Skip to main content

Human Resources Newsletter - July 2017

We’ve Simplified the Performance Management Program (PMP) Year-end Appraisal

We’ve Simplified the Performance Management Program (PMP) Year-end Appraisal.
Complete the updated Year-end form by July 31.

We heard you. In an effort to reduce the amount of writing and time to complete the year-end process, the PMP Redesign Team has simplified the 2016-2017 Year-end Appraisal form and it is now faster and easier to complete. Ratings are still required for each goal and competency but now you only have to summarize your performance against goals in one comment box and summarize your competencies in one comment box. This allows you and your manager more time to prepare for and have a meaningful discussion. 

To Access the Updated Year-End Appraisal Form:

  • Log on to the myAU portal
  • Select "Work@AU" from the top navigation
  • Click on "AsuccessfulU" from the dropdown menu
  • Click the blue button "Go to AsuccessfulU"
  • Under "Home," select "Performance" from the dropdown menu
  • Click on "Year-end Appraisal Form 2016-2017" to access the updated form

If you have not entered your goals for the 2016-2017 PMP cycle, we recommend setting 3-6 goals in AsuccessfulU that are entered under the Goals tab. You can also record notes in your individual goals in the Goals tab and they will be captured in the year-end form. Take some time to reflect on this year and identify areas where you can strengthen and grow your skills and experience. 

We encourage all staff and managers to discuss progress towards goals, celebrate successes, identify obstacles, and find opportunities to explore professional development. 

Please complete your self-review, have your discussion with your manager, and allow your manager time to complete their part of the process by July 31. Your overall performance rating as determined by the Year-end Appraisal is one of the factors considered in the 2016-2017 merit award process awarded in September.

For more information, see resources on AsuccessfulU. If you have any further questions regarding the Year-end Appraisal or PMP Redesign, please email

Return to top

AhealthyU Calendar

Weight Watchers®

Thursdays | 12pm | MGC 203-205

AU Farmers Market

Wednesdays | 4pm - 7pm | WCL

From the Farmer

Tuesdays | Afternoons MGC, WCL, & 3201 New Mexico Ave.

Group Exercise Classes for Faculty & Staff

Monday - Friday | Now - August 11

View the full AhealthyU calendar

One-on-One Investment Counseling Sessions

Tuesday, July 18
Tuesday, August 15
Thursday, August 17

Click here to schedule.

Wednesday, July 12
Wednesday, July 26
Wednesday, August 16
Wednesday, August 30

Call 800-732-8353 to schedule.

Employment Verification Online with The Work Number® by Equifax®

Are you moving into a new home, applying for a new job, or maybe applying for a loan? You may be asked to provide employment verification to prove your income status and that you are employed.

You can now complete your employment verification online with The Work Number®, Equifax's® online employment database of payroll records. The Office of Human Resources has partnered with The Work Number to offer a fast and secure way to provide proof of employment or income. Available to current and former employees of American University, this service simplifies the verification process and accelerates credit decision with verifiers available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

To provide proof of employment and/or income, provide your verifier with your social security number and American University' employer code "18527". Advise your verifier to visit and register inside the verifier area. The printable worksheet for your verifier is available below.

The Work Number Verification Worksheet

For more information on the new employment verification process, visit the Employment Verifications webpage.

Return to top

Staff Appreciation Week Highlights & Winners

Staff Appreciation Week Highlights 2017

On May 22-26, 2017, the Office of Human Resources held the annual Staff Appreciation Week to celebrate AU staff members and their contributions. The week featured favorites such as the staff picnic, AthankU for Your Thyme, the staff volleyball tournament, the Staff Performance and Years of Service luncheon, and the 20-Year Club Celebration. New this year, staff took a tour of the East Campus, livestreamed financial wellness classes online, and viewed the 20-Year Club Inductee video.

The Staff Appreciation Week committee would like to thank its many partners including AhealthyU, Recreational Sports & Fitness, Staff Council, AU Auxiliary Services, and AU Dining. Their events and support helped to make the week successful and fun.

Most of all, we'd like to thank our staff members for the work that you do each day. We're happy that so many participated in this year's activities and we look forward to another great year.

Staff Appreciation Week Event Highlights

Staff Appreciation Week Volleyball Tournament

This year the staff volleyball tournament was delayed a week and held on Friday, June 2, 2017 due to inclement weather. It was a close game between reigning champions from Athletics, but we crowned new champions in staff volleyball!

Congratulations to FASS and Furious (from The Washington College of Law), the 2017 Staff Appreciation Volleyball Tournament Champions.

Winning WCl staff team Team FASS and Furious
  • Minh Nguyen
  • Kenneth Barros
  • Huy Nguyen
  • Tra Pham
  • Michael Jean
  • Cynthia Turcios

"The biggest take away was that we played well as a team. Everyone was very supportive and positive, which helped our new volleyball players," said FASS and Furious Team Captain, Mihn Nguyen.

Other Main Event Highlights

Cookie Bake-Off Winners:

  • Best Overall
    Samantha Guthrie - Madeleines Albright
  • Most Creative
    Ariadna Figueredo - Paint Your Own Unicorn
  • Fan Favorite
    Amy Marrion - Oatmeal Caramel Chai Tea Cookies

Trivia in the Tavern 1st Place Team: What is 'Tom Sawyer' by the Band, Rush?

  • Ethan Goss Alexander
  • Ryan Cassidy
  • Gorky Cruz
  • Samantha Mitchell
  • Cheryl Olszowka
  • Kim Westemeier

AU Honors the 2017 Staff Performance Awards Winners, Years of Service Honorees and 20-Year Club Inductees

Each year, AU honors staff for their outstanding performance that goes above and beyond their normal duties to create an excellent customer experience and move the university towards achieving its strategic goals.

The 2017 Performance Award winners have exceptional stories and achievements. Please click on the links to read their citations.

AU also recognizes staff for their continued dedication, contribution, and service when they reach five-, ten-, fifteen-, and twenty-plus year milestones.

Congratulations to our 2017 Performance Award winners and Years of Service honorees.

Return to top

The Workplace Learning and Development Team Name Has Changed to Talent Development

2016-2017 WLD I AM AU Training Catalog. AU faculty and staff engage in a seminar.

The Workplace Learning and Development (WLD) team name has recently changed to Talent Development. In effort to better serve and engage AU faculty, staff, and students, we are shifting the focus from a "workplace" only environment to a more inclusive learning environment.

As Talent Development, we aim to foster engagement and learning on a larger scale and emphasize that anyone, faculty, staff, or student, can have the opportunity to grow at American University.

We still offer our training and development services such as the:

  • Performance Management Program
  • 21st Century Leadership Institute
  • Mentoring Matters program
  • Professional Development courses

For more information on our programs and services visit To register for Professional Development courses, visit AsuccessfulU on the myAU portal.

Return to top

Importance of Keeping Your Beneficiary Designations Up-to-Date

Named beneficiaries on insurance policies and retirement accounts generally supersede instructions in wills, which is why it is important to keep your beneficiary designations up to date. 

This means that even if your will and other estate-planning documents are current, your best intentions can be undone if your beneficiary was named long ago. For example, if you had named your parents your beneficiaries before you were married, your parents - not your spouse - can inherit your life insurance benefit. Or a former spouse could inherit your 403(b) retirement account if you don't update your beneficiary designations after a divorce. 

By periodically reviewing your beneficiary designations for your AU life insurance and retirement plans, you can be assured that your assets will be distributed according to your wishes. Review Your Beneficiary Designations It's important to review beneficiary designations whenever you experience life changes - such as marriage, divorce, death of a spouse, or birth of children or grandchildren. Additionally, we recommend that you periodically check your beneficiaries because life happens and you may not realize that you have forgotten to update your beneficiary information. 

How to Check Your Beneficiaries 

Review your AU life insurance beneficiaries on the myBenefits site:

  1. Log in to the myAU portal; 
  2. Select Benefits: myBenefits under the Work@AU navigation; 
  3. Click the red button "View your current benefits details and beneficiaries" on the right side; 
  4. Select "Important Documents" on the far right side. Click on "Employee Detail Report," to view current designations. 
To make changes to your life insurance beneficiaries:
  1. Perform steps 1-3 above, then scroll down to the "Benefits Snapshot" section. Select "Additional Benefits."
  2. Click on the pencil icon next to "Beneficiaries" to add or edit your beneficiaries. 

Check your retirement account beneficiaries by calling or visiting your investment service provider online, depending on which plan(s) you are enrolled in. 

  • If you have a Fidelity account, to review or update your beneficiaries, call 800-343-0860, or log onto your account at and click on "Profile" at the top of the page. 
  • If you have a TIAA account, to review or update your beneficiaries, call 800-842-2776, or log onto your account at

Making a proper beneficiary designation is an important part of your estate planning. We recommend that you consult with a legal advisor and/or an estate planning professional if you have questions regarding your beneficiary designations.

Return to top

Join AhealthyU Summer Group Exercise Classes- Now Complimentary for Off-Campus Locations!

Be Active. Join AhealthyU Summer Fitness Classes May 30 - Aug. 11.

Stay active this summer with AhealthyU's group exercise classes now – August 11, 2017. AhealthyU makes staying active easier with the addition of two new group exercise classes (Barre and Yoga Bootcamp) and complimentary group exercise classes for off-campus locations (4401 Connecticut Avenue, 3201 New Mexico Avenue, Spring Valley Building, and Washington College of Law).

More About AhealthyU's New Group Exercise Classes

This summer, AhealthyU is offering a Barre group fitness class which focuses on isometric strength training, using body weight to help strengthen and tone your body. High repetitions with small hand weights and exercise balls are incorporated into this invigorating new fitness class. Join us on Tuesdays from 12:05 -12:45pm at Cassell Fitness Center.

Yoga Bootcamp
Yoga Bootcamp is also a new addition to the summer group exercise classes which combines yoga flow with core work and cardio bursts, all in one 40-minute class. Join us on Thursdays from 12:05 -12:45pm at WCL, Tenley Campus Library Room N100B.

Exclusive to faculty and staff, AhealthyU's group exercise classes are no cost to AU Recreational Sports and Fitness members, off-campus locations, and participants of the 2017 Steps to AhealthyU Pedometer Challenge. The drop-in fee is $5 for non-members who attend classes at Cassell or Jacobs Fitness Centers (you must bring your AU ID for access to the fitness centers). As a reminder, the drop-in fee allows access to the class only. Fitness center shower and locker room access is not available for drop-in participants.

For the full AhealthyU group exercise schedule, visit the AhealthyU website.

Return to top

AhealthyU Pedometer Challenge Standings & More

Steps to AhealthyU Pedometer Challenge 5/30 - 7/10/17

Step counts are skyrocketing in the final weeks of the 2017 Steps to AhealthyU Pedometer Challenge! With a grand total of 96 teams of four, here are the Week 5 standings for our top stepping teams:

Competitive Track

  1. She Persists - 3,945,871 steps
  2. Walker Texas Ranger - 3,508,006 steps
  3. Road Runners - 3,383,397 steps
  4. BIOpedal - 2,659,643 steps
  5. Tater Trots - 2,614,229 steps
  6. Radio Active - 2,170,113 steps
  7. Alternative Steps - 2,128,615 steps
  8. Ear Buds - 2,046,364 steps
  9. Bee Hive - 2,040,588 steps
  10. The Legal Step Four - 2,015,297 steps

Need help increasing your step count?

By making small changes to your routine, you can make every step count towards your personal or team goals. We asked our top teams to share their tips for getting more steps each day.

  1. Make a step goal to reach before leaving work.
  2. Get to campus early and walk laps around the quad before it gets too hot.
  3. Walk at lunch time. Gather your co-workers and teammates, and take a stroll around campus.
  4. Walk whenever you can instead of using other modes of transportation.
  5. When using public transportation, try exiting the bus or train at an earlier stop.
  6. Driving? Try parking your car in the back of the parking lot.
  7. Take an AhealthyU fitness class.

To view the weekly standings visit: . For assistance with pedometer issues (syncing, errors, etc.) email AhealthyU Pedometer Challenge Support at

Return to top

AU Office of Human Resources