Wright State University Staff Council Minutes
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
Present: Council Members: Mendy Beverly, Linda Dunbar, Diane Hamilton, Mary Healea, Jill Oroszi, Jennifer Rice, Evelyn Roberts, Marianne Shreck, Tami Smith, and Daisy Stieger
Others: Bill Rickert, Allan Boggs
The WSU Staff Council met on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 , at 2:30 p.m. , in Room 267 University Hall.
The North Central Association (NCA) Accreditation Team Visit for WSU's ten-year accreditation will be held on campus on May 15-17, 2006 . Bill Rickert said he was confident that WSU will be re-accredited, and that it is an opportunity to examine our progress during the last ten years and to identify areas we can improve. Many employees have been involved in preparing the WSU Self-Study Report, which includes responses to the concerns from the last accreditation visit in 1996, along with other accomplishments and improvements made since then.
The final draft of the self-study report will be available on the WSU website later in January. Bill encouraged everyone to review the document and to make suggestions.
Bill said that during the next few weeks, he and Allan Boggs would be working with others to determine the process used to calculate staff pay increases for 2006. They don't know yet what percentage increase will be given to staff this year. The bargaining unit faculty will receive a 3% increase this year per their collective bargaining agreement, which may be an indication of the raise pool for staff.
Allan addressed the issue raised by CSAC regarding the classified staff pay increases for newer and long-term employees. While longevity is important, the newer employees need to move through the pay ranges. Those with salaries well below the market (midpoint of the range) need to move faster to the midpoint. Those with salaries close to the midpoint progress more slowly to the midpoint and above.
Allan talked about salary market surveys. Now that we have current and accurate job descriptions for our staff, we can compare both classified and unclassified employee salaries to the marketable salaries of other businesses in the region. Salary data is reported in quartiles. Q4 is the highest salary level; Q3 is an above average salary level used to keep good employees longer; and the midpoint salary (50%) result in great employee turnover. Since WSU provides more benefits and employer contributions than most businesses in the region, the midpoint salary of our pay ranges equal the market salary plus or minus 3%.
A council member asked Allan what percentage of our classified staff are receiving salaries below the midpoint of their range. He said he would find out and report back.
Allan said that an administrative manual is being developed and is scheduled to be completed by July 2006. It would apply to all employees. There are inconsistencies and policy issues to address. He said that at the unit level, classification and pay issues are seen as Human Resources issues. He would like to change that so there is a partnership between Human Resources and the unit managers. We need to do what we can to move people through the salary ranges, and we should reward good employees with better promotions - possibly lift the lid for promotions from a 5% increase to the10 or 15% range.
Bill Rickert asked for suggestions on ways to calculate the classified staff pay increases for 2006. Linda Dunbar suggested giving better raises to long-term employees since we are not rewarding people who stay longer. Daisy Stieger said that some long-term staff members really have had no chance of getting the average percentage raise in the last two years. Employees with over 20 years of service should not be penalized for long-term performance.
Allan said there are several components in the salary increase pool including across-the-board, merit, equity adjustments, etc. How far can you break the pool down into additional segments before it hurts everyone?
Bill said he and Allan appreciated the Council's input regarding salary increases and promised to consider their insights when developing the salary increase methodology for 2006.
Allan mentioned a survey suggested by Iris Harvey, Associate Vice President for Marketing and Communications. The survey is for “Best Places to Work in Dayton .” Iris Harvey is to talk to the Provost about the possibility of WSU participating in the survey.
4. Time Off
A. Bill Rickert talked about the Parental Accommodations policy that was being finalized for bargaining unit faculty members. The original document can be found in Appendix G of the collective bargaining agreement – Side Letter about Parental Leave. This policy is to help new parents to blend family and job obligations. Men and women are to be treated equally.
The final policy states that a faculty member who is primary caretaker of a newborn or newly adopted child under six can get teaching relief equal to one quarter's assignments. This policy will be made public in a few weeks.
Bill asked council members to think about parental accommodations for staff that would be comparable to the faculty.
It was suggested that a committee be formed to consider parental accommodations for staff members. This committee would consist of two representatives from the classified staff and two from the unclassified staff. Bill Rickert and Rich Johnson, Employee Benefits Manager, would also attend. This committee will look at the faculty parental accommodations document and will make recommendations to the administration for a comparable one for the staff.
B. Other kinds of time off include personal days, holiday time off, bereavement time, sick leave (set by the state), and vacation leave. These will be discussed at the next meeting along with the 4-hour rule and short-term disability. Allan said Human Resources hopes to hire a Leave/Disability Coordinator when office space becomes available.
4. Agenda for March 8, 2006 Meeting
Follow up on Compensation
The meeting was adjourned at 4:16 p.m.
The next meeting of the WSU Staff Council will be held on Wednesday, March 8, 2006 , at 2:30-4:00 pm , in Room 267 University Hall.