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Human Resources Information

Employees are essential to the University’s operations. At this time, Saint Louis University remains open, with reduced operations in some cases. 

The COVID-19 pandemic is a rapidly evolving situation that presents unique challenges for our University and our employees. Our goal is to be flexible with our response to workplace matters as they arise. We will adjust policies and practices as necessary in response to changing circumstances. 

Employees with questions or concerns are encouraged to speak with their immediate supervisors.  

Remote Working 

The University is preparing plans to slowly and deliberately reopen the campus for work. Employees who have been working remotely should continue to do so until they hear otherwise from their supervisor.

SLU's Human Resources Department is here to support you and your families during these uncertain times.  Our commitment to the health and safety of all members of our community ­extends to enabling staff to work from home.  

We have been working over the past few weeks to identify resources, best practices, and other information to help address these challenges. We hope that you will find some of these helpful for sustaining your health and wellbeing in addition to dealing with challenges of working remotely.

View Resources

COVID-19 Related Reporting

SLU has established the Office of Employee Health as a central point of contact for all employees across the entire University who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or have tested positive.  All faculty, staff, clinicians, residents and fellows must contact the Office of Employee Health if:

  • Exhibiting signs of COVID-19
  • Exposed to COVID-19
  • Under self-isolation due to a confirmed exposure 

SLUCare and School of Medicine: SLUCare and School of Medicine employees should also notify their supervisor and department. Such notifications do not alleviate the requirement of notifying Employee Health. As stated above, this requirement also applies to our residents and fellows. 

Employee Health

As a central point of contact, Employee Health gives our entire community access to a consistent source of information, guidance on handling COVID-19 related exposures and reporting. Employee Health will assist you with:

  • Reporting an exposure or symptoms you are experiencing
  • Asking questions related to recent travel or family members’ travel
  • Receiving quarantine status updates
  • Providing a release to return to work after quarantine 

We have added staff within Employee Health to handle your calls and emails. It is our intent to provide our University community with the best information available on this challenging health situation and to take all steps necessary to ensure we maintain a safe workplace.  

The Office of Employee Health can be reached by telephone Monday through Friday at 314-268-5499 from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. You can also contact Employee Health any time via email at employeehealth@slu.edu.

Mental Health Resources

The University's Employee Assistance Program (EAP) has provided COVID-19 specific resources within their online portal, which include a recorded webinar, health and safety resources, recorded relaxation break, and resiliency resources.  EAP continues to provide employees and their families access to professional licensed counselors, too. Confidential professional counseling is provided through ComPsych at no personal cost for staff and their families. Call (800) 859-9319 to make an appointment or visit guidanceresources.com for more information. To register online, please use the Company ID slueap and create your own username and password.

FAQs

The FAQs below were updated on March 24 and reflect the latest on the University's human-resources-related decisions in response to COVID-19.

Who should be working from home?

When this crisis began, managers were asked to identify emergency personnel whose presence on campus is essential to our operations, and only those employees have been asked to report to work onsite. Currently, fewer than 500 essential, non-clinical staff are working on campus each day. They include staff in DPS, Facilities Management, Student Development, HR, and ITS. All other employees have been asked to work from home. 

I have been working remotely. When can I start working back on campus again?

We understand that some staff and faculty are itching to return to their workspaces. We are preparing plans to slowly and deliberately reopen our campus for work. Reopening guidance was distributed to Vice Presidents and Deans during the week of May 18. They will need time to prepare their reopening plans and submit them for review.

Why isn’t everyone returning to work now that local stay-at-home orders have been revised?

We must go about reopening our campus with thought and care. We cannot risk creating our own COVID-19 hot spot. That would put lives at risk and set back our reopening by months. We must do all we can to protect those essential employees who have been keeping our campus safe, clean and ready for our eventual return. 

What is SLU doing to prepare the campus for a return to work?

Among other efforts, Facilities Services is installing some 800 touchless hand sanitizer dispensers in buildings throughout the campus. As plans are implemented to gradually reopen campus for work, Facilities Services will supply bottles of sanitizers for work, research and classroom spaces.

Will SLU provide me with a face mask when I do eventually return to campus to work?

All units and divisions will be providing cloth face masks to their essential, non-clinical staff who are working on campus. Other staff, faculty and students who are visiting campus (picking up a delivery, for example), and students who are living on campus should wear a cloth face mask of their own, provided it meets CDC standards. As plans are implemented to gradually return staff and faculty to campus, more cloth face masks will be made available. An emergency University policy regarding face masks will be issued soon. It will provide more details about when and where face masks are required.

How will employees be compensated if they are not essential personnel and cannot perform essential duties from home?

For hourly employees using Time Sheets, please submit “Hours Worked” to supplement the hours needed to reach your regularly scheduled workweek. For hourly employees using Web Clock, please work with your supervisor to have “Hours Worked” entered to supplement the hours needed to reach your regularly scheduled workweek. For salaried employees, no entries are needed in Workday. The employee will be paid the employee’s regularly scheduled rate of pay.

Do I have to work the same hours as I would if I was working on campus?

For full-time employees, working from home generally means working an eight-hour day as designated by their supervisors. Managers have been asked to be flexible with their teams when setting work schedules. However, each employee should ideally have an identified schedule during which they will be working during the day. This helps provide reliability to colleagues when collaborating remotely on accomplishing our work. It also helps ensure boundaries for our employees so one’s work does not take over their personal time and home life. Supervisors are expected to have regular conversations with their teams during the workday to stay connected.  Zoom meetings or conference calls are a great way for our employees to stay in touch during the workday.

My job duties can be performed remotely, but I am scheduled for 8 hours a day and don’t have enough work to keep me busy for a full 8 hours. Will I be paid for 8 hours?

You will be paid for any hours up to 8 that you are unable to work each day due to lack of work. (Repeat timekeeping above.) Please make sure your supervisor is aware that you are available to help in other ways. While some jobs may experience a slowdown in activity due to the current situation, others may have more work to do. We are looking for ways to redeploy people to assist those units that need more assistance during this time. You may be asked to support another department or person. Also, please consider what you can do for the greater good of the University, your department and your position. Consider updating policies and procedures, creating project plans or pursue development opportunities through SkillSoft (ex: Microsoft Excel, Access, PowerPoint).

Do I have to report time off if I am working from home?

Yes. Staff working at home are expected to work a full day as designated by their supervisors. You must report vacation, sick and caregiver leave time in Workday in the same manner as you have been doing on campus.

What if my child’s school or care center has been closed due to health concerns?

At this time, all employees are encouraged to work from home if their work allows for this. Employees in this situation would not be required to use sick time unless they were designated as essential emergency personnel.

For emergency essential personnel, we recognize the challenges the current situation will create. While you may still use sick time to be absent from work to stay home with children whose school or care center is closed, we are encouraging our supervisors to work proactively and to be as flexible as possible to assist people in these situations to meet both their work and home obligations. Each situation may require a different response. We will proceed in these situations in a manner that is aligned with SLU’s values. We deeply appreciate the unique service our essential emergency personnel are providing in these unprecedented times, and  will continue to evaluate ways to lessen any burden experienced by emergency essential personnel who will be required to be onsite.

What if a family member is sick and I need to help take care of the family member? Will I be paid?

At this time, all employees are encouraged to work from home if their work allows for this. Employees in this situation would not be required to use paid time off unless they were designated as essential emergency personnel.

In the event you are not able to work at home while taking care of a family member who is sick, you can use accrued sick leave to cover your absence. We have listened to the concerns of our employees and we are immediately modifying our staff sick leave policy. During the period of this pandemic, we will provide our employees access to an additional 80 hours of sick leave in the event they exhaust their current sick leave balances due to COVID-19-related needs.

What if my family members and I are healthy and my child’s school/care provider is open, but I am still concerned about coming to work - can I use sick time?

At this time, all employees are encouraged to work from home if their work allows for this. Employees in this situation would not be required to use paid time off unless they were designated as essential emergency personnel. 

For emergency essential personnel, we recognize the challenges the current situation will create. Employees designated as essential emergency personnel may be required to use paid time off to continue being paid while out of the office. We are encouraging our supervisors to work proactively and to be as flexible as possible to assist people in these situations to meet both their work and home obligations. Each situation may require a different response. We will proceed in these situations in a manner that is aligned with SLU’s values. We deeply appreciate the unique service our essential emergency personnel are providing in these unprecedented times, and  will continue to evaluate ways to lessen any burden experienced by emergency essential personnel who will be required to be onsite.

What if I am able to work onsite or at home and I have childcare resources available, but I choose not to work. Will I get paid?

If an employee is able to work onsite (based on their role), or at home and has childcare resources available, but they choose not to work, they must use accrued vacation. Once vacation is exhausted, the employee will be in unpaid status.

What if I am age 65 or over and have a medical condition that makes me high risk if I contract COVID-19? Can I work from home?

At this time, all employees are encouraged to work from home if their work allows for this. If you have been designated as essential personnel, you may need to request an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), such as working from home. You may request an accommodation by going to your profile in Workday and clicking on “Requests.” You will be asked to respond to the questions posed. Once you submit your request, your Human Resources Consultant will work with your supervisor to determine if a reasonable accommodation can be made.

What are the primary reasons I should be using sick time?

The use of sick time should primarily be used for the following reasons:

  • For the care of yourself, when you are unable to perform your job in the office or at home.
  • For the care of your family member who is sick, and you are unable to perform your job in the office or at home.
  • You have exhausted all possible options to carry out your job duties at work or at home and challenges with child care prohibit you from performing the essential functions of your job.
How will the University administer the additional allotment of 80 hours of sick time?

The University will not automatically add 80 hours into your sick bank. Rather, continue to use your sick balance as noted throughout these FAQs.  The University will allow you to go negative in your sick bank, up to 80 hours.  You will continue to accrue sick time while using sick time. Once we have worked our way through the COVID-19 pandemic, the University intends to remove any remaining negative balances in an individual’s sick leave bank.

Can I take FMLA if I am home sick, or if I am caring for a sick family member?  What if I am quarantined, but have no symptoms?

You may request FMLA if you are eligible and if you are absent for more than three days because you or a family member is sick. You may use sick time for your own serious health condition and caregiver leave for a family member’s illness. Sickness and accident benefits, if applicable, are also available to union employees. If you are quarantined but have no symptoms, you should still request FMLA in order for us to be notified of your specific needs and address any changes in your ability to work from home. Please seek medical attention from your health care provider regarding a diagnosis as it may be considered a serious health condition under FMLA. If you are not sick and do not have symptoms, you do not have to request FMLA to work from home.

FMLASource

What if I have an underlying FMLA-qualifying condition that would make me unable to work in an environment in which COVID-19 was present?

At this time, all employees are encouraged to work from home if their work allows for this. If you have been designated as essential personnel and have been advised by your health care provider to stay home due to an underlying FMLA-qualifying condition that could render you incapacitated if you contracted the virus, you may qualify for job-protected leave under FMLA.

FMLASource

If I have been assigned to work remotely, but I don’t have work to do, and my supervisor identifies a need in another department where I can help, do I have to take the assignment?

Employees who do not have available work from their own department are expected to help out in other areas where needed. It is the employee’s choice to accept or not accept the new assignment, but if the employee does not accept it, then the employee must use accrued vacation time to remain in paid status. Once accrued vacation is exhausted, the employee will be in unpaid status.

What should I do if I'm working from home but a student or colleague wants to meet in person?

Employees working from home are strongly discouraged from setting up satellite locations for meetings with colleagues as this would defeat the purpose of the social distancing measures that we are implementing to help “flatten the curve” of COVID-19 in our city and region. Suggest a Zoom meeting instead. If you need assistance with any meeting request, please work with your immediate supervisor.

If I am working on a laptop or computer that isn’t owned by the University, will ITS still help me with any technical issues?

While there can be a limit to the technical issues that ITS can resolve if you are not working on a SLU managed computer, ITS will continue their practice of seeking to assist students, faculty, staff and clinicians who are working on personal devices. Contact the IT Support Desk at 314-977-4000 or helpdesk@slu.

Can I forward my office phone to my cell or home phone?

There is a limit to the number of phones SLU can forward to an outside line. Instead of forwarding, update your voicemail to reflect that you are working from home and provide callers with alternative ways to reach you. Outside of critical units responding to the immediate needs of students and other stakeholders, most departments and divisions should only forward their main phone line if necessary.

What if I need to use a program or system that is only available with access via Virtual Private Network (VPN)?

ITS plans to deploy a new and significantly improved VPN service called GlobalProtect to all SLU-managed computers. You will need it to continue to access certain secure programs and systems at the University. Additionally, ITS recommends that you connect regularly to GlobalProtect while working remotely to help your computer remain secure and fully functional.

How can I stay in touch with colleagues throughout the day?

SLU has implemented the video-conferencing system Zoom, which is easy-to-use and effective for both formal meetings and informal conversations. In addition to normal email, Google Hangouts is another way to stay in touch. Teams are encouraged to incorporate opportunities to build community while they are working remotely, and team members should check in on each other during this challenging time.

Can I return to campus if I forgot something in my workspace, and, if so, are there any precautions I should take?

If you are not feeling well or experiencing any symptoms, you should not return to campus. Please make other arrangements to collect your things. If you are not symptomatic, not quarantined or self-isolated and have not been exposed, you can come back to campus. To reduce your risk of exposure, limit the amount of time you spend on campus and consider coming in early or late when fewer people will be working on campus.

If I must continue working on campus, what measures is SLU taking to clean buildings and reduce the risk of exposure?

The Facilities Services Division is closely following the guidelines of the CDC and public health officials. Our Custodial Services staff will continue to wipe down all surfaces and touchpoints with hospital grade disinfectants, with a primary focus on currently-occupied spaces. 

What should I do if I am a new hire that is unable to physically go to HR to complete my I-9?

If you are an employee that is working remotely (not working on the SLU campus) and are unable to travel to campus due to a COVID stay at home order, or you self-identify as autoimmune comprised or other medical condition, please reach out to your supervisor and HR@slu.edu to see what accommodations may be made for your particular circumstance.

  

Key HR Policies