Alternative Work Schedule Policy
October 23rd, 2003
Revised July, 2009
The purpose of this policy is to support the creation of alternative work schedules providing employees and the state more alternatives in employees' work schedules. This policy supports the Clean Air Act by reducing the number of hours and miles State of Delaware employees spend traveling to and from work. The added flexibility in creating alternative work schedules also provides new opportunities for efficiency and expanded hours of customer service.
Every agency may, upon approval of the agency head, provide for alternative work schedules. Each agency shall determine which alternative work schedules, if any, are available for employees. Such determinations shall be made based upon the operational needs, staffing requirements, service delivery requirements, and back-up coverage needs of the agency.
Individual employees may be permitted, with the consent of their supervisor and the approval of appropriate management to work alternative schedules. Approval of alternative work schedules for individual employees will be based upon consideration of the employee's job performance, special needs, employee's attendance and timeliness, and any disciplinary issues. Certain positions may not be eligible for an alternative work schedule due to program needs or the job duties assigned to the position. Every employee working an alternative work schedule shall do so in accordance with a written agreement, approved by the employee, the immediate supervisor, and appropriate management. Probationary employees may be eligible for alternative work schedules, in special circumstances, with the approval of the Division Director/Agency Head.
- This policy applies to employees currently subject to the standard work schedule, which is 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Mondays through Fridays with an hour lunch each day (or to equivalent individuals paid on the 40 hour per week schedule).
- Employees working alternative schedules who are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) may not be scheduled to work more than 40 hours in any week.
- All alternative work schedules shall provide that employees working a 37.5-hour week will work 75 hours each and every two-week pay period. For employees covered by the 40-hour per week pay plan, alternative work schedules shall require them to work 80 hours each and every two-week pay period.
- All employees working an alternative work schedule shall enter into a written agreement providing the details of the alternative work schedule. The agreement shall be signed by the employee, the employee's supervisor, and the Division Director/Agency Head. Agencies may develop their own forms of agreement. (A sample form is attached.)
- The employee shall have the right to return to the standard work schedule at any time, and the agency may require the employee to return to the standard work schedule any time the needs of the agency require it or for other work-related reasons. Employees may not change the approved schedule from one alternative work schedule to another alternative work schedule, without written agreement. Agencies have the right, as part of their internal written policies, to restrict start times of alternative work schedules to specific times of the year.
- Alternative work schedules may be developed which begin and end between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday . Employees working seven or more hours in a day must take a 30-minute or 60 minute lunch between the hours of 11:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on that day . Within these parameters, agencies may be flexible in the number and types of available work schedule options.
- Agencies may make more restrictive alternative work policies, but cannot make less restrictive policies.
- If an agency is covered by a union contract, alternative work schedules may be permitted that are consistent with work schedules negotiated as part of approved union contracts. Provisions in union contracts take precedent over this policy if there is a conflict between the contract and this policy.
- Annual and sick leave accrue as normal. Leave usage will be charged based on the approved work schedule.
- A permanent, full-time employee is compensated 7.5 hours (or 8.0 for those paid on the 40 hour per week plan) for holiday pay on approved state holidays. An employee who would have been required to work more than 7.5 hours on a day that is a state holiday in order to complete 75 hours in a pay period (or 8 hours for an 80 hour pay period) shall account for the additional time required through annual leave or compensatory time or by working the additional hours within that two-week period with prior approval.
- If an approved state holiday falls on a day that a permanent full-time employee on an alternative work schedule would not be scheduled to work, the employee shall receive equivalent time (7.5 or 8.0 hours) off. Use of this equivalent time off shall require approval, as does annual leave, and must be taken in a lump sum increment within 30 working days from the date of the holiday (unless otherwise approved by the Division Director or Agency Head). An employee whose regular schedule of hours exceeds a 7.5 (or 8.0 if applicable) hour day must account for the additional hours through the use of annual leave, compensatory leave or by working the additional hours within that two-week period with prior approval. Those scheduled to work for part of the day on a state holiday will have their hours adjusted consistent with this policy. (This section does not apply to "seasonal" or "temporary employment agency" staff since they are paid only for hours actually worked).
- Other types of leave, such as compassionate leave, will be granted on an hourly basis in accordance with applicable merit rules. If alternative work schedules require more hours than allowed for special types of leave, the shortage will have to be made up with annual or compensatory leave. State of Emergency days will be counted as the amount of time normally worked that day. However, if your scheduled day off is called as an emergency day, an additional day off will not be granted.
- Management reserves the right to temporarily revert the schedule to a normal work week or to a special flexible schedule in order to accommodate training, attendance at conferences or other special events. With management approval, employees may further flex their schedule within an individual two-week work period in order to utilize any compensatory time that would otherwise be accrued within that time period. If an employee is out for a period of more than two weeks, then his/her schedule automatically reverts to a normal schedule for the duration of the time that he/she is not working.
- An employee working an alternative work schedule who receives an unsatisfactory or needs improvement performance evaluation may be returned to their normal work schedule if the supervisor determines the employee's performance is impacted by the alternative work schedule.
- An employee working an alternative work schedule that is subjected to disciplinary action based upon just cause may be removed from the alternative work schedule by the employee's supervisor.
- Compensatory time will still be governed by other applicable rules and regulations such as FLSA, Merit Rules and/or agency policies.
This policy is not intended to create any individual right or cause of action
not already existing and recognized under state or federal law.