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3/26 Update: UF HR Expands Definition of “Essential Employees”

Note: This message is for staff and faculty.

Due to the unusual circumstances prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, UF has expanded the definition of essential employees to include anyone who may be required to report to work, be “on call” to report to work and/or be available to work remotely. In the past, the “essential” designation was narrowly focused on a short-term emergency closing during which normal business operations were halted for two to three days.

In the scenario we face now, the university is open for business, and “essential” is expanded to ensure business continuity and to provide as-needed access to campus for those employees working remotely. Importantly, please note that while you may be designated “non-essential,” you may still continue to work remotely if you are able to.

Essential v. non-essential employees

Here’s a quick breakdown to help understand these new designations.

On-Campus Essential—Those working on campus
(Examples include: Assistant Director for University Housing, Plumber, Physician)

  • Continuation of critical and/or essential services that must be completed on-site
  • Maintaining integrity of infrastructure, property or systems on-site
  • Necessary on-campus work to maintain the safety and wellbeing of students, faculty and staff

Remote Essential — Those working from a remote location who may need periodic access to campus
(Examples include: Faculty, Payroll Coordinator, IT Professional, Academic Advisor)

  • Work is required to maintain operations and business continuity of the University and can be completed remotely
  • Access to campus may be needed periodically to complete required work

Remote Non-essential — Those working from a remote location, does not need access to campus
(Examples include: Marketing Specialist, Administrative Specialist, Fiscal Assistant)

  • Work is important to the university and may be completed remotely, but is not essential to maintain operations and business continuity

Access to campus

Please note that only employees designated as On-Campus Essential or Remote Essential may be present on campus during the time the university is limiting on-campus work to essential employees only. Departments are advised to identify anyone who may need to be on campus as essential to ensure they have the building access they need. Faculty and staff who need to be on campus for any reason should wear their Gator1 card so it is visible to ensure safety and security. Directors and AVPs may email to request lanyards and clip-on holders for their departments.

Confirming your designation

UFHR is working with human resources departments throughout the university to ensure a myUFL UF Emergency Remote Work Location file is updated accurately. If you are unsure of your designation, you are encouraged to reach out to your supervisor and/or your area’s human resources department for clarification and to ensure you have the access you will need. In the coming days, if you are designated essential, you will receive an email confirming this. If you have further questions, please email us at