New performance management program to launch soon

It’s about time … time for meaningful conversations. Time for setting goals. Time for employees to have a voice in their professional development.

Time to get rid of the old SRDP system.

Over the last several years, the Penn State Office of Human Resources, along with University leadership, thousands of staff members from a variety of campuses and units, and Sibson Consulting, a strategic human resources firm, have worked together to re-engineer the performance management program for Penn State’s approximately 10,000 full-time staff members.

“Finding a way to improve performance management at Penn State has been an objective of the Office of Human Resources since late 2010,” said Susan Cromwell, director of Workplace Learning and Performance. “Our goal was to develop a fair and consistent tool that would promote a more positive, future-focused approach toward work, regardless of one’s work unit or campus location.”

Developed following a series of focus groups, questionnaires and an extensive pilot, the new performance management program, YOU@PSU, will launch next month. It aims to align employee goals with University goals while ultimately supporting opportunities for employees to grow professionally.

“The SRDP system simply had to go,” said Susan Basso, vice president for Human Resources. “It didn’t accomplish what the new system is designed to do: honor the valuable contributions staff members make to this University. YOU@PSU can be embraced by supervisors and employees at all levels because it was co-created by a comprehensive cross section of people. The collaborative spirit with which the program was developed has resulted in a trustworthy process that truly gives all individuals the opportunity to evaluate their roles and have a voice in what they accomplish.”

With regular and meaningful communication between supervisors and employees, a more proactive goal-setting system, and an improved recognition and reward program, YOU@PSU encourages full-time staff members to perform at their best levels.

“We heard the difficulties people were having with the SRDP system, and we’ve worked to address them,” explained Stephanie Flanagan, senior coordinator for Performance Management in the Center for Workplace Learning and Performance. “YOU@PSU is designed to bring positive change by ensuring that performance management at Penn State is championed by leadership and owned by employees with their supervisor’s support."

“By listening, collaborating, testing, and refining, we have developed a system that helps equip supervisors and employees alike with the skills and tools needed for effective performance discussions, goal setting and recognition,” said Basso. “YOU@PSU will form the foundation for more effective staff development, succession planning and other talent management processes.”

More information about the launch and roll-out of YOU@PSU will be coming soon. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Stephanie Flanagan within The Office of Human Resource’s Center for Workplace Learning & Performance:; 814-863-4614.

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Last Updated August 13, 2014