As we all work to adapt to our new environment to help protect UC Berkeley's staff, faculty and students, as well as the broader community from the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), we understand that there can be confusion and uncertainty at work. In response, we have compiled a list of resources that may be useful in supporting the success of our staff during these challenging times.
COVID-19 Leaves, Pay, and Work Arrangements
UC systemwide policy updates and other important information about work and leave during COVID-19.
Return to the Workplace
As we begin emerging from shelter-in-place orders, please refer to these guides:
Layoffs and Separations
Summary of Leave Types
There are a few different types of leave related to COVID-19. Review the summary table for a quick comparison of the leave types, or review the full summary document below for additional details on each type of leave.
Summary & FAQ for COVID-19 Related Leaves and Job Protections Guidance for Policy-Covered and Represented Staff Employees
UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave (PAL)
On March 16, 2020, President Napolitano issued an executive order whereby eligible employees would receive a “one-time allotment of up to 128 hours of paid administrative leave,” subject to specific conditions.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
On March 18, 2020, the federal government enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which created two new emergency paid leave requirements. See our Labor Law Posters page for printable versions in English and Spanish.
Emergency Paid Sick Leave
Expanded Family Medical Leave
Must be taken in blocks of a minimum of 1 day (8 hours) for exempt employees, or in blocks of a minimum of 1 hour for non-exempt employees
Must be taken in blocks of a minimum of 1 day (8 hours) for exempt employees, or in blocks of a minimum of 1 hour for non-exempt employees
Must be taken in blocks of a minimum of two weeks
Mar 1 – Dec 31, 2020
Apr 1 – Dec 31, 2020
Apr 1 – Dec 31, 2020
Note: All leave and pay provisions are similar to REG pay in which hours paid contribute to retirement and accruals in accordance with standard REG pay rules.
UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave (PAL or EPAL)
Re-issued on March 16, 2020, this UC Executive Order states that all employees shall be eligible to receive a one-time allotment of up to 128 hours of paid administrative leave, subject to the conditions detailed in the full order below.
Timekeeping - How to enter UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave:
This leave should be entered directly into CalTime following the guidance below. For academic appointees who do not use CalTime, follow the process below.
- CalTime - COVID-19 and Timekeeping Guidance
- Process COVID-19 EPAL Requests (for Academic Appointees)
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
Two types of leave are available under the FFCRA.
Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)
Expanded Family and Medical Leave (EFML)
Process - How to request and enter EPSL or EFML:
Employee completes UC Employee Request Form for EPSL or EFML form.
Employee sends completed request form to manager via email or hard copy.
Manager/supervisor reviews the request form and works with the employee to fill in any missing information.
Manager/supervisor determines whether a retroactive adjustment needs to be made and if needed create manual timesheet(s) for any retroactive pay codes that need to be changed.
Manager/supervisor submits leave request form, and if retroactive pay code adjustments are needed, manual timesheet(s), via ServiceNow ticket (for ERSO, Cal Performances, and I-House, submit via email to HR).
- Employee contacts manager/supervisor with questions.
- Manager/supervisor contacts their HR partner with questions.
- HR Partner brings questions to HR Manager.
- HR Manager brings questions to appropriate group in People & Culture
Please refer to the process maps below for more information on the EPSL or EFML request process.
FFCRA Business Process Maps
COVID-19 Leave Tracking
CalTime now allows employees to view total COVID-19 related hours taken. To view your hours taken, click on the handle at the bottom of your timecard and access the accrual tab. View an example on the CalTime website.
Sick Leave and Child Care - Absence from Work Policy update
UCOP has approved a temporary change in their Absence from Work policy to provide additional relief for parents balancing work and child care responsibilities. Effective July 1, 2020, through Dec. 31, 2020, eligible staff may use their accrued sick leave if they are unable to work or telework because their children are not able to physically attend their school or place of care due to COVID-19 precautions. The use of accrued sick leave to take care of children during the pandemic has now been clarified by UCOP to include all dependent care, such as looking after elders and those family members with medical care needs.
The temporary change applies to Berkeley’s policy-covered staff employees. Granting the use of accrued sick leave for these purposes will not be considered an exception to the Absence from Work policy.
Subject to collective bargaining, a similar expansion of the use of sick leave is available to represented staff employees who have accrued sick leave.
UC Berkeley People & Culture has created a process to support teams with increased and reduced workloads due to COVID-19.
Visit the Job Exchange Program page to participate.
To help save jobs in light of the financial impacts of COVID-19, the campus is considering a number of proactive, budget-conserving actions. One such action is instituting a campus-wide hiring freeze effective April 1, 2020. It is our hope that by taking this measure now, we will be in a stronger position to confront future financial challenges related to COVID-19.
As detailed in the FAQ below, we are therefore asking that you do not initiate any new searches and review those that have already begun. The campus will be making very limited exceptions to the hiring freeze, making only select hires that protect against a significant business disruption and/or a significant health, safety, or compliance risk. In addition, “internal UC Berkeley only” recruitments will be allowed to proceed to support continued employee mobility during this period of time.
Staff Equity Increase Exception Requests
This is a follow up to the message regarding a one-year salary freeze for non-represented staff and faculty. Only staff are eligible for an equity increase exception, which will go through a process that is the same as the hiring freeze exception requests. Please read the FAQ's linked below for more guidance.
If you're considering relocating due to or during COVID-19, read the Temporary Move FAQs.
Back-up Dependent Care Program and Rec Sports Fall Programs
According to responses to the Employee Morale Survey, one of the greatest challenges for employees right now is dependent care. The Back-Up Dependent Care Program, launched October 1 and aims to help. If you're planning to participate, make sure you understand the tax implications.
The Rec Sports Department has developed three unique youth program offerings for the children of essential UC Berkeley faculty and staff members. These engaging programs meet and adhere to City of Berkeley guidelines for camps and recreational programs, California Department of Public Health guidelines for day camps, guidelines of the American Camp Association, National Afterschool Association, USA Gymnastics, and USA Skateboarding. For specific program information and registration details, please see their website.
Flu Shot Requirement
UCOP has implemented a new flu vaccination requirement for UC students, faculty and staff. All members of the UC Berkeley community are required to receive their flu shot before November 1st, 2020 to access university facilities. Visit the 2020 Flu Shot page to find out more about the flu shot requirement, how it will be managed on campus, and forms for requesting exemptions or accommodations.
Voluntary Cost Saving Measures
Voluntary actions that staff can take to help mitigate the budget issues related to COVID-19.
Voluntary Separation Program (VSP)
The Voluntary Separation Program (VSP) offers non-represented employees who are considering ending their employment with the University an opportunity to volunteer to be considered for separation on 10/31/20 under the VSP.
Employee-Initiated Reduction in Time (ERIT)
The Employee-Initiated Reduction In Time (ERIT) Program provides an opportunity for employees to voluntarily reduce their current appointment percentage and corresponding pay so that the University can achieve temporary salary savings. Savings from the ERIT program are captured by the employee's home department.
Tools to be Successful While Working Remotely
Telework is a critical tool for reducing the spread of sickness by minimizing face-to-face contact, and maintaining business continuity. However, we understand that telecommuting may be an unfamiliar practice for many of our employees.
Below you will find guidance and resources to help you and your team navigate remote working scenarios. View the Telecommuting Policy for additional details.
The following resources will give you information on technology support and best practices when working remote.
Technology Tools for Remote Work
Telecommuting Resources: Staff and faculty with technical questions about telecommuting to work can find resources and advice on this page.
- Video Conferencing Best Practices: Check out this handout with helpful tips.
- Cybersecurity and COVID-19: Content for telecommuting securely, COVID-19 related phishing, and other resources to help guide you and others during this time.
- Zoom Video Conferencing Tutorial - UC Berkeley Developed
- Zoom Tutorial: How to join and participate in a zoom meeting/training (5m 45s)
- Online Collaboration Tools- Compiled by Community at Work Colleagues and Staff
- UCPath Service During COVID-19: The UCPath Center has transitioned to remote work as of March 20 to protect the health and safety of their employees. UCPC is temporarily modifying services to focus on UC employee payroll and other critical services. Some services will be temporarily suspended, while other services will be delivered on a limited basis. View this webpage for more information.
- Off-Campus Internet Access: Provides the campus community with resources for free or reduced cost internet access when off-campus.
Telecommuting Best Practices
- Temporary Remote Work Agreement: Find the form here.
- Safety Checklist for Telecommuters: The following checklist is recommended for use by each telecommuter in organizing an alternate work site. The telecommuter should review this checklist with his/her supervisor prior to the start of telecommuting, and they are encouraged to work together to ensure the safety of the alternate work site.
Ergonomics tips for working from home: The Be Well at Work Ergonomics Program has special tips for working at home.
Remote Work Ideas Our partners from Student Affairs created this excellent website of tools to help you be successful working from home!
- Staying Focused When You're Working From Home: Working from home can be highly productive, but it can also go badly wrong. Without a proper office space, a prioritized schedule, and on-the-spot supervision, it's all too easy to be distracted. In this article and video, we explore ways to avoid the pitfalls, conquer distractions, and stay professional and productive while you're working from home.
- Work/Life Tips for Working From Home: While it is beneficial to have a plan, or access to a schedule, don’t overwhelm or pressure yourself into thinking that every day must be structured. These are new experiences, and as you integrate working and caregiving life from home, you may find that each day will differ from the previous one. Be kind to yourself, recognize that some days will be easier than others, and give yourself permission to bend your regular rules if needed.
LinkedIn Learning Ideas
- Working Effectively While Being Remote/Telecommuting: Working from home or outside of the office has it's unique advantages and challenges. Learn some ways to be most effective through this learning path!
Learning Path Details: 5h 3m of content ; 5 items of learning content
- Stay connected with Zoom meetings: Collaborate more seamlessly using Zoom, the popular video conferencing tool. In this course, you will learn how to schedule, moderate, and participate in Zoom meetings.
Course Details: 45m 11s of content ; 3 chapter quizzes
During these unprecedented times, your priorities around self-care, exercise, work and family have likely shifted. Whether you need to refocus on your self-care or receive support while caring for others, we have assembled resources to help you achieve and maintain wellness.
- COVID-19 - Resources to Address Financial Needs:
While we are transitioning to ‘Shelter in Place’ in the Bay Area, for many households, this also includes experiencing financial impacts and burdens due to loss of income, unemployment, childcare, and more. The linked information may assist you if you are experiencing financial impacts due to the pandemic.
- Visit 'Your health plan’s response to COVID-19' - for important updates regarding UC’s health plans.
- Greater Good’s Guide to Wellness During Coronavirus: Practices, resources, and articles for individuals, parents, and educators facing COVID-19.
- Wellness Resources Faculty and Staff: During these unprecedented times, your priorities around self-care, exercise, work and family have likely shifted. Whether you need to refocus on your self-care or receive support while caring for others - children, family or elder adults, our partners at the Be Well at Work programs have assembled resources that may help to relieve stress, anxiety, and allow you to breathe a little deeper.
- Be Well at Work- Employee Assistance: We recognize that many people are experiencing heightened anxiety and fear in response to the current pandemic and the uncertainty it brings. While we all strive to support each other as a community, at times, it may also be useful to connect with formal resources for assistance. You can access free, confidential support from a licensed mental health professional through Be Well at Work - Employee Assistance. Appointments, including phone and video options are available, and can be scheduled:
By email - firstname.lastname@example.org OR
By phone - 510-643-7754
- Shelter in Place guidelines: Take care of yourself by staying indoors as much as possible and following these guidelines. Stay connected with your community so that you do not feel alone by reaching out virtually and checking in with your family members and friends.
- Berkeley Blog: Don’t let physical isolation become emotional isolation
- Cover Your face to Prevent COVID-19 Spread: A campus-wide letter from VCA Marc Fisher
- Addressing Relationship Violence During Shelter in Place
LinkedIn Learning Ideas
- Managing Stress for Positive Change: During the current situation we are all facing, it is natural for stress to arise. In this video, you will learn what stress is; how you can train yourself to use stress in more effective ways; and what managers can do to reduce employee stress when an organization experiences difficult times.
Course Details: 57m 59s ; Beginner + Intermediate ; 3 chapter quizzes
Creating Healthy Virtual Environments
In the new circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have all found ourselves inhabiting a new environment, as our work and learning opportunities move into virtual spaces. This transition takes effort and mindfulness. It also creates an opportunity for reaffirming our values and establishing practices that support a culture of inclusion, belonging, and respect. We hope that this "toolkit" can help create a positive legacy of these stressful times that will outlast the pandemic and continue to benefit our community into the future.
LinkedIn Learning Ideas
- Remote Work Foundations: When you unlock the power of remote work, you can ditch your commute, work where you focus best, and spend more time doing things you love, all while advancing your career. Coach Mike Gutman from FlexJobs shows how to use today's cloud-based communication and collaboration tools to get work done from anywhere, while remaining connected to your organization. Learning objectives include:
- Describe the ideal home setup for working remotely.
- Summarize the process of onboarding a remote worker.
- Explain the importance of work-life balance and how to maintain it while working remotely.
- Cite the tools remote workers can use to stay connected to the home office.
- Describe how to manage conflict with teammates while working remotely.
- Explain how to build culture in a remote team.
Course Details: 1 hr ; 5 sections ; 4 brief chapter quizzes
- De-stress: Meditation and Movement for Stress Management: Finding healthy ways to eliminate stress—to de-stress—is critical to a happy, healthy life. This course introduces a series of guided meditation and movement exercises that allow your body and mind to relax and refocus. Instructors from Desk Yogi leads you through grounding techniques to clear your mind while you’re seated at your desk.
Course Details: 36 m ; Beginner ; Meditation
Real-Time Offerings, Services, and Development Opportunities
The People & Organization Development team has many "real time" resources at your disposal. We have adapted to the current situation, and are offering many of our services and offerings remote. We encourage you to take advantage of all the amazing growth opportunities available to UC Berkeley staff:
UC Berkeley People & Culture is a huge advocate for continued learning. We provide many learning opportunities for our employees. This is a curated list of some learning opportunities that you can complete remotely:
- Explore the wisdom cafe - A gathering place for staff to learn about professional development, each other and other informal and social learning opportunities.
You can use the time to learn about and prep for the new Achieve Together performance program
As a Berkeley staff, you have access to LinkedIn Learning
The POD team has been working to create learning pathways (playlists) within LinkedIn Learning that you can explore, in addition to creating your own playlists
All Berkeley staff also have access to CEB
Check out the Corporate Leadership Council page where you will find a wealth of information!
There are still many more learning opportunities on the Grow Your Skills page
While some of the Learning from our Campus Partners has been postponed, there are still groups providing opportunities every day, for example, the Great Good Science Center
While mostly face-to-face events now, the team will start to update the training and event calendar with new virtual events as they are created
You may want to take this opportunity to explore this program to see if there's anything you could sign up for (they have both face-to-face and online programs) now or in the future
UC Berkeley supports staff professional development through Procedure 50, which states that "non-probationary career employees are eligible for up to 80 hours (non-exempt) or 10 work days (exempt) release time (pro-rated based on appointment) per calendar year for professional development, which should be career-ladder related."
Now more than ever, continuous growth and development is critical to maintaining the excellence of our staff, and supporting the mission of the campus, now and in the future. There are many options for developing your knowledge, skills, and abilities, and we encourage you to explore them for yourself and with your supervisor. Here are some ideas:
- Complete the UC System-wide Managing Implicit Bias Series of trainings
- Berkeley People Mgmt Knowledge Assessment
- This will allow you to gauge your current skills and build a development plan with some of the courses offered. It is also a learning opportunity in-and-of-itself (it gives you correct answers when you get one wrong)!
This fully online program allows you to start to build your people management base knowledge
It also incorporates the UC System-wide Managing Implicit Bias Series, which is a great certificate to have as a UC employee
Berkeley People Mgmt "Additional Resource" classes
Also, any face-to-face class that's currently offered is being changed to a zoom "learning lab" program, where participants will come together with the facilitator at the time of the class to discuss current challenges in that topic area (a great way to connect, when we're all sheltering in place)
Our Manager Mastermind Groups will continue via zoom
Here, you will find curated learning paths on some of the top skills that show up in our UCB job descriptions
Grow Your Career workshops
You can take the opportunity to explore some of the workshops that were offered at the 2019 NOW Conference
Or explore videos from the past years as well
- Our campus partners at Student Affairs have created a great webpage highlighting some Remote Professional Development ideas as well!
Use this time to complete your compliance trainings:
Log into the UC Learning Center and click on “Required Training”. If you change the filter to “Required” you will be able to see when your compliance training expires. Remember, by law, we all need to be current in the three UC mandated areas: Sexual Violence / Sexual Harassment Prevention, Cyber Security, and Ethical Values and Conduct.
Remote Consulting Services
The People & Organization Development team offers a wide variety of consulting support for you and your team. Please let us know how we can help you plan for success in any of the following areas:
Change management - Jan Crosbie-Taylor
Program implementation and continuous improvement - Jan Crosbie-Taylor or Colin Gerker
Performance consulting for organizations, teams, and individuals - Colin Gerker
Learning and resource support and curation - Colin Gerker (training lead), Kathy Mendonca and Lisa Rykert (additional support), and Ying Kuah (online content curation or virtual training)
Strategic planning support - Pamela Rich
Performance calibration planning - Colin Gerker
Building a coaching culture, implementing coaching circles - Inette Dishler
- Team development - Pamela Rich
If you think you would benefit from any of these services, please email us using the directory below:
We have many amazing tools for managers working at UC Berkeley, but also understand that managing remotely may bring up new questions. In response, we have curated a list of resources that relate to managing remotely as result of the unprecedented circumstances we are in.
General Resources for Managing Remotely
- Guide to People Management During COVID-19: A guide developed by People & Culture to help managers understand and respond to the unique challenges presented by COVID-19.
- Achieve Together Training & Resources: All Achieve Together training must move online through April 7 (if the shelter-in-place order is extended, we will extend accordingly). You have a variety of options for training/facilitation while we are experiencing the shelter-in-place order.
- Ideas for Supervisors Working Remotely: Our partners at Student Affairs have created a great collection of resources for supervisors navigating management remotely.
- Manager Mastermind Groups will continue via zoom
- Guidance for Timekeeping during COVID-19: Information for managers and supervisors about how to report administrative leave with pay as it relates to COVID-19.
- 4 Areas to Address in Your Remote Working Strategy - Leading with Trust
- UCB Managers Share How to Engage Staff During Covid-19
LinkedIn Learning Ideas:
- Manage Remote/Telecommuting Employees: Managing employees virtually requires different skills than in-person. Use this learning path to brush up on the skills you need to do it effectively.
Learning Path Details: 7h 43m of content ; 9 items of learning
- Expectation Setting in Uncertain Times: Here you can find content for us to flex our muscles around clear expectation setting in times of change, and how we can lean-in to needed conversations to support everyone in doing essential work to drive success.
Collection Details: 11 items of learning
Helpful Toolkits for Managers
Performance Management During COVID-19
Now, more than ever, it is important for managers to check in regularly with their employees, not only to talk about professional responsibilities, but also about your well-being. Therefore, we will proceed with the launch of our new Achieve Together program, with the first check-in conversation to occur by August 31, 2020.
Exceptions to Maximum Vacation Accrual
UC Berkeley encourages employees to use their accrued vacation leave each year. However, COVID-19 has impacted many employees’ vacation leave use.
Under the Absence from Work Policy (PPSM-2.210), policy-covered staff who reach the maximum accrual stop earning more vacation leave until their balance falls below the maximum – with a four-month extension allowed under certain circumstances. On June 29, 2020, President Napolitano approved a temporary increase to that four-month extension for eligible staff, effective retroactively from June 1 through Dec. 31, 2020. This applies to policy-covered employees.
The extension will be applied automatically through UCPath. If you are eligible, you will continue accruing vacation leave through Dec. 31, 2020, even if you are over your maximum accrual. On Jan. 1, 2021, policy-covered staff who are over their maximum accrued vacation leave will no longer accrue additional leave until they bring their vacation balance below the maximum.
If you have questions about your accrued vacation leave, please contact Berkeley Regional Services (BRS) HR Business Partners by creating an HR ServiceNow case (For ERSO departments, email ERSO HR at: email@example.com and for Cal Performances or I-House, send an email to the applicable HR group.).
Use this job aid to see how UCPath displays leave balances.
Managers can also access their UCPath Online Dashboard and go to: Manager Actions > View Employee Absence Balances to see all their employee balances.
Remotely Orienting New Employees
As a hiring manager, you may be wondering how you can successful welcome your new employee to campus when we're not ON campus. We've created this tool kit to help you (and your new employee) become part of the UC Berkeley community, regardless of their start date.
- Take this opportunity to learn about Campus Leadership. (You can also see many of our leaders interviewed in our Campus Conversations series.)
- Learn about our Strategic Plan and discover the latest news and press releases.
- Explore our Principles of Community which guide our campus.
- Be sure to attend the next New Employee Reception and Orientation (NERO). And while you wait for NERO, explore our online orientation program, "Getting Started Working at UC Berkeley."
COVID-19 News Sources Relating to UC Employees
As we all receive constant announcements and updates regarding the evolving COVID-19 crisis, the volume of information can be overwhelming. We have collected a list of key resources specific to UC Berkeley for you to stay up to date on the campus response to the evolving COVID-19 crisis:
Berkeley News: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information
Visit the Coronavirus website to get the latest on Berkeley's Coronavirus response. This page will be updated regularly as more information becomes available.
University of California Systemwide Coronavirus Website
The University of California is vigilantly monitoring and responding to new information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, which has been declared a global health emergency. Access the University of California Coronavirus website tay up to date on the latest developments.
Berkeley Conversations: COVID-19
Across the UC Berkeley campus, researchers are rising to meet the complex challenges of COVID-19 even as the crisis generates waves of news and information that can be confusing and contradictory at times. The online video series, “Berkeley Conversations”, is designed to connect our leading experts with the public they serve, and each other. Through Q&A’s, seminars, and panel discussions, faculty from a wide range of disciplines are sharing what they know, and what they are learning about the COVID pandemic, the economy, racial justice, electoral politics, and much more.
Resources from Our Campus Partners
Many campus groups and partners are creating resource websites that could be helpful to you at this time. We're collecting them here, so you can easily navigate to other resources across the campus and our system.
Division of Equity & Inclusion Resource Page
The Division of Equity & Inclusion is working remotely, providing support virtually to students, staff, and faculty during the period of Shelter in Place. Find out how to access their programs and resources on the E&I COVID-19 Response page.
If you have questions about how we can support you, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Student Affairs Remote Work Resources
Student Affairs has created a site with great information on Remote Work Resources, including categories for staff, for supervisors, and professional development suggestions to take advantage of during this time.
Greater Good Science Center
With the recent COVID-19 outbreak, we’re committed to bringing you stories, tips, and tools for these uncertain times in our global community.
Visit the Greater Good’s Guide to Well-Being During Coronavirus, a webpage with practices, resources, and articles for individuals, parents, and educators facing COVID-19.
Interdisciplinary Center for Healthy Workspaces
Located within the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, the Interdisciplinary Center for Healthy Workspaces has some great information on integrating and applying interdisciplinary sciences to achieve worker health and well-being.
UC Berkeley Executive Education
In recognition of the significant volatility in global business due to the impact of COVID-19, UC Berkeley Executive Education has launched Leading Through Crisis, an online series of short-form videos from renowned faculty at UC Berkeley and the Haas School of Business. These programs have been created to specifically support you and your leadership capabilities during this unprecedented time.
As a UC employee, you have free access to CEB Global. Visit their website and register with your UC Berkeley email address! We encourage you to also explore all of the resources that CEB Gartner has to offer- there are so many incredible articles and resources for you to explore!
This website is also excellent resource for information on how to respond, manage and prepare for the impact of coronavirus in the workforce. We have pulled a short list of links that you may find helpful during this time.
In these extraordinary times, we want you to know we’re here for you, and we believe we are better together. To support you and your team, our behavioral scientists and researchers have curated and developed evidence-based resources.
With activities, guides, articles, videos, and podcasts, we hope you can use these resources to shape the behaviors, mindsets, and skills needed for navigating uncertainty and for adjusting to new remote work arrangements.
These resources are available to everyone anytime, anywhere, and through any device, to help you focus, connect, and thrive: