Alcalá View 1996 13.3

Doing What We Do More Efficiently By Jill Wagner University officials recently made their

Benetits Briefs

the athletic department needing the infor- mation. Human resources personnel wou ld then be more accessible to customers seek- ing individual attention. Streamlining and adding new technology will necessarily change some job descriptions, Brooks says, and the university is fully pre- pared to invest in the retraining of employ- ees. The new computer training room in Maher Hall will be integral to that effort. Gardepie is beginning his work with the telecommunications resale department, which handles the billing for every phone on campus. An outside company currently processes the bills and Gardepie is helping to bring the work in-house, which could save the university up to $70,000 a year. At the same time, he is completing an invento- ry of the various business practices across campus for a report to the board of trustees and vice presidents in February. With his report in hand, the vice presi- dents will set a priority list of which depart- ments to work with next, Gardepie says. The analysis, though, is not something that will be rushed. It could take years. "Some changes will be very complex," Gardepie says. "It takes time to gather the proper input and build consensus." For more information, Gardepie can be reached at ext. 4822 in Maher 120. Leave the Cooking to USD's Catering Are you looking forward to Thanksgiving but not the hours it takes to prepare a tradi- tional turkey dinner? The catering depart- ment has the answer! Nona Janus , catering manager, and her staff are cooking up a storm and invite USD employees to order a comp lete holiday din- ner or individual items from an extensive menu. The dinner includes a who le roasted turkey, stuffing, whipped potatoes, cranber- ries, sweet potato souffle, gravy, rolls and pumpkin pie. Individual menu items include anything from the dinner, soups, side dishes and desserts. Orders must be made by 3 p.m., Nov. 21. Food will be available for pick-up between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., Nov. 27. Watch campus mail for a flier with a complete menu, prices and order form. For more information, call Nona at ext. 4560.

USO announces the fol- lowing changes to 1997 med- ical and dental coverage: Health Net Select will replace the PruCare Plus medical plan. Delta's PMI and DPO/ Traditional plans wil! replace Prudential's dental coverage. USO will continue to carry Kaiser medical coverage. Coverage will become effec- tive Jan. 1, 1997. All USO employees must make open enrollment selections this year. This year USO is introduc- ing an automated telephone enrollment system called BenefitLink, available 24 hours a day from any touch- tone telephone. Open enroll- ment will not be held in Salomon Lecture Hall. All employees must now enroll by calling BenefitLink. Open enrollment instruc- tions and publications will be distributed through campus mail on Nov. 4. The enroll- ment period is Nov. 11 through Dec. 4. Insurance companies will not accept late enrollments. Read all of the open enroll- ment information carefully. During the enrollment period you may select health and/or reimbursement accounts, or you may choose to waive health coverage for 1997. Beginning this year, you may also make selections for vol- untary AD&D coverage, or the taxing of long-term dis- ability benefits. 1996 health and depen- dent care services must be performed on or before Dec. 31 , 1996. Claims for 1996 ser- vices must be submitted for payment before March 31 , 1997. Due to Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, November and December claims must be submitted to human resources at least 10 work days before the pay- check date. Last-minute claim requests may not be processed in time for payroll. If you have questions, call Vicki, ext. 8764, Esther, ext. 8762, or Debbie, ext. 4456. - Vicki Coscia

first move to begin an extensive analysis of the school's business practices by appointing Larry Gardepie, formerly assistant director of human resources, to head the project. Gardepie will work with departments to evaluate where technology can be used more efficiently and thus make employees better able to serve customers (i.e., students or other employees). Known in the corporate world as business process re-engineering, the endeavor now under way on campus had it beginnings in the university's strategic plan. The overrid- ing goal of the plan calls for providing a col- lege education without pricing the average family out of the market, according to Fred Brooks, vice president for finance and administration. "That brings you to a discussion of how to do what we do for less money, but without changing the nature of the university," Brooks says. He and Gardepie are quick to note the intention is not to downsize or eliminate jobs. "We don't have extra people around here," Brooks says. "Instead of having people embroiled in paper work, we need to have them relating to students and employees." Gardepie will work as a facilitator, first guiding the departments through an evalua- tion of their job processes, then helping the employees decide how to run the office more efficiently. His background in human resources will help him work with individuals and his knowledge of business software will help in applying new technology to stream- line department functions, Gardep ie says. Administrators close to the process emphas ize the need to eliminate duplicate processes by making the same information available to all offices through a computer network. A student's address, for example, is currently taken every time the student fills ou t a new form or visits a different office. Ideally, that information would be available to any office with a computer, saving the student and employee from processing data that is already in the system. The same sort of technological streamlin- ing can be utilized in human resources, says Judith Mufi.oz, director of the department. A centralized recordkeeping system would allow quick access to emp loyee data, whether it's a supervisor, payroll, benefits or

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