PRM-011: Use of Working Time and University Equipment for Personal or Commercial Purposes

Date: 04/15/2010 Status: Final
Last Revised: 04/19/2010
Policy Type: University
Oversight Executive: Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
Applies To: Academic Division and the Medical Center.
Reason for Policy:

Restricts the use of University employees’ working time and University equipment for personal or commercial purposes and reduces the risks to the University and its Related Foundations from lending out equipment. This policy does not supersede state and University policies governing structured loan or rental programs, such as Intramural Recreational Sports equipment and University Library materials, or state and University policies permitting incidental use of University computing resources.

Definition of Terms in Statement:
  • Employee (1):

    A person appointed through University Human Resources and paid through University payroll to perform services through the University, who performs services that are subject to the will and control of the University -- both what is done and how it is done. The University's right to control, not the exercise of that right, is a key factor. The University can allow the employee considerable discretion, so long as the University has the legal right to control both the methods and results of the services.

  • University Equipment:

    University owned or leased property used to assist in performing an activity or function (e.g., hand tools, power tools, audio-visual equipment, etc.). University equipment does not include University infrastructure (e.g., networks, buildings, etc.); office furnishings that remain in the location designated for their use (e.g., desks, file cabinets, bookcases, etc.); or telephone and computing resources that are covered by other specific policies.

  • University Function:

    Any activity that is conducted or sponsored by a University office, department, or by University personnel, and is done on behalf of the University, whether the activity is conducted on or off Grounds.

  • University Office or Department:

    Any office or department whose reporting line culminates with the Board of Visitors. A student organization with a Contracted Independent Organization Agreement or a Fraternal Organization Agreement, or a University foundation is not considered a University office or department.

  • University-Related Foundation Function:

    Any activity that is conducted or sponsored by a University-Related Foundation office, department, or by University-Related Foundation personnel, and is done on behalf of the University, whether the activity is conducted on or off Grounds.

  • University-Related Foundation Office or Department:

    Any office or department whose reporting line culminates with a University-Related Foundation board.

  • Working Time:

    The hours during which an employee is expected to be performing his/her University-related job responsibilities. 

Policy Statement:

A University employee’s working time, University equipment, and consumable materials and supplies may not be used for personal or commercial purposes. A violation of this policy by an employee or supervisor may result in disciplinary action, up to and including, termination.

  1. University Employee's Working Time:
    A University employee’s working time shall be used only for University business. An employee shall use working time to perform the duties of the position for which he/she was hired. A supervisor shall not encourage, direct, coerce or request a subordinate to use his or her working time to perform activities other than those required in the performance of University responsibilities.

  2. University Equipment:
    University equipment shall be used only for functions that promote the University’s mission of teaching, scholarship, research and public service, as follows:

    • Used in connection with a University or University-Related Foundation function; (see also Policy XV.G.3, University Services and Activities.); or
    • Used pursuant to a contractual agreement between the University and a government agency, a private business or another educational institution; and the agreement has been reviewed for consistency with University policy on competition with the private sector and unrelated business income by the University’s authorized signatory (Comptroller), with the assistance of the Office of the General Counsel as necessary.

The administrative head of each unit is responsible for the control and accountability of use of all equipment assigned to the unit. University equipment used for those purposes noted above must be tracked by the department who owns the equipment.

Note: For use of Medical Center Equipment, refer to Medical Center Policy 0273.

  1. Exceptions to this Policy Require Pre-Approval:
    Any exception to this policy must and may be approved only by the University’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer or his designee.

To request any exception to this policy allowing University Equipment to be used by: (1) non-University departments or organizations, such as a Contracted Independent Organization; or (2) University personnel to serve non-University organizations or activities, the administrative head/manager shall have the Borrower (Responsible Individual / Entity) sign an Agreement for Use of University Equipment which shall be sent to the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer (or his designee) for review and approval.

No modification to the Terms and Conditions of the Agreement for Use of University Equipment will be made without advance approval in writing by the Office of General Counsel and the University’s Division of Risk Management.

The administrative head/manager responsible for the equipment may establish a user fee, when appropriate. Such a fee must be approved in accordance with Policy V.A.2, Rate Determination and Policy XV.G.3, University Services and Activities.


Each administrative head/manager must maintain documentation to track all University equipment, (including tagged and non-tagged assets), that is borrowed on a temporary basis. The documentation must include the following information as appropriate:

  • Description of the equipment;
  • Duration of loan (check out and return date);
  • Name of sponsoring unit or department;
  • Event description or reason for use;
  • Name and contact information of the person(s) using the equipment;
  • Location for equipment use; and
  • Signature approval of the administrative head or manager.
Related Information:

XV.G.3, University Services and Activities
XV.G.4, Analysis of Unrelated Business Income
V.A.2, Rate Determination
BOV-008, Policy on University-Related Foundations
Ethics in Computer Usage Policy
DHRM Policy 1.75, Use of Electronic Communications and Social Media

Major Category: Physical Resource Management
Category Cross Reference: Human Resource Management
Approved by, Date: Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, 04/15/2010
Revision History: Updated 4/19/10. Previous version in effect from 3/10/08 through 4/18/2010.