Remote and Hybrid Work

Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement: Error for Mac Users 

GW IT has updated HRMD that there is a known issue for Mac users who attempt to fill out the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement. The settings for the browsers may be impacting the user's ability to access the form. If you operate a Mac and are experiencing this service issue, please refer to the following help documents for Safari and Chrome.

Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement

The Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement supports GW’s staff work designations. If your work designation is either hybrid or full-time remote, you must complete a Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement each academic year. Staff members should first consult their managers prior to completing this agreement. The university will assess its operational needs periodically with regards to hybrid and remote work. 

Launch the GW Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement

Form Aids to assist with completion of the form:


Staff guidance for the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement  

  • Do not begin the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement until you have confirmed with your manager that you may do so. 

  • Discuss all expectations for your position with your manager prior to completing the form. You will be able to complete a section within the form, detailing these expectations (e.g. how you will communicate with other staff members and clients, and when you will be needed on-campus).

  • Please carefully read the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement cover page. When completing the form, HRMD has also created instructions to guide you through each step of the process. 

  • The manager may approve the request, deny the request, or reject the request to allow the staff member to amend the information.

  • Please note: there may be a slight delay after each party signs and completes the agreement, before the system notifies the next party. 

  • Remote and Hybrid Work Agreements only apply for the academic year for which they are submitted (September 1 – August 31) and must be re-submitted each academic year. The agreement can be revoked at any time with a 30-day notice.


Manager guidance for the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement

  • All staff members have been notified of their work designations via email. Only those staff members who are hybrid or full-time remote should complete this agreement.

  • Staff members and managers should meet prior to the staff member completing this agreement to discuss all workforce planning expectations (e.g. expectations for how the staff member should communicate with colleagues and clients, and when the staff member will be needed on campus). Staff members will need to complete a section within the form detailing those expectations, and managers will be required to provide their own expectations within the form, as well.

  • We have created instructions for managers to refer to while completing the management section of the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement.

  • Once the staff member has submitted their agreement, the manager will receive an email, notifying them that their staff member has signed a Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement. 

  • If the manager wishes to approve this request, they must select the school or unit’s HR Business Partner within the form. Please ensure that the correct HR Business Partner is selected. They can be located from within this directory. If the incorrect HR Business Partner is selected, there may be a delay in the process. 

  • Please note: there may be a slight delay after each party signs and completes the agreement, before the system notifies the next party. 

  • Remote and Hybrid Work Agreements only apply for the academic year for which they are submitted (September 1 – August 31) and must be re-submitted each academic year. The agreement can be revoked at any time with a 30-day notice.


Remote and Hybrid Work Guide

The university permits the use of flexible work arrangements when such arrangements are pre-approved, assist in meeting operational needs and/or requirements, and maintain a high level of service for university constituents.  There may also be times when a department’s needs require that certain positions follow full-time remote or hybrid work arrangements.  

EEO Notice: The George Washington University is an Equal Opportunity/Equal Access/Affirmative Action institution. The "EEO is the Law" notice provides information regarding applicable laws and procedures for filing complaints if you feel the law has been violated (English, Spanish, Chinese). Hybrid and full-time remote staff are encouraged to review this notice and contact GW's EEO office if they have any questions or concerns.


1. Explore the many benefits of remote hybrid work

The university confirms its commitment to assisting employees in developing a work-life balance by supporting the use of remote and hybrid work. Remote and hybrid work can also benefit the university in numerous ways, including, potentially reducing costs as well as improving employee productivity and morale.

Better for the Environment

Remote and hybrid work can help support GW’s sustainability efforts by reducing automobile emissions and cutting fuel consumption. Remote and hybrid work also reduces the demand for heating, cooling, and lighting that is often required by an office building as compared to a home environment.

Encourages Work-Life Balance

Remote and hybrid work can save an employee significant time that would otherwise be spent commuting. That extra time can allow employees to find a better balance between their work and their personal lives. This extra time can also help reduce stress, improve employees’ health, and therefore reduce health insurance costs – a win for both the employee and GW.

Increases Morale and Productivity

Employees whose responsibilities and preferred work environment are a good fit for a hybrid or remote work arrangement are often more motivated and productive than when limited to the traditional office environment. Remote and hybrid work also allows employees to escape the distractions at the workplace and better focus on their work. Finally, it allows employees to work in locations beyond the office or home, including the airport, a client site, or in the University Student Center between meetings.

Improves Retention

By supporting better work-life balance and workforce mobility, remote and hybrid work can retain employees who may otherwise consider leaving due to changes in their personal life. Decreased employee turnover means GW is able to retain great staff and enjoy savings in recruiting and training costs, as well as provide a high quality of service.

Cost Savings

Remote and hybrid work can achieve significant savings associated with real estate costs and overhead. GW can grow without the need to rent/build additional workstations, office spaces, and parking facilities. Staff also benefit from paying less in gas and mass transportation costs.


2. Assess position designation

Staff designated as hybrid or full-time remote are eligible to work remotely based on the university's Staff Work Designations Policy.

In order to determine if a staff member's position should be designated hybrid or remote, the staff member's manager should discuss the designation with their HR Business Partner and consider the responsibilities of that position.

Guidance for Position Designation
    Never Some of the time All of the time
1 Does this position interact directly with students in a way that is best done in person (“student-facing”), with faculty in a way that is best done in person (“faculty-facing”), and/or with other core GW populations such as patients, alumni, donors, or community members in a way that is best done in person (“constituent-facing”)?      
2 Can the essential functions of this job be successfully performed off-campus and/or virtually?      
3 Does performing the essential functions of this role remotely impact the quality of the work?      
4 Does the work require equipment/physical space on campus? (lab equipment, cleaning machines, etc.)      
5 Is the work-in-progress digital? (i.e., the day-to-day functions of the role)      

Is the delivered work product digital? (for example - Never: cleaned bathrooms, patrolled beats, in-person healthcare visit; All of the time: reports, files, spreadsheets)

7 Is email, phone, and chat communication ideal to convey information in this role?      
8 Are the core functions of this role collaborative?      
9 Are virtual meetings and communication effective for the collaboration needed?      
10 Does performing this role remotely reduce costs?      
11 When vacant, is this position difficult to fill?      
12 Would a hybrid or remote designation expand the talent pool?      

For questions 1, 3, 4, and 8, answering “All of the time” indicates that a position should be designated on-site or in-person. Answering “never” indicates that a position could be designated hybrid or remote.

For questions 2, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, and 12, answering “All of the time” indicates that a position could be designated hybrid or remote. Answering “never” indicates that a position should be designated on-site or in-person.

If you answered “Some of the time” to most of the questions above, you should discuss the operational needs of the position with your unit or school leadership and consult your HR Business Partner.

Work with your HR Business Partner if you have questions about staff designations.

Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees

Like other employees, teleworkers can be categorized as either exempt or non-exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Federal law mandates the reporting of hours worked by non-exempt (hourly) staff for in-person, on-site staff, hybrid, and full-time remote staff. All hours worked, including regular pay and overtime hours, must be well documented. Just as they would in the office, non-exempt employees are expected to use the university’s Time Reporting System to clock in/out using the telephone or PC. Managers should regularly review their employees’ payroll records and address any concerns immediately.

Security Issues

The protection of confidential data is of the utmost importance. All employees, including those in a hybrid or full-time remote arrangement, are expected to comply with applicable policies, including GW’s Information Security Policy (PDF). Any files that contain confidential data should not be kept on local computers, or external media (e.g., CD-ROMS, external hard drives, USB flash drives, zip drives, DVDs, etc). These files should be stored in a secured network folder that is only accessible by authorized personnel. Email is inherently insecure and confidential data should never be sent via email unless encryption software is used.

All work computers should be password protected, and employees shall not share their passwords with anyone else. Pursuant to the Information Security Policy (PDF), employees are expected to secure all university-owned computers and other portable electronic devices by employing strong passwords and physical protections, such as locking cables, whenever these devices are left unattended.

Staff should not keep any hard copies of any documents that contain confidential data outside of the university, such as at their homes or other alternative work locations. Positions that require regular use of documents containing confidential data may not be appropriate for a remote or hybrid work arrangement.


3. Completing the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement Form

Prior to executing a Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement, a hybrid or full-time remote employee and their manager should establish a specific work schedule, determine any modification of departmental operations or procedures that need to be completed prior to initiating the arrangement, and determine the equipment and resources necessary for the arrangement.

After all appropriate documents have final approval, the hybrid or full-time remote staff member should inform the payroll department of their new work location.

Hybrid and full-time remote staff should be mindful of the following:

  • Staff are still required to comply with all university policies and guidelines, including all departmental policies and procedures.

  • Staff must maintain the expected quantity and quality of work. Staff and managers should review university policy and departmental guidelines and practices regarding sick and annual leave to maintain compliance with them.

  • Staff are responsible for the safety and security of university equipment, software, data, supplies, and furniture at the telecommuting site. Employees and managers should review university policy and departmental guidelines and practices regarding the maintenance of data security and confidentiality.

  • Some equipment and related services may be provided and paid for by the employee’s department. Equipment such as computers, printers, software provided on loan by the university remain the property of the university, and must be returned upon termination of the telecommuting arrangement. For university equipment that is provided, each piece of equipment must be listed in the Hybrid and Remote Work Agreement with its serial number by an employee when they take possession. Staff must return the equipment in the same condition in which it was originally received, minus normal wear and tear. Staff are personally responsible for missing or damaged equipment.

  • Staff are solely responsible for tax or other legal implications for the business use of their home.

  • The university assumes no liability for injuries occurring in an staff member's home outside of work hours.

  • If a staff member lives in rented property, they should be aware that their lease may not permit business use of the premises.

  • The arrangement will begin with a 90-day trial period, and can be discontinued during or after that period at any time at the discretion of the staff member's manager if the arrangement does not meet the operational needs of the department and/or the staff member does not comply with the Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement.

  • At the conclusion of the trial period the staff member and their manager will evaluate the arrangement and determine whether it should be continued, modified, or terminated.


4. Telecommuting Resources

Telecommuting Related Policies

There are a number of GW policies that are important for telecommuting employees and their managers to be aware of when working in a virtual environment. You are also encouraged to review the university policy website to review additional policies specific to your position. 

Telecommuting employees should keep up to date on current GW policies that may have an impact on a Remote and Hybrid Work Arrangement, which are provided below:

Staff Work Designations Policy

The establishment of a positive and flexible work environment is essential to attracting and retaining a diverse and talented staff to support the university's academic enterprise.

Flexible Work Arrangements Policy

This policy is intended to establish some flexibility in university work arrangements when conditions are suitable for both employees and their respective department.

Information Security Policy

This policy sets forth requirements and guidelines for the incorporation of information security practices into daily usage of university information systems.

Application and System Access Policy

This policy sets forth requirements to assist in securing and protecting the university’s applications, systems, and data against information security related threats and dangers.

To review additional GW policies that may affect your remote or hybrid work arrangement, please visit the policy website.

Communication Guidance

Telecommuting employees, their managers, and their colleagues are encouraged to use the following tips and resources to work effectively in a virtual environment:

  • Become familiar with the different conference calling options GW's Division of Information Technology offers;

  • Schedule regular check-in times with your manager and colleagues for updates on work, to ask questions, and to learn about any office news;

  • Hold regular staff meetings for everyone in the group or department. If telecommuting employees regularly come into the office at least once a week, it may be beneficial to schedule these meetings on a day when everyone is in the office. Otherwise, an employee can join the aforementioned meeting by phone or video calling software.

  • Use GroupWise Messenger or another instant messaging (IM) system to stay in immediate contact with team members. This often alerts others to an employee’s availability and it may be easier for a colleague to send a quick question over an IM than to send an email or make a phone call.

  • Complete a weekly report to provide your manager with an update of your work. The APP weekly report templates (PDF) are great formats for providing regular updates.

GW Technology and Procurement Resources

Refer to the Division of Information Technology's Technology Checklist for Telecommuters for details.


5. Telecommuting Evaluation

All new Remote and Hybrid Work Agreements begin with a 90-day trial period, and during or after that period, they may be discontinued by the department and/or the university at any time for any reason with a 30-day notice.

Remote and hybrid arrangements must be renewed on an annual basis for each academic year (September 1 - August 31). A full-time remote or hybrid staff member and their manager should discuss how the current arrangement is working, review the staff member's performance goals and how they pair with a remote or hybrid arrangement, and complete a new Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement. 

Human Resource Management and Development is ready to help you with any questions or issues regarding flexible work arrangements, including remote and hybrid work. Contact your HR Business Partner for additional guidance.


6. Terminating a Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement

A Remote and Hybrid Work Agreement may be terminated at any time at the discretion of the department or the university. Although efforts will be made to provide reasonable notice of such a change to accommodate personal commitments, such as childcare and commuting requirements, there may be instances when notice is not possible.

An employee may discontinue participation in a flexible work arrangement only with the university’s approval. In some instances, established departmental operations may require full-time remote or hybrid work. Therefore, an employee must provide their manager with written notification of a request to terminate or modify the remote and hybrid work arrangement and may not proceed with any changes until the university approves the request.

In the event that a Remote and Hybrid Agreement is terminated, Human Resource Management and Development should be notified of the termination. If full-time remote or hybrid work was a requirement of the staff member's position at the time of hire, and the staff member or their department wishes to terminate the remote or hybrid arrangement, contact Human Resource Management and Development to discuss the potential consequences of terminating the arrangement.