University of Vermont

STAFF COUNCIL - Serving as a voice and advocate for all staff at UVM since 1971

STAFF CONNECT - Share Your Thoughts with UVM Staff Council

CREATE A STAFF CONNECT SUBMISSION

Staff Connect is an online tool that allows you to submit questions, concerns, ideas, and suggestions to the Staff Council. If you do not have access to a computer, a printable paper form is also available.

Through Staff Connect's Online Form you must provide contact information so that Staff Council can follow up with you directly.**

Remember, you can also ask your Unit/Division or College’s Staff Council Representative to bring forward your thoughts or assist you with completing a Staff Connect submission.

All submissions are reviewed by Staff Council Office staff and identifying information removed before the submission is sent to the Staff Council President and Vice President for further consideration. The Staff Council Office maintains a database of names associated with submissions to track and respond back to staff who bring forth ideas when and where it is possible to do so.

** UVM is subject to the Vermont Public Records Act which means all communications or documents that deal with University business are subject to disclosure unless exempted under the Act or otherwise applicable law. Unless a specific request is made of the Staff Council, your anonymity will be maintained and confidentiality ensured.

Staff Council is a governance body which represents and advocates for the needs and concerns of more than 1,800 staff employees* at the University of Vermont. Staff Council depends on feedback from the staff we serve in order to better advocate for their needs and effectively communicate questions, concerns, ideas, and suggestions to University leaders in order to find solutions that benefit staff and the entire UVM community.

Staff Connect is one way to let Staff Council know what is on your mind so we can serve you.

What is Staff Connect and how does it work?

Staff Connect is an online tool that allows you to submit questions, concerns, ideas, and suggestions to the Staff Council. If you do not have access to a computer, a printable paper form is also available.

Through Staff Connect's Online Form you must provide contact information so that Staff Council can follow up with you directly.**

Remember, you can also ask your Unit/Division or College’s Staff Council Representative to bring forward your thoughts or assist you with completing a Staff Connect submission. All submissions are reviewed by Staff Council Office staff and identifying information removed before the submission is sent to the Staff Council President and Vice President for further consideration. The Staff Council Office maintains a database of names associated with submissions to track and respond back to staff who bring forth ideas when and where possible.

* Although the Staff Council serves as the voice and advocate for all staff, it does not have the same function as Collective Bargaining Units to which some members of the UVM staff belong. Those staff who belong to UE Local 267 are not permitted to participate at the request of their union.

** UVM is subject to the Vermont Public Records Act which means all communications or documents that deal with University business are subject to disclosure unless exempted under the Act or otherwise applicable law. Unless a specific request is made of the Staff Council, your anonymity will be maintained and confidentiality ensured.

What happens next?

Once your Staff Connect submission has been reviewed, the Staff Council President and Vice President, in collaboration with the Staff Council Office staff, determine whether the submission can be resolved by using historical or university information to provide the staff member with additional resources or context about Staff Council’s advocacy around the issue. In these instances, it is often the case that the questions, concerns, ideas or suggestions brought forward were recently addressed by Staff Council.

If a Staff Connect submission cannot be resolved by providing information to additional resources or context about Staff Council’s advocacy, the submission will be sent by the Staff Council President and Vice President to one of four Staff Council Standing Committees for further consideration. The respective Standing Committee reviews the submission and determines whether or not they will investigate the matter further. If yes, members research the issue at hand, and a proposed outcome, or action is articulated. The staff member who provided the submission may be called upon for additional details during this process. Depending on the particular Staff Connect submission, the staff member may be contacted after a committee has reviewed and investigated the matter fully.

Advocacy and Outreach for Change: Recommendations and Letters of Support

When issues affecting a large number of staff, or  numerous Staff Connect submissions are received regarding one issue, or a group of related issues, the Staff Council Committee to which it has been assigned may determine that a university wide policy recommendation or letter of support for another UVM group’s efforts is the best way to address staff concerns. In these instances, the committee to which the Staff Connect submission has been assigned will discuss, research and drafts a Recommendation or Letter of Support that is voted on and sent to Staff Council Executive Board.

The Executive Board reviews and approves the Standing Coommittee's Recommendation or Letter of Support, or sends the proposal back to the committee for further clarification or research. Once the committee’s recommendation or letter of support is approved by the Executive Board, it is brought to the full Staff Council for a further discussion and vote for approval. Upon approval by the Staff Council, the Recommendation or Letter of Support is sent to the Administration for further consideration.

Recommendations or Letters of Support are often drafted with input from or in collaboration with senior leaders to promote buy in and support as well as establish realistic expectations within these documents. In most instances, Recommendations or Letters of Support are addressed to the University President.

Recommendations are expected to be responded to in writing  by the senior leader(s) to which they are addressed and should indicate their support or opposition to the requested actions. Letters of Support are expected to be acknowledged through writing, but formal responses to the requested actions within them is not required. Both Recommendations and Letters of Support should be responded to within thirty business days.

Recommendations approved by the President are then implemented by the appropriate department or senior leader associated with the issues.  

Questions about Staff Connect

For additional information regarding Staff Connect, please contact the Staff Council Office at 656-4493 or Staff.Council@uvm.edu.

Other Resources

Ethics and Compliance Reporting and Help Line

Employees are encouraged to use the Ethics and Compliance Reporting and Help Line to address questions regarding compliance issues or anonymously to report incidents or situations that may involve violations of the University's Code of Business Conduct or other policy standards or legal requirements.

Last modified August 08 2014 10:58 AM