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ADMINISTRATOR'S HANDBOOK

D. Contracts, Policies and Procedures

 

            St. Bonaventure University's success as an outstanding University over the years has been directly related to the dedication and involvement of every employee. The University has always been committed to a "people policy" based on fairness, mutual trust, and respect for the dignity of the individual and for the opportunity of self-expression and personal development.

            It has always been University policy to provide to the best of its ability good working conditions, fair wages, meaningful employee benefits, and equal employment opportunity for all.St. Bonaventure University, therefore, pledges to be guided by the following principles:

            1. Actions and decisions which affect employees will be based on logic, facts, and a sense of fair play and common sense.

            2. The rights, privacy, and dignity of every employee will always be respected.

            3. Employees have a right to know what is expected of them, and rewards will be based on demonstrated competence in job performance.

            4. Managers at all levels will respond thoughtfully to the concerns and suggestions of employees to ensure that those concerns and suggestions are addressed and that constructive change is encouraged.

            5. Managers, department heads, and supervisors will foster a work environment which encourages employees' interest, involvement, and contribution of their best efforts to achieve improved personal productivity and growth.

            6. There will always be open and honest communication between various levels of management and employees.

            7. The University will encourage and endeavor to provide educational and training opportunities; however, self-development on the job will always be essential for individual success.

            8. Work rules and regulations will be reasonable and fair to ensure that each employee is treated in a manner conducive to the University's Mission and its Franciscan heritage and tradition.

 

            1. Administrators with Faculty Status

             Faculty Status is conferred on some Administrators pursuant to the norms of the Faculty Status and Welfare Handbook. This status does not affect the holder's rights and privileges as an Administrator. A tenured faculty member appointed an Administrator retains faculty tenure and has the right to return to a tenured faculty position, with an appropriate faculty salary, after completion of the term as an Administrator. Contracts for Administrators with Faculty Status will run from September 1 to August 31.

 

            2. Compensation

            St. Bonaventure University will endeavor to pay salaries by position which are comparable to those paid by institutions similar to St. Bonaventure University as reported nationally. This policy and commitment to the administration is applied in the context of University budgetary needs or constraints, the current state of the economy, and the continued well-being of the University.

            Annual raises or bonuses will be awarded upon the basis of merit.

 

            3. Methods of Problem Resolution

            Nothing in the policy below is intended to alter the written contractual agreements entered into between the University and Administrative staff.

 

            Complaints

            An Administrator has the right to grieve perceived mistreatment with respect to an alleged violation of any policy or procedure in this Administrator's Handbook, of a University policy, or of general interpersonal relationships.

            When a complaint involves alleged harassment, the University's policy and procedures against harassment prevail, and the complaint must be resolved consistent with the University's Harassment Policy and Grievance Procedures. This policy and related grievance procedures are defined in Section V. Selected University Policies & Procedures.

            When a complaint involves a perceived violation of any policy or procedure in this Administrator's Handbook or of a University policy, other than the harassment policy, the procedure defined here is to be followed in resolving an Administrator's complaint.

 

            Problem Solving Procedure

            A claim of alleged violation of any policy or procedure in this Administrator's Handbook or of a University policy shall constitute a complaint and may be resolved informally or formally.

            The Informal Process: This process is designed to achieve resolution of a complaint informally. While the informal process has not set structure or protocol, administrators with a complaint are encouraged to seek redress through the normal supervisory structure, by talking to their supervisor, their supervisorís superior, or their divisional executive officer. Also, whenever possible, administrators with a complaint should seek resolution through the Informal Process prior to using the Formal Process outlined below.

            The Formal Process: In the formal process, complaints which cannot be resolved informally with one's immediate supervisor or Executive Officer must follow the process defined herein.

            If the supervisor or Executive Officer is unable to resolve a complaint satisfactorily, an Administrator may submit his or her grievance to the Director of Human Resources (DHR). (If the grievance is directed against the DHR, or for any other reason the DHR has a conflict of interest, the complainant may file his or her written grievance to the Vice President of Business and Finance.) A written grievance should be filed within thirty (30) days of the alleged violation. The DHR will initially determine whether an informal resolution of the grievance has been attempted or is appropriate. Where called for, the DHR will refer the complaint for resolution consistent with the Universityís Harassment Policy and Grievance Procedures. If the complainant has not sought informal redress of his or her grievance, the grievance does not involve harassment, and the DHR believes that the complaint could be resolved informally, the DHR should direct the complainant to talk to his or her supervisor, or any other appropriate person who may be in a position to resolve the complaint informally. Where appropriate, the DHR may mediate between the aggrieved party and a supervisor. If the DHR finds that the complainant has been unsuccessful in resolving his or her grievance informally or that the grievance is inappropriate for informal resolution, the DHR should designate an administrative resolution committee member to assist in investigating the grievance.

            The DHR and designated administrative resolution committee member shall conduct a prompt, thorough and impartial investigation, and prepare a written summary of the complaint, investigation and their conclusions. The investigation and summary shall be limited to the specific complaint filed. If, after investigation, the grievance appears legitimate, parties involved, the administrative resolution committee member, the DHR, and other appropriate supervisory personnel, including the relevant Divisional Executive Officer(s) shall discuss and implement a disposition. If, after investigation, the grievance appears to have no factual basis, or is otherwise illegitimate, the DHR and administrative resolution committee member should inform the complainant in writing that the grievance is rejected.

            A party who is dissatisfied with the DHR and administrative resolution committee memberís decision to reject a grievance, or with the disposition implemented, may request review by a panel of three administrative resolution committee members. The request for review must be made in writing to the DHR, no more than ten (10) days after the dissatisfactory disposition or rejection, and should state why the party is dissatisfied, and what remedy the party seeks. Within fifteen (15) days of receiving a request for review, the DHR will then convene a panel of three administrative resolution committee members, not to include the officer who investigated the grievance. The panelís review will be based upon written material submitted to the panel and consultation with others as the panel deems necessary. Only those invited by the panel shall appear before it to address the issues of the grievance. The panel may reject or modify the investigating officersí conclusions only if the panel finds that the DHR and investigating administrative resolution committee member did not conduct an impartial or thorough investigation (e.g., had a grudge against one of the parties, refused to meet with one of the parties, refused to interview material witnesses) or did not arrive at reasonable conclusions based upon the investigation. If the panel believes that the investigation was incomplete in some regard, it will direct the investigating administrative resolution committee member to reopen the investigation and gather additional witness statements or other information.

            If the review panel affirms the disposition recommended by the DHR and investigating administrative resolution committee member, it should inform the DHR, any relevant supervisors and Divisional Officer(s) and that disposition should be implemented. If the review panel rejects or modifies the disposition recommended by the DHR and investigating administrative resolution committee member, it should summarize it conclusions in writing and recommend an alternative disposition. In the case of rejection or modification, at least one representative from the panel, the parties involved, and other appropriate supervisory personnel, including the relevant Divisional Executive Officer(s) shall discuss and implement the panelís recommended alternative disposition.

            If a grievance is directed against an Executive Officer of the University, the above procedures should be used, except that the University President will review, discuss and implement any recommended disposition with the DHR and investigating administrative resolution committee member, or with a representative of the review panel. If the grievance is directed against the President of the University, the above procedures should be used, except that the Chair of the Board of Trustees will review, discuss and implement any recommended disposition with the DHR and investigating administrative   resolution committee member, or with a representative of the review panel.

            Failure to comply with a resolution created under this procedure, or retaliation against any person for filing a complaint, or cooperating with an investigation is a violation of University Policy and may subject an employee to disciplinary action. The DHR shall keep a file of all appropriate records relating to problem-solving procedures.

 

Appointment of Administrative Resolution committee members

            Administrative resolution committee members shall be contract administrators appointed by the President and Divisional Executive Officers. Seven administrative resolution committee members will be appointed and they will serve one-year terms, subject to renewal. Appointment as a resolution committee member will be treated as a regular committee assignment for which no additional compensation will be paid.

           

 

            4. Contracts

            Full-time Administrators may be offered contracts signed by the Vice President for Business and Finance in accordance with the University's Mission and this Handbook, and consistent with the duties and responsibilities of the position to which the Administrator is appointed. Administrator contracts, which coincide with the University's fiscal year, (June 1 to May 31) or available funding for the position do not limit the right of the University to terminate an Administratorís appointment or employment for any of the reasons stated in the contract or under ď5. DismissalĒ or ď11. Reorganization or Reduction in ForceĒ in this Handbook.

            All contracts to be issued will generally be provided to Administrators by May 1 of the year that the contract comes up for renewal.

            An Administrator is obliged to return the signed contract to the Vice President for Business and Finance by May 15th of the renewal year if the Administrator intends to continue employment with the University. Failure to return a signed contract or failure to submit a written request to review a contract to one's divisional Executive Officer by May 15th of the renewal year releases the University from any obligation to fulfill the terms of the contract.

            An Administrator may petition the President in writing through the divisional Executive Officer to be released from a contract prior to its expiration. The President, however, is under no obligation to comply with such a request.

 

            5. Dismissal

            An Administrator may be terminated or suspended for unsatisfactory work performance, neglect of duties or responsibilities, incompetence, insubordination, violation of University regulations or policies, acts detrimental to the character or Mission of the University, or for other adequate cause. Dismissal for cause may be invoked by the University at any time and regardless of the length of contract under which an Administrator may be serving.

            All dismissals must have the sanction of the divisional Executive Officer and the approval of the President. An Administrator so terminated has the right to appeal a termination. This appeal must be made in writing to the President or the President's designated representative within fifteen (15) calendar days after notification of termination. After this period no appeal is possible.

            If an Administrator appeals a dismissal for cause, the President or a designated representative will request the Administrators Affairs Committee to conduct a formal review of the termination in a timely manner. The review by the Committee will be based upon written material submitted to the Committee and by means of such consultation with others as the Committee deems necessary. The Administrator shall not have the right to appear in person before the Committee, to be represented by counsel before the Committee, or to have witnesses address the Committee in his or her behalf. Upon concluding its formal review, the Committee will promptly make a recommendation in writing to the President, who will furnish a copy to the Administrator involved. The Committee's report should include findings of fact and a recommendation for or against dismissal.

            The President has final authority and will make the ultimate determination.

           
 

            6. Hiring

            In hiring Administrators the University complies with all pertinent laws and legislation. The criteria for the recruitment and employment of Administrators are established on the basis of the duties and responsibilities of a given position and the Mission of the University. Announcement of an open position is normally made through advertisements coordinated by the Office of Human Resources. Notice of open positions will also be made within the University according to guidelines established by the Office of Human Resources. All employees are encouraged to apply for the open positions for which they are qualified.

            Searches are generally conducted to find the most qualified person for an open position. The University welcomes the hiring of qualified individuals who are related to other employees at the University. A supervisor, however, is not permitted to hire or to evaluate his or her own spouse, children, relatives, or any other individual with whom he or she has a significant relationship.

            All appointments must have the approval of the divisional Executive Officer subject to final approval by the President.

 

 

            7. Part-Time Professional Personnel

            A part-time Professional Personnel member holds a position which is approved and is expected to continue but does not meet all the requirements of a full-time position. To be part-time, a position must be scheduled for no more than 1,000 hours of work per year (e.g., 17.5 hours/week for 40 weeks or 35 hours/week for 20 weeks). A salary commensurate with the position or function shall be established and defined in the individual contract with no University benefits extended beyond Social Security and Worker's Compensation Insurance. A break in service requires completion of a new waiting period unless specifically permitted as part of a specified agreement.

           

            8. Performance Appraisal

            It is the University's policy to have each Administrator evaluated in writing at least once a year by the immediate supervisor and for that supervisor to discuss the performance appraisal with the Administrator in relation to the Administrator's job description, and then to have the appraisal approved by the divisional Executive Officer. The Administrator will be furnished with a copy of every performance appraisal by the immediate supervisor. Any Administrator who is dissatisfied with an appraisal is entitled to make an appeal in writing first to the immediate supervisor, then to the divisional Executive Officer, and finally to the President. Each written appeal must be responded to in writing in a timely manner. An employee's written comments on a performance appraisal form do not constitute an official appeal. For the protection of both the Administrator and the University, a written appraisal and any written appeals and the responses will be placed in the Administrator's personnel file.

            While the University welcomes the hiring of qualified individuals who are related to other employees at the University, a supervisor is not permitted  to evaluate his or her own spouse, children, relatives, or any other individual with  whom he or she has a significant personal relationship.

 

            9. Personnel Records         

             Administrative personnel records are kept in the Office of Human Resources, which serves as the sole central legal and confidential repository for the institution in accordance with Federal and State regulations. An Administrator may examine his or her personnel record in the Office of Human Resources. Information contained in the Employment History file of a current or former employee may be released by the Office of Human Resources when requested by the Administrator's supervisor  to the requestor on a need-to-know basis only. Other in-house requests may only be released by the Office of Human Resources with the written authorization of the named employee. Information requested by agents from outside the institution must be made in writing and the requested information will then be released by the Office of Human Resources with the written authorization of the named employee. Copies of pertinent materials may be kept in appropriate offices. Annual contracts of all Administrators are maintained in the Office of the Vice President for Business and Finance. The Office of Human Resources also maintains a central file of detailed administrative job descriptions.

 

            10. Professional Development     

            The University supports Administrators who are interested in advancing themselves professionally. In-service training and other opportunities for professional development are provided under the direction of the divisional Executive Officer.

 

            11. Reorganization or Reduction in Force

            The changing needs or financial condition of the University may make it advisable for the University to reduce the number of administrative employees. In such an event, and consistent with the needs and well-being of the University, reduction in force will be made in relation to the financial needs of the University and in the spirit of fairness for everyone. A reduction in force may occur at any time regardless of the length of contract under which an Administrator may be serving.

 

            12. Salaries

            The salary of each Administrator is established by the President after consultation with the Administrator's divisional Executive Officer. Merit raises or merit bonuses are based upon performance of the individual Administrator and the financial condition of the University consistent with defined policy. Changes in an Administrator's responsibilities and/or job description may require a salary adjustment. The University regards salary information as confidential and all Administrators are expected to keep this information in strictest confidence.

            The University makes those deductions from salary that are required by law including Federal and State withholding taxes. In addition, contributions to the University's pension and insurance plans may be withheld, as may other contributions when authorized by the Administrator.

 

            13. Work Outside the Institution and Additional Work Within

             St. Bonaventure University assumes that its Administrators observe professional integrity and that discharging their full-time responsibilities to the University precludes their accepting compensation from outside firms and institutions. When and if circumstances warrant that an Administrator provide substantive professional services for compensation outside the University, it is required that the Administrator may do so only with the full knowledge and prior approval of the divisional Executive Officer. Divisional Executive Officers must have the approval of the President to perform work for compensation outside of the University. The same policy applies to additional compensation from the University for professional services (e.g., teaching St. Bonaventure courses) other than those services specified in an Administrator's job description and normal contractual agreement.

            All Administrators are encouraged to share their expertise with their colleagues via professional publications and presentations and to accept minimal honoraria. An Administrator whose research and development work is supported by the University and who obtains a copyright or patents a program or technique or process will contribute a fair share of their proceeds to the University.