Probationary PeriodEmployees who are newly hired, re-employed, promoted, demoted, or laterally transferred serve probationary periods, unless otherwise governed by contract provisions. Senior-level executives, senior-level professionals, and certain AAPs do not serve a probationary period. Probationary periods typically last from three to six months — normally not exceeding 12 months. A probationary period allows an employee time to become familiar with the basic responsibilities of a new position and lets the supervisor assess job performance. During this period, employees are encouraged to talk frequently with their supervisors about job responsibilities, performance, and expectations.
Results of the probationary period may be reported as successful completion, extension of the period, or termination of employment. The Employment at Will policy remains in full effect during and after the probationary period.
Performance Evaluation and Merit IncreasesGeorgetown officials understand that the University thrives when it attracts, retains, and motivates highly qualified employees who are dedicated to the University’s mission. Georgetown’s leaders also believe that the community is most productive when its members tell one another what they are doing well and what they could improve upon.
Employees and supervisors should communicate throughout the year about the employee’s job performance. Formal written performance evaluations for all employees are conducted at least annually (mid-year reviews are recommended), and merit increases, if any, are tied to evaluations at the end of the fiscal year.
During the annual performance evaluation meeting, the supervisor and employee discuss the employee’s performance over the past year. The supervisor and the employee each offer reviews of the employee’s contributions to the department’s goals and the University’s mission, as well as areas in which the employee could improve. The completed evaluation becomes part of the employee’s personnel record. Merit pay raises are recommended based on the employee’s overall performance; the salary range for the position; the appropriate salary level considering the employee’s performance; and the availability of salary funds.
Disciplinary Actions and DismissalIn order to achieve their goals, both the University and individual departments set expectations for employees regarding job performance, time and attendance, and conduct. Employees are responsible for meeting these expectations and for understanding that failure to meet expectations may result in disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.
The purpose of discipline in most cases is to help employees improve poor or declining job performance, time and attendance problems, or unacceptable conduct. In many instances the University will attempt to address these issues by following a system of progressive discipline, which typically includes the following steps:
- Counseling by the supervisor
- Written warnings
- Disciplinary suspension for conduct issues
Certain violations and infractions, as determined by the University, including, but not limited to, performance or conduct that is harmful to the University, insubordination, failure to follow University policy, dishonesty, theft, vandalism, physical assault, falsification of University records, or other illegal activity may be sufficiently serious to suspend the normal progressive disciplinary process. Under these circumstances, any step in the disciplinary procedure may be used, including dismissal without prior discipline.
By establishing these procedures, the University does not waive or limit its right to terminate employment with or without notice or cause. In addition, employees need to remember that the Employment at Will policy remains in full force and effect at all times. The progressive discipline policy does not apply during the probationary period or to senior level executives or senior level professionals.
Dispute ResolutionThe University has established a procedure for dispute resolution to promote positive employee/management relations. This systematic review process may be used to help resolve certain allegations of inappropriate treatment or actions. Information is posted online at http://hr.georgetown.edu/employment_services.
Employees are strongly encouraged to discuss and solve problems with their immediate supervisors or department heads. If the issue cannot be resolved within the department, employees may contact the Human Resources Department to initiate the dispute resolution process. The process must be initiated within 30 calendar days of the disputed event.
All employees are eligible to use the dispute resolution process except:
- Newly hired, probationary employees;
- Employees covered by a union grievance procedure;
- Senior-level executives and senior-level professionals;
- Professional librarians covered by the faculty grievance procedure; and
- Temporary or special employees.
Employees who believe they have been subject to harassment or discrimination should contact the Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity, and Affirmative Action at http://ideaa.georgetown.edu. The office hosts educational programs, offers mediation services, and handles grievance procedures, according to University policy.
Union Organizing ActivitiesGeorgetown will follow the procedures established by the National Labor Relations Board concerning union organizing activities in the workplace. The University will exercise its right as an employer to help employees obtain adequate information upon which to base a decision to accept or reject union representation. The University will strive to respect the rights of employees to vote for or against union representation, without intimidation, unjust pressure, or hindrance in accordance with applicable law.
Union solicitation activities may be conducted on non-working time in areas of the University that are not immediate patient care areas. Distribution of written materials may be conducted on non-working time in non-working areas. Distribution of written materials in work areas is prohibited at all times unless otherwise approved in advance.