SU’s Human Resources wins prestigious award
SU’s Human Resources wins prestigious awardNovember 05, 2002Cynthia J. Moritzcjmoritz@syr.edu
Syracuse University was selected by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), CNY chapter, for its HR Excellence Award, presented Oct. 22 at the Hotel Syracuse. SHRM is nationally recognized as the premier HR organization and strategic partner to member organizations on workforce issues. The annual award ceremony honors the top four small, medium, large, and giant Central New York companies (based on number of employees) that best demonstrate a commitment to progressive HR practices. In the giant company category, SU’s competitors were Lockheed Martin, Loretto, Penn Traffic Co., Turning Stone Casino Resort and Welch Allyn Inc.
Under the leadership of Associate Vice President for Human Resources Neil Strodel, a team representing the different functions within Human Resources was formed to solicit and document information for the application. Team members were Lisa Brennan, Cathy Bottari, Eboni Britt, Janna Nelson, Lori Sliwa and Pam Socker. By immersing themselves in the application process, team members expanded their knowledge of the HR profession as well as current SU HR practices.
The effort was highly collaborative, as many University departments submitted statistics and information supporting SU’s position as a strategic leader in HR practices and policies. In its application, Human Resources showcased its distinctive programs, including the HR Service Center, staff diversity training, the Fair Wage Initiative and the New Approach to Staff Compensation.
“This recognition by our peers is extremely gratifying and highly motivating,” says Strodel. “We have come a long way in the past few years, and will continue to plan strategically and innovatively in the areas of work life and employee practices.”
“This is a terrific accomplishment and a testament to how well our HR staff performs,” says Senior Vice President for Human Services and Government Relations Eleanor Ware. “An award such as this is not won by individuals; it is the result of exemplary teamwork, and HR is such a team.”
The criteria used by SHRM for making the award include:
- Use of metrics
- Manner in which core values are articulated and disseminated throughout the company
- Results of the strategic management of human resources as evidenced by exemplary retention rates and low turnover
- Strategic use of all communications channels
Workforce Planning and Employment
- Strategic use of outsourcing during staff crunches
- Establishment of schools and training programs
Human Resource Development
- Annual talent review
- Knowledge network
- Comprehensive training and development program, designed for all levels of employees, including senior management
Compensation and Benefits
- Focus on maintaining competitiveness and taking specific actions to realign the salary structure
- Alignment of the incentive compensation plan with company and personal performance
Employee and Labor Relations
- Wide variety of programs directed at improving employee relations and facilitating an exceptional work environment. High CEO involvement in the programs.
- High adaptability to a diverse workforce, i.e., producing videos and conducting benefits meetings in languages other than English if appropriate.
An emphasis on occupational health, safety and security are also required.