News for Employees
Gradual Reopening Includes Select Campus Facilities
Some UW–Madison facilities are reopening on a limited basis, with new safety requirements such as masking and physical distancing in place. Facilities that are now open in a limited capacity, by reservation/appointment, include Allen Centennial Garden and Memorial Library. The Chazen Museum of Art will reopen to the public with limited hours on July 14. In addition, all child care facilities on campus are now open, including Eagle’s Wing, UW Child Development Lab, Waisman Early Childhood Program, and Little Chicks Learning Academy. Per campus guidelines, all visitors, students and employees at all campus locations must wear masks or face coverings and practice physical distancing of 6 feet.
The reopening of these facilities is part of a plan known as “Smart Restart,” aimed at fully reopening campus for a hybrid of face-to-face and remote instruction beginning on Sept. 2. The gradual reopening process is being coordinated by campus leaders and public health experts. All UW employees should wait for instructions from their dean, director or supervisor before reporting back to campus. Information about the Smart Restart plan is available online at smartrestart.wisc.edu.
Flexibility Added to FSA and Dependent Child Care Accounts
UW–Madison employees who are currently enrolled in a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Dependent Day Care Account now have the flexibility to make a mid-year change to either of these accounts without a qualifying life event (such as marriage or birth of a child). From July 1, 2020, until August 31, 2020, employees have a one-time opportunity to increase or decrease their annual contribution to an existing FSA or Dependent Day Care Account. Employees who wish to make a mid-year change must complete an Election Request Form. In addition, the amount employees may carry over for healthcare FSA has increased by $50 effective January 1, 2021. Employees may now carry over up to $550 from the 2020 plan year to the 2021 plan year. These changes were made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Support for Working Remotely
Instructors can take advantage of a variety of professional development opportunities to enhance their remote teaching this summer. These include a weeklong essentials bootcamp, TeachOnline@UW, self-guided materials, and support for recording lectures.
July 4 Is a Floating Holiday This Year
July 4 is designated as a floating holiday this year because it falls on a Saturday. For University Staff, floating holiday time can be used any time during the calendar year it is earned. This year, the floating July 4 holiday needs to be used before December 31, 2020. For Faculty, Academic Staff, and Limited employees, the July 4 floating holiday can be used any time during the fiscal year in which it is earned, but must be used by June 30, 2021.
Employees who are on furlough will earn the floating holiday at their pre-furlough level. Employees may choose to report furlough on both the scheduled work day before and after the holiday and will still earn the July 4 legal holiday. For most employees, the scheduled work days before and after the holiday are Friday, July 3, and Monday, July 6. Employees who are filing for unemployment benefits should record the floating holiday pay on the weekly unemployment claim certification for the week the floating holiday is used, not the week it is earned. If you have questions, please speak with your supervisor or your human resources representative.
Virtual Learning Session Teaches New Approaches to Conflict
The newest episode in the Connect, Learn and Grow series, “Recognizing and Addressing Conflict,” is now available online. This recorded session teaches intentional strategies that can be used to transform conflict from a dreaded experience into an opportunity. Participants will learn new strategies for approaching conflict and will be given activities to deal with conflict effectively. The Connect, Learn and Grow series offers virtual learning and connection at no cost to UW–Madison employees. Learning and Talent Development, which sponsors the series, is inviting ideas for future topics and speakers. Suggestions may be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download Campus Images and Display Bucky Pride
The Wisconsin Alumni Association is offering UW-themed photos and graphics that can be used for video conference backgrounds, social media cover photos, or wallpaper on your computer or smart phone. Featured images include the Union Terrace, Bascom Hill, Alumni Park, the Madison skyline, and more. Professional backgrounds are also available. Instructions are provided on how to add a virtual background using common video conferencing platforms. The images are offered at no cost and can be downloaded at uwalumni.com/support/virtual-backgrounds.
Employees Advised to Watch for Unemployment Fraud and Phone Scams
UW–Madison has become aware of several attempts to obtain employee information through phone scams, as well as fraudulent claims for unemployment benefits using stolen employee information. In a phone scam, someone claiming to be from the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) calls and asks for the employee’s Social Security number. The DWD will never contact claimants by phone to request personal or financial information.
In a fraud attempt, someone applies for unemployment benefits using stolen employee information. If you learn that someone is using your identity to collect unemployment benefits, report this immediately to the DWD at dwd.wisconsin.gov/ui/fraud/report.htm or call the Fraud Hotline at 800-909-9472. You should also file a police report for identity theft.
UW–Madison is tracking unemployment phone scams and fraud attempts. If you experience any of these problems, please send an email to email@example.com or speak with your human resources representative. For language assistance, call Cultural Linguistic Services at 608-265-2257.
Antivirus Solutions to Replace Symantec
The UW–Madison license for Symantec Antivirus will end on June 24 for students and July 31 for faculty and staff. University-owned devices (including Windows and macOS) should be running Cisco AMP, the university’s centrally managed endpoint security software. Your IT administrator will handle the removal and update to the new Cisco AMP tool. If you have downloaded and installed Symantec Antivirus on your personal device, you must remove it before June 24 (for students) or July 31 (for faculty/staff). The Office of Cybersecurity has recommended antivirus solutions for personally owned devices.
Round One Parking Application Deadline Extended
The deadline to apply for parking permits for parking year 2020–21 (Sept. 1, 2020–Aug. 31, 2021) has been extended. The first application period (“round one”) is now open until June 26. UW–Madison employees who have already submitted their parking permit applications can make changes to their application, if desired. Additional information is available at transportation.wisc.edu.
TTC Project Announces 2021 Timeline
UW–Madison, in consultation with UW System, has decided to extend the Title and Total Compensation (TTC) Project timeline, delaying the scheduled implementation of new titles and position descriptions until 2021. The shift will allow time for employees, supervisors, and human resources (HR) departments to focus on the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new timeline will also help ensure that employee conversations about position descriptions and TTC title placement can safely occur. As plans become clearer in the coming months, the TTC Project will announce when project activities will resume, including conversations that need to take place in person. The TTC Project Team will update content in the Resource Library and on the project website at go.wisc.edu/ttcproject as new information becomes available.