The HRS open forum attracted a full room Feb. 1. Some highlights of what was discussed:
UNCG staff have been surveyed by Staff Senate and by Human Resource Services in two independent surveys, regarding their preference and thoughts for ‘summer flexible hours’ options. The two new options under review would involve closing the university on Friday afternoon during certain weeks of the summer or adoption of a compressed workweek of four ten-hour days with choice of the day off. UNC Wilmington has adopted the first option, and it has been utilized for 20 years, said Dr. Edna Chun, associate vice chancellor for human resources. A third option would involve no change, but would maintain the existing flexible work hours policy.
The new options were proposed in response to an earlier Staff Senate Morale Survey conducted in 2011 that indicated strong interest by staff in flexible work hours as an important work/life initiative in difficult financial times when salary increases have not been available.
The results: both surveys indicated a strong interest and desire by staff for a flexible summer schedule involving one of the two new options, Chun noted. Although the survey questions were constructed differently in the two surveys, the results from the Staff Senate Survey showed that 70 percent of the respondents wanted a change. The HRS Survey found similar high interest in the new options, with greater interest in the compressed work week. In the Staff Senate survey, respondents were pretty evenly split among the three proposed options.
The results of the Staff Senate survey can be viewed here.
The question is which of the three options will be the norm – there would be some exceptions to that norm, regardless, Chun told the attendees. She emphasized that this would be a pilot program and outlined some of the advantages of the two new options. These advantages include enhanced work/life balance; availability of flexible hours to all departments and staff on a consistent basis; potential savings in commuting expenses, carbon emissions, and energy costs for the compressed workweek; improved schedules for peak demand, and enhancement of recruitment and retention.
The decision about the pilot program is one that the chancellor and executive staff will make, Chun noted.
Several individuals asked questions and made observations about the different options.
A few other topics were discussed at the forum:
1) A professional development needs assessment was conducted and 691 people responded. HRS will be analyzing the results to develop programming responsive to the needs identified. Professional development workshops offered in coming weeks include:
- Workplace harassment – Feb. 10
- Customer service excellence – Feb. 17
To see a full listing and to register for these workshops, visit http://web.uncg.edu/hrs/Training/.
2) Thirty-three individuals will participate this year in the UNCG Leadership Institute. (See related story in today’s CW.)
3) The vendor for the employee assistance program has changed to ComPsych and the new program offers valuable and enhanced resources to employees including three visits per issue for help with personal, financial and other work/life issues. Information on the new program can be found at http://web.uncg.edu/hrs/Benefits/EAP/.
4) Potential supplemental benefits programs: If you have concerns or thoughts regarding supplemental benefits programs – whether supplemental medical, short-term disability, etc. – email them to Angela Montgomery (HRS) or Deb Carley (HRS). They may take them to the UNCG Benefits Committee.