COVID-19 update: ANU campuses move to remote work and study

25 March 2020

Dear colleagues,  

The advice from our ANU medical experts is clear: to control the spread of COVID-19 we must take tough action to reduce the number of interactions on our campus, and take it now. And that is what we are doing. 

Together we are going to lead by example, so effective tomorrow Thursday 26 March, all our campuses will shift to remote work and study. So, please plan today to work off-campus from tomorrow. We will still operate as the nation's university, but likely not from our campus until at least the end of semester on 27 June. More details are provided here. 

Staff will continue to be paid as per usual arrangements and previous announcements. 

A small number of staff will be given access to relevant buildings to continue laboratory-based work on the COVID-19 response, which is our top priority. We must also maintain on-site infrastructure, care for animals and deliver essential services that can only be done on campus, including security, processing financial payments and running payroll. Staff required for these tasks will be contacted by their supervisor. Strict social distancing and hygiene protocols will be in place. 

Staff who require support with recording of lectures will be able to access a lecture theatre on campus with a technician by appointment. If you need this service, please contact your supervisor. 

A cloud based virtual desktop that will support computer laboratory-based teaching has been devised and we will provide further details shortly. 

Childcare centres, the supermarket and pharmacy will also remain open in line with the current Government advice. Residential halls and colleges will remain open for those students choosing to remain on campus. They'll have heightened safety protocols to maintain good hygiene and social distancing; including rostered use of shared spaces such as kitchens and bathrooms.  

I understand some staff may not have access to IT equipment to support working from home. You may take home portable devices and IT accessories from your office. The Australian Tax Office website provides advice about tax deductions for work expenses for your personal situation. 

If you are removing items from your office, please be careful and only take portable items that are able to be carried safely by one person (10kg or less). And make sure you strictly observe social distancing. 

If you wish to cancel your parking permit, please visit the website. 

I know many of you will have family and carer responsibilities while working from home and may not be able to do your job to your normal capacity. We're going to be flexible and support you to adjust as best as we can while we work through this together.  

Hours may be spread out across the week. If you can work at least 25 hours a week (pro-rata for part-time staff), this will be deemed a full working week for pay purposes. Please speak with your supervisor about your circumstances and work plan. 

Now that we are moving to remote working, we need to know where you are working from and some important aspects about your situation. All staff will need to provide details here (or copy and paste this URL into your browser:  This will notify us of your current working arrangements and individual circumstances. Of course, your privacy will be respected. 

In summary: 

  • All staff will be required to work remotely from Thursday 26 March.  
  • All University buildings will be locked, and 24/7 access will be removed from Monday 30 March. 
  • Payroll will be processed as normal. 
  • A working from home guide will be available later today on our website for all staff. 
  • All staff will need to update their details here.
  • Please check the ANU website for updates.  

We are living in extraordinary times and this means we need to respond in an extraordinary way. Our job now is to keep our great University operational, and our community safe. Thank you for your support and understanding.