Board Resolution 2002-03-05(a)

Meeting room

Topic: IMRF Staff
Subtopic: Changes to Employee Handbook
Date: 3/22/2002
Status: Active

Trial Work Period

A trial work period is available if you have physician's approval to return to work on a part-time basis, and all time-off benefits under our FMLA and Extended Leave policies have been exhausted.

The conditions of a trial work period are as follows:

Overtime Pay for Business Travel

Occasionally, IMRF employees are required to work at locations other than our Oak Brook office, such as attending Benefits Fairs, Reciprocal Conferences, training seminars, Authorized Agent sessions, and visits to our Regional Counseling Center (RCC).

The time spent driving to and from locations is considered time worked, whether you are a driver or a passenger. Time worked also includes any travel done via airplane, train, bus and/or taxi.

Time spent attending external training courses, participating in Benefits Fairs and Authorized Agent sessions, and working at the RCC is also considered time worked.

Here are some examples:

Example # 1

An employee who lives in Tinley Park attends a one-day training seminar in Evanston.

Drive from Tinley Park to Evanston, 2 hours
Training seminar, 4 hours
Lunch, 1 hour
Training seminar, 4 hours
Drive from Evanston to Tinley Park, 2 hours
Total time 13 hours
Minus 1 hour lunch

Total Time Worked: 12 hours

Example # 2

Two employees attend a Benefits Fair in Peoria, driver and passenger.

Ride from Oak Brook to Peoria, 3 hours
Participate in Benefits Fair, 7 hours
Lunch, 1 hour
Ride from Peoria to Oak Brook, 3 hours
Total time: 14 hours
Minus 1 hour lunch

Total Time Worked for Each Employee: 13 hours

New Policy

Example # 3

An employee who lives in Naperville drives to Springfield RCC to assist in member services, and returns the next day.

Day One

Drive from home to Springfield, 4 hours
Lunch, 1 hour
Work at Springfield office, 8 hours
Overnight stay

Total hours: 13 hours

Minus 1 hour lunch

Total Time Worked: 12 hours

Day Two

Drive from Springfield to Oak Brook, 5 hours
Lunch, 1 hour
Work at Oak Brook office, 3 hours

Total Hours: 9 hours

Minus 1 hour lunch

Total Time Worked 8 hours

Example # 4

Employee lives in Chicago and attends a two-day training seminar in Denver.

Day One

Commute from home to O'Hare and flight to Denver, 4 hours
Attend seminar, 8 hours
Overnight stay

Total Hours 12

Total Time Worked 12 hours

Day Two

Attend seminar, 7 hours
Return travel from Denver to home, 6 hours

Total Hours: 13 hours

Total Time Worked 13 hours

As stated in our employee handbook, non-exempt employees and non-management exempt employees are eligible for overtime pay.

Visits from Former Employees

It is always pleasant to see a former employee in the office, however, IMRF has established rules to make sure that these visits do not violate our security policies or disrupt the workplace.

If you know a former IMRF employee will visit the IMRF office, you must notify your manager or supervisor. You must also tell the receptionist what time the visitor is expected to arrive.

Once a former employee arrives, he or she must complete the sign-in sheet at the front desk. The receptionist will provide a temporary "visitor" badge; the former employee must wear the badge at all times in the office.

Former employees must be escorted throughout the office by a current employee. Visits must be brief and should not cause any disruption to the workplace.

Former employees who visit the office unannounced and unescorted must not be allowed access through any secure doors. Instead, they should be directed to the 4th floor reception area. Please notify any manager, supervisor or Human Resources immediately if this situation occurs.

Please note: IMRF has the right to refuse office visits from former employees.

Investigatory Interview

An employee may have a co-worker present at an "investigatory interview" if the employee believes the interview might result in disciplinary action.

During an investigatory interview you may be privately questioned about any performance issues, such as those detailed under "Performance Management" in our Employee Handbook. A co-worker can be present only if the purpose of the interview is to determine if you will be subject to performance management, suspension, or termination.

This policy does not apply to performance appraisals, routine sessions held to monitor work performance, disciplinary meetings, or to discharge conferences.

If you will be the subject of an investigatory interview and wish to have a co-worker present:

  1. You must make the request and select the co-worker. Your manager or supervisor cannot assist you in selecting the co-worker, nor can they force anyone to participate.
  2. The co-worker must be a current IMRF employee.
  3. During the interview, the co-worker may ask questions and make comments.
  4. The co-worker cannot engage in any debate, obstruct the process, or discourage cooperation.
  5. Co-workers violating the limitations on their role will be removed and a new co-worker must be selected.

Professional Certifications

Employees with at least six months of service may receive paid time off and payment for exam fees for the following certifications:

Only two attempts to pass an exam or section are eligible for paid time off. Additional attempts require the use of personal and vacation time. Proof of attendance for the exam must be provided.

Absences due to preparation and/or review classes will be deducted from accrued personal and vacation time. Independent study work is the employee's responsibility and may not be done during scheduled work hours.

IMRF will provide reimbursement one time only for examination fees, preparation courses and textbooks. Any travel expenses are the employee's responsibility.

A request must be completed and signed by employee’s Manager and Human Resources prior to beginning the certification process. Reimbursement is made upon presentation of paid receipts.

At the time of reimbursement, an employee will be required to sign a demand note. The demand note requires repayment to IMRF, in the event of resignation or termination for cause within 2 years from the date of the reimbursement check, as follows:

Within 12 months 100% repayment

Within 13 to 24 months 50 % repayment

Any repayment owed to IMRF may be withheld from any lump sum payout given at termination, such as unused sick or vacation time.

Revised Policy

No repayment will be required when an employee is terminated due to permanent disability; end of FMLA/Extended Leave; layoff; elimination of position or when an employee dies.

If the employee does not receive a passing score for an exam or section, IMRF does not pay for retesting fees, or additional books or classes. The Executive Director has the authority to approve additional certifications not included in the above listing.


To provide an exceptional level of service to our members, it is crucial that an acceptable level of staffing is present during working hours. Yet, IMRF understands the varying lifestyle needs of its employees. As a result, a flextime program has been adopted and generous time-off benefits are available.


Employees must work a seven-hour day, with start times varying between 7:30AM and 9:30AM, and end times between 3:30PM and 5:30PM. Your manager will advise you of your daily hours of attendance. For example, if you start work at 8:12AM, your end time is 4:12PM. Your lunchtime is unpaid and must be taken between 11:30AM and 1:30PM.

Each department manager is responsible for scheduling employees to provide proper coverage throughout the day. Your manager will advise if your start and end times are verified by using sign on/sign off procedures on your PC. If you forget to sign in or sign out, please notify your manager immediately. The start and end times for all employees are monitored. Proof of your arrival and departure times may be required.

Your daily attendance record will be noted as "tardy", under the following conditions:

Your Manager may allow you to make up the time. If not, accrued vacation/personal time must be used to account for the late arrival. If none is available, then the absence is unpaid.

If you have a scheduled start time, your daily attendance record will be noted as "tardy" if you start work after your assigned time. You may not make up the time and an equivalent deduction must be made from your accrued vacation/personal time. If none is available, then the absence is unpaid.

Every employee is responsible for arriving to work on a timely basis, working a seven-hour day and accounting for any time-off. Failure to do so may jeopardize your employment status, up to and including immediate termination.

Reasonable accommodations for scheduling may be allowed for disabled employees through the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Also, your schedule may be adjusted for qualifying conditions under the Family & Medical Leave Act, which has certain "job protection" features.

Tuition Reimbursement Program

Most IMRF positions require experience and technical knowledge or special skills. IMRF provides and supports professional training and development opportunities for employees. This support includes in-house training programs, tuition reimbursement, and payment for certain seminars or training courses. This tuition reimbursement policy applies to all full-time employees.

Courses must be taken at schools accredited by a recognized regional academic association, such as the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Tuition reimbursement for courses requires approval by the employee’s manager and Human Resources Manager prior to the beginning of the course. An IMRF Reimbursement Application must be completed and signed before the start of the course(s). Classes, exams, studying, and homework must be on the employee’s own time and not during the employee’s normal scheduled work hours.

Employees must have three years of service to apply for reimbursement for graduate level courses.

Courses reimbursable under the tuition reimbursement program are:

A maximum of two courses at the same time may be eligible for reimbursement.

The total amount of tuition reimbursement allowed in a calendar year is $5,250.

Employees are reimbursed for tuition for undergraduate courses after completing the course and receiving a grade of "C" or better. Tuition fees for approved graduate level courses will be reimbursed if the employee completes the course and receives a grade of "B" or better. The original grade report, not a photocopy, must be submitted to the Human Resources Department, along with a completed Expense Report Form and a copy of a receipt from the school documenting payment for the course(s). This documentation must be submitted within four weeks after the course grade is issued. In some cases, tuition fees may be paid directly to the school upon completion of the course(s). See Human Resources for details.

For courses where a pass/fail grade is given, the employee must request a letter grade from the instructor and submit both the letter grade and pass/fail grade.

Before payment of tuition reimbursement is made, an employee will be required to sign a demand note in case he/she resigns from IMRF, or is terminated for cause within 2 years from the date of the IMRF reimbursement check.

Only tuition is reimbursed. Employees are not reimbursed for other school expenses such as registration, application, laboratory fees, and book expenses.

Tuition reimbursements may be subject to federal and state income taxes. If so, once a tuition payment has been made by IMRF, the amount will be processed immediately by payroll, to be extended to a maximum of three paychecks.

IMRF will not duplicate payments from other educational assistance programs. Employees are encouraged to apply for any educational assistance from a scholarship, grant, government benefit program (such as Veterans Assistance) or other source for which they may be eligible. Employees receiving educational assistance from another program will be reimbursed by IMRF for the difference between the tuition for an eligible course and the amount of assistance received from other sources.

Employees who resign employment before course completion and receipt of a grade are not eligible for tuition reimbursement. An employee who is involuntarily terminated before course completion and receipt of grade may be eligible for tuition reimbursement unless the termination resulted from cause. If the termination resulted from cause, no reimbursement will be made.

Employees who resign from IMRF, or are terminated for cause, within two years after receiving reimbursement for a course are required to repay all or a portion of the tuition cost. Employees who resign, or are terminated for cause within 12 months of a course reimbursement payment must repay 100% of the total tuition costs. Employees who resign, or are terminated for cause, within the 13th to the 24th month period (inclusive) following a course reimbursement payment must repay 50% of the total tuition cost. No repayment will be required when an employee is terminated due to permanent disability; end of FMLA/Extended Leave; layoff; elimination of position or when an employee dies.

Payments under this program may be withheld from any money payable by reason of termination such as unused sick time or vacation.