Payroll Processes During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

Interim Payrolling Processes During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency – Revised June 16, 2020


(Interim Payrolling Processes is available in two formats)

Word Document - Interim Payrolling Processes During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency - Rev. 06/16/2020

PDF Document Interim Payrolling Processes During the COVID-19 Health Care Emergency - Rev. 06/16/2020


FAQs Payrolling Processes During COVID-19 - Rev. 07/09/2020

Harvard Offices Abroad - Rev. 06/16/2020



General Information
Due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, some Harvard employees have had to leave their on-campus work locations and temporarily establish a remote worksite outside Massachusetts (MA) or outside the U.S. In addition, prospective new employees who had planned to relocate to Massachusetts to work on campus may be unable to do so during the public health emergency. To minimize disruption to operations during what we expect to be a temporary situation, please follow the processes listed in the attached document. Instructions and processes will change as additional information is made available.


These processes apply to current employees and prospective new employees who have been approved for hire prior to the hiring freeze or in accordance with the hiring freeze exception process. This includes those Harvard students who are or will be performing services for compensation. This document also includes guidance for processing non-employee payments, such as student stipends and fellowships.

Please contact your local human resources, faculty planning, or finance offices for guidance on current hiring policies.

Individuals with an unpaid appointment (e.g., visiting scholars, unpaid interns, etc.) are not affected by the hiring freeze and are not covered by this guidance. Follow your School's or Unit's unpaid or courtesy appointment processes.

Please Note:

  • These instructions apply only during the public health care emergency. Upon resumption of normal operations, individuals must be transferred to the appropriate payroll.
  • In all cases, schools and units should defer hiring start dates if at all possible. Please contact your local hiring office for guidance about exigent circumstances.
  • All employees on a Harvard payroll must continue to comply with Harvard HR policies, including remote work policies.
  • Individuals being paid with sponsored funding may have additional restrictions around working outside of the United States. Please contact your Financial Dean and/or Sponsored Research Office for guidance. See OSP for FAQs and additional details and restrictions.
    • If an individual is working under a participation agreement or intends to take any equipment with them to another country, please contact your school’s HR or faculty affairs office.
    • See the Research and Labs section of the FAQ regarding restrictions of research projects requiring physical experimentation at a home.
  • For questions not addressed in the document, please contact your local Human Resources Office or Global Support Services.
  • Additional Resources:

Payment Categories and Hiring Methods for Individuals Classified as an Employee

Guidance Regarding Independent Contractor Requirements during COVID-19 Outbreak

Harvard Payroll Policy

Student Employment Office COVID-19 Disruption
Financial Matters for Students