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Monday, October 3, 2016

CLA wishes from the Administrative Insights Meeting

At the Administrative Insights Meeting (AIM) in April, I received a nice surprise in the form of a stack of small envelopes. Each contained up to three wishes for CLA, written by the staff from across the college units and college offices attending the AIM. Here is the compiled list. Improved communication between offices, opportunities for training and professional development, and greater recognition and chances to come together as a community were among the issues cited. The list provides a great way to identify and highlight some areas for action in CLA both at the unit and college level. Take a look at the list to get a sense of what is on the mind of our staff. Let me know what stands out for you at cladean@umn.edu.

Accountability in positions so things get done
Actual promotional ladder in new positions through job family study instead of terminal positions
Additional staff/office space
Alignment of administrative processes & procedures across admin offices (HR, Dean, Fiscal)
All would assume good intentions
Be open to new ideas, new information when changes occur
Be patient as staff get grounding in new position
Better collaboration between employee groups, especially instructional
Better communication between CLA Admin and units
Better communication that help processes across offices
Better interpersonal skills among staff and department administrators
Better on-boarding and continuing "get to know cla" for new employees
Better streamlined processes and open channels of communication
Better workspace/environment (climate control, etc)
Buy-in on processes - perhaps a better understanding or information on procedures
Celebrate feedback
Central space with good academic vibe/character and coffee to bring small teams together or hold small gatherings
Changes in roles and new staff on-boarding
CLA HR communicate the responsibilities of the corridors, structure and who does what in CLA HR and CLA Faculty Affairs
Clear and well organized hiring process with fewer steps and more efficiency
Clear cut plans for what will happen in our department
College oriented to supporting departments - listening and respecting & acting
Curriculum data support - tracking trends and support in how to create/change course offerings and make more attractive to students
Decision making roles in new org structure are clarified and communicated
Diversity and inclusion beyond words, action and movement in productive and visible changes in POC and LGBT
Documentation of roles and responsibilities - unit vs admin
Emphasis on service culture
Employee recognition & appreciation, not necessarily a competition for awards
Encourage more collaboration between the academic and administrative units, through events, continuing ed, etc.
Extra funding for administrative support
Faculty allowed to focus on teaching and research = reduction in administration - more effective systems -  Peoplesoft not vanilla
Fewer meetings
Fiscal security for CLA
Fix the heating / cooling system in our building
Flexible work schedule (e.g. work from home once a week)
Funds to support civil service employee professional development
Greater help for department preparers
Higher funding
Higher pay
Higher salaries
Improved communication across CLA and across Johnston Hall
Improved summer offerings to students in CLA
Improved turnaround time on posting job descriptions from central HR
Leadership training for new admin team
Less emphasis on faculty being more important than us
Major shift in the way we provide support
Managing all printing through Loeffler - getting rid of local non-networked printers
More accountability from unit administrators and chairs
More accountants
More CLA All Staff events and parties - not just for the folks in Johnston Hall
More collaboration requests to our CLA scholars from the university
More emphasis on wellness and mental health
More employee recognition and morale building
More hands-on management/directors to CLA HR so we can continue to improve processes and streamline more efficiently
More inter-departmental gatherings to build a stronger community
More recognition of the excellent work our two HR consultants are doing
More Staff, More Staff, More Staff!
More training resources for staff
New buildings
New faculty search authorization/ new faculty line for my department
Period of calm (no upgrades, no staffing changes, etc)
Pizza Fridays!
Professional development opportunities
Recognition of unit autonomy
See continued growth in collaboration and communication across CLA
Setting up a budgeting process for replacing technology in departments - hard numbers
Standing desk
Training & documentation for administrators
Training & documentation for chairs
Training among units was more cohesive
Updated Intranet
Washington Ave bridge renovating the weather shelter into a more appealing space
We could all speak easily about equity and diversity
We had a way to ask for help across our units in a more formal way
We have so many loyal, dedicated and competent staff in CLA. I wish we could hold those who are not performing accountable for that performance
Willingness to consider restructuring fiscal support teams so less bureaucratic and more unit specific support
Wish CLA would be more consistent w/ following collegiate policy
Wish departments and the college could fix a culture of distrust
Would be great to have time for strategic improvement vs putting out fires