Management Update - March 2018

March 2018

Volume 15 | Issue 10

Great Colleges to Work For Survey

Kent State University is pleased to announce that we are once again participating in the Great Colleges to Work For program. By continuing to participate, we are able to track our progress and gain worthwhile internal and external benchmarking.


Thanks to the valuable input of our 2017 survey respondents, Kent State was again recognized as a Great College to Work For in the Benefits and Compensation category. The university is proud of this accomplishment. 2018 affords the same opportunity, and all who take the survey are encouraged to share their insights. Although recognition is not guaranteed, the university community remains wholly optimistic about the value derived from this program.


Please note that the survey will be distributed to a random sample of faculty and staff from March 12 through April 6 . We encourage those employees who receive the survey to complete it. However, note that the survey is voluntary and completely confidential; our institution will not be able to trace results back to individuals. ModernThink LLC, an independent management-consulting firm focusing on workplace quality in higher education, will process your survey. ModernThink can be reached at 888-684-4658 or at


Thank you, in advance, for your participation. Please contact Assistant Provost Susan Perry, Accreditation, Assessment and Learning, at or 330-672-3931, if you have any questions.

New Enhancements to the Tuition Benefit Workflow Process

The Tuition Benefit workflow process was one of the Lean Initiative projects selected by the Division of Finance and Administration. In collaboration with Academic Personnel, Benefits, Bursar's Office, Payroll, Training and Development and with technical assistance from Information Services, the existing workflow process was enhanced to make it more effective and efficient.   

New process and enhancements include:

1.         Reduced workflow processing time:

  • Department heads will not have to enter the appropriate index and approve the request before it routes to Benefits for processing. Instead, an email will be sent so they can verify the prepopulated index.
  • Employees have the ability to see the status of their tuition waiver request at any time during the process.

2.         Reduced potential for errors. Automatic restrictions are in place for grants and cost shares:

  • Grant-only indexes and cost shares represent a small percentage of circumstances where the workflow will route directly to a department head for selecting the proper index.  
  • If the department head does not take action within five days, the workflow will route to Benefits for follow-up.  

3.         Real time calculation of eligibility per the policy register:

  • If a dependent is not eligible, an error message will display and prevent the process from continuing.
  • The employee and dependents' information will populate in the tuition benefit drop down box. If a dependent's name is not showing, please contact Benefits.
  • Once the tuition benefit is submitted, end-users and department heads will receive an email confirmation.

The new Tuition Benefit workflow will go into effect March 30, 2018. We will continue to communicate changes to the process. If you have additional questions, please contact Benefits at 330-672-3107 or

Performance Evaluations On the Horizon

Performance evaluations for classified and unclassified employees will take place from April 2 through June 15. Employee Relations is working with Information Services in hopes of having a single sign on in FlashLine available this year.

Online performance evaluations for classified employees will take place April 2 through June 1. Unclassified employees will be able to complete the evaluations April 16 through June 15.

Managers and supervisors of classified employees will receive an email prior to March 26 with detailed instructions. As a reminder, access is available to the performance log employees and supervisors can use throughout the year to record personal accomplishments, training and discussions.

Two webinars will be available for supervisors and managers. The first, "Navigating the Online Evaluation Process," will familiarize evaluators with the online assessment tool. The second webinar, "Assessing and Improving the Performance of Others," is a webinar for new managers and supervisors regarding how to evaluate employees. Dates to register for the webinars will be available soon.

More information will be posted to the Human Resources Performance Evaluation website. If your department is interested in having a Human Resources representative present an overview of the evaluation process in person, please call Karen Watson at 330-672-4636 or email

Mark Your Calendar: Student Employee Appreciation Week: April 8-14

The week of April 8-14 is National Student Employment Appreciation Week. To celebrate, Career Exploration and Development will have special edition T-shirts available for student employees at all campuses to pick up at events throughout the week. Further, departments across the university have planned a variety of events, activities and giveaways. More information will be available in the coming weeks.  

While student employees will be celebrated university-wide, supervisors are also encouraged to show appreciation to those working within their departments. Appreciation can include giving students a simple thank-you card, surprising students with a homemade treat or a number of other suggested Student Employee Recognition Ideas. Another great way to appreciate your students would be to place an ad in The Kent Stater's special Student Employee Appreciation edition on Thursday, April 12. For information on the Stater's advertising specials, email

For more information about Student Employee Appreciation Week, please contact Ami Hollis at

Stress Management That Works: Three-Part Webinar Series

Every day we all encounter stressors such as traffic, work deadlines and family obligations to name a few. Sometimes it feels as though we cannot get away from stress. This three-part webinar series will help you become more aware of feeling stressed and provide some simple techniques and strategies for coping with it.

Session I: March 8, 2018, 10-11 a.m.

This webinar will provide education and background knowledge to help you understand stress and its effect on your body. We will also discuss how to identify when you are feeling stressed and ways you can decrease your stress number through understanding how you currently think about your problems. Registration required.

Session II: March 21, 2018, 10-11 a.m.

This webinar will dive deeper into understanding stress by discussing how we can shift from thinking about stress as an unsurmountable to a solvable problem. Registration required.

Session III: April 5, 2018, 10-11 a.m. 

During this webinar, we will discuss incorporating stress management into our daily lives. Often the idea of adding things to our day to manage stress can feel overwhelming. We will discuss how better time management can assist in effectively managing our stress. Registration required.


Our presenter for the series will be Lisa Kirby, MFT, PC. Ms. Kirby is the account manager for Impact Solutions, Kent State's employee assistance program provider. Ms. Kirby is a licensed professional counselor and marriage and family therapist. During her tenure at IMPACT, she has provided crisis and triage support in response to client needs. As an account manager, she works closely with the employee wellness team in the attainment of a healthier and more productive workforce.  

This series is ideal for all Kent State faculty and staff. Each session will count as 25 Wellness Your Way points towards your 2018 Tier 2 totals for full-time, benefits-eligible employees. The series is a companion to the book, Stop Stress This Minute by Jim Porter. Note that, while the program is most beneficial if you participate in all three parts of the series, this is not required. 

If you have questions, please contact the Employee Wellness office at 330-672-0392 or For a full list of employee wellness programs and services, visit today!

Smoke-Free, Tobacco-Free Policy Reminder

All Kent State University locations are smoke- and tobacco-free in accordance with university policy 3345-5-21. This policy aligns with the university-level initiative to create a healthy campus environment for all employees, students and visitors. 

The policy covers all Kent State campuses, locations and properties, both domestic and international, and applies to all members of the university community: students, employees, volunteers, vendors, visitors and customers. In addition, the policy applies to all university-owned, -operated or -leased property, as well as personal vehicles on university property.   

Under the policy, all smoking is prohibited. This includes electronic smoking devices, mod boxes or electronic nicotine delivery systems that create an aerosol or vapor. The use of nicotine, tobacco-derived or plant-based products, or oral tobacco is also prohibited. 

Members of the university community who are thinking about kicking the tobacco habit should visit On this page, you can find links to Employee Resources and Student Resources for quitting. Resources include free smoking cessation support, smoking cessation apps, free nicotine replacement therapy information for employees, and internal cessation resources for students and employees. 

Please reinforce this policy with employees and students in your area. Questions may be submitted to

Registration Opens for Annual Employee Appreciation Day - March 20

Kent State University faculty and staff will be recognized with a complimentary lunch, entertainment, games, giveaways, dancing and fun on Tuesday, March 20, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Kent Student Center Ballroom. A special evening event will be held for second- and third-shift workers from 10-11:30 p.m. 

Registration is now open. If you would like to attend, please register by selecting the day or evening event button on the Employee Appreciation Day homepage.

To provide a consistent experience for all employees, lunch and events will be held concurrently throughout the three-hour period so departments can schedule release time for staff. Workers are not required to use designated sick or vacation leave to attend. Participation in this event should be coordinated with guidance from your supervisor or manager.

All Regional Campus employees are invited to attend the March 20 event on the Kent Campus. However, note that Regional Campus employees will be recognized during separate employee appreciation events throughout the year at your respective locations.

The Employee Appreciation Committee and university administration is excited to bring this special event to all full- and part-time faculty and staff. For questions, please contact the Employee Engagement and Outreach Office at 330-672-2100 or

Please note: Although the university certainly values its graduate assistants and student employees, Employee Appreciation Day events are intended for all full- and part-time faculty and staff. This is not intended to include graduate assistants and student employees.

Kent State Announces Free Electronics Recycling Feb. 28, March 7, 14 and 21, and Document Shredding Event March 21 during RecycleMania

On Feb. 28, March 7, 14 and 21, Kent State University will hold a FREE electronics recycling drop-off, called E-Cycle Drive. On March 21, Kent State will hold FREE document shredding, called ShredMania. Both events are open to students, faculty, staff and the Kent Community. E-Cycle Drive and ShredMania are hosted by Kent State's Division of Human Resources, University Facilities Management and the Office of Sustainability.

E-Cycle Drive will be open Wednesdays, Feb. 28, March 7, 14 and 21, from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Kent Campus R-17 parking lot behind Starbucks (between South Willow Street and South Lincoln Street.) Shred-Mania will be open Wednesday, March 21, from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Kent Campus R-17 parking lot behind Starbucks (between South Willow Street and South Lincoln Street.) Both the electronics recycling and university paper shredding contributes to Kent State's standings in RecycleMania. This is the ninth year Kent State is competing in RecycleMania.

For more information, visit

Correction: Office Support Staff Recognition Program

In last month's issue of Management Update, we listed the date for the Office Support Staff Recognition Program incorrectly. This invitation-only event will take place Tuesday, April 24, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Kent Student Center Ballroom. Managers and supervisors should schedule coverage in their respective units so invitees may attend. 

Please direct any questions to Employee Engagement and Outreach at 330-672-2100 or

Dates to Remember


March is Women's History Month

March is National Nutrition Month


March 8

International Women's Day


March 12

Daylight saving time begins (ends Nov. 5)


March 17

St. Patrick's Day


March 20

Spring begins
International Earth Day


March 26-April 1

Spring Recess


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 at We look forward to hearing from you.   

POSTED: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 02:56 PM
Updated: Wednesday, March 14, 2018 02:56 PM