714 Disconnecting from Work Policy FAQs
While employees are permitted to contact each other outside of regular work hours, the policy encourages everyone to be respectful of each other’s time away from work. The policy may be used to set expectations around situations when it is necessary to contact someone outside of work hours (e.g., an emergency) and when that contact can wait.
Instead of sending an email or making a call after hours when you happen to be thinking about a work topic, wait and reach out in the morning. Disconnecting from work is essential to work-life balance and mental health.
If you are concerned that your supervisor is not following the requirements in the policy, contact your HR consultant or your FASR consultant.
Learn to delay delivery of email messages in Outlook.
This policy applies to all those employed by the University. Speak with your supervisor to ensure you both understand the parameters of how this policy will apply to your work situation.
Outside of regular hours, your colleagues and supervisor may not be available to respond to you in a timely way.
When working on a deadline or on a time-sensitive project, there may be times you need to work outside of regular hours. Make sure you talk with your supervisor in advance about the situation, how long those working conditions are expected to last and how your additional work will be recorded.
Before you send an after-hours email, consider whether the message can wait until regular hours.
If your team is working toward a deadline that requires additional work outside of regular hours, be clear with your team in advance about expectations, how long the requirement will last and how their extra time will be recorded. In such a scenario, be particularly mindful of when you are contacting employees and be sure to follow through on commitments to lieu time.
Be mindful of how employees interpret messages from you and what they may infer about your expectations. If you are sending a message at the end of the day on a Friday to clear something off your to-do list, your employees may interpret that as an expectation they respond over the weekend. If you don’t require a response before Monday, make that clear in your message.
The Disconnecting from Work policy is not one-size-fits-all. It is a universal principle that will have individual application.
A: In rare situations, a unit may require coverage 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In this situation, ensure that no one employee is expected to be on call at all times. Distribute accountability within your team. Make sure your employees clearly understand what qualifies as an emergency and what expectations are when they are on call.