A-to-Z Index

June HR Update

Good News Regarding Medical Flexible Reimbursement Accounts

Participants in a Medical Flexible Reimbursement Account (FRA) will be able to set aside more money before taxes beginning July 1 than previously announced. The Internal Revenue Service issued guidance on May 30 to confirm that the new $2,500 federal limit under national health reform would be delayed for state Medical FRSs until July 1, 2013. This means that state employees who wish to participate in a Medical FRA for the upcoming plan year, July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013, may contribute up to $5,000 to their account. See http://www.jmu.edu/humanresources/wm_library/StateSpecialEnrollEmployeeInfo2012.pdf for additional information and the required special enrollment form.

Welcome to WageWorks 

Administration of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Flexible Reimbursement Accounts will move from the Fringe Benefits Management Company (FBMC) to WageWorks on July 1.

The new FRA website will be available before July from the Department of Human Resource Management’s website, www.dhrm.virginia.gov, under Flexible Benefits Program, and at www.wageworks.com. All Flexible Reimbursement Account enrollees must register their accounts AFTER they receive their open enrollment confirmation notice in the mail from WageWorks. New VISA payment cards will be issued to all Medical Reimbursement Account enrollees.

Your Benefits Representative is available to assist you with Flexible Reimbursement Account questions.

Action Needed by Classified Employees and Their Supervisors

At the end of the fiscal year, in order for the university’s leave records to be as accurate as possible for the state leave liability report, it is important for all employees to enter outstanding leave requests for January 10 through June 30 into MyMadison prior to June 30. In addition, all leave must be entered into MyMadison for supervisors to approve and act on employee leave requests still pending approval.

Recognition Leave Granted by the Governor

Governor McDonnell granted full-time state employees two hours of recognition leave on May 25. Employees can now see their hours in MyMadison under the Recog Leave heading. Log in to MyMadison to record the two hours taken by entering them as 2 hours RL TAKEN (Recognition Leave Taken). These two hours of recognition leave will be available for use until May 24, 2013.

Dianna Jarrell, Absence Programs Coordinator, 540-568-3974, jarreldl@jmu.edu  is available to assist you with leave questions.

Classified Employee Performance Evaluations

Did you know annual performance evaluations for classified employees may be completed and submitted to Human Resources anytime beginning July 2 through September 28, 2012? 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:

Refer to Performance Evaluation Process on HR’s website for links to applicable forms, policies and process details. Your Employee Relations Representative is available to assist you with questions about performance evaluations.

Training opportunities for employees and supervisors:
Individual Professional Development Plan Workshop

Training opportunities for supervisors: 
Performance Management Information Sessions for Supervisors of Classified Employees

Test Your Knowledge – Retreats and Hourly Staff

Question:  As a department head, I’m holding an evening retreat off campus for my whole staff - a time to get to know each other better, have fun, eat and do a short motivational training exercise. Since this is after hours and non-routine, I don’t have to compensate my hourly staff, do I?

A. No, when work functions are after hours, off campus and include fun and food, that’s not necessary.
B. No, the employees are not required to produce any work, so you don’t have to pay them.
C. Yes, but you can pay them less than their regular rate of pay.
D. Yes, at their regular rate of pay.

D is the correct answer.

Employers must pay an employee for time spent attending training programs, seminars and lectures unless ALL of the following factors apply:

  • Attendance is outside regular working hours.
  • Employee doesn’t perform any productive work during the sessions.
  • The program doesn’t directly relate to the employee’s job.
  • Attendance is voluntary.

If you give the impression that the employee must attend the event or risk disciplinary action, then his or her attendance is not voluntary. If the training, event or function is intended to help the employee perform his or her job better (in this case a training exercise), then it’s directly related to his/her job and he/she must be compensated including any overtime beyond 40 hours within that work week.

Your Workforce Management Representative is available to assist you with questions regarding employee pay.

Promoting Positivity

A valuable source of information for performance evaluations can be obtained from the employees themselves. The university’s Performance Management Program requires employees to actively participate in the performance evaluation process. Each employee must be given the opportunity to provide the supervisor with a self-evaluation of his/her performance for the evaluation period. Using a copy of the job description and a blank evaluation form, the employee self-assesses and submits it to the supervisor. The supervisor must review and consider this feedback when completing the employee’s performance evaluation.

A Snapshot of Upcoming Training Sessions Offered by
JMU Training and Development

Dealing with Distressed, Disruptive and Dangerous Students
EveryOne Makes a Difference: Right and Wrong in the Workplace
Heart Health Awareness Workshop
Managing Multiple Priorities
Nobody's Listening
Time Management Strategies: Control Your Time - Don't Let It Control You

For additional information or to arrange customized sessions for your department contact Suzanne Vance, Training Coordinator, 540-568-4101, vancesn@jmu.edu.