Email guidelines for SLCL staff

During term-time:

  • According to UCD Out of Hours Email Policy (8th November 2019), employees “are not expected to read or reply to emails outside their normal working hours, except in exceptional situations”. Therefore, the School suggests answering emails between 9.00am and 5.00pm, with a disclaimer added to the staff email signature: 

‘As a School we endeavour to send emails to each other between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday-Friday. I cannot guarantee that I will either read or respond to emails outside of those hours.’ 

N.B.: The ‘scheduled send’ facility on Google mail enables us to send emails at any time, but we can schedule to send them between 9.00am and 5.00pm and we should endeavour to try to do this to keep within the guidelines of the above policy.

  • While there should be no pressure to respond to emails outside of those hours, staff may wish to do so for urgent matters. 
  • It is reasonable to give a period of 48 hours to respond to most emails, although urgent matters may need to be dealt with more quickly.

Outside of term-time:

  • Same rule applies unless on Annual Leave/Sick Leave/Sabbatical Leave

Annual Leave/Sick Leave/Sabbatical Leave:

‘I will be on annual leave (or sick leave, or sabbatical leave) from … to … Please contact for matters relating to the School. For matters relating to Spanish, German, French etc please contact the Subject Head (or nominee)’.

N.B.: During the Sabbatical Leave please ensure to read enquiries related to any administrative role you might have within the School, unless different agreements are made.

Out of Office:

  • As officially staff are on university business while out of office (conferences, study break etc), emails should still be answered but not necessarily straightaway. Considering this, is it reasonable to say something along the lines of:

‘I am out of the office (dates from and to). Therefore, please be aware that there will be a delay in my responding to your email’.

 SLCL Email Guidelines

This document is an addition to the SLCL Email policy: it relates to a broader logic of best practice for communications within the School. 

SLCL Email Guidelines 2021PDF|