March 2, 2015
In response to the feedback received since the announcement of the proposed changes to the leaves policy, Treasurer Bill Sullivan has asked that we pause on the roll-out of the program.
Since November 2013 a large committee worked hard to review, simplify and improve the package of University leaves. The process involved many meetings with faculty and staff and the recommended product of that effort was socialized with staff advisory committees. The Leaves Committee sincerely believed that the proposed program, which increased cost to the University, was well designed, balanced and fair.
We have received considerable input over these past 10 days and it is clear that the original feedback received by the Leaves Committee in their pre-rollout sessions did not provide sufficient insight. The primary, but not only, concern we heard last week was that the number of allotted PTO days was not adequate in the proposed plan. Thus, the number of allotted days will be increased. Bill will also ask the Committee to re-evaluate the entire plan before finalizing the number of PTO days and any other aspects of the plan.
In order to gain personal insight into the full range of perceptions and concerns regarding both our existing leaves policies and the proposed changes, Bill would like to gather representative faculty and staff in relatively small focus group sessions over the next week.
The schedule for these sessions is outlined below. In order to have the most candid and productive exchange of thoughts and ideas, we would like to limit the participant size of each session to 25-30 people. This limitation on size is not in any way meant to reduce input. For those who cannot attend one of these sessions, you may continue to provide feedback by emailing email@example.com, and we encourage you to do so. Information sessions that were already scheduled will now be conducted as additional forums with Human Resources during which faculty and staff can provide feedback and have their questions about leaves answered.
Following these sessions, it is Bill’s intent and desire to re-engage with the Leaves Committee to develop a revised recommendation on the leaves policies (including increasing the days offered), clearly taking into account all of the feedback that we receive.
You may sign up for the sessions by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with the session number you wish to attend (“Session #X”) in the subject line. We invite you to sign up as a participant in these sessions on a first-come, first-served basis, with several slots reserved for those employees who do not have ready access to computers.
Session #1 Wednesday 3/4 from 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Session #2 Thursday 3/5 from 5:30 - 7 p.m.
Session #3 Friday 3/6 from 10:30 a.m. - noon
Session #4 Friday 3/6 from 2:30 - 4 p.m.
We are currently working on reserving rooms for these sessions. Those selected to attend the sessions will receive an email confirming the details.
I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all faculty and staff members who have shared feedback and questions and look forward to learning more through the meetings that will be held in the coming days.