University Statements


Employee Survey Update

September 30, 2013

Dear Colleagues:

Over the last two years, our colleagues in the Employee Assembly and the Division of Human Resources have worked diligently to address the four university-wide issues identified in the staff survey conducted in Fall 2011: workload, career development and growth, supervisor feedback, and recognition of excellent work.

Local initiatives in the colleges and units, such as new supervisory feedback tools, employee recognition programs, and rotational programs, have gained traction, and a variety of initiatives have been implemented university-wide. You can learn about the measures already underway at https://www.hr.cornell.edu/about/employeesurvey/

In May 2013 the Employee Survey Review Team (ESRT) and its employee-led subcommittees submitted a new report of recommendations to Vice President Mary Opperman and me that further responds to the four concerns identified in 2011 survey. The recommendations were vetted by employees in several open forums conducted by the Employee Assembly earlier this year. Mary Opperman and I reviewed the report with senior leadership, the HR community, and college and unit business officers. For the full report and our response, please see: https://hr.cornell.edu/about/employeesurvey/es_response.pdf

I commend the Employee Survey Response Team (ESRT) and its committees for their hard work and their thoughtful recommendations for change. In response to an Employee Assembly resolution, and to continue the momentum, the Provost and I have asked each dean and vice president to report on efforts to respond to the employee survey each year in their annual reports.

In the words of the ESRT, "Beneath all of these recommendations is an emphasis on creating a culture at Cornell where we say thank you to one another, provide open and honest feedback, look for ways to grow our existing staff, and have a positive work/life balance all across campus."

Please join me, members of the ESRT, and those who staffed the subcommittees, in working together to address the concerns of our staff, while enhancing the teaching, research, scholarship, creative work and public engagement that make Cornell one of the world’s great research universities. I hope to see many of you in Bailey Hall on Oct. 1.

Best regards,

David J. Skorton