Staff Council focuses on professional development, review process

Year’s goals to be discussed at October retreat

Professional development – including more accessible training, tapping into campus resources, and an effort to target needs of each campus – will be an area of focus of the University of Colorado Staff Council (UCSC) during the upcoming academic year.

UCSC members:

  • Officers
    Stephanie Hanenberg, chair; Carla Ho-a (Johnson), vice chair; Tyson Randall, treasurer; Erin Foster, secretary
  • CU-Boulder
    Dana Drummond; Erin Foster, John McKee, Philip Bradley (alternate)
  • CU Denver, CU Anschutz Medical Campus
    Deserae Frisk, Malaika White, Danny Felipe-Morales, Jennifer Williams
  • Colorado Springs
    Deidre Green, Rhea Taylor, Ida Dilwood, Carla Rupprecht
  • System
    Tricia Strating, Leo Balaban, Debbie Martin, Jim Dages (alternate)

The council, which includes several new members, met Aug. 9 to plan its annual retreat, where members will define the development goals. The group will spend Oct. 4-5 in Breckenridge discussing the agenda, which likely will include performance management.

Council members previously have discussed disparities in the execution of employee reviews – sometimes within the same department – and Boulder Campus Staff Council drafted a resolution calling for an improved system, especially because merit raises often are dependent on performance evaluations.

The resolution states: “Boulder Campus Staff Council representatives have heard anecdotally from many staff members and appointing authorities that the existing performance management processes are not efficient, fair and consistent. They are not an effective tool to measure work performance and to use those measurements for the determination of merit increases.”

In the document, the Boulder Staff Council recommends that the campus adopt and implement a variety of performance management system goals, including consistent supervisor training, fair and consistent evaluations, and an audit system to ensure procedures are properly executed. The resolution will be sent to Boulder campus administrators.

During the Staff Council meeting, members said constituents feel that the performance management system seems to be broken. They said evaluation results are subjective, even within the more regimented format used for classified employees. Depending on supervisors, results could differ widely, council members said. The format for exempt professionals is decentralized and often is completely different, even within the same unit. Council members said a feedback loop is missing, and supervisor training is absent.

“Because a performance management system feeds into the merit increases, it’s a sore point for people,” said Carla Ho-a (formerly Johnson), who recently stepped down as UCSC chair to focus on additional duties in her position of associate dean for finance and administration in the College of Nursing.

Ho-a will remain on the council as vice chair. Stephanie Hanenberg, formerly vice chair, will assume the role of council chair.

Also at the meeting, E. Jill Pollock, vice president of employee and information services, said in the next month, employees will be asked to comment on the university’s health and wellness programs in an effort to provide new or enhanced services for better employee health or increased patient satisfaction.