August 2014 | Kent State University

August 2014

August 2014
Volume 12 | Issue 2

December Holiday Schedule

Kent State University will once again operate on a holiday schedule in December. The holiday schedule will run from Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2014, through Thursday, Jan. 1, 2015. During that time, all nonessential operations will be closed at all Kent State campuses. Normal business operations will resume with the first shift on Friday, Jan. 2, 2015.

Classified and unclassified employees who accrue vacation will receive paid leave for four days, Dec. 26, 29, 30 and 31. This is in addition to the paid holidays of Dec. 24, 25 and Jan. 1. This also applies to 12-month faculty who accrue vacation.

Employees not eligible for the paid leave include student employees, classified temporary staff, temporary agency staff, unclassified nine- and 10-month term appointments, short-term unclassified assignments and employees in a lay-off status. More information on the holiday schedule, including how employees should report time during that period, will be communicated in early December.


Salary Increase Announced for Unrepresented Employees

The Board of Trustees on May 28, 2014, approved the operating budget for FY 2015. The budget included a 2-percent funding increase for salaries of classified and unclassified employees not represented by a union. This increase will be an across-the-board increase in pay and will become effective on Sept. 1 for eligible employees. The Division of Human Resources has provided the following noteworthy dates as the salary increases are applied:

Classified Employee Pay Increase Timetable

  • The pay increase will take effect Aug. 24, 2014, since it is the start of the pay period that includes Sept. 1, 2014. The increase will be reflected in the Sept. 19, 2014, paycheck.
  • Employees hired on or after Aug. 24, 2014, will not be eligible for the increase.
  • Upon completion of a probationary period, employees hired between May 1, 2014, and Aug. 23, 2014, will be eligible for the pay increase.
  • To be eligible for a pay increase, classified employees must have a current satisfactory, signed performance evaluation on file in Human Resources. Employees who receive an overall performance rating of “Needs to Improve” on their evaluation will not receive any pay increase until they reach the “Usually Meets” level of performance.

Unclassified Employees Pay Increase Timetable

  • Pay increases for unclassified employees are effective Sept. 1, 2014, and will be reflected in the Sept. 15, 2014paycheck.
  • Employees hired on or after June 1, 2014, will not be eligible for the increase.
  • Employees with promotions, market and/or salary adjustments effective on or after June 1, 2014, will not be eligible for the merit increase unless indicated otherwise through discussions with the Compensation Department.
  • To be eligible for a pay increase, unclassified employees must have a current satisfactory, signed performance evaluation on file in Human Resources. Employees who receive an overall rating of “Unsatisfactory” on their performance evaluation will not receive any pay increase.
  • Continuing unclassified employees will be eligible for this pay increase. Grant-funded and term positions will be determined on a case-by-case basis by the applicable department and approved by the appropriate appointing authority through the initiation and processing of appropriate paperwork. However, all of these groups must have met the performance evaluation eligibility criteria as stated above.

The salary increase is just one part of your overall compensation package, which also includes university contributions for health benefits, retirement plans, tuition waiver, vacation and sick leave. For questions regarding compensation, please contact the Compensation office at 330-672-8325 or compensation@kent.edu.


Save the Date – Employee Appreciation Day

Mark your calendars for Thursday, Sept. 11, from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. when the Student Green at Risman Plaza will turn into a fun-filled employee appreciation event!

As the cross-divisional committee works out the additional details and activities, you will be hearing much more regarding the complimentary lunch, entertainment, games, giveaways and more that will make up this day of appreciation. Lunch and events will take place concurrently throughout the three-hour period so that departments may schedule release time for staff, and employees would have the same experience no matter what time they attend. Employees are not required to use designated sick or vacation leave to attend; however, the time for participation in this event should be coordinated with encouragement and guidance from their supervisor or manager.

The university administration is looking forward to bringing this event to all full-time and part-time faculty and staff for all they do to make Kent State University a great place to work! 

We’ll see you at the Green!


Still Time to Use Your Vacation Leave

Managers and supervisors are asked to share the information below with their staff members who accrue vacation leave.

Vacation Cutback in September
Please remind classified and unclassified staff in your department to check their vacation balance and make sure they are not at risk of losing any accrued vacation time. According to the university policy regarding annual vacation leave for nonteaching unclassified and classified personnel, the maximum amount of vacation an employee can accrue is that which can be earned in a three-year period.

Employees who are over their accrual maximum must use the time by Sept. 30; if not, they will lose any vacation hours accrued beyond the maximum. Employees can check their leave balance in the MyHR tab of FlashLine, in the Employment Details channel. Leave is recorded in the Time Reporting channels of the MyHR tab. Approvers will find the leave reports in the My Action Items tab. Please check the My Action Items tab frequently for pending actions.

If you have questions, contact a member of the Human Resources Records team at 330-672-8316.


Guidance for the Position Request Authorization (PRA) Workflow

Talent Acquisition has great news for end users who complete the Position Request Authorization (PRA) workflow. To help guide users through the PRA process is a “new and improved” tutorial.  

Users can now become more familiar with the PRA process. Some areas that the new tutorial will address include:

  • What information you should have before initiating the PRA such as HOME ORG, Position Number, Budget Information;
  • How to add “preferred skills” to your posting; and
  • Helpful/useful tips as it relates to the overall hiring process.

The “Completing the PRA Process” tutorial can be found in Flashline under the My Action Items tab in the Workflow & Utilities channel or on the Talent Acquisition website at www.kent.edu/hr/employment.

For questions you may  contact the Talent Acquisition office at 330-672-2100 or employment@kent.edu.


Training and Development Schedule Available for 2014-15

Supervisors and managers are asked to please share these training opportunities with their faculty and staff.

The 2014-2015 Human Resources Training and Development schedule is now available. Based on faculty and staff feedback, our workshops, webinars and e-learning modules feature new and fresh content. Below is a sneak peak of some of our new materials:

New Workshop: "Workplace Conversations: Maximizing Results." Upcoming dates for this workshop include, Aug. 8, 21, and Oct. 22. Building on material from "Supervising Successful Performance," this four-hour, instructor-led workshop explores methods to successfully conduct a performance improvement conversation. Participants will assess their competency through the Coaching Skills Inventory, develop their performance conversation skills through a seven-step model and engage in discussion around university-specific examples and role-plays. In addition, participants will attend a one-hour follow-up session held approximately 90 days after their initial workshop to reassess knowledge gained from the Coaching Skills Inventory.  

New Webinars and E-learning: Interested in previewing workshop material? Can’t get away from your desk on the day of a scheduled workshop? Then view our growing collection of webinars and e-learning! New webinar topics include "Principles of Conflict Management," "Time-Wise," "Kent State Customer Care," and "File Management," an informative workshop with Information Services on managing your electronic files and email. 

For added convenience, previously recorded webinars can be easily accessed any time.

To view or register for all learning opportunities go to www.kent.edu/hr/register. For questions, contact HR Training and Development at 330-672-2100 or hrd@kent.edu


Things to Know for Student Employees

Posting positions: Many new and returning students are currently searching for on-campus jobs. We encourage departments across all eight campuses to post their fall position openings now through the Experience Job & Internship Board. Supervisors seeking to post for the first time should contact the Career Services Center at 22360 orcampusworks@kent.edu prior to creating an account. The On-Campus Employer User Guide is a helpful resource when using the Experience Job & Internship Board. 

Training and supervising student employees:  To ensure your student employee’s success, a thorough orientation to the job, department and key university policies is critical. For recommended topics and key policies for review with your new and returning student employees, see the Training & Supervising section of the Student Employment Handbook.

Student work hours: As you begin to determine your student employees’ availability to work, please keep in mind that students are not permitted to work during their scheduled class times. This supports academic success as well as compliance with federal policy.

OPERS refund: This time of year, many students who are working during the summer and are required to contribute to OPERS begin to ask about applying for their refund. Please let students know that while upon termination of public employment in Ohio, they may apply for a refund of accumulated OPERS contributions; that state law requires a three-month waiting period after ending public employment (i.e. at Kent State University) before students/alumni are eligible to apply for a refund. Eligible individuals should contact the Payroll Office at 330-672-8640, 236 Schwartz Center, or emailpayroll@kent.edu, for instructions to request an OPERS refund.

Student employment policies & procedures: The Student Employment Handbook serves as a resource for both student employees and supervisors, and is updated throughout the year. In addition, supervisors should also be familiar with the Student Employment section of the University Policy Register.

If you have questions, please contact Ami Hollis at ext. 28380 or the Student Employment Office atcampusworks@kent.edu


Aug. 6 - Last Chance to Attend a Human Resources Knowledge-sharing Session

During the months of July and August, representatives from the Division of Human Resources and the Office of General Counsel have been holding Human Resources Knowledge-sharing Sessions at various locations throughout the Kent Campus.

The final session will take place on Aug. 6 in Heer Hall. Faculty and staff are welcome and encouraged to attend. The informational session will include the following topics:

  • An overview of the Office of General Counsel.
  • Introduction of the new wellness coordinator, Michelle Igleheart. Igleheart will provide updates on the university’s wellness plan, partnership with Be Well Solutions and the Movable wellness challenge. 
  • IMPACT Employee Assistance Program and Right Direction. 
  • Learn about upcoming training and development offerings.

The Aug. 6 session begins at 8:30 a.m. and concludes at 11 a.m. The first hour will be designed for supervisors/managers, and the second hour will be information-sharing for all employees.

For questions, please contact Karen Watson, manager, Employee Relations, at 330-672-4636 or kswatson@kent.edu.


Dates to Remember

Date Event
Aug. 6 Human Resource Knowledge-sharing Session.
Lunch & Learn: Meal Planning for Busy Families. Find more information.
Aug. 12 International Youth Day
Aug. 14 V-J Day
Aug. 15 Kent State University at Geauga Commencement
Aug. 16 Summer III classes end. Summer Commencement, 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., Memorial Athletic and Convocation Center. Visit www.kent.edu/commencement for more information.
Aug. 19 National Aviation Day
Aug. 21 National Senior Citizens Day
Aug. 22-24 Destination Kent State: Welcome Weekend
Aug. 25 Fall Classes Begin.
OneWellU Walking Program Begins. Find more details.

Tell Us What You Think

This e-newsletter is designed to keep you, the managers and supervisors, informed. Please take a few minutes to let us know what you think of it, along with any comments or suggestions. You may contact us atmanagersfeedback@kent.edu. We look forward to hearing from you.

For information about events and programs for university employees, please check out the Faculty and Staff calendar and share the information with your staff.