Dr. Edna Chun, associate vice chancellor for Human Resource Services, has been at UNCG for a few weeks. These weeks have been a particularly busy time for the department. She spoke with Campus Weekly about HRS’ work related to the summer’s cuts in positions, as well as what she foresees for Human Resource Services in the months ahead.
1) Proactive efforts to place people
HRS has been working diligently to match individuals whose positions are being cut with the small number of potentially compatible positions that are currently open, Chun said, in a manner consistent with university policies.
“It won’t work all the time,” she explained.
She knows that the cuts and RIF process are a great concern to employees. HRS is working with deans, vice chancellors and department heads “to have it impact as few people as possible, recognizing there are budget goals to meet,” she said.
“We’re working very hard,” she said. “It’s succeeding to a significant degree,” she said of the placement efforts.
She spoke of the pain of a person losing their job. She hopes that the number of permanent employees who lose their jobs ultimately won’t be as high as some have predicted. “Last year, UNCG and the entire UNC system had made tentative plans to endure a significant cut and therefore many positions that became vacant in 2010-11 were left unfilled or filled by temporary workers,” she explained. “Although the resources to fund these workers are no longer available, this action reduced the number of permanent employees we had to RIF as a result of the cuts that were effective July 1.”
Additionally, Angela Mahoney in HRS has been spearheading outplacement resource efforts, for individuals leaving UNCG employment due to the budget cuts.
2) Affirmative action process
“We’ll be streamlining the affirmative action process,” she said. The goal will be that at the beginning of EPA and SPA job searches, through better use of technologies, those conducting the search will be more readily able to bring affirmative action goals into the process, she explained.
3) Cost-effective electronic HRS training
HRS has lost its one training point person, Jason Morris, she said. HRS will develop more online training components, which employees can take part in at their convenience. These online courses will be cost-efficient for the university.
4) HRS efficiency and effectiveness study
Early in the fall semester, HRS will conduct a study asking stakeholders “What do you think of all of our processes?” The responses, along with knowledge of best practices and data, will help HRS set its goals, Chun said.
The views and responses received will help drive HRS from the outside in, she told CW, and help them be a more strategic office.
“A lot of our processes feed Payroll, but we need to optimize our people power,” she said.
The office will work on its strategic plan in alignment with the Business Affairs and UNCG strategic plans.
She foresees HRS having more of a partnership role with other departments throughout the university.
By Mike Harris
Photograph by Mike Harris