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October 2019 Human Resource Management Newsletter

October, 2019
State Employee Health Plan Change to Coverage End Date for Terminating Employees

The Health Care Commission elected to change the coverage end date for terminating members from the last day of employment to the last day of the month in which the member terminates employment. This change in coverage end date will affect all State Employee Health Plan (SEHP) benefits in which a member is enrolled, including Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts.

Effective October 1, 2019, if a member terminates employment on the 1st day of the month, SEHP benefits also terminate on the 1st of the month. HSA & FSA contributions will be deducted from the first check of the month for a member terminating on the 1st day of the month.

If a member terminates on the 2nd day of the month or later, SEHP benefits will terminate at the end of the month.  SEHP deductions will be taken from both the first and second checks of the month. Employees are responsible for the semi-monthly premium deductions to ensure coverage to the end of the month.

Also, the SEHP is changing the timing of deductions from once a month to twice a month for vision, voluntary supplemental insurance, and Long-Term Care (LTC).   All SEHP deductions will be paid semi-monthly.  Starting with the payroll period beginning September 8, 2019 and ending September 21, 2019, paid on October 4, 2019 the premiums for vision, voluntary supplemental insurance, and LTC will be deducted semi-monthly or from the first two paychecks of the month.  

Open Enrollment 2020 – State Employee Health Plan

Information about the State Employee Health Plan Open Enrollment for 2020, statewide meeting schedule, and the State Employee First Look webinar are posted on the SEHP Plan Year 2020 website. The webinar is on-demand and can be viewed anytime.

Plan Year 2020 Open Enrollment information is posted on HRM’s Open Enrollment website and on the SEHP’s website.

Open Enrollment for 2020 will be an active enrollment and all eligible employees who want medical plan coverage will need to make elections during Open Enrollment in the Membership Administration Portal (MAP), even if you wish to keep the same medical plan and the same insurance companyIf you are enrolled in a medical plan and do not make a medical plan election during Open Enrollment, you will be defaulted into Plan N with an HRA and with the same insurance company.

Open Enrollment for SEHP Plan Year 2020 runs from October 1 - 31, 2019.  You are strongly encouraged to enroll early in October in case you need assistance.  You may go into MAP as many times as needed during Open Enrollment to make changes.  The selection saved as of midnight on October 31st will become effective January 1st.

Open Enrollment 2020 – Optional Group Life Insurance

Life insurance provides financial protection for you and your family.   Benefits-eligible employees have basic life insurance coverage equal to 150% of annualized salary.  During Open Enrollment, October 1st-31st, you can apply for additional, optional group life insurance with guaranteed issue amounts for you, your spouse and/or child(ren) without answering health questions.   Approved coverage starts January 1st.   Additional information can be found at here

Important Open Enrollment Dates

October 1-31, 2019


Wednesday, October 16, 2019

  • KU Lawrence Benefits Fair & SEHP Open Enrollment Sessions – Kansas Union 4th Floor.  See additional information here.
State Employee Health Plan Dependent Audit

The SEHP, with the assistance of Claim Technologies Incorporated (CTI), is conducting the annual dependent eligibility audit to re-verify the eligibility of employees' dependents for coverage.  Employees included in this audit will receive a letter like the letter found here.   If employees have questions about returning the requested documents, they can call CTI at 888-220-2445.  (KU's Benefits Office did not receive a list of employees who will receive the verification letter.)

Duo Multi-Factor Authentication

As of Oct. 1, all KU faculty, staff and 3Gs with active appointments must use Duo multi-factor authentication (MFA) to access most KU systems, such as HR/Pay, Blackboard and myTalent. The campuswide adoption of multi-factor authentication marks a major step forward in KU’s efforts to protect student, employee and university data. KU IT and HRM have partnered over the summer to provide information regarding Duo authentication to newly hired staff and faculty. If you aren’t enrolled in Duo, read more about multi-factor authentication and how to enroll at https://technology.ku.edu/ku-now-protected-duo-multi-factor-authentication.

2019 National Disability Employment Awareness Celebration
October 10, 2019, Alderson Auditorium, 3-5pm.

Join our panelists for a conversation on mental health, stigma, equity and inclusion.

Each panelists will share their personal experiences with mental health, academics, and work. Through sharing and conversation, the panelist will broaden and redefine our perspectives of mental health. Panelists will offer suggestions for proactive change that ensures all Jayhawks, potential Jayhawks, family and visitors feel valued, understood, and actively included in all that KU offers. There will be a light reception following the event sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Affairs.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Kansas sponsored events. Communication Across Realtime Translation (CART) and American Sign Language (ASL) will be provided for this event. If you require an accommodation in order to participate, please contact the ADA Resource Center for Equity and Accessibility, by 5:00 p.m. on October 4, 2019

Tuition Assistance Deadlines

KU provides eligible employees with assistance to cover tuition for one class (up to 5 hours) per semester.  For more information about the program to include eligibility, and courses that qualify, please visit the Human Resource Tuition Assistance for Employees webpage

Applications must be received on time.  Application availability and deadlines are as follows:

Spring 2020 Semester: Online Tuition Assistance Application will be available October 1, 2019, and the deadline is November 1, 2019

Summer 2020 Semester: Online Tuition Assistance Application will be made available March 1, 2020, and the deadline is April 3, 2020

Fall 2020 Semester: Online Tuition Assistance Application will be made available June 1, 2020, and the deadline is July 3, 2020

Fall 2019 Staff Professional Development Opportunities

KU Human Resource Management Learning and Development provides a variety of services aimed at improving individual and organizational performance. This includes professional development programming. Listed below are programs taking place on Lawrence campus from October through December 2019. Register through KU’s Talent Development System at mytalent.ku.edu by clicking the links below. All classes are held in Joseph R. Pearson (JRP) 204 unless otherwise noted.


Training Spotlight: LinkedIn Learning with Lynda.com Content


All KU staff and faculty have the benefit of unlimited access to LinkedIn Learning with Lynda.com content through mytalent.ku.edu. LinkedIn Learning provides an on-demand library of 5,000+ courses to further both your creative as well as professional knowledge and skills across a wide range of topics. Getting started is easy, log into www.mytalent.ku.edu, click on the LinkedIn tile, and follow the instructions, or simply just click here. Any questions, contact hrdept@ku.edu.

LinkedIn Learning Course Spotlight: Being an Effective Team Member

It's easy to call out the qualities that make someone a poor team member. But what makes a person invaluable on a team? Learn tips that can help you increase your self-awareness, demonstrate that you're a reliable teammate, approach teamwork more collaboratively, and more.



Aspiring Leaders Program 2020

The Aspiring Leaders Program introduces the essentials of effective leadership to staff who want to lead from where they are within their organization. Those who currently do not have a formal title of leadership and are early in their career are encouraged to apply.

With a program start date of January 9, 2020, 15 staff will be chosen through a competitive process. This unique opportunity requires staff commit to attending all eight sessions over eight months and obtaining supervisor approval to participate. Visit the program website or attend an information session for more details.

Aspiring Leaders Program Information Sessions

Learn about program content, goals, the application process, and hear from former participants about their experiences. Registration requested but not required.

Tuesday, Oct. 1 | 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 1 | 2 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Wednesday, Oct. 2 | 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.

Behavioral Strategies to Achieve Broader Success (new this fall)

*This session is an expanded version of Jeff Chasen’s breakout session during the 2019 Staff Leadership Summit.*

Successful engagement is important on campus and a wealth of behavioral research reveals practical and powerful strategies to help you engage in meaningful ways. Come and learn key behavioral strategies that promote the best outcomes for you (and for all others who engage with you).

Thursday, Dec. 5 | 9 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Building Intercultural Skills Workshop (in three parts)

This series of three workshops offers practical skills for handling confusing situations and building confidence in interactions with KU’s increasingly diverse community. A $20 fee for an online profile is required – contact Alison Watkins for more details.

Oct. 16, 30 & Nov. 13 | 10 a.m. – Noon

Bullet Journal Workshop

Do you ever worry that you’ve forgotten something important? Learn the Bullet Journal Method, which helps optimize your time by creating a record of your past, present, and future and by focusing your energy on what matters most to you. Bring a pen or pencil and a notebook that has 100+ blank pages with you to class.

Wednesday, Nov. 20 | 1 – 3 p.m.

Compassionate Communication Series

Offered through a partnership between HRM and the Ombuds Office.

Level 1: Introduction to Compassionate Communication

Tuesday, Oct. 22 | 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Friday, Nov. 15 | 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Wednesday, Dec. 18 | 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Compassionate Communication includes approaching communication in a way that fosters understanding, connection, and compassion. Approaches include translating judgments into observations, emphasizing needs instead of strategies, replacing thoughts with feelings, and changing demands into requests.

Level 2: A Deeper Dive into Empathy

Prerequisites: Introduction to Compassionate Communication

Tuesday, Oct. 9 | Memorial Union Malott Room | 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

This class is intended to support participants in having a deeper integration of empathy. In a supportive, community environment, participants experience challenge, guidance and support in the practice of empathy and seeing our world empathically.

Level 3: Diving Deep into Feelings and Needs

Prerequisites: Introduction to Compassionate Communication; and A Deeper Dive into Empathy

Friday, Nov. 22 | Memorial Union Malott Room | 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

This class takes us from the very beginning concepts of Compassionate Communication to a deeper understanding of the purpose, meaning and implications feelings and needs have in our lives and in the world. We will practice responding and communicating consciously based on awareness of our own and other people’s needs.

Level 4: Self Empathy (new this fall)

Prerequisites: Introduction to Compassionate Communication; and A Deeper Dive into Empathy; and Diving Deep into Feelings and Needs

Tuesday, Nov. 19 | 9 a.m. – noon

This class is designed to deepen your ability to connect with self and heal your past through the process of self-empathy. Exploring the places where you get emotionally triggered enables you to develop a greater understanding of why you react so strongly, and expands your ability to choose how you respond to the things that trigger you. A variety of self-empathy techniques will be shared.

Special Opportunity: Dance Floors: The Dance of Compassionate Communication (special one-time offering)

Prerequisites: Introduction to Compassionate Communication; and A Deeper Dive into Empathy; and Diving Deep into Feelings and Needs

Tuesday, Dec. 3 | 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

This is a masters class, providing an opportunity to experience Compassionate Communication in real-time. Participants will go through the dance of CC with guidance from the trainer. Dance Floors offer an active, reflective, and practical method of learning and practicing CC.

Conducting Unclassified Professional Staff/University Support Staff and Student Searches

The training provides an overview of equal opportunity principles, university hiring guidelines, and best interviewing practices. Attendance is encouraged for those who plan to chair a search committee and anyone else needing a refresher on conducting staff searches.

Wednesday, Oct. 16 | 103B Carruth O’Leary | 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 29 | 103B Carruth O’Leary | 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. 

Thursday, Nov. 14 | 103B Carruth O’Leary | 10 a.m. – Noon

Wednesday, Nov. 20 |103B Carruth O’Leary |  3 p.m. – 5 p.m. 

Tuesday, Dec. 10 |103B Carruth O’Leary |  10 a.m. – Noon


Registration not required for Lunch-N-Learns. Earn one HealthQuest point for attending. For October, come learn the benefits and/or practice myofascial release using a foam roller and lacrosse/tennis ball. For more information, visit https://wellness.ku.edu/lunch-n-learns

Wednesday, October 2 | Ambler Student Recreation Fitness Center, Conference Room 202 | 12:10 – 12:50 p.m. 

Managing Difficult Conversations

Learn tools to prepare for a difficult conversation. Content based on the 5-step process created by the Harvard Negotiation Project.

Tuesday, Oct. 29  | 9 a.m. – Noon 

Mindfulness in Everyday Life

Learn the essential components of mindfulness and how to incorporate mindfulness skills into your everyday life in order to achieve greater appreciation of the present moment and decreased stress.

Tuesday, Dec. 3 | 9 to 11 a.m.


The Faculty and Staff Wellness committee invites you to take a guided tour of campus locations while earning one HealthQuest point. Registration is required. Fall schedule currently in development. Visit https://wellness.ku.edu/move-n-learns as details become available.

Safe Zone Training (for faculty & staff)

The purpose of this program is to reduce homophobia, transphobia, and heterosexism on our campus, and to make KU a safer and freer environment for all members of our community, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Offered through a partnership between the Center for Sexuality and Gender Diversity and the Office of Multicultural Affairs.

Friday, Nov. 8  | Multicultural Resource Ctr. Room 116 | 1 – 4 p.m.

Monday, Dec. 2 | Multicultural Resource Ctr. Room 116 | 9 a.m. – Noon

Supervisory Training for Excellence in Performance, 2.0 (STEP 2.0)

A 7-week comprehensive program for supervisors of staff. Topics are: hiring process, managing employee performance, compliance, communication, organizational change, counseling and disciplinary action, trust and relationship building, self-management, ethics, handling microaggressions, and addressing sexual harassment.

Thursdays, Oct. 3 – Nov. 14 | 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Unconscious Bias and the Workplace

Learn how unconscious bias negatively affects the workplace, interactions with our colleagues, and impacts productivity. This training is especially ideal for members of University search and selection committees. ​Offered by the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access.

Tuesday, Oct. 8 | 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Yoga on the Hill

Learn to incorporate breath awareness with postures and movement to help focus the mind and relieve physical stress. This is an all levels class. Please bring a yoga mat.

Friday, Sept. 27 | Memorial Union Crossroads Rm. | 12 to 12:45 pm

Friday, Nov. 22 | Memorial Union Crossroads Rm. | 12 to 12:45 pm

Friday, Dec. 13 | Memorial Union Crossroads Rm. | 12 to 12:45 pm

Performance Management System– Self Evaluation Launch and Due Date

In mid-October all staff who are due an annual evaluation will receive an email from the Performance Management System notifying them that the 2019 Annual Performance Evaluation has been launched and the self-evaluation is available for them to complete.  Completion of the 2019 Annual Performance Evaluation will begin with the employee completing their self-evaluation.  The self-evaluation will be due in early January 2020. 

Training is currently being scheduled specific to the 2019 Annual Evaluation Form.  Available training will include:

“Performance Management System - Self Evaluation Hands on Training” - This training class will be held in a computer lab where attendees will be able to go through the annual self-evaluation form in the Performance Management System with an instructor guiding through the evaluation and answering questions.  For more information about this training, please contact hrdept@ku.edu.

Step-by-Step Instructions for the evaluation process as an employee can be found at: Performance Evaluation - Employee Step-by-Step Instructions

Step-by-Step Instructions for the evaluation process as a supervisor can be found at: Performance Evaluation - Supervisor Step-by-Step Instructions

Nominate Exceptional Staff for Employee of the Month
Nomination Deadline: December 1, 2019

The next deadline for Employee of the Month nominations is December 1, 2019.  This is a great way to recognize exceptional University staff members and show your appreciation for their contributions.  Winners receive a $750 award, a surprise visit from a member of the Provost’s Office, and they become a candidate for the 2020 Employee of the Year Award.


Nominations need not come from an individual’s manager or supervisor, anyone can nominate staff whom they feel go out-of-their way to help others or exceed the normal requirements of their jobs.  This program is open to all regular staff with half-time or greater appointment, with a year of service at the time of nomination.  Employees of most affiliated corporations are also eligible for this program. 


To access the nomination form go to Employee of the Month Webpage there, a paper nomination form can be completed or the online nomination form can be completed. 

Nominate Exceptional Teams for Special Recognition
Nomination Deadline: December 31, 2019

Any group consisting of three or more members is eligible for consideration for the Exceptional Team award. The nomination should be based on a project or assignment that is above and beyond the team’s normal course of duties.  Project participants may also be drawn from a cross section of University departments. This year’s nomination deadline is December 31, 2019, and the winning team will be recognized at the Employee Recognition Ceremony to be held in May of 2020. To nominate a team for Team of the Year please complete the Team of the Year Nomination form.

Work Location and New Withholding Taxes

Many states are implementing new state taxes. Therefore, it is important that the HR/Pay system has the correct work and tax location for our employees. Those employees whose work locations are other than Kansas or Missouri must have the proper state and locality reported.  Please verify and update your work location in HR/Pay KU Directory Page: link. For other states, the building codes start with OTH. Please review your paycheck to ensure the correct state tax is being deducted from your paycheck available to you in HR/Pay: link.

New Withholding Tax for Washington and District of Columbia

We have been recently notified by the Kansas Department of Administration of additional tax withholding requirements applicable to the University of Kansas.

  • For those employees who work in the District of Columbia, there is a new employer fringe of .62% which will be assessed on each applicable paycheck. This is for the DC Paid Family Leave Program.
  • For those employees who work in the State of Washington, there is a new employee tax of .04% which will be deducted from each applicable paycheck. This is for the Washington State Paid Family and Medical Leave.
Audit Records and Time Entry

Hourly employees must enter their own time. Hours are entered by using a HR/Pay clock method if temporary or eligible for premium pay; regular hourly non-premium pay employees will enter their total hours worked in quarter hour increments in the HR/Pay timesheet.

All time and absence reporting must be submitted by the end of each workweek at a minimum.  It is important that we have the “employee’s” signature on the time and absence as the audit record.  During the holiday season time approvals may be due earlier, so it is even more important that employees’ time and absence submissions are accurate and completed by the end of each workweek in order to be paid on time.

Employer Fringe Parking Costs

The State of Kansas Department of Administration has notified us they are no longer charging the employer fringe on employees parking deductions.  The fringe was 6.65% based on the amount the employee paid.  (e.g. Employee paid $360 annually, the employer cost would be $23.95 annually.)

Sign Up for Discount on Campus Food and Beverage Purchases

KU Dining Services has worked with Financial Services- Payroll and Human Resource Management on a new benefit for faculty and staff. Now you can sign up for a KU Dining plan through payroll deduction and save 15% on food and beverage services across campus.


Sign up for the $425 KU Dining Plan and conveniently pay through 10 payroll deductions of $42.50 each by filling out this form. You’ll get the full $425 up front to use in all KU Dining locations on campus, and save 15% on each purchase. Want the discount but need a smaller plan? You can sign up for a plan with cash, check or credit card by filling out this form and adding funds starting at just $25. Then, just add more money when your dining funds get low.

Whether you’re grabbing coffee at the Roasterie or sitting down for lunch at Impromptu Café, use the KU Dining Plan to save 15%. For more information or to sign up for a plan.

Flu Vaccine Clinics Offered for Employees

The single best way to avoid getting the seasonal flu is to get vaccinated. For faculty and staff enrolled in the State Employee Health Plan (and spouses enrolled in the employee’s plan), flu shots provided by Watkins Health Services are covered in full as a preventative care benefit.  Flu vaccine will be available while supplies last. Please bring your health insurance card to any Watkins clinic listed below in order to have your insurance billed.  Save time by completing the necessary forms in advance.





Wednesday, October 2

11:00 am 1:00 pm

Strong Hall, Rotunda

Thursday, October 3

10:00 am 12:00 pm

Kansas Union, 4th Floor

Tuesday, October 8

3:00 pm 5:00 pm

Daisy Hill Commons, Lobby

Wednesday, October 9

11:00 am 1:00 pm

Burge Union, Forum C

Thursday, October 10

11:00 am 1:00 pm

Nichols Hall, Atrium

Wednesday, October 16

10:30 am 1:30 pm

Kansas Union, 4th Floor

Thursday, October 17

11:00 am 1:00 pm

DeBruce Center, Mezzanine

Wednesday, October 23

11:00 am 1:00 pm

Wescoe, Underground

Thursday, October 24

11:00 am 1:00 pm

Anschutz Library, 3rd Floor

Tuesday, October 29

11:00 am 1:00 pm

Strong Hall, Rotunda

Wednesday, October 30

3:00 pm 5:00 pm

Watkins Health Center


For KU employees who do not participate in the State Employee Health Plan, flu shots cost $35.  Payment is due at the clinic by cash, check or credit card.  Medicaid, Medicare, and Medicare Supplement plans are not accepted. If this is your coverage, you will need to pay at time of service. 

Employees who are unable to attend a clinic can make an appointment to receive a flu shot by calling 785-864-95651.  The Faculty/Staff Immediate Care Clinic at Watkins Health Center, 1200 Schwegler Drive, also accepts walk-ins from 8 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday.

For additional flu information from the State Employee Health Plan, click here.


The Faculty and Staff Wellness Committee is having a Lunch-N-Learn about Myofascial Release on Wednesday, October 2nd from 12:10-12:50 pm at Ambler Student Recreation Fitness Center in conference room 202.  Melinda Ball will demonstrate how to use tools such as foam rollers and tennis and lacrosse balls to help release tension in the soft tissues of the body through myofascial release. Myofascial Release is a safe and effective hands-on technique that involves applying gentle sustained pressure into the myofascial connective tissue to eliminate pain and restore motion.  Participants will be able to practice these techniques, so wearing exercise attire is suggested.

Safe Drug Disposal Options Available on Campus

KU faculty, staff and students who have expired or unused medications now have a place to safely dispose of them on campus. In an effort to improve safety and help combat substance abuse, DCCCA provided a grant for a secure metal dropbox to be located inside Watkins Health Center Pharmacy.


The MedSafe container can accept controlled and non-controlled medications in pill, tablet or capsule form, as well as ointments, powders, creams and lotions. Liquid medications must be in original containers, less than 4 ounces and sealed in a plastic bag.


Items NOT accepted include sharps containers, needles, syringes, aerosol cans, inhalers, contact lens solutions, personal care products, chemicals, pill organizers, medical devices and illegal drugs.


The contents will be disposed of and properly destroyed using incineration by Sharps Compliance, Inc., which is the Drug Enforcement Administration’s preferred method of disposal. It’s also the most environmentally-friendly way to dispose of medications.

Additionally, you can request a take home drug disposal bag from the Pharmacy staff. The Deterra Drug Deactivation System comes with instructions to place medication inside, add warm water, seal, shake and safely place in your normal trash.

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