Alternate Work Week Policy - CalHR

CalHR Alternate Work Week Policy

AWWS Purpose

The alternate work week schedule (AWWS) allows employees and supervisors to mutually agree upon a varied distribution of their normal work hours. It does not change the number of hours worked, but simply allows each individual the flexibility to rearrange their work schedule to better meet their personal needs while also considering the needs of the office.
 

The major benefits of the AWWS are:

1. Improved employee morale and job satisfaction;
2. Extended hours of service to the public and other State agencies;
3. Decreased short-term absenteeism for medical and miscellaneous personal appointments; and
4. Increased employee usage of carpools and public transportation. 
 

AWWS Policy

It is the policy of the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR) to offer flexible work hours and schedules to employees while continuing to maintain operating efficiency, productivity, and effective service to the public and other State agencies.
 

AWWS Eligibility

Only permanent CalHR employees in classes assigned to Work Week Group (WWG) 2 (covered by the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)) are eligible to participate in an "official" AWWS. While AWWS are not allowed on a formal basis for WWG E/SE employees, the work schedule flexibility of WWG E/SE employees allows a variety of work schedules that are mutually acceptable to the employee and the supervisor.
 
Participation is dependent upon the employee maintaining a minimum balance of 40 hours of leave credits (excluding sick leave) to cover any deficit that results from working less than the required number of hours for a pay period (reference page 3255.4, Excess Hours). The AWWS may be terminated at any time for failure to maintain acceptable leave balances.
 

Responsibilities and Approvals

Managers/supervisors are responsible to ensure that their units have coverage during the normal office hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., including the lunch period. Consideration should be given to the employees' workload and the type of work performed. These issues should be considered prior to approving any request for an AWWS.
 
Employees must submit a completed Alternate Work Week Agreement form (CalHR 183) and proposed alternate work week calendar to their supervisors. The Department of General Services (DGS) annually creates work schedule calendars consistent with both 9/8/80 and 4/10/40 work schedules. See the DGS Office of Human Resource's Timekeeping Toolkit for more information and to download the most current calendars.
 
Note: These DGS calendars can be used and attached to the CalHR 183 form. CalHR employees should not use the DGS internal Alternate Work Week agreement form in place of the CalHR 183.
 
Prior to approving the CalHR 183, managers/supervisors must consider the impact the proposed work schedule will have on fellow employees, as well as the division as a whole, and make any necessary adjustments.
 
In addition, the employee's attendance record shall be reviewed. Careful consideration must be given before approving an AWWS for any employee whose leave balances are consistently hovering around the required 40 hour minimum. Exceptions to this policy can be made at the discretion of the Division Chief; however, the reason for approval must be documented.
 
All AWWS will be approved for a 3 to 6 month trial period. This will allow sufficient time to determine any impact the scheduling change may have on meeting workload commitments, assessing impact on attendance, as well as allowing the employee and their supervisor to determine whether the new work schedule will meet individual and program needs.
 
Any adjustments to the employee's original request should be discussed with the employee in order to develop a work schedule that is agreeable to both the supervisor and the employee. Adjustments to the original agreement should be documented.
 
Once division approval has been given, the original copy of the alternate work week agreement and subsequent adjustments must be sent to the Personnel Office. The Personnel Office will provide a copy to the appropriate attendance clerk.
 

Alternate work schedules must always be effective at the beginning of a pay period.

When a 4/10/40 or 9/8/80 schedule is cancelled by either the employee or supervisor, written notification must be immediately sent to the Personnel Office. This notification should contain the date upon which the employee will return to a normal 8-hour day schedule. Where possible, cancellations should occur at the end of the pay period.
 

AWWS Definitions

Core Time

The period of time during which all employees are expected to work.
There will be no fixed core time. Each division will be responsible for establishing their core hours. It will be the responsibility of the manager/supervisor to ensure that staff is available to cover key unit functions during the normal work hours.
 

Regular Business Hours

8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday with a one hour lunch period.
 

Lunch Period

A minimum of 30 minutes must be taken for lunch. The lunch period is usually between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. It may be necessary for employees to stagger individual lunch breaks to allow a minimum level of coverage during this two-hour period.
 

Vacation, Sick Leave, and other Excused Absences

Each absence will be recorded on an "Absence and Additional Time Worked Report (STD 634). The normal work week for full time employees is 40 hours. Hours of work (including holidays and excused absences) should add up to 40 hours unless the manager/supervisor has approved CTO.
 

Alternate Work Week Schedules

Regular Work Week: Employees working a standard 5 day, 40 hour week schedule from Monday to Friday.
 
Alternate Work Week Schedule: An alternative to the normal 5-day, 40-hour work week. Examples of alternate work schedules utilized at CalHR are:
 
  • 4/10/40:  An employee works the required 40-hour minimum work week in four 10-hour days between Monday and Friday.
  • 9/8/80:  An employee works eight 9-hour days and one 8-hour day in a two-week period with one day off every other week that corresponds with the 8-hour day.
 
Employees who are approved for a 9/8/80 work week will be required to adjust their work week to ensure that they do not work over 40 hours in any consecutive seven day period. In this instance their work weeks would be adjusted to start four hours into their work shifts on their 8 hour days (this puts 4 hours into each work week).
 
Example: An employee on a 9/8/80 schedule working from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday with a 1 hour lunch, and from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with a 1 hour lunch on their 8 hour Friday with every other Friday as their regular scheduled day off (RDO). The work week technically would start mid-day on Friday and end at mid-day on the following Friday. 
 
Week 1:  Monday through Thursday, 9 hours a day; Friday 4/4*
Week 2:  Monday through Thursday, 9 hours a day; Friday RDO* /RDO
Week 3:  Monday through Thursday, 9 hours a day; Friday 4/4*...
...and so on
 
* These hours together form one work week. The hours not marked with an asterisk form another work week.
 
In the above example, the work week, which under the FLSA is defined as a fixed and regularly recurring period (7 consecutive 24-hour periods) begins mid-day on Friday (of Week 1) and extends to mid-day the following Friday (Week 2). This work week remains constant as reflected above.
 

Formal Approval

Once the supervisor approves any form of AWWS, the employee must complete the alternate work week agreement form (CalHR 183) and forward it to the supervisor, Division Chief, and Personnel Office for signature. A copy of the signed agreement will be placed in the employee's personnel folder for possible audit.
 

Termination of AWWS

The alternate work week agreement may be cancelled at any time by either the employee or CalHR by written notification or at the discretion of the supervisor to include, but not limited to, the following: exceptional and verifiable needs of the department; employee performance, failure to maintain the acceptable leave balances, or abuse of the AWWS policy. All AWWS terminations are effective the last day of the pay period.
 

Time Reporting

All employees working a formal AWWS, i.e., 4/10/40, 9/8/80 will be required to report all hours worked, as well as any hours on paid leave, in Item 7A on the monthly Absence Report, Std. 634. This will ensure proper recordkeeping and crediting for any excess or holiday credit hours that may be accumulated on an AWWS. In addition, it will allow proper auditing of overtime hours that could be accumulated for those employees covered under FLSA.
 

Excess Hours

AWWS can sometimes result in a difference between the number of hours worked and the number of hours in a pay period. Hours worked over the required number of hours for a pay period are called excess hours. Hours worked below the required number of hours in a pay period are called deficit hours.
Excess hours are credited at the close of the pay period, and therefore, cannot be used during the month earned. Excess hours will be carried as a credit on the employee's leave balance.
 
Deficit hours will not be carried over to the next pay period. The employee must use previously earned excess hours to equal the required number of hours for the pay period. If the employee does not have sufficient excess hours, s/he may use other leave credits (other than sick leave) to cover the deficit. If the employee does not have sufficient paid leave to cover the deficit, her/his pay will be docked, and the AWWS will be cancelled for failure to maintain a 40-hour leave credit balance (excluding sick leave). (Reference page 3255.1, Eligibility.)
 
Upon separation or transfer out of CalHR, any accumulated excess hours shown on the employee's leave balances will be paid at the straight time rate.
The Personnel Office will assist attendance clerks and/or any affected employees with the proper attendance recordkeeping for excess or deficit hours.
 

Leave Credits

Leave credits, including sick leave, personal leave hours, vacation, CTO, and excess hours, must be charged according to the employee's work schedule. For example:
 
Employees on a 4/10/40 schedule absent on sick leave all day must charge 10 hours of sick leave credits.
 
Employees on a 9/8/80 schedule who are absent on sick leave on the day they are required to work 9 hours must charge 9 hours of sick leave credits. If absent on their 8 hour day, must charge 8 hours of sick leave credits.
 
The employee must temporarily revert to a five day, 40 hour week schedule (for a minimum of one work week (Monday-Friday)) when on jury duty, on military leave, in training for 5 or more days; or when using leave credits prior to going on nonindustrial disability leave. In these instances, the temporary work schedule change must be coordinated with the Personnel Office so the proper documentation can be prepared.
 

Bereavement Leave

A maximum of three days or 24 hours is allowed, and must be charged in 8 hour increments. An employee on a 4/10/40 schedule who is off for three days (30 hours) must charge the additional 6 hours to vacation, holiday credit, PLP, CTO, excess hours, dock, or sick leave (with proper substantiation). Likewise, an employee on a 9/8/80 schedule who is absent on three 9 hour days (27 hours) must charge the additional 3 hours to vacation, CTO, holiday credit, excess hours, personal leave program hours, dock, or sick leave (with the proper substantiation).
 

Holidays

If a holiday falls on a regularly scheduled work day, the employee will receive 8 hours pay for the holiday, which will be counted toward the 168/176 hours needed for the pay period. The employee must then charge the additional 2 hours (if on a 10/4/40 schedule) or 1 hour (if the holiday falls on a 9 hour day when on a 9/8/80 schedule) to vacation, CTO, excess hours, personal leave program hours or holiday credit hours.
If a holiday falls on the employee's regular day off, the employee's leave record will be credited with 8 hours of holiday credit. This holiday credit does not count toward the total hours worked for the pay period.
 

Personal Holiday

An employee will receive 8 hours for her/his personal holiday (PH), which when used, will count toward the 168/176 hours required for the pay period. The employee must charge an additional 2 hours (if on a 4/10/40 schedule) or 1 hour (if PH is used on a 9 hour day when on a 9/8/80 schedule) to vacation, CTO, excess hours, personal leave program hours or holiday credit when a personal holiday is taken.
 

Overtime

California Code of Regulations 599.700 defines overtime as "authorized time worked in excess of regularly scheduled work week." The regularly scheduled work week is 40 hours for all employees covered under the provisions of FLSA, including those on an AWWS.
 

Changes to Alternate Work Week Schedule

Division Chiefs may require occasional changes be made to AWWSs due to meetings, training, or any other work commitment where the employees attendance is necessary. Permanent changes in an employee's regular day off must be reported on a new alternate work week agreement and the new schedule should begin at the start of the next pay period.
 

Employee/Supervisor Conflict

The standard excluded grievance process is to be used in the event the employee and supervisor are unable to reach a mutual agreement on any issue concerning alternate work week schedules. 
 

Updated 12/10/2013