As anticipated, cases of Omicron have increased substantially, and the Ontario government introduced new restrictions as of today to help protect our healthcare systems and those who are most at risk. The principles the university introduced at the beginning of the pandemic continue to guide our decisions.
McMaster remains focused on the health, safety and wellness of our community and the need to focus on our academic and research programs. We also want to ensure that we are supporting our broader community and our healthcare colleagues.
Employees who can do so will continue to work remotely as we gradually begin to return to university locations over time.
- Beginning January 17: Employees who support student and academic activities will return on a limited basis. As occurred throughout the fall, areas can determine how to best manage staffing levels to provide needed services while following physical distancing guidelines and minimizing staffing wherever possible.
- Beginning February. 7: Hybrid work plans across the university originally developed by units to start in January will begin to be implemented. The transition to these plans will occur throughout the month of February.
Ongoing discussions regarding workplace flexibility will continue in many teams. Supervisors have been asked to give employees as much notice as possible about a return to on campus work to allow them time to prepare and make any necessary arrangements. Please talk to your supervisor about individual needs and requirements.
HR support is available to explore potential options and solutions.
Each department and faculty will be determining the appropriate level of onsite presence for their area, and we all need to expect that the fall will continue to be a transitional time. Looking to the future, McMaster is evaluating learning from the pandemic, and pilot arrangements through the fall that address employee wellness.
McMaster leadership is asking leaders to be inclusive and understanding of staff needs for flexibility, especially during the fall, and explore new ways of working where possible.
There are a number of resources available to employees to support their wellbeing and mental health, including:
- Visit the HR Events and the Employee Well-being webpages for upcoming online wellness sessions and additional initiatives
- Explore the psychological well-being resources available for employees and managers
- Look into our Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) Smart Coaching offerings such as Parenting, Caregiving and Wellness coaching.
- A Way Through seeks to support people in managing grief, loss and bereavement during COVID-19 by making resources more accessible and fostering community support.
McMaster Human Resources provides an updated guide and checklist to support those who have been working on campus throughout the pandemic and those who may return to campus in some capacity. If you are approved to work onsite, here are resources to support you.
For information on safety measures and COVID reporting, please visit the Health and Safety page.
Whether it is due to weather, a scheduled absence, emergency or illness— online collaboration and productivity tools provide continuity. University Technology Services (UTS) provides IT tools and services to support your work on or off campus.
To assist with your decisions around work arrangements and operational needs for your team, please consult McMaster’s Leader Decision Guide.
Additionally, the COVID-19 Supervisor Guide and Workplace Health and Safety Guidelines During COVID-19 both contain key information for chairs and employment supervisors.
Leaders can participate in sessions being held to support the evolving needs of their teams through the gradual transition back to campus.
Please visit the Health and Safety page for information on safety training for the campus community.
This bulletin provides an overview of employment considerations and University guidance with respect to out of province / country employment arrangements through to April 30, 2022.
This approach may be further reviewed within the next 12 months in support of longer-term recruitment strategies for the University.
Many leaders have carried heavy workloads and responsibilities during the pandemic. The McMaster Okanagan Committee prepared this toolkit with the intent to make their jobs easier – to provide them with quick and helpful reminders and tips that they can consider and employ with their teams as we return to campus.
The guidelines outlined in this document will assist in the development of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) related to Research Lab Use and will help to ensure the appropriate COVID-19 health and safety considerations for the protection of all members of the McMaster community.
The guidelines outlined in this document will assist in the development of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) related to fieldwork and will help to ensure the appropriate COVID-19 health and safety considerations for the protection of all members of the McMaster community.
The MacPherson Institute provides individual and group consultations for instructors seeking pedagogical support and technological expertise.
In spring 2021, MacPherson hired 21 temporary positions to help support the increased remote teaching needs, and many of these supports will be extended until spring 2022. This continuation will ensure instructors and faculty continue to have support as they prepare courses for hybrid and flexible teaching environments.
MacPherson has resources in place to support remote teaching options and information to enhance your home recording and virtual classroom setup.
Click here for McMaster’s MS 365 hub and here for the new Discover and Learn MS 365 and Zoom website (users must be logged with their McMaster email and password for access to the Discover and Learn site).
The Faculty of Engineering also provides additional online teaching tool instructions and tips.
For information on academic appointments, tenure, promotion and faculty supports — please visit the Office of the Provost’s dedicated web page. This resource also includes frequently used forms, policies and guides of interest to faculty.