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Note: Please continue to read the information letters from TU Berlin's crisis committee for the latest update and guidance for students, faculty and staff.

Letter from the TU Berlin Crisis Committee

Monday, 16. March 2020

Dear Colleagues,

Our current utmost priority is to reduce social contact to a minimum to avoid spreading the coronavirus. The following regulations are intended to contribute to this aim and enable staff to work from home, as technology and the nature of their work permit.

We ask all management as well as staff to consider together whether working from home is possible and can be implemented.

To this end, the TU Berlin Crisis Committee asks
a) that the conditions and instructions listed below are adhered to, should work from home be possible.
b) that all managers enable flexible individual solutions which meet our priority of “minimizing social contact”. Possible models may include half of the team working in the morning and the other half in the evening. We ask that you remain flexible when finding possible solutions.

The following regulations regarding work from home apply until further notice:

  1. Decision of the direct Manager
    Due to the current exceptional situation, the respective direct manager is responsible for decisions regarding the granting and scope of work from home. Human Resources will not be reviewing or approving any decisions. 
  2. Employment contracts remain unchanged
    Should staff work from home, their employment contracts remain unaltered in their current state. Employees are only freed from their obligation to work in their respective place of work for the duration of the exception approving their work from home.
  3. Joint agreement on the scope of responsibilities
    The employee and manager are to jointly determine the type and scope of duties to be completed from home. Work packages, scopes for action, and the means and extent of accessibility are to be clearly agreed upon by the employee and manager. 
    Tasks can be completed with or without technical aids and online or offline from home. It will not be possible for every employee to fully work from home. We ask that direct managers make individual considerations about which tasks can be completed from home and to implement these accordingly.
  4. Working times when working from home
    Collective agreements and statutory provisions as well as the existing TU Berlin/Staff Council agreements and circulars on working hours, rest breaks and incapacity for work apply.
    Pursuant to the flextime framework in the TU Berlin/Staff Council agreement on flexible working hours, employees are permitted to freely determine their working hours when working from home. When recording your working hours, please enter “Homeoffice” under “Comments” in column J. You are not required to enter your start and end times. Employees are to arrange the times they are to be available when working from home with their supervisors.
  5. Tools, data privacy, and occupational and health protection when working from home
    Employees are permitted to use both official and personal tools when working from home. Please ensure data privacy and security (see info sheet “Data privacy and IT security when working from home”). 
    Employees are also protected by statutory accident insurance when working from home. Protection extends to occupational accidents and occupational illnesses. According to Section 8 (1) sentence 1 SGB VII, occupational accidents are accidents suffered by insured persons as a result of an activity which constitutes the basis for insurance coverage.
  6. Persons with pre-existing medical conditions
    In work areas with limited opportunities to allow employees to work from home, we ask the immediate supervisor to decide who can work from home and to what extent as prudent. We ask that this is made possible in particular for employees with pre-existing conditions or employees living with persons with pre-existing conditions. This especially includes the risk groups listed by the Robert Koch Institute: https://www.rki.de/DE/Content/InfAZ/N/Neuartiges_Coronavirus/Risikogruppen.html 
  7. Maintenance of University operations
    In order to maintain University operations, certain work cannot be completed from home. This work must continue to be performed on site by the respective employees. A provision shall be made here which ensures the minimum operation of the University and which also takes into account the interests of the persons concerned with regard to protection against infection. 
  8. Tips for working from home
    How do I implement mobile working?

There are different options for mobile working:

If you work with personal data:
You should only work using a VPN: see https://www.tu-berlin.de/?57961 

All others can use the
o cloud:
https://tubcloud.tu-berlin.de  or https://www.tu-berlin.de/?131359 
o Accessing email online
https://exchange.tu-berlin.de/owa  or https://www.tu-berlin.de/?97930 
o AFS:
https://webafs.tu-berlin.de  or https://www.tu-berlin.de/?78548 

You can find further services at https://www.campusmanagement.tu-berlin.de/menue/dienste/ 

Stay up to date:

Call forwarding

Where possible, employees working from home are requested to forward calls from their work phone to their personal landlines or cell phones where they can be reached. If the number you wish to have your calls forwarded to has a different area code than 030, meaning it is outside of the Berlin landline network, please send an email with your TU Berlin phone number to Torsten Wünsch (torsten.wuensch@tu-berlin.de).

Instructions for activating/deactivating call forwarding

For conventional connections:

  1. Lift the receiver of your work phone and dial 321.
  2. Enter the number you wish your calls to be forwarded to (if entering an external number, such as a cell phone number, dial 0 first, e.g. 00176...).
  3. Wait for the acknowledgment signal tone and hang up.
  4. To deactivate call forwarding, lift the receiver and dial 421. Wait for the acknowledgment signal tone and hang up.

Please note that you cannot deactivate call forwarding from outside the University.

For connections using VoIP:

You can find the instructions at https://doku.voip.tu-berlin.de/german/8851/ 
-> Menü Anruffunktionen -> Rufumleitung
In English: https://doku.voip.tu-berlin.de/english/8851/index.html 
-> Call  Functions -> Forwarding all Calls
This documentation is only accessible within the TU Berlin network and cannot be accessed from an external computer or account.

If you are cannot or do not wish to forward your calls, we ask that you create call forwarding chains within your team ending with an employee’s voice mailbox requesting the caller to send an email. The team member who activates this voice mailbox recording is requested to send an email to Torsten Wünsch ( ) with their name, TU phone number, and email address (must end with @tu-berlin.de) More information is available at https://www.facilities.tu-berlin.de/iv_c_fachtechnik/menue/organisation/schwachstromtechnik_fernmeldetechnik 

Using the TUB Cloud

Please consider in advance which documents you want to upload to the TUB Cloud to later access when working from home or outside the office. You are not permitted to upload documents with sensitive data (such as personal data). You can find further information at: https://www.campusmanagement.tu-berlin.de/tubcloud/ 

Phone conferencing

Please plan meetings with your team and/or colleagues working from home using phone conferencing:
https://www.campusmanagement.tu-berlin.de/menue/dienste/kommunikation_internet/tubmeeting/ 

If these services are temporarily unavailable due to the foreseeable high demand, please reschedule your use for off-peak hours. Thank you!

Deputization regulations

Managers are required to determine clear deputization regulations.

Activating your out-of-office message

Please remember to set up or activate your out-of-office message and to name your respective deputy in the message.

Office/fridge

Please also remember to remove food and perishable items from the office if you are to begin working from home.

Info sheet on data privacy and IT security when working from home (last updated: March 2020)

Please use sensitive data as little as possible.

The most important rule is to take only official analog and digital data that is absolutely necessary from your place of work. As a rule, work with personal or otherwise sensitive data should be carried out in your place of work. If necessary for official purposes, resources that are only available in analog form can be digitized in advance by the employee. Data and the TU network can be accessed via the tubCloud (quick access: 131359) or VPN (quick access: 57961). In exceptional cases, encrypted data can be saved to an encrypted USB stick. Please contact your local IT support if you require assistance.

Sharing information with third parties is prohibited

All data, particularly personal and confidential data, must be protected by the employee in such a way as to prevent an unauthorized gateway and unauthorized access to data and documents. Data, information, and documents may neither be shared with third parties nor made available for viewing by third parties (e.g. on your computer screen or printouts).

Protect your data and devices

If you use personal hardware to conduct official work, please use a separate user profile for official work. Clean this regularly of (temporarily) stored official data. Do not leave your mobile workplace unattended. Mobile terminal devices should be locked (including when not in use) and documents are to be stored securely. Passwords should be entered unobserved by strangers and never stored locally. You are not permitted to share your devices with third parties. For all services not accessible from outside TU Berlin, please use the VPN if you are dependent on it for current work, as this makes unauthorized access for third parties more difficult.
To conserve the limited available capacities, please terminate the connection as soon as possible after finishing your work.

Use trusted software products

To the extent possible, use the same products as in your official workplace. Licenses are generally available from Campus Management. In order to use official emails, calendars, or address books, please exclusively use the products recommended by Campus Management (quick access: 97930). When using tablets and smartphones for official purposes, please use apps which comply with data privacy regulations.

Keep your technology secure

Regularly update operating systems and all installed programs/apps on your mobile devices. Install virus protection software with regular updates and a personal firewall (for example SOPHOS Av, quick access: 13499). Delete apps and de-install software you (no longer) need. Make sure that you use the separately installed administration profile for operating system or application software updates. Configure your device’s security settings according to the recommendations of Campus Management and the data protection officer as well as data protection regulations. Please contact your local IT support if you require assistance.

Zusatzinformationen / Extras

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