Academic Staff Executive Committee Minutes 02-11-21
2:30 – 3:45 p.m. Thursday, February 11, 2021
Members Present: Jenny Dahlberg; Tim Dalby, chair; Mallory Musolf; Leslie Petty; Deb Shapiro; Lindsey Stoddard Cameron; Bill Tishler
Guests: Lesley Fisher, Ron Harris, Karen Massetti-Moran, Cori Splain, Mark Walters
The meeting was called to order at 2:32 p.m.
Guests: Mark Walters, Chief Human Resources Officer; and Karen Massetti-Moran, Director of Total Rewards, Office of Human Resources
Mark and Karen discussed the status of the Title and Total Compensation Project and the Single Payroll Cycle Initiative. On TTC, OHR is moving forward with re-engaging the campus on the project. Before the pandemic, the plan was to implement the new title structure and the new compensation structure for July 2020. HR redirected its efforts to dealing with issues related to the pandemic. While there are issues that they continue to triage, OHR is starting to reengage and identify what needs to be put into place for implementation. They have restarted various advisory groups, and the TTC team has been working on aspects of the project throughout the pandemic, such as career progression and competency models. OHR is at the point where they believe a July 1, 2021 implementation date is possible. The title structure is in good shape, and aligning implementation with a new fiscal year is a good thing. There are also interdependencies with other projects like the Administrative Transformation Project, which will require many of the same personnel currently working on TTC. OHR will also be working on revisions to the telecommuting policy through the summer.
There is a tentative project timeline, and OHR is encouraging HR reps across campus to talk to supervisors about starting conversations for those employees that have been adequately mapped. The aim is to have all conversations completed between now and May 15. The May 15 deadline is due to the systematic changes that would need to be made in HRS. Notification letters would be distributed prior to or on July 1. The timeframes for title appeals would be from July 15 – August 15 for 12-month employees and from August 15 – September 15 for 9-month employees. Employee forums are scheduled for April.
On the single payroll initiative, most of the work on things like forums and financial sessions is being done by personnel at UW System. As the implementation date of single pay gets closer, OHR will be following up individually with employees about financial impacts, including partnering with Extension for additional tools where necessary.
The bulk of the work in the next few months on TTC is around the employee/manager conversations. There are resources to support both managers and employees in these conversations, including online manager training, and OHR will provide the HR reps with these training materials. The standard job description library is up to date and was frozen as of January 31.
ASEC raised questions around concerns from employees potentially feeling demoted due to the new structure, particularly with the requirement for the number of direct reports for managers. The goal is to create a structure where employees don’t have to be supervisors to grow in their positions. Individual contributor and manager tracks have been identified, and there is the ability for employees to use business titles, currently known as working titles. OHR has identified market factors that attach to positions when they have a certain number of direct reports. Pay grades will be market-informed, but this is an issue that will need to be continually addressed, in some cases at the position level. ASEC expressed concerns about the timeline for a July 1 implementation and the ability to have meaningful conversations while there is a push to schedule not only furloughs but vacation time as well. The suggestion was raised to possibly extend vacation carryover from June 30 to August 31.
There was also discussion about the benefits aspect of TTC. The plan originally was to pursue changes after implementation of the title structure. There are questions about how to implement things like leave for caregivers and other benefits in which we lag behind peer institutions. Other topics included the lack of supervisory requirements within instructional titles, as well as the question of individuals hired into new or small offices on campus with plans to grow that office (e.g. assistant director positions) and whether individuals would have to reapply for those jobs once direct reports came into play. This is an issue that will need to take into account the time it takes to hire those positions as well as needing to ensure that it is not abused. ASEC again reiterated its question of not only whether the process is ready but whether the workforce is ready.
Tim Dalby, ASEC Chair, discussed the need for further perspective on benefits progress in TTC as well. There was good discussion at the Academic Staff Assembly meeting on the climate divestment and procurement resolution. He reported on the recent meeting of the Personnel Policies and Procedures Committee, at which was discussed the outcome of the ALRA proposal and some initial discussion of the current telecommuting policy.
Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff, reported that both the call for Athletic Board candidates and the call for additions to the ASEC slate had gone out. On the topic of the divestment and procurement resolution, a virtual town hall on the resolution has been scheduled for February 18 at 5:30 p.m. Jake and Lesley met with Alissa Oleck to talk about further strategies for recruiting academic staff for governance committees. Jake shared the statement from the University Committee regarding ASM’s proposed COVID relief fund, as well as ASM’s response to the statement.
Deb Shapiro reported on the Librarians Assembly Steering Committee, where there was discussion about the distinguished prefix process for employees within GLS as well as budget reductions.
Lindsey Stoddard Cameron reported on the Committee for Women in the University. A letter calling for a task force on caregiving will move forward in March, with a focus on all kinds of caregiving and not only childcare. The Campus Diversity and Climate Committee heard from Dianna Murphy on a new languages initiative, which also came up in the Campus Planning Committee with respect to campus signage.
Meeting adjourned at 4:09 p.m.
Minutes submitted by Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff