January 2015 Communications to SEIU Covered Professionals, Merit Supervisory Exempt, and Merit Confidential Staff


As a staff member of the University, you will want to be aware of these recent developments from University Human Resources:

The 2014 Working at Iowa Survey results are now available, with the University level report posted on the project website:  http://hr.uiowa.edu/working. Results for individual colleges, divisions and many departments have been distributed to Senior Human Resources Leaders, so that the information can be shared with leadership, staff and faculty in the respective units.

The survey data provides an opportunity to have a dialogue about the survey results and to consider how to best utilize our strengths, as well as recognize where we can continue to improve.  This data can also be linked to other information, whether related to other Human Resources related measures, e.g. turnover, or to general productivity and/or effectiveness data to determine what responses would be most important to support strategic success.  Finally, it is important for survey participants to know and understand how the survey results are used.

The University report continues to reflect that University staff in general are highly committed to their work and the mission of the University, with a high percentage of individuals feeling both competent and supported.   The consistency of the University results since these surveys began in 2006 reflects the resilience of University faculty and staff and our ability to thrive and excel even in challenging times.  This resilience not only supports the belief in the University as a good place to work, but also as one that will continue to thrive in the future.

For a third year in a row, the University health insurance plans have not experienced a rate increase.  This remarkable record reflects a combination of factors, including many of your own efforts to make healthy choices related to smoking, diet, and general fitness.  Through the summary data we see from the Personal Health Assessment questionnaires completed by faculty and staff, we continue to see reductions in the number of health risk factors reported by individuals.  Not only does this contribute to maintaining health insurance rates, but also reduces absenteeism, improves productivity, and has a positive impact upon each individual’s quality of life.  The beginning of a new calendar year is a great time to go into Self Service and complete your own Personal Health Assessment questionnaire, as well as access the services available to you through liveWELL.

To support the health and productivity of individuals who experience difficulties with sleep, Faculty and Staff Services (a free and confidential employee assistance program) now offers eligible individuals’ access to SHUTi.  SHUTi stands for Sleep Healthy Using the Internet, and is a 6-8 week online program that has been shown to improve sleep for adults with insomnia.  Our own pilot program affirmed the research showing that individuals using SHUTi experience an improvement in their sleep, are awake at night less often and for less time, and with more rest, experience an increase in energy during the day.  For more information about the SHUTi program, contact Faculty and Staff Services at 335-2085.

University staff do important work to support the success of our students, patients, as well as the research and scholarly work of the University.  University Human Resources looks forward to continuing to support you in the year ahead.


Susan C. Buckley, Vice President for Human Resources