Personnel Program Changes Coming
Classification, Pay, Performance, Campus Autonomy Policies Would
Affect Many Staff
by Kathleen Phillips Satz
The university's staff personnel programs could undergo a complete rebirth over the next year, based on proposals developed by the campuses and the Office of the President after review by staff and management last fall.
Among the proposals is one that could change future pay programs and another to create a whole new structure for organizing staff.
Campus personnel officials are urging the thousands on campus who could be affected to review these proposals now, while they are still in the development stages.
The proposals affect employees covered by Staff Personnel Policy (SPP) as well as those in the Administrative and Professional Staff (A&PS) Program, the Management and Professional Program (MAP) and the Executive Program.
Employees covered by collective bargaining agreements or represented by an exclusive bargaining agent--such as the new Technical Unit represented by UPTE--are not covered by the proposals.
Campus staff can attend one of several meetings scheduled in the next few weeks to offer comments and ask questions. (See page 3 for dates and times.)
Under the latest version of the proposed Human Resource Management Initiatives, the current four-tier personnel program would be replaced by one program. This would simplify the complex policies that apply to staff personnel and the campuses would take on new authority for implementing those policies.
The proposals also contain a discussion of "new directions for compensation and classification," including the possibility of greater emphasis on rewards for performance, a stronger relationship between pay and local market conditions and streamlining the job classification system.
To ease the transition into these new programs, the proposals include a commitment to staff development and a proposed statement of University Human Resource Philosophy, emphasizing responsibility and accountability, recognition for individual performance and flexibility in human resource policies.
Here are some details of the four major components as contained in the nine-campus systemwide proposal:
o Proposed philosophy for human resource management: The university believes that human resource policies, programs and operations should reflect and be guided by principles and values that are consistent with the high quality of the university's academic achievements.
The proposed philosophy statement outlines the values and principles as they apply to day-to-day operations, including respect for both individual achievement and team initiative, the need for resources and knowledge to do our work well, commitment to staff diversity and effective communications.
o Proposed personnel policy redesign: The new, single personnel program would feature a simplified set of policies at the universitywide level, including subjects that are legally mandated as well as basic rights and conditions of employment that need to be consistent for all university employees. Leave of absence is one example of a policy in this category.
The majority of policies would be substantially the same for all affected employees, although some policies, such as eligibility for overtime pay, would differ.
o Compensation and job classification initiatives: The proposals include ideas for pay systems tied more closely to prevailing market practices and to local conditions.
For example, a "variable pay" plan calls for combining base-building salary increases with incentives and non-monetary awards that don't increase base pay.
o Education, training and development: The success of all the proposed changes, as well as the many other changes taking place on campus, depends a great deal on making sure that employees have the skills, information and resources they need.
The Human Resources Initiative includes a proposed University of California Development and Training Blueprint for Action, developed by campus, laboratory and Office of the President training officers.
Your Chance to Respond
The current proposals represent "phase two" in a process of consulting campus management and staff about changes in policies and programs.
Last fall the university asked for comments from the campuses, individual employees, advisory groups and employee organizations.
Berkeley campus employees attended information sessions and provided responses in writing, leading to the latest set of proposals, issued in late February.
Over the next few weeks, the Berkeley Campus Personnel Office will hold open forums to answer questions and listen to comments on the proposals.
Employees may also provide comments in writing to Alice Gregory, director of Human Resources, 207 University Hall #3540, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The campus response will be forwarded to the Office of the President and final proposals will then be issued for formal review, at which time campus meetings will again be held.
Full Proposal on Gopher
The full proposal has been posted on the Berkeley Campus Personnel Office gopher and the Office of the President gopher.
Copies of the proposal have been sent to control units and copies are also available for review at the reference desks of Doe and Moffitt libraries and the Berkeley Campus Personnel Office, 207 University Hall.