Human Resources Newsletter

July 2014

PMP Year End Appraisal

Performance Management Program (PMP) Year-End Appraisal – Where Should You Be in the Process in July?

Please note that what appears below is a recommended timeline for the Performance Management Program (PMP) year-end appraisal process. Some departments may have earlier, internal deadlines. Check with your HR Rep for details.

The Performance Management Program (PMP) year-end appraisal opened on June 9 and runs through July 31. What does that mean in terms of where you should be in the PMP process? We recommended that you complete your self-assessment by June 27.

The year-end appraisal is an integral part of the evaluative PMP process through which you should receive thoughtful, meaningful, feedback from your supervisor. By completing your self-assessment in June, or as soon as possible in July, you will give your manager ample time to review your assessment and add his/her comments.

Next is the important year-end appraisal discussion where you have the opportunity to have a dialogue with your supervisor about your successes and challenges during the past year. You also will look forward and shape your goals for 2014-2015 as well as identify and address areas for development.

Make sure to schedule your appraisal meeting with your supervisor as early as possible, especially if your manager supervises multiple people.

After your discussion, your manager will complete the form and send it back to you for acknowledgement that you had your year-end meeting. After you sign the form, your manager will also sign the form and your appraisal will move to the merit stage of the process by July 31. Your overall performance rating is determined by the year-end appraisal and is one of the factors considered in the merit increase process.

To begin your self-assessment and to prepare for your year-end appraisal discussion, login to AsuccessfulU and take the 40-minute online training course, Performance Management Program: The Year-end Appraisal Online. For additional support, you may refer to user guides in AsuccessfulU that will help you navigate the system; contact the PMP “Super User” in your department; or submit a question directly to AsuccessfulU@american.edu.

A few Quick Tips to help you through the PMP system:

  • AsuccessfulU works best on Internet Explorer 8, 9, and 10 over other browsers.
  • As you complete your self-assessment, be sure to click the “Save” button often.
  • Discuss a development goal during your year-end assessment. Development goals are great opportunities to add or improve skills and knowledge.

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American University is Committed to Diversity in Hiring

Throughout American University’s history, inclusiveness and diversity have been hallmarks of the institution. AU embraces diversity in its broadest sense including, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, nationality, disability, socio-economic standing, and intellectual viewpoints. The university views diversity as an essential component of the educational experience of our students and an important indicator of our success in adapting to the dramatic demographic shifts that will occur in the decades ahead.

The Office of Human Resources’ Recruitment Team would like to highlight two of our new and exciting diversity hiring initiatives: hiring our nation’s veterans and individuals with disabilities. As part of our commitment to diversity hiring, the AU Recruitment Team has partnered externally with several local and national organizations as well as the Academic Support and Access Center and the Veterans Liaison Network on campus to assist in our outreach and support to these populations.

The Recruitment Team represented American University at the Disabled American Veterans & RecruitMilitary.com Job Fair on June 26 at FedEx Field in Landover, MD. We also will participate in the Careers Magazine & the disABLED Magazine’s Career Expo for People with Disabilities on Friday, November 21 at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC.

We will share more information as we grow and build on these new initiatives. If you would like to share your ideas with the Recruitment Team or would like to become involved, please contact Jennifer Gross at grossj@american.edu or Stacy Martz at smartz@american.edu.

“AU genuinely cares about its veterans. With the Yellow Ribbon Program, the AU Veterans Liaison Network, AU Vets Club and the new Veterans' Lounge, AU provides a great atmosphere and awesome support for veterans to take on the challenges of life after the military.” - Dave Null, American University Benefits Operations Specialist & Marine Veteran

For a current list of all available staff positions please visit: https://jobs.american.edu/JobPostings.aspx.

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Fall 2014 Tuition Remission Application Deadline is Monday, August 25

Fall 2014 Tuition Remission Application Deadline is Monday, August 25

The deadline for faculty and staff to submit an online application for themselves and/or spouses or same sex domestic partners for tuition remission for the fall 2014 semester is Monday, August 25, 2014. Applications for tuition remission will not be accepted after August 25. Please contact the Benefits Team at x3400 or AUTuitionBenefits@american.edu if you have any questions.

Please note that taxable tuition remission will be included as income to the faculty or staff member in the October through December biweekly or monthly paychecks.

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Chef Kyle and Leah Tasman

AhealthyU’s Cooking Demonstration Series Teaches You to Cook and Eat Healthy

On Friday, June 13, AhealthyU hosted a Summer BBQ Cooking Demonstration for faculty and staff members. Thirty-three faculty and staff members gathered outside in the Leonard Picnic Area for the event. Chef Kyle, the Aramark Sustainability Chef, demonstrated how to grill salmon properly, and prepare Swiss chard and scallions for a healthy summertime meal. Those in attendance sampled the dish and vouched for the fact that healthy ingredients, a grill, and good technique make for a tasty meal!

If you are interested in learning how to make quick, nutritious dishes and sampling all the recipes that are demonstrated, be sure to attend AhealthyU’s monthly cooking demonstration series. Future cooking demonstrations will be announced via Today@AU.

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Terry Fernandez

Terry Fernandez, An AhealthyU Success Story

AhealthyU offers faculty and staff programs and tools to achieve their health and fitness goals including health screenings, diet and nutrition programs, and group exercise classes. It is important that you also have regular check-ups with your primary care physician to evaluate your health and make recommendations that suit your individual needs.

In the last 18 months, OIT Senior Director of Customer Services & Support, Terry Fernandez, has undergone a lifestyle and physical transformation to become healthier.

“I have a chronic health condition, and in January 2013, I had a health scare that affected my ability to walk. It was very scary to think that the effects could be permanent and I felt that it was finally time to focus on myself,” Terry explains. Terry set a goal of losing 50 pounds, and selected a doctor-supervised program that restricted calories, stressed eating well-balanced, all-natural whole foods, drinking lots of water, keeping a food diary, and exercising six times a week. By July 2013, she had lost 50 pounds and revised her goal to lose an extra 10 pounds.

“I’ve kept off 60 pounds for over a year and I went from a size 16 to a size 6,” Terry says. “I regularly receive compliments from folks who I haven't seen in a while saying that I look 10 years younger. I have more confidence and energy to keep up with my active family – my husband, two sons, and dog.”

“I’m committed to maintaining my healthy weight by eating well and exercising, but I still allow myself to indulge in special treats on occasion. I just exercise a little more and eat a little less to compensate for it.” Fernandez also participates in AhealthyU's health assessments and gets her annual flu shot. “AhealthyU piloted a walking/fitness program with OIT last year that also helped to make being more active fun,” Terry points out.

“You have to carefully select the time when you embark on a journey to focus on your health and well-being, as it has to be the right time for you. You have to be mentally prepared and committed to seeing it through, as it takes work.”

To share your success story of a lifestyle change that has helped you to become healthier and happier, please submit your story online at http://www.american.edu/hr/AhealthyU/Success-Stories.cfm.

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Financial Resources

Take Steps Today to Increase Your Financial Fitness

Regardless of where you are in your career and stage of life, you have financial challenges and goals that are both common to your peers and individual to your life situation.

AU’s 403(b) retirement benefit, with a two-to-one match, is one of the university’s most popular benefits. Make the most of this benefit by investing to reach your goals. Not sure where to start or if you are on track to retire? Fidelity and TIAA-CREF send representatives to campus every month to meet one-on-one with AU’s faculty and staff to provide guidance that is consistent with your principles and values to reach your goals.

Retirement Planning One-on-One Counseling Session Schedule

Fidelity
Call 1-800-642-7131 or go to
https://fidelity.com/atwork/reservations to
schedule an appointment. Consultant: Jeff Jones.
TIAA-CREF
Call 1-800-732-8353 to schedule an appointment.
Consultant: Glenn Collins.
  • July 14 and 16
  • August 26 and 27
  • September 24 and 25
  • July 8 and 30
  • August 13 and 21
  • September 10 and 23

Counseling sessions are provided at no cost to you and are scheduled between 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. in Human Resources office, 3201 New Mexico Avenue, NW Suite 350, unless otherwise indicated.

Check myBenefits for future dates.

NEW! Financial Avenue - online financial resource for faculty and staff

In collaboration with AU Central, HR is pleased to provide Financial Avenue online courses and mini-modules. The courses include topics such as the basics of personal money management, budgeting, identity theft, and tackling debt.

  • You can access all of the online courses and mini-modules at any time. Visit Financial Avenue at https://www.financialavenue.org/ to create your account and begin the program today.
  • First-time users click on the Sign Up button.
  • Use the access code 1bttpi to begin the registration process.

Financial Avenue works best on Firefox or Chrome browsers.

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Wellness Discounts

AhealthyU has a few tips this month to help you become a wiser healthcare consumer:

  • Diet to Go is a healthy eating program that offers customizable, prepared meals with flexible scheduling options and multiple pick-up locations. Faculty and staff are eligible for 25 percent off the first week and 5 percent off every following week. To learn more about Diet to Go, visit diettogo.com.
  • Gold’s Gym is offering AU staff, faculty, and family members a $15.95 bi-weekly membership fee with no enrollment fee through the end of August. You will have access to all 30 local Gold’s Gym locations. For questions and more information, email Maxie C. Sprott at Msprott@goldsgym.com.
  • CareFirst Blue365 features healthy deals and discounts exclusively for CareFirst members. Discounts include 20 percent off at Reebok.com, 25 percent off Polar Heart Rate Monitors, or a gym membership for only $25 a month. For more information, visit www.carefirst.com/wellnessdiscounts.

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August Training Calendar

Register for the instructor led courses listed below by logging into AsuccessfulU, AU's online training registration system via the portal. 

How to Access the Learning Module in AsuccessfulU:

  • Click here to access AsuccessfulU’s portal page.
  • Click the "Go to AsuccessfulU" button in the middle of the page.
  • From the "Home" tab on the top left of the page click on "Learning" from the drop down menu.
  • This will launch your personal profile in the “Learning” tab. You can search and register for training sessions here.

DATE TIME TITLE
Friday, August 1 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Valuing Diversity and Inclusion
Tuesday, August 5 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. Delegating for Results
Friday, August 8 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Maximizing Meeting Effectiveness
Monday, August 11 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. Creative Problem Solving for Individual Innovation
Wednesday, August 13 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Embracing Change
Wednesday, August 13 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. Developing Others
Thursday, August 28 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Project Management

Please contact the Workplace Learning and Development team at training@american.edu with any questions.

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Workplace Learning and Development

Staff Council

AU Welcomes the 2014-2015 Staff Council

June 17 marked the first meeting of the new 2014-2015 Staff Council in Butler Board Room. During the May election period, more than 2,000 votes were cast from across the campus for the 10 open Staff Council positions. Congratulations to our newly appointed officers, Celina Ryan, Chair; Andrea Carpenter, Co-Chair, and Adrian Sanchez, Secretary. Elected Council members now include:

Jennifer Baron Jocelyn Hill Valerie Rauenzahn
Andrea Carpenter Steve Kelly Celina Ryan
Anna Castro Helen Lee Adrian Sanchez
Keesha Ceran Jeremy Lowe Heather A. Smith
Sean Cullinane Rena Munster Jordan Tobin
David Fletcher Marianne Norman Michael Wargo
James Helms Paula Palhus  

The Staff Council serves the interests and needs of AU’s staff as it pertains to their daily activities and work conditions. The group promotes understanding and cooperation by facilitating communication among campus constituencies, and serves as an advocate for staff-related issues.

Staff Council currently is involved in a taskforce to analyze the Transportation Demand Management (TDM) survey, and is participating in the AU Wellness Committee and satellite committee coordination of WAMU tours and off-campus yoga classes.

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For more information, visit the Staff Council website, www.american.edu/staffcouncil.