UHD Staff Council: July Update
By Sheryl E. Taylor
UHD Staff Council President Dr. Isidro Grau kicked-off July's meeting by welcoming fellow staff members along with a few announcements.
Grau, director of UHD's Academic Support Center, reminded attendees that election ballots for new Staff Council officers and ambassadors will be making their way to email boxes soon. He also recognized Council President-Elect Gladis Moya, department business administrator II in Employee Services and Operations, who will assume her new role as Staff Council president on September 1.
The meeting featured a presentation on the proposed changes to annual staff evaluations—presented by Ivonne Montalbano, vice president of Employment Services and Operations and Bernice Guillen, coordinator of Talent Management & Employee Relations.
Previously presented to the Staff Council's Executive and Appraisal Committees and the President's Cabinet—the new Staff Competencies are all anchored on UHD's Revised Strategic Plan 2015-2020 and the University's mission and values.
According to Montalbano, the creation of this new program relied upon defining competencies and the words of UHD President Dr. Juan Sánchez Muñoz.
"Dr. Muñoz has expressed that every UHD employee, no matter his or her role, plays a part in student recruitment, retention, graduation, and success," she said. "This is the preface of these new competencies. Competencies describe how employees should successfully perform their job duties and contribute to students' success."
Montalbano also noted the distinction between competencies and goals/objectives—competencies is how employees accomplish their jobs and goals/objectives is what employees should accomplish. She stressed the significance of how these staff competencies come "full circle" in relating how the entire UHD community contributes to student success while measuring how well employees perform their jobs.
"These competencies are broader," said Montalbano. "I really believe that it gives staff members a better opportunity to understand their jobs and how they can grow their skills to do their jobs better and professionally."
The new competencies—integrating elements from Talent Development, Talent Management, and the Career Ladders Program being launched in early 2018—will be incorporated into job descriptions, Gator Learning activities, professional growth attempts, and staff performance evaluations.
"By tying together professional development goals to these competencies, it will enable employees to focus on areas needing improvement and/or specific competencies required for career growth," she added.
In the coming months, ESO will:
- Host Information Sessions on the new Staff Competencies, slated for fall 2017, to introduce this concept and further elaborate on these competencies.
- Assign competencies to every job description and communicate (face-to-face or electronically) with every employee and seek feedback from staff and managers.
- Unveil the Career Ladders Program by early 2018.
- Roll-out the new Staff Competencies for the 2018-2019 evaluation year.
"We are very excited about these staff competencies that will be rolled out in early 2018," said Montalbano. "Our goal is to continue providing learning activities through Gator Learning so that our talented staff continues to grow professionally. These competencies were created with the UHD staff in mind...because in order to be successful in helping students Finish UHD Strong, you need talented staff, strategic competencies and a strong management team."
At the close of the meeting, Grau reminded fellow staffers to:
- Apply for the EDGE Grant (Educational/Development Grant for Employees). Sponsored by UHD Staff Council for staff members, the EDGE Grant as part an ongoing effort to promote staff education and self-development—attending seminars, workshops, training sessions, continuing education courses, etc. that are related to their jobs. Funds for the grant are raised by Staff Council through fundraising efforts. One grant per month will be awarded to a full-time UHD staff member.
- Invite a fellow colleague to the next Staff Council on Friday, August 18, from 11 a.m. to noon, in One Main Building, Room N1099.
Learn more about UHD Staff Council and upcoming events.