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Changes to staff PTO, vacation policies for 2022 add flexibility

By IU Human Resources

December 09, 2021

Indiana University is updating Human Resources policies related to how staff employees use their accrued paid time off and vacation hours. The changes go into effect on Jan. 1, 2022, and can help staff employees make the most of their accrued time off.

“Considering the challenges we have all faced in the past few years, the goal of these changes is to keep enhancing the flexibility of time off,” said Laura Kress, interim vice president for Human Resources.

Kress said IU wants to help staff maximize the value of their earned time off by lifting annual usage limits for all staff, making half days available to exempt staff, and preventing loss of extra time off balances with expanded PTO sick leave carryover.

Below is a summary of the upcoming policy changes. More details and related resources, such as a printable notice, will remain available on the HR website. Updated HR policies, including HR-05-70 and HR-05-120, will be posted on Jan. 3, 2022. For questions related to PTO and vacation usage or these changes, contact askHR.

Annual usage limits for PTO, vacation hours eliminated

Beginning Jan. 1, 2022, annual usage limits for PTO and vacation hours are eliminated. Remember that most PTO and vacation usage requires advance approval of supervisors. Be sure to talk to your supervisor about your time off requests.

There is no change to the amount of PTO that employees may carry over at the end of each year.

New PTO half days for exempt staff employees

Beginning Jan. 1, 2022, exempt staff employees can choose between new half-day or existing full-day PTO increments. The half-day option gives exempt employees more flexibility to use PTO in increments that reflect actual usage. Half-day increments are ideal for personal errands and appointments that don’t require a full day of PTO.

For exempt staff, PTO usage must be entered in the ePTO system in half- or full-day increments, not hourly. The ePTO system will be updated on Jan. 20, 2022, to allow for the entry of half days (to be applied to calendars Jan. 1 and after). Here’s a quick guide on when to use half- or full-day PTO:

  • Time off for one-quarter to three-quarters of a workday should be entered as a half day.
  • Time off for three-quarters or more of a workday should be entered as a full day.
  • Time off for one-quarter or less of a workday should NOT be entered as PTO.

The example below can help exempt employees working a typical eight-hour workday choose between half- or full-day PTO increments.

Half-day PTO usage based on an eight-hour workday

Time off

Two hours or less

Two to six hours

Six or more hours

PTO usage


Half day:
Enter four hours

Full day:
Enter eight hours

PTO sick leave rollover increasing in 2022

Rolling unused year-end PTO into sick leave accounts can help staff employees manage larger PTO balances and ensure they have adequate time off to cover absences for personal and family medical needs.

For the 2022 rollover period that takes place from December 2022 to January 2023, the maximum amount of PTO that can be rolled over to sick leave is increasing from 96 to 120 hours.