University of Wisconsin Human Resources System: Union Perspectives

Wednesday, 26 September 2012 | A Public Affair

On Wednesday September 26th, host Brenda Konkel took another look at last Friday’s topic of reshaping the University of Wisconsin Human Resources System, except this time from the perspective of Madison Unions. She had a panel of guests in the studio consisting of Aaron Crandall, United Faculty & Academic Staff (UW-Madison) Local 223 President, Eleni Schirmer from the Teaching Assistants Association, Gary Mitchell, President (also Chair, Administrative Support Bargaining Team) for AFSCME 2412 (Union representing UW Madison staff), and Kevin Walters, Research Associate at the University of Wisconsin Department of History.

The University of Wisconsin Interim Chancellor David Ward stated of the plan:

“The HR Design project represents an unprecedented effort involving OHR, campus governance groups, labor organizations and other university stakeholders to redefine the university’s approach to human resources. We recognize the project’s strong commitment to participation and dialogue as central to creating an HR system tailored to our values, culture and organization… Eleven groups of employees—representing governance groups, labor organizations, administration, classified staff, HR practitioners and other stakeholders—came together in spring semester 2012 to analyze the full range of human resources practices on our campus and to make recommendations for improvement. Their commitment and hard work, supported by the project’s Collaboration, Change Management, Communication and Data Analysis teams, formed the core of this plan. We thank them for their effort, positive spirit and courage in tackling complex and sometimes controversial topics. We also thank the thousands of people from all segments of our campus community who participated in the process and shared their perspectives. The opportunities and initiatives presented in the plan are ambitious and will require changes to our policies, processes, technology and, in some cases, our culture. Many details remain to be clarified, but this document provides a trajectory for improvement. We look forward to ongoing engagement with campus on these important topics.”

Although many at the University are optimistic about the new HR restructuring, many impacted Unions have voiced serious reservations. The panel discussed these important issues regarding the future of UW-Madison.

To view the new plan:

To listen to the entire interview:

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