The Office of Personnel Management has published a list of frequently asked questions about returning federal employees to the office as agencies develop plans to resume normal operations.
The list is being published in response to a memo that was issued by the White House Office of Management and Budget that outlines guidelines for agencies to resume normal operations. The guidelines encouraged agencies to follow coronavirus gating criteria and adhere to local conditions and guidelines in determining when it is safe for federal employees to return to work in these areas.
There have been concerns about telework as agency operations return to normal. Local regional leaders in the Washington, DC area, for example, encouraged OPM to continue to maximize the use of telework to protect the health and safety of federal employees.
OPM addressed telework in several of the questions in its new list of FAQ’s about restoring normal operations. The agency said, for example, that telework should be maximized for federal employees with school-aged children in areas where schools remain closed and stressed the agencies have full flexibility “to calibrate the extent of their telework.”
Other questions addressed by OPM include what to do if an employee returns to work showing signs of illness and how agencies can encourage the use of face masks for federal employees.
A copy of the list of OPM’s FAQ’s is included below and available on the OPM website.