Inside Rensselaer
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A Word From Human Resources
HR Policy Manual Revised

Since Rensselaer’s founding in 1824, the Institute’s business environment and workforce have evolved. Over the years, the pace of change in higher education has been the motivation for a number of legislative changes in labor and employment law. As an employer, we work to ensure that Rensselaer’s Human Resources policies are poised to encourage innovative solutions for our leaders to proactively and realistically respond to the internal demands of our employees, students, and external stakeholders.

Several years ago, we developed HR policy guidelines that encouraged all leaders to embrace fair treatment as a foundation for their decision-making. Most importantly, it is essential that our workplace policy guidelines are shared with faculty and staff to ensure that the strategic linkage between Rensselaer’s mission, vision, and the Institute’s day-to-day operations are aligned.

The Division of Human Resources has recently revised the HR guidelines in a way that is more strategic, flexible, performance-oriented, and employee-centered. Both the content and concept of policies have been updated to reflect relevant changes in labor and employment law. We hope that these new changes will continue to provide leaders with guidance to establish ground rules regarding employee conduct and performance, on matters related to harassment, affirmative action, business ethics, use of e-mail, recruitment, promotion, transfer, separation, rehire polices and workplace conduct rules, and methods for addressing complaints and resolving disciplinary issues.

Workplace guidelines allow Rensselaer to guide operations without constant management intervention. The Human Resources Policy Manual now provides many benefits to Rensselaer employees that will offer individuals more freedom to carry out their jobs and make decisions within defined boundaries, as well as provide employees with a better understanding of their job constraints without having to use a “trial and error” approach. Additionally, the new guidelines provide our leaders with procedural direction to ensure that decisions are ethical and legal.

Later this month, the updates will be shared with the provost, portfolio vice presidents, and academic deans. The information will also be available for all faculty and staff to view on the Division of Human Resources website.

To provide the campus community with an opportunity to review the guidelines and address any questions regarding the new revisions, the Division of Human Resources will schedule educational sessions during the upcoming months to educate leaders, faculty, and staff. We appreciate your patience and understanding during this process.

Curtis Powell, SPHR
Vice President for Human Resources

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Inside Rensselaer
Volume 5, Number 3, February 18, 2011
©2010 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
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