Interactive Process Overview

Interactive Process Overview

The interactive process, required under ADA, is one that engages Humboldt and the employee in a discussion exploring the employee’s request for an accommodation(s).  This process involves the employee, their manager and HR partner, information from the employee’s qualified profession provider, and the ADA/504 Coordinator.  The process is ongoing and results in a formal determination by Humboldt regarding workplace accommodation(s) that becomes the Accommodation Plan.  Effective interactive processes support open dialogue and seek to proactively resolve employee accommodation concerns as they might arise.

The interactive process is a means to:

  • Initiate discussion and evaluation of an employee’s request for an accommodation;
  • Foster timely and effective implementation of identified reasonable accommodations or equally effective alternatives;
  • Implement and support human-centered case management strategies throughout the employee’s tenure; and,
  • Effectively evaluate and improve Humboldt’s workplace and its processes in support of equitable access to its programs and activities.

Role of the ADA/504 Coordinator

The ADA/504 Coordinator is considered the subject matter expert for Humboldt.  In this role, the ADA/504 Coordinator or their designee evaluates all received requests for accommodation from employees as well as provides guidance to the broader campus community regarding accessibility of its physical and web assets, consultation with managers, and input to leadership that fosters inclusivity and campus culture.  The ADA/504 Coordinator also provides training to the campus community that supports the functions of the CDRC and ADA specifically.

Role of Managers and HR Partners

Managers and unit or departmental HR partners role in the interactive process is vital to the implementation of reasonable accommodations or their equally effective alternatives.  In this process, manager and HR partners provide valuable information regarding unit operations and job functions, which informs the overall ADA accommodation analysis.

Role of the Employee

The employee is the primary participant in the accommodation process as they initiate a request for accommodation.  The expectation of Humboldt is that employees seeking accommodation will enter the process as an active participant and will engage in activities that foster the development of a comprehensive Accommodation Plan.  The employee has a right to withdraw their request or to reactivate a formerly withdrawn or closed request at any time during their employment with Humboldt.

Role of the Qualified Professional/Treatment Provider

The qualified professional is a licensed professional (for example: a hospital, physician, physician’s assistant, nurse practitioner or nurse, counselor, physical therapist) who has a history of treating the employee for the disability and/or condition and who can attest to its impact.  The qualified professional’s role is limited to providing documentation and/or information acceptable to Humboldt in its accommodation decision making process.

Acceptable Documentation

Under ADA, Humboldt may request supporting documentation acceptable to Humboldt that will be considered when making a determination regarding accommodation(s).  An employee’s comprehensive medical record is not needed nor requested, only information relevant to the stated disability or condition in context of the workplace.  Specific information is necessary, such as:

  • Name, title of provider, contact information including address and phone number (often found on the letterhead of the provider);
  • Type and history of relevant disability/condition;
  • Determination by the provider of impact on major life activities or on bodily functions;
  • Recommendations for reasonable accommodation(s) or equally effective alternatives that may be considered by Humboldt;
  • Any other information that may be relevant to the impact of the impairment within the context of the workplace; and,
  • Signature of provider

Employees are encouraged to use the Employee ADA Medical Certification Form.  In some instances, Humboldt may request additional information in order to make its determination.  In such cases, the ADA/504 Coordinator will either request the employee sign an Authorization to Release Confidential Medical Records or Information so that the ADA/504 Coordinator at Humboldt can contact the qualified provider or may provide the employee with a list of information needed so that the employee may consult with the provider directly.