Last updated 12:30 PM, May 4, 2020

We acknowledge that there are many challenges and questions as we adapt to new ways of working and managing our personal well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic. This page offers updates on campus operations of particular interest to UW–Madison employees, as well as resources to help protect your health and safety.

Many questions about how this situation affects employees are answered at this Human Resources site. We also encourage you to explore other sections of this website, where additional information that can be helpful to employees is provided. Please be sure to review the information on Health Guidance.

If you do not find the information you are looking for here, or if you need additional clarification, please contact your supervisor or the local human resources contact where you work.

Working from home

How to work effectively and safely from home

This Division of Information Technology offers a list of resources to help with working and learning remotely.

The Office of Strategic Consulting has assembled resources aimed at keeping units running effectively while working remotely. These resources include advice for supervisors and links to other campus resources on remote work technology and staying healthy while working from home.

University Health Services provides information on preparing  ergonomic workstations that make work more comfortable and safer. A PDF on how to telecommute and set up a remote work station is also available.


Technology for working remotely

Most of the tools you might need are easily accessible with an internet connection, and your laptop or home computer.  Here’s what you’ll need to know to work remotely.

Here are a number of available software downloads, including Adobe Creative Cloud and Microsoft Office 365.

Troubleshooting common technical issues.


Managing fears and anxiety

The Employee Assistance Office (EAO) has created a guide for managing fears and anxiety related to COVID-19.

EAO is offering counseling and consultation by phone or video chat. Confidential services are available at no cost to UW–Madison faculty, staff, graduate student employees, significant others, and family members. Learn more at the Employee Assistance Office website.

Consultation with professional counselors is also available 24 hours a day, seven days a week from LifeMatters. This free, confidential service is offered to UW employees, their significant others, and family members statewide.

HR Contacts

Most questions about your employment at UW–Madison can be directed to the division, school, or college where you work. Find your local HR contact here.

Ombuds Office helps with work-related concerns

The Ombuds team serves the campus community with confidential guidance with work-related challenges, whether they relate to the new challenges presented by COVID-19 or to other issues. During the “Safer at Home” order, the Ombuds team is available via phone and video chat. Their services are free to all UW employees, including graduate students and post docs. For appointments: 608-265-9992, uwombuds@mailplus.wisc.edu


All on-campus childcare centers are closed until further notice. This includes Eagle’s Wing, UW Child Development Lab, and Waisman Early Childhood Program. Employees and families will receive additional updates from center directors.

Little Chicks Learning Academy is open and following CDC guidelines for operations. UW Staff in need of childcare should explore availability by completing an online reservation form. University employees are encouraged to explore care.com for possible childcare services.

Respect Statement

COVID-19 is not specific to an ethnicity or race—disease does not discriminate. Racist behaviors or stereotyping are not tolerated at UW–Madison. If you experience harassment or discrimination, students are encouraged to file a bias incident report. Employees may file a complaint with the Office of Compliance.


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Where can employees find more information about working remotely?

The Office of Human Resources has developed a new policy: COVID-19 Pandemic Employee Work Location and Leave Policy in light of  changes to campus operations. It can be found here: https://kb.wisc.edu/98958

This policy provides direction when UW-Madison implements emergency COVID-19 pandemic provisions requiring physical distancing of employees. 

For guidance on telecommuting related to COVID-19, please go here. For resources and tools to assist with remote work, see the Information for Employees page.

Last updated 11:19 AM, May 12, 2020

Can I still travel to work under the Safer at Home order if I'm an essential on-campus employee?

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services, at the direction of Governor Tony Evers has issued a “Safer at Home” Governor’s Order to help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin. “Safer at Home” requires Wisconsin residents to stay at home and engage in physical distancing; it also closes non-essential businesses and bans non-essential travel and social gatherings. The original order went into effect Wednesday, March 25, 2020. On Thursday, April 16, 2020, Gov. Evers extended the order to remain in effect until 8 a.m. on Tuesday, May 26, 2020, or until a superseding order is issued.

UW–Madison continues to maintain essential university operations, including distance learning and essential research, which is specifically permitted under the Governor’s Order. If you are expected to be on campus for these activities, you are allowed to travel.

Law enforcement is able to enforce the order. UWPD will not randomly stop people who are out and about, and there is no need to obtain a special letter, permit, or permission to leave your home. However, if UWPD receives a complaint or become aware of someone or a group of individuals blatantly ignoring the order, they will take appropriate action to encourage compliance.

The university’s primary focus is in keeping our community safe.

Last updated 11:18 AM, May 12, 2020

What does COVID-19 mean for upcoming sabbaticals?

The university will be as flexible as possible with requests to modify sabbatical leave granted for the 2020-21 academic year due to the circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Employees eligible for sabbatical changes should already have received information from the provost’s office.

Because changes in sabbatical plans may have an impact on course offerings and other planned service, faculty must seek approval first from their department and then from their dean’s office before a request can be forwarded to the Office of Human Resources and authorized by the provost. Requests for changes to already-granted sabbatical leave must be made by June 1, 2020.

Questions should be directed first to deans’ offices, and then to provost@provost.wisc.edu.

Last updated 1:44 PM, April 24, 2020

Where can I park?

Park and Rides

Park and ride lots are open per normal schedule—no overnight or weekend parking. There is no shuttle service as of March 19. As per relaxed campus parking rules (see below), park and ride permit holders may park on campus in certain lots.

Campus Parking

Essential employee parking map (PDF)

At this time, no parking permit or payment is required to park in most* surface lots and gated lots (ramps and garages). All timed “meter” (through vendor ParkMobile) stalls do not require payment. Flex permit holders do not need to start a paid parking session.

*Exceptions (updated 3/20/19): There are certain controlled parking areas: high security areas, areas vital to researchers, and some UWHC lots. A lot-specific permit is required to park in these areas.

  • Controlled as of 3/23/20: Lot 11 (Bascom Hall), Lot 23 (Van Hise Garage), Lot 38 (Microbial Sciences Garage), and Lot 95 (HSLC Garage), Lot 13, Lot 22, Lot 51, Lot 54, Lot 56, Lot 74, Lot 81 and Lot 82. If you do not have a lot specific permit for one of these surface lots but need access for your work, please email customerservice@fpm.wisc.edu with the subject line “Requesting access for parking in [insert Lot #]”.
  • Controlled as of 5/11/20: At the request of UW Hospital administration, Lot 75 is restricted to UW Hospital and AFCH patients, visitors and Lot 75 permit holders.

For safety reasons, vehicles must be properly parked inside the lines for marked stalls and cannot park in restricted areas (ex. access aisle, fire lane, blocking someone in, etc.) or reserved stalls. Reserved stalls are specially signed and include department reserved, service/vendor and UW Disabled stalls. A state DOT Disabled permit or plate is required for use of UW Disabled stalls.

Note: campus buildings are locked and parking facilities attached to those buildings may be impacted. This list will be updated as information is available:

  • Lot 80 is open, but Union South is closed. Foot traffic can use the open stairwell to access the Dayton Street patio area. Accessible parking is available in the circular drive off Dayton Street, between Union South and Computer Sciences.
Last updated 12:39 PM, June 1, 2020

If I’ve had direct or indirect contact with a person diagnosed with or under investigation for COVID-19, should I come to work?

If you think you have been exposed, you should self-monitor yourself for symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever (100.4 F and higher), cough and shortness of breath.

Anyone who is sick, including with symptoms of COVID-19, should stay home.

At this time, only essential employees should report to work on campus at UW–Madison. See more information on this topic, including who is considered essential.

All others should follow the guidance of state and local public health officials and their employers. As of March 20, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers issued new guidance for some businesses in Wisconsin.

Last updated 5:07 PM, May 11, 2020

Where can I get assistance with online instruction?

In partnership with the Office of the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning, the Division of Information Technology (DoIT) has established a website with guidance and support to faculty and instructors who may need to rapidly reconfigure their courses. Visit the Instructional Continuity website. The Office of the Provost will provide additional communication to faculty and planning is underway to proactively support faculty through this process.

UW–Madison Libraries is also offering a number of resources for instructors, including a number of library resources in Canvas. Visit the Library Support for Instruction Continuity site for more information.

Last updated 10:41 PM, March 22, 2020

What is the status of childcare on campus?

All on-campus childcare centers are closed until further notice. This includes Eagle’s Wing, UW Child Development Lab, and Waisman Early Childhood Program. Employees and families will receive additional updates from center directors.

Little Chicks Learning Academy is open and following CDC guidelines for operations. UW Staff in need of childcare should explore availability by completing an online reservation form. University employees are encouraged to explore care.com for possible childcare services.

Posted on 6:44 PM, March 21, 2020

Where can I find resources and tools to learn or work remotely?

Here is a guide for working remotely and a guide for learning remotely for faculty, staff, and students. A number of software downloads are also available, including Microsoft Office 365.

The DoIT Help Desk is also available to support faculty, staff, and students who need additional assistance.

DoIT has shared tips for how to manage slower internet speed and low bandwidth while working and learning remotely. Students should contact their instructors as soon as possible if their internet connectivity or lack of access to certain equipment or software (such as laptops, digital learning tools, or printers) is restricting their access to course materials and class participation. Instructors are also encouraged to use asynchronous instruction and learning activities wherever possible to reduce the need for high-speed, robust connectivity

If students, faculty or staff need to check out a laptop to assist with remote learning, teaching, or working, please see this guide.

Many carriers are currently offering low-cost wired broadband internet service options. Contact your local internet provider to see if they are offering free or reduced rates. DoIT does not recommend relying on mobile hotspots as they do not provide enough data to sustain continued full-time work or learning from home.

Last updated 12:45 PM, June 1, 2020

Is Transportation Services pausing payroll deductions or giving parking permit refunds?

As of March 23, payroll deductions have been suspended. Employees are not required to make up “missed” deductions. Accounts with payroll deduction balances will be adjusted so employees are not charged during the suspension period. It is not known at this time how long payroll deductions will be suspended, as the suspension period is dependent on campus reopening for regular business. Transportation Services will not request any further payroll deductions until campus reopens. You will be notified before payroll deductions start again. Please keep your permit and/or product and do not return it to Transportation Services if you will need to use it prior to August 31, 2020.

Check the Transportation Services website for the most recent updates.

Please note: All Transportation Services office locations are closed and staffing significantly reduced. Offices are closed until campus directives state non-essential operations may reopen. Emailed questions and concerns will be answered during weekday hours of operations.

Last updated 3:09 PM, April 27, 2020

Latest Updates

  • Employee Emergency Loan Program

    UW-Madison has established an emergency loan program to provide assistance to those employees who are experiencing financial hardship because they have been placed on Position-Specific Furlough or are working reduced hours in a Work-Share program.

  • Chancellor message: Planning for a safe return to campus

    In a blog post, Chancellor Blank looks ahead to how the university will be operating this fall to ensure students receive a full educational program while maintaining the safety of the campus community.

  • Safer at Home guidelines still in effect in Dane County

    Public Health Madison Dane County has issued a local public health order that maintains Safer at Home guidelines in Madison and Dane County until May 26. The action comes in response to a Wisconsin Supreme Court decision on Wednesday that invalidated the state’s Safer at Home Order.

  • Chancellor Blank: Budget and furlough information for UW-Madison employees

    To our faculty and staff, Over two hectic months, COVID-19 has dramatically changed the world we live in and our campus operations. I am tremendously proud of the ways UW-Madison has responded. The value of a great public university has never been clearer, providing research, information and education related to the pandemic.

  • UW−Madison Guidelines: Furloughs, Work-Share Program, Reassignments and Leave Provisions

    UW−Madison employees have a strong tradition of working together as a community to address challenging circumstances. Our current situation requires that we implement short-term, cost-saving measures to address the fiscal impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • UW-Madison info about Executive Order on Immigration

    According to UW-Madison’s Office of Legal Affairs, the restrictions in the executive order are limited to new applications made outside the U.S. for the next 60 days for “immigrant visas,” (those individuals seeking permanent residence in the U.S).

  • UW-Madison statement on April 16 Board of Regents Executive Committee

    Across every department and division, each University of Wisconsin-Madison employee contributes to our mission of teaching, research and outreach. We deeply value the work of our faculty and staff, along with the flexibility and creativity they’ve employed to keep the university running during this period.

  • Gov. Evers extends Safer at Home order

    Gov. Tony Evers today directed Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary-designee Andrea Palm to extend the Safer at Home order from April 24, 2020 to 8 a.m. Tuesday, May 26, 2020, or until a superseding order is issued. The order implements some new measures to ensure safety and support the progress we've made in containing COVID-19, but also allows certain activities to start up again.

  • Leave programs for employees affected by COVID-19

    UW–Madison employees who are affected by COVID-19 may qualify for paid leave under the federal program called the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and/or under the UW–Madison COVID-19 Pandemic Employee Work Location and Leave …

  • Events Cancellation Extended Through June 30

    The university has extended the cancellation of non-essential in-person campus events and meetings through June 30. Previously, the cancellation had been in effect through May 15. In-person meetings of essential personnel may continue but require …

  • More Workforce planning posts