Responsible Office: Human Resources, Division of Administration
Current Approved Version: 08/17/2020
Policy Type: Administrative
Policy Statement and Purpose
VCU provides various paid and unpaid leave options to assist eligible employees (including faculty) with managing absences from work. The nature and extent of attendance, time reporting and leave accrual are determined by employment status and conditions of employment.
The purpose of this policy is to set forth the minimum time reporting and leave record keeping that is required by the university, and to establish responsibility for maintaining such records. In addition, this policy requires the university to follow federal requirements for substantiating (1) salaries and wages charged to federal contracts and grants; and (2) overtime and overtime-related record keeping under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
Noncompliance with this policy may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination. VCU supports an environment free from retaliation. Retaliation is prohibited against any employee who brings forth a good faith concern, asks a clarifying question or participates in an investigation.
Who Should Know This Policy
All employees (including faculty), managers, timekeepers and certifying officers are responsible for knowing this policy and familiarizing themselves with its contents and provisions.
Leave Plan Year The period of time used for beginning accruals and calculating carry-over amounts. At VCU, the leave year is defined as January 10 of the current year through January 9 of the following year.
Timekeeper A person assigned to enter and/or ensure all time worked and leave taken by employees are approved by the appropriate supervisor in the approved electronic timekeeping system according to policies and established deadlines.
Timekeeping Records (“Records”) Official time and leave records consist of hours worked or leave taken as entered into the Banner or other approved electronic human resources information system via the approved electronic timekeeping system.
Work Week A work week is defined as 12:01 a.m. Sunday through midnight the following Saturday.
VCU Human Resources officially interprets this policy and is responsible for obtaining approval for any revisions as required by the policy Creating and Maintaining Policies and Procedures through the appropriate governance structures. Please direct policy questions to HR Operations in VCU Human Resources.
Policy Specifics and Procedures
1. General Provisions: Employees are required to report time worked or leave taken as indicated below.
Non-exempt full-time and part-time employees record hours worked on a daily basis and submit leave requests using the approved electronic timekeeping system in accordance with university leave policies and departmental guidelines or Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM) policy, as appropriate.
Exempt full-time and part-time employees submit leave requests using the approved electronic timekeeping system in accordance with leave policies and departmental guidelines DHRM policy, as appropriate.
Faculty in all leave plans: submit leave requests via the approved electronic timekeeping system in accordance with faculty-specific leave policies and departmental guidelines DHRM policy, as appropriate.
Hourly/wage employees, student workers and work-study employees record hours worked on a daily basis using the approved electronic timekeeping system. The employee’s manager, or designee, must authorize all absences from work.
No leave may be taken in anticipation of future leave accruals.
No “off-the-book” records of time worked or leave taken are permitted. See definition of “timekeeping records” above.
Departments are required to designate timekeepers and appropriate proxies.
2. Leave Requests: Employees are expected to request time off in advance, when possible, by using the approved electronic timekeeping system.
The employee’s manager is expected to respond timely to requests, indicating approval or denial, and ensure that timekeepers have appropriate information by established departmental timekeeping deadlines.
3. Leave and Time Reporting: Authorized managers must approve hours worked and must approve or deny leave submitted in the approved electronic timekeeping system. This can be done daily or weekly prior to the end of a pay period.
4. Special Leave Circumstances:
University and departmental policies and guidelines regarding leave requests and leave usage must allow employees to stay at home or leave campus if they feel ill or register a fever.
During a public health emergency declared by the federal or state government, leave requests are to be liberally granted, and employees are permitted to remain in a leave without pay status for a reasonable period consistent with the reason for absence not to exceed one month.
5. Record Keeping: Records must be supported by documentation of the employee’s time worked or leave requested and the supervisor’s approval or denial of these actions. Documentation may consist of paper documents, emails, calendar entries or electronic records. The approved electronic timekeeping system serves as the electronic signature for leave.
Departments are required to maintain records of every wage and non-exempt employee’s hours worked for each work week. Departments also must keep records of authorized leave used each pay period by all employees (including faculty). Records of military leave use and leave used under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) also must be maintained. Most records are stored in the approved electronic timekeeping system once the hours and leave have been approved.
Original supporting documentation that exists outside of the approved electronic timekeeping system must be maintained in a secure, confidential location in the department for five calendar years, and thereafter may be destroyed according to the Library of Virginia records retention and destruction schedules.
Employees in grant-funded positions may utilize applicable leave with supervisory approval to cover absences related to unexpected or extraordinary circumstances.
Hourly/wage employees, student workers and work-study employees must obtain prior, documented approval to work and be paid for overtime, or adjust work hours, for FLSA compliance. Time worked must be submitted and approved by managers in the approved electronic timekeeping system by deadlines to ensure prompt payment.
Non-exempt full-time and part-time employees must obtain prior, documented approval to work and be paid for overtime, accrue overtime leave, or adjust work hours, for FLSA compliance. Time worked must be submitted and approved by managers in the approved electronic timekeeping system by deadlines to ensure prompt payment.
Understand and comply with all applicable leave policies.
Notify their department promptly of prospective changes in employment status (e.g. a planned leave of absence or when separating employment).
Regularly inform their manager and human resources professional of absences, expected return-to-work dates and submit physician-approved medical restrictions for review and approval.
Submit leave requests to their manager in a timely manner using the approved electronic timekeeping system.
Submit requests for FMLA leave 30 days in advance, if foreseeable, and within two business days of return to work, if unexpected.
Review leave information in eServices/VCU Self Service every pay period to ensure accuracy of personal leave balances; contact assigned timekeeper promptly to resolve discrepancies.
Obtain required training on leave policies, timekeeping procedures, and using the approved electronic timekeeping system.
Publish departmental deadlines to all employees and managers to ensure leave or work-hours in the approved electronic timekeeping system is submitted by payroll deadlines
Ensure managers approve hours worked and leave taken according to leave policies, FMLA and FLSA rules and published deadlines.
Record workers' compensation leave only as authorized by VCU’s Human Resources workers' compensation office.
Submit employee’s own paid leave in the approved electronic timekeeping system to cover a waiting period of seven consecutive calendar days for the employee’s approved initial short-term disability period.
Assist managers in tracking FMLA leave use.
Assist employees in resolving leave questions using the applicable leave plan.
Submit the final timesheet, as applicable, for a separating employee within three days after the employee’s separation date to ensure an audit of the leave records is conducted. The time used and the time accrued will be reconciled to ensure proper payment of leave balances.
Submit to VCU Human Resources the applicable separation checklist for the benefited or non-benefited employees on the employee’s final day of employment or for an employee’s death in service (see the “Forms” section).
HR Support Staff and Fiscal Administrators must:
Submit the appropriate personnel action form and forward required attachments for timely personnel-related transactions.
Notify VCU Payroll Services immediately of an employee’s change in status that affects pay, including leave without pay, suspension, demotion and separation.
Review reports regularly and submit the appropriate personnel action form promptly to extend or change job/account end dates or to separate an employee.
Ensure prompt distribution of human resources email notifications to employees as appropriate.
Monitor and update Banner access for appropriate staff.
Coordinate with the department timekeeper to submit to VCU Human Resources the applicable separation checklist for the benefited or non-benefited employees on the employee’s final day of employment or for an employee’s death in service (see the “Forms” section).
Provide training and assistance to timekeepers to help resolve leave problems.
Process leave adjustments and amendments accurately and within the pay period they are received.
Conduct leave audits when processing leave of absence and employment separations to ensure leave balances and payments are accurate.
Provide assistance with overtime issues, leave questions and leave policy interpretations, including the appropriate use of short-term disability, WC and FMLA leave.
Process and monitor all short-term disability claims and coordinate with the department and employee to ensure accurate pay and leave use.
Coordinate with the VCU Workers' Compensation/Short-term Disability Coordinator on short-term disability work-related injuries to ensure accurate leave and pay benefits.
Provide information to third-party administrators regarding employee eligibility for short-term disability and WC benefits.
Review overtime reports for compliance with FLSA.
Extend probationary period dates for approved medical leaves of absence.
Administer the leave share program by coordinating donations, calculating leave share payments and preparing appropriate timesheets to document payments.
Process leave payments and leave deductions for employees changing their employment status.
Process recorded docks and amendments to previously paid hours and supplemental pay accurately and within the pay period it is received.
Process separation leave payments accurately and within the pay period in which the separation occurs
Monitor supplemental pay reports to ensure staff are paid according to FLSA guidelines.