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Maintaining Business Continuity Amid COVID-19

Further to the President’s statement earlier today about the COVID-19 pandemic, we would like to advise the community about our plans to maintain business continuity over the coming days.

To ensure our operations continue to the extent that is possible, we are asking that all HR & Equity staff take the following measures to be prepared to work from home:

Work-Essential Technology

At the end of each work day, please be sure to transport your University-provided technology, including, but not limited to, laptops and e-tokens, to ensure you have the required resources to work including access to HRIS or FIS. You are responsible for safeguarding all University-provided technology during your commute and at your home. Be sure to double check that you have packed required charge cords for all technology.

Access to Files

Prior to departing the office today, please take the time to review your files. To ensure access in the event that VPN/RDP are not functioning when working remotely, please confirm that any necessary files saved locally on your computer or shared drive are uploaded to your personal OneDrive or team SharePoint site as appropriate. You should have full access any files you may need.

Trial Working Remotely

In preparation, please test your capacity to work from home as soon as possible. It is recommended that staff do a trial run of working remotely for a full day next week on a rotational basis within your team.

Work from Home Resources

For anyone who has not worked from home previously, please take the time to review these recommended guidelines for more information on how to ensure you have access to the services you need:

If You Are Sick or in Self-Isolation

At this time, no employee is required to have a doctor’s note or medical certificate for cold or flu-related absences, or for self-isolation. Individuals who are not symptomatic for COVID-19 but meet the criteria for recommended self-isolation based on public health advice should work from home during this 14-day period. If symptoms of illness arise during self-isolation, please follow the sick leave procedures as outlined.

All employees who are sick or who need to self-isolate should complete this self-declaration form after reporting their absence to their Manager, Supervisor, or Department Head. The University will use this information to monitor the overall health of our community.

Please continue to inform your Manager or Director through normal processes if you will be absent due to illness, including cold or flu-related absences.

Child Care

We also recognize that many parents and caregivers may need to work from home while schools are closed to balance their child care needs. We ask Managers and Directors to be as flexible as possible when considering flex-time and telecommuting requests based on this need.

For More Information

All information regarding the University’s response to the COVID-19 coronavirus can be found on the University of Toronto website. Frequently Asked Questions from the U of T community about the coronavirus are also available. We encourage employees to check this website frequently for up to date information.

If you have questions about our business continuity plan, please contact Joan Griffin, Manager, HR Stakeholder Relations.