Those who have made suggestions so far fall in every category:
58 support staff
25 grad students
10 other (mostly identifying as APOs)
There have been many outstanding and thoughtful ideas. I am inspired by the many heartfelt comments found in the suggestions and the passion that so many of you have expressed for your university.
At this point there are some clusters or themes that are emerging. In no particular order, the areas that have garnered the most suggestions are:
- technology to reduce paper (e.g. electronic time sheets, committee materials, syllabi)
- flex-time options for staff
- pay freezes and pay cuts, mostly for senior administrators, but some suggestions for scaled cuts based on salary, and pay caps for full professors since mandatory retirement is gone
- teaching-track or teaching-focused options for professors
- online teaching elements, including online courses and online lectures with professors focused on small group or discovery learning
- shared and/or centralized staffs, e.g. similar departments sharing a finance/HR person
- optimization of existing technology (broader use of PeopleSoft modules, better training on PeopleSoft, better integration of PeopleSoft with BearTracks, fewer telephone landlines, more/better staff training for Office suite, streamlined financial processes
- technology solution for program tracking for students to see what they’ve completed and what they still need
- FEC process: does it need to be annual? Is it required for a single increment (versus 0, .5, 1.5 or 2.0)? Or is there a better way?
- RSO process streamlining, especially setting up research accounts
- switch from defined benefit to defined contribution plan
- provide opt-out options on health benefits, especially when spouses both work here
The website will be open to suggestions through the end of this month, so please do share your ideas if you have them. We will share suggestions with the community in a way that protects the identity of those who submitted them since they did so with the expectation of privacy. Some steps will be taken immediately and other options will be longer-range; we expect to have a report and some go-forward plans by this fall.
So to those of you who have submitted ideas, thank you. On behalf of the umbrella committee and the working committees, I appreciate your creativity, candour, and passion. Keep those good ideas coming.
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)