Previous Suggestions

Previous Suggestions


Add Parking

Suggestion summary

Take steps to ensure that everyone’s day begins with convenient parking. Replace any parking spaces we remove. Consider building a parking ramp.

Response

We agree completely that everyone’s day should start with an available, convenient parking space, and we strive to make that happen. We also work hard to replace every parking space replaced by construction of new buildings. Of course, some of these new spaces are a little more distant than formerly, but again we strive to locate new lots as conveniently as possible, while balancing other campus needs such as green space and common gathering areas.

We have extensively researched the idea of a parking structure; however, that option is not compatible with our efforts to keep parking costs as low as possible. Ramps are just too expensive. We believe that our resources are most efficiently directed to enhancing alternative transportation modes to reduce the number of cars on campus and hence make parking more available and convenient.

Boost Employee Morale

Suggestion summary

Take steps to boost employee morale and raise expectations.

Response

Given the current economic and political climate, boosting employee morale is not always easy to do.

Still, the division regularly looks for ways to improve the morale of the units and employees, as do department heads, supervisors, and others. Our picnics, open houses, newsletters, and departmental events are just a few of the ways we come together to create a supportive community.

Improving morale and raising expectations are goals we should all contribute to. When you see someone who could use a boost, consider constructive ways to help get them back on track. And if you have ideas that might help your unit or the division raise

Train a Backup Locksmith

Suggestion

Train a back-up locksmith who can step in when the locksmith is not available.

Response

This is a good suggestion and one that Physical Plant plans to implement. We’re working on it.

Offer Tuition Discounts

Suggestion summary

Offer a tuition discount for employees and their families.

Response

Tuition discounts for employees and families would be a fringe benefit that would have to be negotiated as part of the pay plan. To enable the discounts, UW System would need to work with the Board of Regents and the Office of State Employment Relations. UW-Stout and other UW campuses ask the state of Wisconsin to consider this benefit each biennium.

Even without the proposed tuition discounts, UW-Stout offers some related perks. Employees are often eligible for tuition and fee reimbursement. Contact HR for additional information.

Provide Training on Headquarter City Form

Suggestion summary

To avoid problems with headquarter city forms, provide training to anyone new to a position that would need to fill out a headquarter city form.

Response

We provide training to employees attending the Travel/General Ledger/Accounts Payable Edge session or if they contact Jenn Nichols (232-3286, nicholsje@uwstout.edu) for help. We also have a web page that explains the form: http://www.uwstout.edu/bfs/travel/hqcity.cfm.

In addition, we will talk to Human Resources personnel about introducing the Headquarter city form during New Employee orientation.

Distribute the ASLS newsletter electronically rather than printing it.

This is a good idea, with green implications. But we’re not quite ready to stop the presses. We print the newsletter because many people prefer to read a paper version and because some people rarely get a chance to view it online since their jobs keep them on the move.

However, the newsletter is available digitally (via email or http://www3.uwstout.edu/asls/news.cfm), so we each have the option of forgoing the printed version. To remove your name from the hard-copy distribution list, just email the newsletter editor, Tom Dye, at dyet@uwstout.edu and let him know whether you want the newsletter via email or simply want to access it on the web.

Communicate guidelines for dealing with bloodborne pathogens (BBPs).

UW-Stout’s Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control Plan is available to all Stout employees and students. It was designed to help eliminate or minimize occupational exposure to BBPs in accordance with OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910.1030.

The plan, and related training, focus primarily on personnel—such as Police Officers, Health Care Workers, Custodians, and Athletic Trainers—who have, or may likely have, occupational exposure. However, the plan also includes universal precautions.

When it comes to disinfecting affected work areas, Physical Plant custodial personnel provide clean up in non-emergency situations, and Stout Police handle emergency situations.

Place waste-receptacles in more logical locations.

Waste receptacles should be positioned to maximize availability while balancing the ergonomic and logistical needs of those who must empty the receptacles.

This year, we started a co-mingle program for recycling waste for both interior and exterior spaces. This program addresses student requests and is environmentally friendly, but it requires larger receptacles that may be in different locations than in other years. As with any new program, we need to work out the kinks, which might include location issues, and improve the processes. If you have specific suggestions, please contact a custodial supervisor at extension 2200.

Consider alternative ways to staff work areas.

Whenever staffing decisions need to be made, we try to “think outside the box” and consider all the factors.

Staffing decisions are based on many things, including the workloads of current personnel, task analyses, anticipated needs, and more. Our management team strives to make the best staffing decisions possible, given the current and anticipated situations. Of course, we not only try to allocate our resources in the most logical and efficient ways but also try to hire the best candidates to meet the challenges we face.

We are always open to detailed, constructive suggestions, of course.

Collect graduation fees when students apply for graduation.

We’re happy to announce that we hope to put this improvement into action with the Spring 2011 graduating class.

In the past, we couldn’t have made this change because we had to wait for the Registration Office to accept an application before we could bill the student. As a result, we were dependent on students accessing their accounts and making payments after the acceptance.

But by the end of this academic year, we plan to do things differently. Thanks to new software and ASLS employees who envisioned a better way of working, we expect to collect fees when students apply for graduation—an improvement that should avoid surprising students with unexpected fees prior to graduation, save the university money, and save ASLS employees time.

Include custodians and maintenance staff in building design.

ASLS makes a sincere effort to ensure that upkeep is a key consideration in design choices, but that doesn’t mean we can’t do an even better job sharing information and getting input from the people who keep our buildings looking good and working well.

To that end, construction design projects always include representatives from the Physical Plant, so custodial and maintenance needs are reflected in the design. In fact, the representatives often question material and design choices with custodial care or maintenance in mind.

In addition, the design process offers several opportunities for other custodial or maintenance representatives to provide input, such as during open forums for Program Revenue projects, stakeholder listening sessions with design architects, the 35% plan review, the 35% plan-review feedback meetings, and the 95% plan review. In these sessions or in others, they review selected materials and finishes, discussing care processes, asking questions, providing feedback, and, in some cases, suggesting alternatives that enhance upkeep while still meeting design needs.

Of course, designs must always strike a balance between function, aesthetics, upkeep, cost, and more. As a result, compromises are inevitable. But, with a little teamwork and understanding, the results should be satisfying to all concerned.

Enhance communication across the division.

We’re taking steps to enhance communication now, developing more emails, taking a fresh look at our online resources, and considering new & improved ways to share news and build teams.

Keep sending us suggestions, and we’ll keep our thinking caps on.

Note: Suggestions of a more personal nature are not included on this website. Such suggestions are forwarded to the responsible parties to be handled on an individual basis.

Thank you for the suggestions!

Keep them coming!