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This message applies to staff and faculty of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. This message does not apply to UCLA health system (hospital and clinic) personnel as those policies are determined by UCLA hospital leadership.
“As we look forward, the DGSOM will continue to align with UCLA in implementing a school-wide flexwork strategy that is equitable, data-driven, productive, and – as the name indicates – flexible. Your continued collaboration and problem-solving mindset will be essential to our success in this exciting new chapter for the DGSOM.”
Kelsey Martin, MD, PhD, Dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
For more than one year, the majority of the UCLA workforce has worked together in a hybrid fashion (with most members working remotely) to advance our mission. This year-long pilot has proven that our workforce, on balance, and in many arenas, can be productive in a flexwork work environment.
Local and national data indicate that a strategic flexwork strategy provides greater work-life balance, promotes personal responsibility, reduces our environmental footprint and ensures that we remain competitive in a rapidly evolving job market. Surveys indicate that for those colleagues who have been able to work efficiently in a remote context, there have been benefits: relief from long commutes, more control over use of time, and strong work-life balance.
In addition, nationwide data show:
At the same time, however, there are certain elements that require careful consideration, including ensuring equitable arrangements, building a sense of community in virtual environments, balancing different workstyle preferences, and more. We will continue to collect data over the next year in order to continually evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of flexwork arrangements. We will re-assess our strategy in September 2022 and will make adjustments as needed over the coming months in partnership with campus.
What is happening in the short term?Earlier this summer, UCLA main campus announced that UCLA staff and faculty successfully working remotely should expect to continue doing so through the end of August. As previously announced, DGSOM will be following the same guidance in the short term.
What is happening in the long term?UCLA is developing a long-term flexwork standard for those who are able to continue working effectively remotely -- fully or partially. The DGSOM will align with campus in its long-term strategy to promote a safe, healthy, productive and competitive workplace.
Process and documentation
1) UCLA Health Telecommuting Policy →2) Eligibility Criteria →3) Flexwork Request Process →4) Flexwork Agreement (pending)5) Flexwork Scheduling (pending)
One key component of flexwork is the ability to work remotely. To help those working, learning or teaching offsite, as well as those managing remote teams, we’ve provided a number of resources that are designed to ensure your continued success in a virtual work/learning environment.
Topics include communication, teamwork, self-care and ergonomics, management, collaboration, virtual meetings, building trust and community, and more.
To find the training that is right for you:
Shifting to Remote Work – UC Learning Center (20 Min) This course will: provide simple tips for quickly transitioning to remote work; address security concerns; and lead learners to UCLA’s telecommuting resources.
Contributing as a Virtual Team Member – UC Learning Center (18 min) In this course, you'll learn how to develop the skills you need to show team leadership and be an effective member of a virtual team.
Exploring Virtual Collaboration – UC Learning Center (24 min) In this course, you'll learn how to develop the skills you need to show team leadership and be an effective member of a virtual team.
Creating Your Circle of Trust – UC Learning Center (2 mins) Even the best of us have a hard time persevering without incorporating the benefits of trust and resilience into their efforts.
Working on Shared Goals through Teaming – UC Learning Center (5 mins) When organizations are recruiting, one of the top skills they look for in a candidate is an ability to collaborate.
Communicating Effectively While Working Remotely (2 hr ILT, CORE)
Putting an End to Unproductive Virtual Meetings (1 hr, ILT, CORE)
Healthy Working at Home– UC Learning Center (15 min) This brief ergonomics course targets individuals working from a home office environment.
Take a Deep Breath and Manage Your Stress – UC Learning Center (24 min) When you're constantly adding items to your never-ending to-do list, feeling overwhelmed at work and at home, and finding your health and relationships negatively impacted, you are likely experiencing stress.
Perseverance – More than Inspirational Words – UC Learning Center (2 mins) Watch this video to learn having a goal direction, trust and resilience can help you weather challenges and become a trusted and admired leader in your organization.
Developing Your Resilience – UC Learning Center (2 mins) Discover 3 strategies to help you strengthen your resilience and recover from setbacks on your way to your goals.
Setting Communication Standards for Remote Teams – UC Learning Center (3 min) Effective communication is perhaps the biggest challenge facing remote teams. Virtual teams are faced with two main communication challenges: the way they deliver messages, and the fact that remote communication can easily lead to misunderstandings.
Establishing Effective Virtual Teams – UC Learning Center (30 min) Building and managing teams is enough of a challenge when everyone is in the same location.
Assessing and Managing Virtual Team Performance – UC Learning Center (3 min) Managing a virtual team effectively requires a special skill set. While members of any team need to know what's expected of them, it's critical for remote employees because their work time may be less structured, in different time zones, and they are often operating without direct daily supervision.
Managing Virtual Team Meetings – UC Learning Center (3 mins) Building a solid team is enough of a challenge when everyone is in the same location. Virtual teams require even more commitment. Successfully leading virtual team meetings requires ensuring that the right technology is available and preparing a complete, detailed agenda.
Leading Virtual Teams (2 hr ILT, CORE)
Managing Remotely: Best Practices (PPT) – UCLA Campus Human Resources
To access courses provided by the UC Learning Center:
UC LEARNING CENTER
To access resources provided by UCLA Health’s Center for Organizational Readiness and Education (CORE):
UCLA HEALTH CORE
UCLA Ergonomics is conducting evaluations of employee's remote workstations via Zoom. Please find find information on furniture allowances, device options through UCLA Health IT, and schedule an ergonomics assessment to get started.
Flexible work (flexwork) provides a framework that guides alternatives to the standard eight-hour, in-person, office-based daily schedules that were the norm prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Example flexwork categories include: telecommuting full-time, onsite full-time and hybrid (a mix of both). Flexwork includes remote work (also referred to as “telecommuting”), as well as the opportunity for alternate work schedules, under which an employee works a schedule that varies from the traditional 8-hour work day, 5 days per week. Alternate work schedules are subject to approval by the employee’s manager and department head (or designee), and need to be documented via a flexwork agreement (process and documents forthcoming).
Yes. Formal templates, support documents and more are all in development and pre-launch drafts will be shared with you for your input.
Once flexwork agreements are implemented, brief monthly one-on-one check-ins will be encouraged to ensure that the flexwork agreement is operating successfully.
Yes, there will be some eligibility criteria but there will also be flexibility for department leaders to assess functionality based on the unique roles and needs of their departments. The criteria will be outlined in forthcoming planning and approval documents.
Additional considerations for telecommuting include:
Per UCOP guidance, UCLA employees may work in any state as long as they update their address and withholdings in UCPath to meet tax requirements. UCOP has not issued guidance yet on employees outside of the United States.
There are certain aspects of flexwork and telecommuting that we are carefully considering, including ensuring equitable work-at-home arrangements, building a sense of community in virtual environments, balancing different workstyle preferences, and more. Targeted resources, training and support will be developed as part of our overarching flexwork strategy and implementation.
No. Categories of flexwork at UCLA include 1) telecommuting full-time, 2) onsite full-time and 3) hybrid (a mix of both). As described above, the specific arrangement depends on the employee’s job functions and performance, the employee’s preferences, the manager’s business needs, and the availability of physical space. If the employee prefers to work onsite full-time, and this preference aligns with the manager’s business needs, the employee may perform their work onsite (contingent on availability of onsite workspace).
Based on recommendations provided by the DGSOM Remote Work and Wellbeing Task Force, the Dean’s Office and its HR team are in varying stages of developing and/or finalizing the following:
UCLA has approved a furniture stipend for eligible telecommuting employees, including DGSOM employees, as part of its long-term flexwork strategy. Those working remotely three or more days per week will be eligible for a one-time $2,000 furniture stipend that can be used toward offsite work equipment purchased through an approved UCLA vendor. (Those who already purchased home office furniture can apply for a reimbursement of up to $2,000 if the equipment was purchased in March 2020 or beyond.)
Campus is delegating each School to develop a centralized review and approval process. DGSOM is in the process of developing these processes in collaboration with main campus. We will provide additional information as soon as possible.