Q&A’s on the Increased Flexitime Program
1. If an employee planned
to work on Saturday and/or Sunday, but unexpectedly cannot, can the
employee ask for leave during the weekend? If so, what are the procedures
for requesting leave?
If the employee needs the
hours to complete the 80-hour biweekly requirement, the employee may
request leave or use comp time during the weekend.
As is the current policy,
employees should request leave in advance whenever possible. When this is
not possible, the employee should at least leave a voice mail message to
his/her supervisor requesting the leave. This may be necessary because the
supervisor will likely not be at work. The employee must understand that
leaving a message does not constitute approval.
2. If an employee
works from 4:30 to 5:30 a.m., or from 10:00 to 11:30 p.m., can it be
counted as regular hours?
3. Is there a new
electronic 690E (for patent examiners) available which does not
automatically assign an 8, 9, or 10 hour work day to the examiner?
We are working on this now,
and will provide one as soon as possible.
4. Can everyone now work
regular hours until 10:00 p.m.?
No, you must elect to
participate in the program in order to work regular hours until 10:00 p.m.
5. What is meant by fully
successful performance (for purposes of eligibility to participate in the
Employees may be restricted
from participating in this program if there is a requirement for close
supervision due to serious deficiencies in the performance of their
primary tasks over a period of at least one quarter to the extent that the
level of their performance would constitute grounds for an unsatisfactory
6. Am I automatically on
No, you must notify your
supervisor in writing of your intent to participate in this program.
7. When do I need to notify
my supervisor of my desire to participate?
Through the end of the
first quarter, you can begin working this schedule at the beginning of the
first full biweek after you have given notice to your supervisor that you
want to work this schedule. After that, you can switch between any of the
available schedules by notifying your supervisor in writing. The change
becomes effective the first full biweek of the new quarter, so long as you
give notice before the beginning of the biweek.
8. If I decide that the
program is not for me, how can I switch out of it? How often can I switch
my schedule back and forth?
You can change schedules
once a quarter as long as you notify your supervisor in writing before the
beginning of the first biweek of the quarter.
9. Is this scheduling
option available to probationary employees?
Yes, consistent with
10. How much leave can I
take on a given day?
You can take from 15
minutes to 12 hours.
11. Do I need to leave a
message on my voicemail and E-mail if I am going to be absent for only a
part of the day?
No, you are required to
update your voicemail and E-mail only if you will be absent for a full
day, Monday through Friday (excluding holidays).
12. Are there sample
voicemail messages and E-mail out of office messages to distribute?
We will be distributing
some sample messages in the near future.
13. Is this the same as the
Maxiflex program at the BPAI and the TTAB?
No, this is a different
program, and does not replace the pilot programs at the boards.
14. Can I work both days of a weekend?
Yes, although you can only
work regular hours on one weekend day per week, you can work one day each
weekend (both Saturdays or both Sundays), or both days of one weekend, and
none the next. If you have been approved to work overtime, compensatory
time, or credit hours, you can work these hours on any day. For example,
if you have been approved to work overtime, and work two hours the first
Sunday of the biweek, you can either claim this time as regular time or
overtime. If you claim it as regular hours (time towards your 80 hour
requirement), you cannot work regular hours on the following Saturday, but
you can work overtime on that Saturday.
15. Will TRAM hours be
extended on the weekends?
We will post the TRAM hours
as soon as possible.