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"Employer of Choice" Philosophy Explained

March 5, 2008

TO: PAT Staff, Operating Staff and Extension Educators

FROM: Dick Cannon, VPFA

DATE: March 5, 2008

RE: Staff Unionization

President Huddleston says he wants UNH to be an “employer of choice.” What this means in the context of our philosophy — in particular, relative to working with staff — is that we value and work very hard to create and maintain a workplace that is characterized by some of the following:

· Salaries and benefits competitive with comparator employers that UNH hires from or individuals could go to from UNH

· Retaining talented staff for a full career, as evidenced by the average longevity of a UNH staff person

· Fair treatment of individuals in like circumstances and an expeditious process for resolving disputes, through various services offered by the Affirmative Action office and Human Resources

· Valuing diversity among all employees, and backing up that value with policies and guidelines that enhance diversity, from our anti-discrimination policy to domestic partner benefits

· A healthy and safe environment

· Feeling a sense of pride in each other’s accomplishments, through recognition programs that acknowledge individual contribution and service

· All one team rather than factions competing for a bigger share the salary and fringe pool not justified by competitive market conditions

· Value and reward employee performance to high UNH standards through merit increases

· Invite staff ideas and ingenuity to optimally deploy and use UNH resources, using the talent and on-the-ground expertise of our staff and extension councils

We believe this philosophy is best advanced by keeping the lines of communication open among all parties and not constraining cooperation and communication by arbitrary rules of engagement that can attend union contracts.

We also value accountability and accuracy. That’s why our communications to you are always signed, and that is why I now want to correct the unsigned source of Fact or Fiction on the unhunion.com Web site.

As has always been the case, the distribution of the salary increase pool is subject to trustee and campus-based salary increase guidelines. The majority of UNH staff know that the total salary pool includes across-the-board, merit and equity.

The 5.5 percent total salary increase could include a 3 percent across-the-board increase for all benefits-eligible employees; however, a final determination is not made until June and, as has always been the case, the PAT, OS and EE councils will be part of that discussion.

But it also is important to understand that 5.5 percent is not the cap or the maximum.

For example, while it is true some employees paid well compared to the market, or those who make fewer contributions to UNH than their co-workers will receive an across-the-board increase; it is also true that many employees will receive increases greater than the across the board and some greater than 5.5 percent to recognize the increasing demand for their job skills and or performance contributions.

In the upcoming weeks, we will continue to send out pertinent information as warranted by the questions and concerns we are receiving from staff.


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