Compressed, Flexible, and Telework Schedules


Effective Date: Expiration Date: Chapters:
Jan. 8, 2024 When Superseded 12  


The District Government offers its employees alternative work scheduling and telework options. Depending on the agency's needs, employees at agencies with established alternative work schedules or telework programs may request the use of compressed work scheduling, flexible work scheduling, or telework. An employee's request must be approved by their supervisor, agency head, and personnel authority, if necessary. Regardless of what AWS or telework options are used at an agency, directors shall ensure their agencies have at least 50% of its office-based staff physically present during regular business hours. An agency that cannot meet that requirement must receive a waiver from the City Administrator. Agency directors may prohibit AWS or telework by new employees during their first 90 days of employment. This issuance provides guidance on the District Government's alternative work schedule and telework programs.

NOTE: This issuance supersedes issuance I-2022-20, Compressed, Flexible and Telework Schedules, effected November 15, 2022, to update and clarify standards and expectations related to alternative work scheduling and telework options.

Alternative Work Scheduling (AWS) Options

AWS consists of compressed work scheduling and flexible work scheduling, each of which is discussed below. AWS requires the approval of an employee’s supervisor or manager, and the final approval of the agency head or their designee.

Compressed Work Schedule

With a compressed work schedule, an employee works more than eight hours per day and, in exchange, works fewer than 10 days per pay period. An agency director has the authority to determine whether their agency will utilize compressed work schedule for its employees. With supervisory or managerial approval, the following compressed schedules may be authorized for employees:

  1. Nine-day work schedule. Employees may work five days one week and four days the next, within a single pay period, for nine days total. With this schedule, employees will work eight 9-hour shifts and one 8-hour shift during the pay period, for a total of 80 hours bi-weekly.
  2. Eight-day work schedule. Employees may work four days each week, within a pay period, for eight days total. With this schedule, employees will work eight 10-hour shifts, for a total of 80 hours bi-weekly.

Flexible Work Schedule

With a flexible work schedule, an employee may alter the start and end times of their tour of duty, provided the hours worked include the agency’s core hours and the schedule is approved by their supervisor or manager in writing.

NOTE: Core hours are times during the workday, workweek, or pay period during which an employee under a flexible work schedule is required to be present for work.

For example, an agency has core hours between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. An employee could be approved to work 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., with a 30-minute lunch period. This is because the tour of duty covers the core hours of 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Alternatively, a manager may approve a tour of duty of 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., provided there is adequate coverage for business operations.

Employees are limited to selecting a single tour of duty. That is, an employee may not select differing tours of duty for different days. An employee authorized to work 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. is required to work this same tour of duty every day. Additionally, a flexible schedule may not begin prior to 6:00 a.m., nor end after 6:00 p.m.


Approved telework may be either routine or situational.  Summaries of routine telework and situational telework, along with provisions and restrictions related to telework, are set forth below.

Routine Telework

Routine telework is a pre-approved, written arrangement in which an employee may perform officially assigned duties at the employee’s home address on a regular basis. Pre-approved routine telework provides employees with no more than one day of telework per week. Routine telework may be combined with flexible work schedules (see prior section) but may not be combined with compressed work schedules.

Agencies are not required to offer routine telework.  However, when agencies offer employees routine telework, the option must be offered on an equal basis to all similarly situated employees in an administration, office, or unit. Employees are not entitled to any specific routine telework schedules. For instance, many employees may want Monday or Friday as their routine telework day. However, agencies are not obligated to arrange schedules so an employee may engage in routine telework on their preferred day. Managers must ensure at least 50% of their staff reports to the office on every day of the week in which it is in operation. Therefore, agencies should spread out routine telework schedules and avoid scenarios where an excessive number of employees are teleworking on the same day.

Routine telework is a privilege and not an employee right. An employee’s immediate supervisor must determine if the duties of the employee’s position are conducive for telework before an employee receives approval. For instance, an employee who consistently provides face-to-face service to customers or clients may not be a good candidate for telework. Employees who wish to telework must work with their supervisor to complete a telework agreement in PeopleSoft. Telework agreements require the approval of an employee’s supervisor or manager, and the agency head or their designee.

Situational Telework 

Situational telework is a temporary arrangement approved in advance, in writing, where an employee may request authorization to telework during a specific, time-limited circumstance such as the completion of a time-sensitive, priority project, or due to an illness or injury which prevents the employee from physically reporting to their official worksite but does not limit their ability to work remotely, or due to a home repair emergency which does not interfere with their ability to work remotely. The granting of situational telework on a frequent, routine basis, shall be considered non-compliant and abusive of the District’s telework policy. For example, a manager granting an employee the ability to situationally telework once every week would be considered an abuse of policy.

Situational telework, like routine telework, is a privilege and not an employee right. An employee who situationally teleworks without written permission from their supervisor will be subject to discipline. Managers and supervisors do not have to grant an employee’s request for situational telework, even if the employee has a legitimate reason for requesting it. Supervisors have sole managerial discretion whether to grant or deny situational telework. Moreover, a manager has the discretion to grant situational telework on a case-by-case basis. Therefore, the granting of situational telework in one instance does not establish any precedential value or entitlement to situational telework for future events.

NOTE: Situational telework may be afforded to employees regardless of whether they already have a compressed, flexible, or telework schedule.


Employees are ineligible to participate in telework (either routine telework or situational telework) if they:

  • Fail to receive written approval in advance from their supervisor/manager, the agency head, or the personnel authority, if applicable;
  • Receive a performance rating of Marginal Performer (Level 2) or lower on their most recent official performance evaluation; or
  • Are on a Performance Improvement Plan.

Employee Rights and Responsibilities


Employees are not entitled to AWS (flexible or compressed) or telework (routine or situational).

Agencies are not mandated or obligated to offer telework. Managers are not obligated to permit requested changes to an approved routine telework schedule, nor are managers required to approve requests to situationally telework.

Approval of an AWS or telework may be revoked for reasons such as failure to complete work, inability to perform the essential functions of the position, noncompliance with a telework agreement, or if the agency’s operational needs require more in-person coverage.

Even when on routine telework, employees may be required to physically report on their telework day if required by their agency. If this occurs, employees are not entitled to a “make-up day” if they must report in-person on their regularly scheduled telework day. Managers, at their discretion, may permit an employee to telework on an alternate day if the employee does not exceed one telework day per week (except for situational telework). Permanent changes to an employee’s routine telework schedule require the creation of a new telework agreement.


Employees are expected to adequately perform the essential functions of their position and complete all work assignments while on AWS or telework. Failure to meet performance standards while on an AWS or telework schedule may result in revocation of an AWS or telework agreement.

Employees who enter an approved telework agreement must be able to report to their official worksite, if requested to do so by their immediate supervisor, within a timeframe prescribed by the agency. For example, an agency may require its teleworking employees to report within two hours following a request to attend a mandatory meeting due to an emergency, or for any reason.

Employees who telework are required to respond to all emails and phone calls within a timeframe designated by the agency. For instance, a department may require its employees respond to calls/emails within 45 minutes of receipt.

Manager’s Rights and Responsibilities (Agency Heads & Supervisory Roles)


Managers have the discretion not to grant employees the privilege of teleworking or participation in an alternative work schedule as long as it is not discriminatory. If a manager or agency provides telework or AWS as an option for an employee, the option must be open to all employees who share that position. However, this does not mean an employee in that position is automatically entitled to telework or AWS.

When deciding whether to permit an employee to telework or utilize AWS, managers may consider individual factors such as the employee’s performance, attendance, and disciplinary history. For example, even if an employee’s entire unit teleworks one day per week, the individual employee within that unit may still lose their telework privileges if the employee fails to complete work assignments or be responsive while teleworking, or if the employee has a history of poor performance or past disciplinary actions.

Managers have several tools to manage telework and AWS. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Discretion to approve or disapprove AWS;
  • Discretion to approve or disapprove AWS and telework scheduling in a manner that meets agency coverage, operational, or management needs;
  • Discretion to approve or disapprove changes related to routine telework scheduling, i.e., changing which day of the week an employee teleworks;
  • Discretion to approve or disapprove situational telework, including for employees on an AWS; and
  • Discretion to approve or disapprove a “make up” day if an employee is unable to telework on the routine day, due to agency needs.

The ability to exercise these discretions applies to both union and non-union employees. For union employees, the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) shall control to the extent there is a conflict between this policy and a CBA.


Managers must ensure employees on an AWS or telework schedule maintain an adequate level of performance and responsiveness. Scheduling options such as telework require managers to consistently monitor performance.

When an employee has been approved for routine or situational telework, consider requiring the employee to establish and complete a work plan for their telework days. The work plan identifies tasks, assignments, projects, and initiatives an employee has been assigned and assists with time management.

Other performance management tools that managers may use to monitor the performance of employees who are not physically present in the workplace may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Regular check-ins. Scheduling regular one-on-one meetings with employees to discuss their progress, address concerns, and provide feedback.
  2. Task and Project Management Tools. Use project management software to assign tasks, set deadlines, and track progress.
  3. Time Tracking Software. Consider consulting with your agency’s IT department to acquire time-tracking tools to monitor the time employees spend on tasks and projects.
  4. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Establish clear KPIs and performance metrics to measure productivity and progress tied to specific goals, objectives, and projects.
  5. Email and Communication Tracking. While respecting privacy, managers may track email response times and communication frequency to ensure employees are staying connected and responsive.
  6. Employee Self-Reports. Encourage employees to provide regular updates on their work progress, challenges, and accomplishments.
  7. Attendance and Availability. Track employee working hours and availability to ensure the employee is adhering to the agreed-upon work schedules.
  8. Documentation and Reports. Maintain detailed records of employee performance, which may be useful for both ongoing evaluations and future reference.

When working with employees to complete a telework agreement, agencies should consider including requirements that a teleworking employee must: (1) have the ability to report to the worksite within a specified period of time (for instance, two hours) following a request from manager; and/or (2) respond to emails or phone calls within a certain amount of time following receipt (for instance 45 minutes).

When scheduling employees, managers must ensure at least 50% of their staff is physically present on any given business day.

Combining Flexible Work Options

Agencies may not approve employee requests and agreements that combine routine telework and compressed work schedules. Employees working a compressed schedule are still eligible for situational telework for approved reasons at their manager’s discretion.

Agencies may approve employee requests and agreements that combine telework and flexible scheduling

Requesting a Flexible, Compressed or Telework Schedule (including Situational Telework)

Telework & AWS Application

An employee seeking approval to participate in an AWS or telework must submit an application in PeopleSoft using the self-service portal at > Self Service > Personal Information > DC Telework Agreement. For step-by-step instructions, please refer to the Employee Telework Application Guide.

Submissions on an Employee’s Behalf

When necessary, supervisors may submit a telework application on an employee’s behalf. Upon submission, both the supervisor and employee will receive an email notification of the submission. For step-by-step instructions for submitting an application on an employee’s behalf, please refer to the Manager's Approval Guide.

Recording Hours in PeopleSoft

Employees on a compressed schedule or telework should appropriately report their time in PeopleSoft. Regardless of which work option is chosen, time entry in the system should indicate the number of hours worked and show the day(s) an employee is teleworking. For instance, if an employee works a compressed schedule under a 10-hour schedule, their time entry must reflect 10 hours of “Regular Time” on four days each week of the pay period. Additionally, an employee should enter the time reporting code (TRC) of “Telework (Routine)-ROTW” for a scheduled routine telework day.

Reference Material

Employees and managers may obtain additional guidance from the following reference materials:

  • Sections 1208-1211 of Chapter 12, Hours of Work, Legal Holidays and Leave.
  • Telework General Information Guide at DCHR intranet site.
  • Telework Information Center at DCHR intranet site.

Legal Authorities

  • D.C. Code §§ 1-612.01 et seq.
  • Subtitle B of Title 6, Chapter 12 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations 

Additional Information

Employees, managers, and supervisors may obtain additional guidance relating to recording time in PeopleSoft from their agency timekeeper, Payroll Supervisor, or Quality Assurance Liaison (or equivalent). Additionally, questions concerning telework may be directed to your agency Telework Coordinator (TC)/alternate TC. 


  1. Attachment 1 - FAQ
  2. Attachment 2 - Telework & AWS Form
  3. Attachment 3 - Community-Based Positions Quick Guide
  4. Attachment 4 - Employee Application Guide
  5. Attachment 5 - Manager Approval Guide
  6. Attachment 6 - DC Telework Employee Policy Video
  7. Attachment 7 -DC Managers Telework Policy Video
  8. Attachment 8 - DC Government: Navigating and Completing the DCHR Telework Application (Video)

Issued by Director Charles Hall, D.C. Department of Human Resources on Jan. 8, 2024, 8:45 a.m.