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June Update

Noteworthy News

HR, Training and Performance, and AVP Move to the Wine-Price Building Beginning June 17

Note: Accessibility to HR services will be limited to phone and email communications on Friday, June 17 and possibly Monday, June 20 as we move from the University Services building and JMAC to the second and third floors of the Wine-Price building on North Campus.

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Recognition Leave Expires June 30

Full-time state employees were granted two hours of recognition leave by Governor McDonnell to use by Thursday, June 30, 2011. The two hours appear on J-Ess.  Select leave type RL Taken (Recognition Leave Taken) and enter the reason GL (Governor’s Leave) when requesting to use this recognition leave. Note: It must be used in the full two-hour increment.

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Good News! The $20 Cash Match Returns

Effective with the June 10 payroll period, the cash match for full-time state employees who participate in the 457 Deferred Compensation Plan and/or the 403(b) plan will return to 50 percent of their contribution, not to exceed $20 per pay period. For example, employees who contribute $40 per pay period to their 457 or 403(b) account will receive the full $20 per pay period cash match.

To change your payroll deduction for the 457 Deferred Compensation Plan, go to http://www.varetire.org/. Select Commonwealth of Virginia Deferred Compensation Plan under the Defined Contribution Plans tab and log into your account using your password. You may also call the Plan Information Line toll-free
1-VRS-DC-PLAN 1 (1-877-327-5261).

To change your 403(b) payroll deduction, contact an HR benefits representative at 83970. Changes are effective the first available pay date in the following month.

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Classified Employee Performance Evaluations

Did you know annual performance evaluations for classified employees can be completed and submitted to HR anytime beginning July 1 through September 30? Ratings are contingent on continued performance for the duration of the performance cycle which officially ends October 24.

To ensure thorough and thoughtful evaluation of employee performance, this is an ideal time for:

  • Supervisors to make any necessary adjustments to Employee Work Profiles (sometimes referred to as position or job descriptions) through PositionLink
  • Supervisors to recognize extraordinary contributions by submitting a Notification of Extraordinary Contribution form to HR no later than September 1
  • Employees to communicate their perspectives on performance through self-evaluation
  • Employees to review/create their Individual Professional Development Plan (IPDP)
  • Employees and supervisors to receive and provide open and honest feedback on the past year’s performance

Refer to Performance Evaluation Process on HR’s website for links to applicable forms, policies, and process details.

Training opportunities for supervisors: 

Performance Management Information Sessions for Supervisors of Classified Employees

Thursday, July 14

9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.


Wednesday, August 3

9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.


Tuesday, August 16

2:00 p.m. –   4:00 p.m.


Tuesday, September 6

2:00 p.m. –   4:00 p.m.


Training opportunities for employees and supervisors:

Individual Professional Development Plan Workshop

Thursday, July 26

  9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.


Thursday, August 4

  2:00 p.m. –   3:00 p.m.


Wednesday, September 7

10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.


The Employee Work Profile (EWP) is a multi-purpose tool used by employees, management and HR for a variety of functions. It is written to reflect the purpose of the position and its’ core responsibilities and duties.

The EWP is used for:

  • Position Classification: determining the role assigned to the position and the corresponding pay band/salary range
  • Pay Actions: assessing factors describing the skills needed and the duties of the position and used to determine starting pay and pay changes
  • Recruitment and Selection: referring to the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) and education/experience requirements when writing job announcements, developing screening criteria and interview questions, and making the hiring selection
  • Performance Planning and Evaluation: outlining core responsibilities and measures, how the employee performs the duties and how the supervisor measures performance
  • Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Classification: determining the employee’s status as exempt or non-exempt under the FLSA
  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): stating the essential functions of the position and determining the employee’s ability to perform the job
  • Workers Compensation/VSDP: documenting duties and physical requirements for the position and used by healthcare providers to assess an employee’s readiness to return to work
  • Grievances: providing documentation for the grievance process
  • Career Development (IPDP): establishing an employee development plan that identifies the skills employees need for current and future positions

Because of its many functions, the EWP must have accurate and current information. An ideal time to review EWPs is during the performance evaluation process.

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Promoting Positivity - Whether You Supervise One or Ten Employees

  • Communicate regularly throughout the performance cycle. Nothing should come as a surprise.
  • Provide information in advance on the overall process: forms to be used, timelines to be followed, explain the ratings.
  • Encourage the employee to self-assess. Ask the employee to think about and mention things they’ve done throughout the year that may have not been readily noticed by the supervisor. Supervisors should use this information to enhance the evaluation process.
  • Separate feelings from work facts.
  • Schedule time for this process in advance.
  • Create a private setting for discussion. Turn off cell phones, forward phones, ignore emails and discourage interruptions. Dedicate ample time.
  • Be specific in your comments/feedback. Base these on facts.
  • Preserve the relationship. Use positive, constructive, but honest feedback.

Time and effort put towards the evaluation process will benefit both employees and their supervisors. The exchange of information during the evaluation meetings can be invaluable towards building lasting employment relationships.

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June’s Policy Highlight - An Excerpt from JMU policy 1305 Performance Evaluation for Classified Staff

             If an employee’s supervisor changes during the performance cycle, the outgoing
             supervisor should complete an Interim Performance Evaluation form at that time. 
             This is helpful to the incoming supervisor to assist in the evaluation of the employee
             at the end of the performance cycle. The new supervisor should review the
             performance expectations, make any necessary modifications, and incorporate
             the former supervisor’s assessment in the overall evaluation at the end of the 
             performance cycle.

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Free Faculty/Staff Training Sessions Offered by the JMU Training and Development Department

The Training and Development Department will have three training rooms and a conference room for classes in the Wine-Price building - Reflections, Inspirations A & B, and the Horizon conference room.

Wednesday, June 29
Dealing with Distressed, Disruptive and Dangerous Students
10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Taylor 306

Wednesday, July 13
Right and Wrong in the Workplace
9:00 a.m. –11:00 a.m., Wine-Price

For additional information or to arrange customized sessions for your department, contact Suzanne Vance, Training Coordinator, at 84101 or vancesn@jmu.edu.