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January 2017 Human Resource Management Newsletter

January, 2017
Performance Management System Phase I and II – Self Evaluation Due January 6, 2017

On October 17, 2016, all USS and UPS employees included in Phase I and II of the Performance Management System received an email from the Performance Management System notifying them that the 2016 Annual Performance Evaluation had been launched and the self-evaluation was available for them to complete.  The self-evaluation is due January 6, 2017.  Once the employee completes their self-evaluation in the 2016 Annual Performance Evaluation, the employee will forward the self-evaluation to their supervisor within the Performance Management System.  The entire evaluation process is to be completed by March 1, 2017.

Hands on Training has been scheduled specific to the 2016 Annual Evaluation Form in the Learning Management System.

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

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

State Employee Health Plan (SEHP) – Plan Year 2017
  • Plan Year 2017 for health, dental, vision, and spending accounts will be effective January 1, 2017
  • First premium will be deducted from the paycheck dated January 13, 2017.


Please refer to the 2017 SEHP Benefits booklet for detailed information about plan design changes (page 4) and premiums (page 19; most premiums will increase), and 2017 updates. Please refer to the Open Enrollment email or Benefits for additional information.


Paycheck Deductions
Health insurance elections made during October’s Open Enrollment became effective January 1, 2017.  The first deduction for 2017 will be taken from the January 13, 2017 paycheck.  Please review your January 13, 2017 paycheck to verify correct benefit deductions for 2017 (How to guide). If your benefit deductions appear incorrect, please contact the Benefits Office immediately at benefits@ku.edu and be prepared to provide a copy of your Open Enrollment confirmation printout.


Twelve-month staff will have deductions from 24 checks (the first two checks each month).  When the month has a third paycheck no deduction will be taken.


Prepaid Summer Benefits for Eligible Faculty and Staff

Employees with prepaid summer benefit coverage will prepay your summer health insurance and optional group life insurance premiums during the designated spring semester payroll periods. If you will not be returning to KU in the subsequent fall semester, the prepaid summer deductions will be refunded.

Academic year faculty and staff with positions designated as less than twelve-month will have Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) and/or Health Savings Accounts (HSA) deductions taken from 16 checks (the first two checks of the months of January through April and September through December).  These deductions will not be taken from any other paychecks received during the year.


A memo will be sent to academic year faculty and staff in the Spring about the prepaid deduction schedule.


Health Savings Account (Employee & Employer contributions)

The Employer HSA and HRA contributions will be deposited in four quarterly installments for active employees.  The employer contribution will be based on your enrollment on the 1st day of each quarter.




Paycheck date

1st installment

January 27, 2017

2nd installment

April 21, 2017

3rd installment

July 14, 2017

4th installment

October 20, 2017


The first HSA employee contribution deduction will be taken from the January 13, 2017 paycheck.


Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)
FSAs for calendar year 2017 became effective on January 1, 2017.  The first 2017 deduction for health and/or dependent care FSAs will be taken from the paycheck dated January 13, 2017.


  • NueSynergy will send all accounts a debit card. You may continue to choose other claim submission methods.
  • Eligible claims incurred in 2016 must be filed by April 30th, 2017.
  • Both the Health Care FSA and the Limited Purpose Health Care FSA allow up to a maximum of $500 to be rolled over into the next plan year.


For more info visit www.kansasfsa.com or contact NueSynergy at 855-890-7293 or CustomerService@nuesynergy.com


New Identification Cards:

New ID cards will be issued as follows:


  • BCBS, Caremark, Delta and Surency will send new cards to all members
  • Aetna will send all Plan A members new cards and members who make changes
  • Quest will send cards only to new members or members who make changes in coverage
  • NueSynergy will send all FSA accounts a debit card


*Note:  The BCBS card will have a sticker on it to activate Relay.  The BCBS card will work if the member chooses not to opt-in to Relay.  The SEHP states that BCBS has partnered with Relay, as a trusted and secure mobile customer communication network, to provide an extra level of personalized service.  If you opt-in to use this benefit, you will receive text messages on BCBS plan updates and personal health notifications.  To learn more or to opt-in to receiving periodic text messages from BCBS, call 855-939-5424 or text BCBSKS at 73529.

BrassRing Update for Search Committees

Search committees will now see a new log-in screen when accessing the BrassRing Applicant Tracking System due to a recent upgrade.  In order to access your candidate materials please be sure that you select the link HR/Search Committee Access – Sign In Here link as highlighted in yellow (see below).  This will ensure that you are able to log in quickly and efficiently.  For more information regarding log-in instructions please visit our webpage for details or email employ@ku.edu for assistance.

Nominate Exceptional Teams for Special Recognition - Nomination Deadline: January 31, 2017

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 January 31, 2017, and the winning team will be recognized at the Employee Recognition Ceremony to be held in May.

To access the nomination form go to Nominate Team Award Form.

Nominate the 2016-2017 Student Employee of the Year

There is still time to nominate a student for KU’s 2016-2017 Student Employee of the Year. The deadline for accepting nominations is January 31st. This award was established to recognize student employees who embody service, excellence, dedication, and whose academic achievements remain stellar.


Eligibility criteria

See the online application form.



Departmental supervisors may submit their nominations via an online form. The deadline for nominations is January 31, 2017. Only one nomination per student will be accepted.


Award ceremony and prizes

The Student Employee of the Year nominees will be named during the ceremony on April 11, 2017 at 3:00 pm in the Kansas Union Ballroom. During the ceremony, the winner and four finalists will receive a solid brass Jayhawk. The Student Employee of the Year will also receive $500 and be entered into the National Student Employee of the Year competition. Previous award winners can be viewed online.


All nominees, the four finalists, and the winner will receive a Jayhawk pin and a certificate of recognition.


Call for nomination reviewers

The Student Employee of the Year committee also needs participants, either KU staff or faculty, to review nominations. Each reviewer will read, evaluate, and score a select number of nominations using materials provided by the committee. If you are interested, please submit your name and contact information to seoty@ku.edu no later than January 15, 2017.



Questions about the program can be emailed to seoty@ku.edu.

Search Training Available – Spring 2017

Need to prepare for a student or staff search for the spring term?  Please join us.

Registration is easy.  Visit HRM’s available professional development activities on the Learning Management System to select the search training course you would like to register for.

All staff/student course offerings for search training are in 103B Carruth. The current schedule is as follows:

January 18, 2017 – 9:30-11:30 a.m.

February 14, 2017 – 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon

March 14, 2017 – 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

April 11, 2017 – 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon

April 27, 2017 – 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

May 16, 2017 – 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

We hope to see you there, however if you are unable to attend, HRM is happy to schedule an independent session to cover best practices during the search process.  Contact employ@ku.edu to arrange a training session.

Save the Date!

The 7th annual Staff Leadership Summit “Diversity & Inclusion: Why it Matters” is February 16, 2017.  Keynote speakers will be Michael Wade Smith and Provost Neeli Bendapudi.

The Rosalie Lanier Gray KU Staff Assistance Fund

The Rosalie Lanier Gray KU Staff Assistance Fund was established in 2016 to provide monetary relief to eligible KU staff who experience a qualifying emergency.  You can make a difference in the lives of those staff by donating to The Fund via:



To discuss additional giving options, please contact Lorie Worner, KU Endowment, at lworner@kuendowment.org or 785-832-7340.

Performance Management System Phase III

Training will begin for employees in Phase III beginning January 3, 2017.  Human Resource Management has been working to schedule training on site with departments as well as open sessions for affected employees in Phase III, and online training for those unable to attend in person.  Employees can locate available training using the Learning Management System.  A full listing of the departments in Phase III is available on the Talent Development Project Page under “Performance Management System Timeline Phase III.”

HealthQuest Rewards – Plan Year 2017

HealthQuest is a wellness rewards program that is part of the SEHP. For more information, visit the HealthQuest webpage.  


2017 HealthQuest Program - From January 1, 2017, employees enrolled in the medical portion of the State Employee Health Plan (SEHP) have an opportunity to earn credits by participating in wellness activities offered through HealthQuest. Those who complete a required health assessment questionnaire worth 10 credits and earn an additional 30 credits by December 31, 2017, for a total of 40 credits, will receive the incentive which is a $480 annual discount on the medical plan premium for Plan Year 2018.


Earning Your Credits - Employees and covered spouses can earn credits in 2017 and receive the HealthQuest premium discount. Here are 2017’s Plan A  and Plan C incentive guides.


New Website and Home Mailer – Cerner, the new HealthQuest vendor, will launch its website on January 1, 2017.  A mailer will be sent to all households as well as an email communication (with detailed instructions on how to register and create your account on the new portal).


Biometric Screening - Biometric screening events are being scheduled statewide and scheduling will begin 01/01/2017 using the new HealthQuest website. The upcoming opportunities for KU employees to attend a screening in Lawrence will be: Jan 19-20, Feb 6-7, Apr 4-5, May 4-5, Aug 21-22, Sep 11-12, Oct 5-6, and Nov 7.


Naturally Slim – In January, HealthQuest will release Naturally Slim, an optional, free interactive web based program promoting healthy eating and weight management available to benefits-eligible employees and spouses enrolled in SEHP medical plans.

Enhanced Security – HR/Pay

As communicated this summer, Human Resources, Comptroller’s Office and KU Information Technology were working together to enhance security measures in the HR/Pay system. We wanted to inform you that we have restored the self-service direct deposit services but with additional security measures.


As part of the security measures, you will need to enter your existing bank account before you can delete, change or add an account.  The existing account numbers are masked and the social security number on the W-4 Tax Information page is no longer displayed.  An email will be sent to you upon submission of a change to your direct deposit or W4 tax information.

Our goal in managing KU’s Human Resource and Payroll System is to provide a self-service environment, allowing you to quickly and easily make needed changes, while protecting both you and the university.


If you have questions or concerns about the Direct Deposit or W-4 changes, please contact KU Payroll Services  directly at 785/864-4385 or payroll@ku.edu.  Your HR/Pay Team is available at hrpay@ku.edu or 785/864-0600.

403(b) and 457 Voluntary Retirement Plans

The University of Kansas offers two voluntary retirement savings plans.  While there are no University contributions made to either, the plans help employees supplement retirement income.


  • KPERS 457 deferred compensation plan(all employees may elect to participate)
  • Kansas Board of Regents 403(b) voluntary retirement plan (for benefits-eligible employees only)


For more information, please see Voluntary Retirement Plans, or email benefits@ku.edu.

2017 Pre-Retirement and Financial Planning Seminars

These are a series of seminars designed to help faculty, staff, and their families plan for financial security and an enjoyable retirement.  Reservations are not required and seminars are offered free of charge.  These seminars are not intended to provide individual investment advice.


Seminars will be held in Alderson Auditorium, Level 4, of the Kansas Union:

February 17, 2017 9:00 - noon Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning *
February 17, 2017 1:30 - 3:30 Long Term Care @
February 22, 2017 9:00 - 11:30 Social Security *
February 22, 2017 1:00 - 4:00 Health Insurance After Retirement *
February 23, 2017 8:30 - 9:30 Tomorrow in Focus: Saving for Your Ideal Retirement *
February 23, 2017 9:45 - 10:45 Within Reach: Transitioning from Career to Retirement *
February 23, 2017 11:00-12:00

Paying Yourself: Income Options in Retirement
(This session is for those who have TIAA accounts)

February 24, 2017 9:00-11:30 KPERS Benefits in Retirement *

* Sessions will be streamed live and available for viewing for up to 30 days after event. @ Session will be available for on-demand viewing for 30 days after event. # To be determined if this session will be streamed live

Beginning February 17, 2017, handouts for all sessions will be available on the HRM webpage.  In January, watch for an email from the Benefits Office which will give complete details.

Spring 2017 Wellness Events

Save the date for the Faculty and Staff Wellness Fair on Wednesday, April 5 from 10:30-1:30 in the Kansas Memorial Union Ballroom.


Join us for our Lunch-N-Learn and Walk-N-Learn series this spring.  Lunch-N-Learn topics include gardening and the benefits of massage. For more information visit http://wellness.ku.edu/lunch-n-learns.  Walk-N-Learn tours include wellness services for faculty and staff and touring the Spencer Museum of Art.  For details visit http://wellness.ku.edu/walk-n-learns.


Ambler Student Recreation Fitness Center is offering a free week trial to KU faculty and staff between Monday, January 9-Sunday, January 15th.  Attend January’s Walk-N-Learn to learn more about Recreation Services programs and facilities.

Watkins Health Services Updates

Massage Therapy

Massage therapy is just one of the many services that faculty and staff can access at Watkins Health Services. A variety of options are available including medically ordered therapy, Swedish, deep tissue and more.  You’ll find the faculty/staff rates to be very affordable. Appointments can be made by calling 785-864-9507.  Gift certificates may be purchased for a co-worker or spouse from Watkins Business Office.


Walk-Ins Welcome at Immediate Care Clinic

Faculty and staff who develop flu symptoms or an achy back during the work day may be seen at the Immediate Care Clinic (ICC) on campus.  Watkins Health Services provides accessible and quick medical treatment for KU employees on a walk-in or appointment basis.  Walk-ins are welcome weekdays from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm when classes are in session or 8:00 am to 3:30 pm when classes are not in session.


The clinic provides treatment for common illnesses like colds, coughs, sore throats, sinus infections, ear aches, pink eye, rashes, bites, headaches, stomach aches, urinary discomfort and minor cuts and abrasions (non-work related).  For convenience, ancillary services like lab work, x-rays, immunizations and prescriptions are also accessible onsite.  Employees still need to have a primary care provider for preventive and on-going care and treatment of chronic conditions. Work related injuries are managed by Lawrence Memorial Hospital as the University’s approved provider.


KU affiliated corporations may also use the ICC.  Family members, former faculty and staff and retirees are not eligible for care.  Co-pays are collected at time of service and claims are submitted to most insurance companies with the exception of Medicare or Medicaid.  For questions or to schedule an appointment, call the ICC at 785-864-9565.

Weight Watchers at Work Program
Meetings held at KU Endowment Building, West District

Join us for Weight Watchers At Work any Thursday at 11:30 a.m. at KU Endowment, 1891 Constant Ave. This Weight Watchers group meets in the privacy of the student call center at KU Endowment in West District (free parking!).  Meetings include a private come-and-go weigh in from 11:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. and a 30-minute program that begins at 11:30 a.m.  For more information, contact Lori Blaylock, coordinator, at 785-832-733726 or lblaylock@kuendowment.org or Kim Stewart, leader, at 785-213-5760 or kimberly.a.stewart@weightwatchers.com .

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