work schedules to help employees meet personal/family needs and thereby retain valued employees while meeting the operational needs of the college. An alternate work schedule requested by an employee must also meet the department's needs; in essence, the employee and supervisor must develop a partnership to ensure that required work can be completed given the requested schedule change. To ensure adequate departmental staffing, once an alternate work schedule has been approved, the employee is responsible for following this schedule. Alternate work schedules may not be possible in all positions or departments, and are subject to change.

Questions regarding flexible schedules should be directed to your supervisor or department head or to the Office of Human Resources.

Personal Business

Department heads and supervisors may consider requests for occasional rearrangement of work hours to accommodate personal business which must be taken care of during normal work hours. Brief absences can usually be accommodated by using personal time or vacation time. At the discretion of the department head or supervisor, an employee may also make up the time on another day during the week in which time is taken off.