Helping employees maximize their potential


Unexpected Visitors

This page provides guidance on an appropriate and effective first response to unexpected visitors in the workplace.

UC Riverside Department Guidelines - Unexpected Visitors

It is important that you maintain a calm, professional and firm demeanor at all times in dealing with unexpected visitors.

Address unexpected visitors by taking the following steps:

  • Visitors may not be present in restricted areas without permission. They are not to interrupt or disrupt work.
  • Determine if the visitors are in an appropriate visitor area of your department.
  • Ask the visitors to state their business at your department.
  • Why are they there?
  • Is the visit related to department business?
  • With whom do they wish to visit?
  • Determine if the visit violates University access provisions of policy or labor agreements. If so, explain to the visitors why their presence is in violation of UC policy or the applicable bargaining unit labor agreement.

  • If you can offer a reasonable alternative for the time and place of the visit, do so and schedule it.

    • If you cannot, tell the visitors you will inform the employee of the visit. Ask the visitors to leave and escort them (without physical contact) to an appropriate location.

If the unexpected visitors are Union Representatives, please follow the same actions as you would for any other unexpected visitor, keeping the following additional details in mind:

  • Union representatives may have access to employees in appropriate areas on University property so long as the union representatives comply with the access provisions as noted in each labor agreement's Access Article.
  • Union representatives may not be present in restricted areas without permission. They are not to interrupt or disrupt work.
  • Most labor agreements state in part: "...internal union business such as membership recruitment,...handbilling or other distribution of literature, and all other union activities shall take place during non-work time..."
  • Labor agreements and policy state that employee rest and meal periods are non-work time for the purpose of union access to employees.
  • Unions my use general purpose meeting rooms after making prior, approved arrangements.

If a union visitor refuses to leave, contact Employee and Labor Relations.

If a non-union visitor refuses to leave, call the UC Riverside Police Department at (951) 827-5222.


If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Employee and Labor Relations.