Red X iconGreen tick iconYellow tick icon
Category Human Resources
Type Guideline
Approved by Vice Chancellor
Date Guideline Took Effect 1 February 2023
Last approved revision 
Sponsor Human Resources Director
Responsible officer Employment Relations Manager

Please note that compliance with University Guidelines is expected in normal circumstances, and any deviation from Guidelines – which should only be in exceptional circumstances – needs to be justifiable.


To support the Working from Home Policy and Procedures by providing guidance and supporting information when considering a working from home requests and arrangements.

Organisational scope

All University employees.


All employees of the University of Otago
Working from Home (WFH)
Means an agreed arrangement to work fully or partially from home or at another location outside of the University of Otago.


1. Introduction

  1. Managing staff working remotely introduces new challenges such as team cohesion, collaboration, ensuring staff wellbeing, avoiding distractions and ensuring staff have the correct equipment. It is therefore important that working from home is well planned and well managed.

2. Key considerations

  1. To help guide discussions with your Managers/Heads of Department (who are required to endorse alternative working arrangements), the following questions have been developed for consideration.  These are designed to help you think through the challenges and opportunities that working from home will bring.  Where relevant, it is expected that the answers to these will be documented in the Request to Work Flexibly Form.
    • What is your proposal regarding working from home – how many days / times, etc?
    • What is the reason(s) you wish to work from home and how will this benefit the University and yourself?
    • Based on past experience, how effectively will you be able to work from home?
    • How will the full needs of all your students be met (including those with disabilities)?
    • How will your teaching be delivered and how will you ensure your teaching is effective?
    • How and when will you be available for students and colleagues, e.g. what is the most effective method for contacting you? will you have core hours and if so, what will your office hours be etc?
    • How will you maintain links with other members of staff (academic staff and professional staff) and students?
    • What will be the impact on your research and how will you mitigate this if needed?
    • If necessary, will you be available for face-to-face meetings, on campus?
    • Do you have an appropriate environment at home to work, e.g. a confidential space to talk to students and colleagues?
    • Would you require any further equipment?
    • What impact will working from home have on other staff (academic staff, and professional staff) and students?
    • Will the work you do need to be altered in any way?

3. Resources and support

  1. There are several avenues to find help and support for both staff working from home and for Managers / Heads of Department:

Related policies, procedures and forms

Contact for further information

If you have any queries regarding the content of these guidelines or need further clarification, contact your local Divisional Human Resources Manager / Adviser.

Back to top